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How to Have a Personal Spiritual Revival | Refreshment

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
May 27, 2022 3:00 am

How to Have a Personal Spiritual Revival | Refreshment

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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May 27, 2022 3:00 am

Somebody asked the great evangelist Dwight L. Moody why he said that he needed to be continually filled with the Holy Spirit. He said, “Because I leak.” When it comes to having a passionate relationship with the Lord, we have to continually refresh our passion, because we all have a slow leak. And today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie helps us see where we are in that relationship with the Lord, and take the proper steps to re-energize our faith, fervor and fidelity to the Lord.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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You're listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by Harvest Partners. For more ways to deepen and challenge your spiritual walk, enroll in Pastor Greg's free online courses.

Sign up at Do you need a personal spiritual revival? Coming up today, Pastor Greg Laurie invites you to pause for a few moments and take stock of where you are in your relationship with the Lord. Was there a time in your Christian life when your passion for Christ was stronger? Was there a time in your life when you read God's Word more faithfully and were involved in church more than you are now? Was there a time when you shared the gospel more? If so, you need a personal spiritual revival. Somebody asked the great evangelist Dwight L. Moody why he said he needed to be continually filled with the Holy Spirit.

He said, because I leak. When it comes to having a passionate relationship with the Lord, we have to continually refresh our passion because we all have a slow leak. And today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie helps us see where we are in that relationship with the Lord and take the proper steps to re-energize our faith, fervor, and fidelity to the Lord. Today we are back in the book of Nehemiah and we are in Nehemiah chapter 7. So tune in there with me.

The title of the message is How to Have a Personal Spiritual Revival. You know when you look back at the late 60s and the early 70s there is a lot of parallels between then and now. I have read a lot of interesting articles lately about this noting how similar they actually are. It was a nation that was divided back then. Racial conflict. A drug culture. Things were very dark.

But listen to this. When things are really dark God's light can shine brightly. And I think we are due for another Jesus revolution. Listen to this description from the 1971 edition of Time Magazine talking about the spiritual awakening.

I think they really captured what was going on. It is a style that is inconceivable in our own day. I can't imagine reading this in Time Magazine today. But here is what they said. Quote, Jesus is alive and well and living in the radical spiritual fervor of a growing number of young Americans who have proclaimed an extraordinary religious revolution in His name. The article continues.

Their message. The Bible is true. Miracles happen. God really did so love the world.

He gave His only begotten Son. Bibles abound. Whether the cherished fur covered King James version or scruffy back pocket paperbacks they are invariably well thumbed and often memorized. There is an uncommon mourning freshness about this movement writes Time. A buoyant atmosphere of hope and love along with the usual rebel zeal. But their love seems more sincere than a slogan. Deeper than the fast feeding sentiments of the flower children. And what startles the outsider is the extraordinary sense of joy they are able to communicate. End quote. Isn't that great. Sounds like a revival to me.

And it was. Let me make a distinction between two words that are often used interchangeably. Revival and awakening.

Here is what it comes down to. America needs a spiritual awakening. The church needs a revival. An awakening is when God sovereignly pours out His Spirit and it impacts a culture. That is what happened in the Jesus revolution.

That is what happened in multiple spiritual awakenings in the history of America predating us being established as a country. But a revival. That is what the church must experience. It is when the church comes back to life.

When the church becomes what it was always meant to be. It is a returning to passion. I think many times we overly mystify the idea of revival. And we don't really need to because another word I could use for revival is restoration. Restoration. Restoring something to original condition. You know if you see a cool old car cruising down the road restored to showroom condition you think wow that is beautiful. Someone took time to do that. That can happen in a life as well.

Not just when the model first comes out but you can keep it beautiful and keep it in perfectly restored condition. That is what the church needs. There is a man named R.A. Torrey. He was a friend of D.L.

Moody. They used their initials a lot in those days. Anyway R.A. Torrey a great preacher and an evangelist in his own right who traveled around and spoke a lot and led a lot of people to Christ made this statement.

And I find it interesting. He says quote, I can give a prescription that will bring a revival to any church or community or any city on earth. Here is what Torrey says you need to do. Number one. First get a few Christians. They need not be many. Get them thoroughly right with God. This is a prime essential.

If this is not done the rest of what I say will come to nothing. So number one. Get some people who are willing to get right with God. Number two. Let them bind themselves together in a prayer group to pray for revival until the heavens open and God comes down.

