A Divinely Empowered Church – To Save A Dying World!
By Fred D. Jarvis
If there was a time when we should search our hearts and examine our ways that time is now. This is a day of moral and spiritual power failure. In spite of God’s call for His children to be courageous conquerors, many are spiritual casualties.
There is more to being saved than being saved. The spiritual decline and destitution round about us must be challenged. We must recover the secret of our lost power. Too long we have been cursed with cold ceremonies, spiritual stagnation, and dead religion.
If there ever was a time in which we needed revival, it is now! Only men with a deep passion for souls can save this world from death and destruction.
The number of faithful and deeply spiritual Christians is admittedly small. The marks of maturity are too few. How we need a new intensity of faith and depth of devotion. Bargain counter religion never counts.
Too often we have softened our message and lowered our standards. We have tried to adapt ourselves so much to the world that we have become absorbed by the world. Attachment to Christ is the only way to have detachment from the world. God wants the first fruits and not the leftovers of our lives.
A Woe in the Heart, a Go in the Feet
May God help us to recover the fire and zeal of the early church and to do our best to meet the emergency of the hour with the urgency of the Gospel. Our relevant Gospel is the only answer to a lost and reeling world.
The Gospel makes a total difference in a man’s life from within and without. The early Christians did not have their own program or policy to promote. They had a living Lord to proclaim. Their attitude was that every heart without Christ was a mission field and that every Christian was a missionary. They had a woe in their hearts and a go in their feet. There was nothing casual or nonchalant about the early saints. They turned the world upside down. They lived the truths they preached.
Only those who are willing to lose themselves can save the world. The lost can only live as we Christians are willing to die. The world will not be won until they see more of Christ in us. There is a tremendous difference between halfhearted and wholehearted Christians. The Gospel is not just to make nice people nicer. It is a demanding, dynamic, revolutionary, life-changing experience. Half-won, half-convinced, halfhearted Christians will never impress anyone with their brand of Christianity.
We must act as if we believe that men are lost, that souls are going to hell, that the lost need the Gospel. There is something radically wrong with a Christian who can sit in the pew Sunday after Sunday and feel no burden for the lost or urgency about the Gospel.
Away with lip service and half-heartedness! The need of the hour is for Spirit-filled, missionary-minded, soul-winning Christians. We need something more than the power of propaganda and the power of organization. Only the power of the Holy Ghost can shake the world and turn it back to God.
How sad that many Christians are cold and calloused. May God help us to renounce our worldliness and unconcern. May the fire of heaven fall upon us. Churches, choirs, music and money, preachers and organizations are not enough. Without the power of God, men are doomed to death and damnation.
Get into Orbit for God
It is time to break the chains of inertia, to sweep silence, indolence and laxity aside and get into orbit for God. The sight of sinking souls must move us to action and concern. We are not our own. We must put ourselves and our substance at God’s disposal. We must be loyal to Christ and conscientious in the discharge of our duty to the lost. We need Christ-like Calvary love for the lost. We must go if we would sow, and weep if we would reap. Christ’s “Go” is the sublimest order ever given on earth. Our supreme aim must be to share the living Christ with a dying world.
The time has come for action, involvement, and a serious effort on the part of every child of God to make Christ known to the utmost extremities of the earth. To give ourselves to Him in a general way is not enough. Vague talk about missions will never do. We must not be confused and uncertain about our purpose.
There should be no question about the priority of missions. We cannot be neutral about the matter of soul-winning and world evangelization. The world is largely unreached with the Gospel and we must do something about it!
May God give us a new full vision of Himself that will make us a menace to the devil. May God give us more fire-baptized prophets and God-anointed soul winners. There must be a universal conscription of God’s people. The teeming millions need to hear of our redeeming Saviour. We have no right to make the Great Commission null and void. Oh, the shame of wasting our time and talent! It is wrong to rob God of our money, influence, and time.
A Burning, Bleeding World Needs Burdened, Burning Men
Only a church on fire will win a world on fire. Let us bend our best energies on saving souls at home and abroad. Too long we have chosen the side of comfort and ease. May God help us to sweep aside all that would stain or soil our souls. May He clear the cobwebs from our hearts and help us to rescue the lost and dying. It is time to throw out the lifeline and press forward for God. The world will only listen when we have something to say. It will be moved only as we are moved.
Revival is the answer to the missionary problem. It is only people who sustain a close relationship with Christ that seem to care much about the lost. People who walk with God know the power of prayer. Saints who saturate their souls with the Word of God are automatically missionary-minded. We cannot be rightly related to the Lord and wrongly related to missions.
Christ’s cause demands maximum surrender, total obedience, and wholehearted commitment. The early Christians first gave their own selves to the Lord. They did not “live unto themselves, but unto Him who died for them, and rose again” (2 Cor. 5:15). God can do His best in us and through us as we yield ourselves completely to Him.
Oh, that men would personalize and internalize these truths! The deeper we go, the more living water we find. People often say that they are waiting for God to move, but God says He is waiting for us. “And there is none that calleth upon Thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of Thee...” (Isa. 64:7).
A spiritual awakening is the only satisfactory answer to world evangelization. Deep love for souls, implanted by the Holy Spirit, is the only thing that will drive out our love of ease and self-indulgence. The Gospel cannot go farther until Christians go deeper.
Sacrificial giving and going will only follow spiritual living. When revival comes we will not have to urge Christians to obey the Great Commission. We will lengthen our cords as we strengthen our stakes. There is a vital relationship between missionary success abroad and the spiritual life of the church at home.
Revival will sweep away indifference, formality, selfishness, and fruitlessness. It will invariably put missions in its proper place and priority. Oh, that revival and prayer would become a passion with us! Our frigid souls need a new flame of Holy Ghost fire!
The Fire Must Fall Again!
Revival will never come until we reach a place of spiritual desperation. It is time for us to pay the full price of Pentecost. The need for worldwide empowerment and revival is urgent. The fire must fall again. God has promised to give us the desires of our hearts. Let us believe and pray, sacrifice and give, surrender and obey until “the Spirit be poured upon us from on high, and the wilderness be a fruitful field, and the fruitful field be counted for a forest” (Isa. 32:15).