Number three. Let them put themselves at the disposal of God for Him to use as He sees fit in winning others to Christ. That is all that is sure to bring revival to any church or community. I have given the same prescription around the world writes Torrey. It has been taken by many churches and many communities and in no instance has it ever failed and it cannot fail. End quote.

Let's review. Get right with God. Get together with other Christians and pray for revival.

Number three. Make yourself available to God especially in winning souls. See we can do that. Now that spiritual awakening.

That outpouring of the Spirit. That is up to God. We can't organize it. But we can agonize for it in prayer. And we can call upon God to send it.

But then let's just get out there and do these practical things that He recommends. Well before us here in Nehemiah 8 is a national revival. I love this definition of revival. I am not sure who said it. But let me quote it.

Quote. Revival is when God gets so sick and tired of being misrepresented He shows up Himself. Isn't that great? God gets so sick and tired of being misrepresented He shows up Himself. But before we talk about revival here in the book of Nehemiah let's start with a few lists. A lot of us have lists right now. God has lists too. Let's just say that God is a stickler for detail. And He also keeps very careful books.

Listen to this. Everything you say and do is recorded by God in heaven. And here is some good news. Every person who believes in Jesus Christ has their name recorded in heaven. Every Christian who believes in Jesus Christ has their name written in the book of life. So I don't know what you are going through today but just remember this. If you are a Christian your name is written in the book of life. And that is a big thing.

It is. One day the disciples of Jesus came to them and they were all excited because He gave them power to cast demons out of people. So they are talking about how wonderful it was. Jesus says, guys listen don't rejoice because you can cast out demons but rejoice because your names are registered in heaven. Now I don't know when this happens. I don't know if God writes our name in the book way way back before we are even born because He knows who will believe in Him and He knows who will not. I don't know if it happens when I believe in Jesus at that very moment. But I am confident of this. Once you have asked Christ to come into your life your name is in the book. And listen it will never be blotted out of the book.

It is secure. Your salvation is secure in Christ. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. It's such a blessing to hear from listeners who take time to express their appreciation. Pastor Greg, magnificent. This is just one of the words that enters my thoughts after completing your book Revelation a Book of Promises. It has never taken me so long to read a book because I was just absorbing the information contained in each and every chapter.

I kept saying to myself I'm so glad I won't be here when the tribulation happens. Pastor Greg I love your preaching and I listen to you on the radio into your podcasts. I'm sending you a very big thank you. And I'm so happy that God blessed you with the calling to preach to his followers. We're so grateful to hear of the changed lives through the books and resources of Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries.

If you have a story to share why not contact us and let us know. Email Pastor Greg. Greg at harvest dot org.

Do it today would you? Again that's Greg at harvest dot org. Well today Pastor Greg is presenting a message called how to have a personal spiritual revival from the book of Nehemiah.

Let's continue now. I think when we come to portions of the Bible like the genealogy of Christ or a list like this we kind of skim over it. For starters it's hard to pronounce all those names. But why does God record them? Because they matter. These are people that matter to him.

People that contributed to the success of the rebuilding of the walls. So we come to Nehemiah 7 and we have a list of people and what they are doing. But now it sort of shifts gears because we are going now to Nehemiah chapter 8 as well. We are going to look at the spiritual awakening. But listen. First they had to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.

They were getting Jerusalem ready for a big event to come. When God is at work He looks at the big picture. We tend to look at the small one. We are myopic. We see what's in front of us.

We see what's troubling us. God is looking down the road. What He is going to ultimately accomplish. God was getting Jerusalem ready for the day when God incarnate would walk their streets. God incarnate would be born in the manger in Bethlehem.

God incarnate. Jesus Christ would go into the temple there in Jerusalem. Jesus Christ would teach in the streets of Jerusalem. And ultimately Jesus Christ would be crucified outside the walls of Jerusalem. So these walls had to be built.

But here is now that list. Nehemiah 7 verse 1. "'After the wall was finished and I had set up the doors in the gates, the gatekeepers, the singers, the Levites were appointed. I gave the responsibility of governing Jerusalem to my brother Hanani, along with Hananiah, the commander of the fortress, for he was a faithful man who feared God more than most.'" So now the walls are done and Nehemiah appoints some people to take care of business. His brother Hanani and Hananiah. They were faithful to God the Bible says. And they also feared God.

Listen to this. The greatest ability is dependability. Again the greatest ability is dependability. Are you a dependable person? See Nehemiah knew he could lean on these guys. He knew they would get the job done. There are several people I know.

Many of them work here. And there are certain people I know that if I give a task to it is done. I don't have to think about it. I don't even have to ask how it went.

It is done and it is going to be taken care of because that is a dependable person. Other people are like, oh we can't do this. There is this problem.

And they come back with all the. Hey you know what. Can you get a job done? So God is looking for people that can take a task and complete it. And He is looking for people who are faithful in the little things. You want to be used by God one day?

Would you like God to call you into some form of service? That is a good thing to aspire to. Take care of the little things right now. Do what is in front of you right now. Because Jesus said, if you are faithful in the little things you will be faithful in the large things.

But if you are dishonest in little things you won't be honest with greater responsibilities. See everybody had a part to play in this wall building project. Many of them rebuilt the wall near their home. Everyone was vital. Because if there was a breach in any part of the wall it was penetrable.

And they needed to keep the wall secure. The same is true of the church. We all have a role to play. Not all of us are called to be Hananias or Hananias. Some of us are Nehemiah. Some of us are someone else. But we all have a part to play finding, developing, and using the gifts that God has given us in the church.

Now we shift gears to Nehemiah 8. And a new person emerges. He has been there all along. But now we are going to find out more about him. He has his own book. His name is Ezra. He is a priest.

And he is now leading this great revival. Nehemiah chapter 8 verse 1. When the people assembled with unified purpose at the square just inside the water gate they asked Ezra the scribe to bring out the book of the law of Moses which the Lord had given for Israel to obey. And on October 8 Ezra the priest brought the book of the law before the assembly which included the men and the women and the children old enough to understand. He faced the square just inside the water gate. From early morning to noon he read aloud to everyone who could understand.

And the people listened closely to the book of the law. And Ezra the scribe stood on a high wooden platform that had been made for the occasion. And to his right stood. And there are a bunch of people that stood to his right and left.

And I will let you review those names later because I can't pronounce all of those names. And Ezra stood on the platform in full view of the people. And when they saw them open the book they all rose to their feet.

We will stop there. So this was a full blown revival. What is revival? It is restoration. What is revival?

It is waking up from sleep. It is waking up from sin. So what are some signs of revival? Well according to the text we will be looking at.

Number one. You know you are having a revival when people are hungry for God's Word. Again you know you are having a revival when people are hungry for God's Word. Let me personalize that for you because the title of this message is how to have a personal spiritual revival. You know you are having a revival when you are hungry for God's Word. Are you hungry for God's Word today? I hope so.

That is a good sign if you are. These people were hungry for God's Word. And Ezra is the one bringing it to them.

Now he has always been a part of this narrative. His book parallels the book of Nehemiah. When the Jews were originally released from the captivity of Babylon they were led by Ezra and they rebuilt the temple. So things started out well but people had cooled off a little.

The passion wasn't really there as it should have been. The walls were in total disarray and ruin and rubble. So God touches the heart of Nehemiah the king's cupbearer who leads the second wave of people. And as the walls are rebuilt the people are revitalized.

And they are inspired by it. And old Ezra was just waiting for what the Lord would do. He had been praying. He had been studying the Word of God. Ezra 7.10 says that he studied the law of God to practice it and teach us standards in Israel.

And he had been praying. Ezra 9.6 says Ezra prayed, "'O my God, I am utterly ashamed. I blush to lift up my face to You, for our sins are piled higher than our heads and our guilt has reached to the heavens.'" Now you know when you look at the godly Ezra there is not a lot of sin to identify there. But yet he is saying our sins. And this brings up a very important point. Revival starts with you.

It is easy to say those people are compromising. What about their sins? Hey what about you? What about me? It starts with me in realizing that God wants to revive me personally. Before there can be a revival in the church there must first be a revival in you. Here is my question. Do you need a personal spiritual revival? You say, well I don't know.

How can I tell if I need one? Let me ask you a few questions. Was there a time in your Christian life when your passion for Christ was stronger? If so you need a personal spiritual revival. Was there a time in your life when you read God's Word more faithfully and were involved in church more than you are now? If so you need a personal spiritual revival. Was there a time when you shared the gospel more? In fact you looked for opportunities to engage people with the message of Jesus Christ. If so you need a personal spiritual revival.

Because these are signs of someone who has left their first love. Pastor Greg Laurie with good counsel today about reevaluating our lives and having a personal spiritual revival. And there's more insight coming as he continues this study here on A New Beginning. Pastor Greg I have a copy of your new book called Lennon, Dylan, Alice and Jesus which we're making available right now. Let me read something from your book if I may. It's in a section talking about Prince. And you write, contrary to popular belief adversity is not the greatest test of character overnight success is. Just ask Des Dickerson who was Prince's dazzling lead guitarist from 78 to 83.

He said this, fame was like this vertical take off and suddenly there are more people around you. Oh we have roadies now? Oh we have bodyguards now? And they're there for a reason too. We experienced many riots.

We couldn't walk down the street and they had to cordon off the floor of our hotel. What that does to your head is beyond description. And what it does to the human psyche is a whole other thing. There's this internal mechanism that unconsciously begins to take form and your equilibrium gets so skewed that you find yourself doing and saying things that aren't you. And then get this, he says, you become your own press release. I thought that was very telling.

Yeah that's very insightful and that's written by someone who knows what they're talking about. And think about Prince himself. I mean this incredibly talented man died of a drug overdose.

I mean so many have died of drug overdoses. You would have thought that Prince would have said, hey my friend Michael Jackson died this way. Hey Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin died this way. Hey Chester Bennington died this way. He actually took his own life.

I don't want to die that way but that's exactly how he died. And I think people take drugs to numb the pain because they just don't know how to live with this altered state of reality they find themselves in. They need Jesus. And I think so many people look to these rock stars saying, oh I wish I was them. No you should not wish you were them. But you have your challenges.

You have your pressures. And really Christ is the answer for everyone. He's the answer for the rock star. He's the answer for the unknown person. He's the answer for the billionaire. He's the answer for the person that doesn't have two pennies to rub together. He's the answer for every man, every woman, every boy, every girl, every person. So I've written this book to say no one is beyond the reach of God. Don't stop praying.

Don't give up on these people. You know I think about electronic dance music DJ Avicii. His real name was Tim Bergling. Avicii had global success. Thousands of people would come to his rave concerts and thought he was the greatest thing ever. But Avicii was a young man who according to his parents was searching for peace and the meaning of life. Tragically he began to drink extensively and his liver was failing and the doctor told him he had to cease and desist from drinking or he would die.

He's still a very young guy. And then he made somewhat of a recovery and retired from his career and then ended up taking his own life in the worst way imaginable. But I think a lot of these guys are searching for peace and meaning. Why are they here on this earth? And really we all are when you get down to it.

Except these people have had all the success this world offers and have realized how empty it is. I explore the lives of a lot of rock stars past, present and ones that are emerging on the scene right now. So it's not just about rock music.

It's just about this. Don't take the wrong course in life. Don't think that things will fill that void in your life or a career will do it or success will do it or sex will do it or any other thing. What you really want, what you really need is a relationship with God. And we have a lot of rock stars that we talked to for this book and we interviewed that will tell you that from personal experience. As always, Christ is the answer.

Yeah, yeah, that's right. So many reasons to dig into this spiritual biography of rock and roll. It's actually a group of short biographies, several dozen musicians and artists and what we can learn from their lives. It's fascinating and a great tool to help you share your faith.

Let us send you Lennon, Dylan, Alice and Jesus. It's our thank you gift to those who can partner with us right now so that these daily studies can continue. Your donation also helps us reach out with the gospel as we did just a few weeks ago at Boise Harvest. So contact us today. Our phone number is 1-800-821-3300. We're always ready to take your call 24-7.

That's 1-800-821-3300. Or write A New Beginning, Box 4000, Riverside, California 92514. Or go online to You know, there's nothing like curing the Word of God and worshiping the Lord together. I want to encourage you to join us for something we call Harvest at Home. It happens every Saturday and Sunday at You can join Christians literally from around the world as we worship and we study the Word of God together. So join us for Harvest at Home at Well next time, more counsel on how we can have a personal spiritual revival, including special insights on the danger of sin and how to resist it in our lives. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher, Greg Laurie. The preceding podcast was made possible by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God. Learn how to become a Harvest Partner, sign up for daily devotions, and find resources to help you grow in your faith at
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-13 14:04:25 / 2023-04-13 14:13:52 / 9

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