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How to Discern Revival

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown
The Truth Network Radio
February 14, 2023 5:10 pm

How to Discern Revival

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown

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February 14, 2023 5:10 pm

The Line of Fire Radio Broadcast for 02/14/23.

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So, how can we discern whether something is really revival? It's time for The Line of Fire with your host, biblical scholar and cultural commentator, Dr. Michael Brown. Your voice for moral sanity and spiritual clarity. Call 866-34-TRUTH to get on The Line of Fire. And now, here's your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Welcome friends to The Line of Fire.

Michael Brown here. This is going to be a rich, productive, edifying show, one that I trust you'll be able to go back to and find very, very helpful. I'm coming your way again from Kona in Hawaii at the University of the Nation's base for YWAM. I'll be teaching the rest of the week, so we are audio only.

Again, for those watching on Facebook or livestream, just picture my smiling face. Here's a number to call if you'd like to weigh in. 866-34-TRUTH, 866-348-7884. As there are reports of revival at Asbury and other places, how do we know it's real or not? How do we know if something is genuinely revival? Should we give it a name like that as things are unfolding? Is that something that should only be done years later looking back?

What are concerns that you might have? 866-34-87884. Alright, because the word revival itself is not found in the Bible, it's a concept in the Bible. And in the Hebrew, there's a verb that's used, so it's to make alive again. And you have that sometimes translated as revive, as in Psalm 85.6, revive us again, or a similar verbiage in Habakkuk 3.2.

These are great revival passages from the Old Testament. But you don't have the word revival itself. So many people have different definitions of revival. We all kind of describe the same phenomenon, but I'm going to give you my working definition of revival that I've used for probably the last 25, 30 years. Revival is a season of unusual divine visitation resulting in deep repentance, supernatural renewal, and sweeping reformation in the church along with the radical conversion of sinners in the world, often producing moral, social, and even economic change in the local or national communities. Let me give that to you again.

Revival is a season of unusual divine visitation resulting in deep repentance, supernatural renewal, and sweeping reformation in the church along with the radical conversion of sinners in the world, often producing moral, social, and even economic change in the local or national communities. This is something that I can speak to you about with some degree of authority. In other words, this is something that I've had lots of life experience in over a period of years. This is something that I've studied intensely over the years. This is something that I've gotten to interact with in terms of other leaders with experience as well as historians over the years. So this is not just theoretical. This is not just abstract. There are other areas where if I address them, they're theoretical because they're not part of my life experience or I haven't studied them with intensity. This is something I've both experienced over a period of years in my life in several different settings.

This is something that I'm a firsthand witness to. This is something that I have studied with some focus over the years, so I believe I can be of real help here when we discuss revival. How do you discern whether something's really revival or not? When does it reach that level that it is clearly a season of unusual divine visitation that will be marked, that will be memorable, that will bear lasting fruit? How do we know? We understand that God moves differently through history. We understand that God moves differently in different cultures. We understand that every move of God will have its own unique character. Just like when God spoke through the prophets, even though it was Koamah Adonai, this is what the Lord has said, even though he spoke directly through the prophets, it was N'um Adonai, utterance of the Lord, or Pi Adonai, the mouth of the Lord has spoken. Even though that was the case, the fact is, the words came out differently through each prophet. The words sounded different. The vocabulary was different because the light was shining through different refracted windows, you could say, and different shaded windows, and therefore had the unique flavor and character that God wanted through the unique person. So we understand that there are differences, and yet there are similarities.

There are things that happen in Scripture, there are things that happen through history, and when you have been around with this for a while, just like areas where you have experience, you can spot things more easily, right? I am car ignorant. I know the car that I drive, I know how to get it from place to place, I know a few basic things about it, but if they said, oh, you got this problem with the engine, you got this problem with the transmission, I'm clueless about it. But someone that's an expert car mechanic, you drive in, they're here to go, oh, you got this.

Yeah, or I could see the way the car handled, you got this. They recognize it immediately. An experienced doctor, the same thing, you come in and say, yeah, you got this. It's clear, the symptoms are clear.

You have no idea what it is. So when you are familiar with something, you can recognize it more easily. And over the years, you know, you hear lots of claims about revival, this and that. Okay, well, there are characteristics. Even though things are going to be different in every setting, there are characteristics. And generally speaking, when suddenly I begin to hear reports about something very unusual and supernatural and intense happening, and it is marked by extended meetings in the presence of God, it is marked by repentance and confession, it is marked by believers getting transformed, it is marked by the gospel going to the lost as well, when these things are happening. And then, as I'm hearing the good reports, the amazing reports, the incredible reports, as I'm hearing all of that, I'm hearing critics attacking, this is not from God and it's controversial. That gets my attention.

I wonder, could this be real? Because generally speaking, you're going to have these various characteristics. And I'm going to get very specific in a little while. But I just want to give you a little history here. Before the Brownsville Revival began, Father's Day of 1995, and it was that distinct when God moved supernaturally there and the revival lasted for roughly five years, began to wane towards the end. But I'm talking about something where the lines would form 12 hours before the doors would open, which was another hour before the service started. You know, Pastor, think of this. Your people stroll in 5, 10, 15, 20 minutes late into the service, right? And here people are getting on lines 13 hours before the service started, and then the service would last 5, 6 hours most nights of the week. And this went on for years, with no advertising, because the revival will advertise itself.

As Leonard Ravenhill used to say, you don't have to advertise a fire. So God moving in these distinct ways and the hunger, the thirst being so intense, but I knew it was close. I knew it was close.

I knew something was at the door. So the last book that I wrote that came out right before Brownsville, it came out March of 1995. So obviously I'd finished it the previous year.

It came out March of 1995. And the closing words of the book were, are you ready? It was called From Holy Laughter to Holy Fire America on the Edge of Revival. And I drew a picture at the end of Niagara Falls and the intensity of standing under the falls, a place you could stand under there, and it's an extraordinary experience of an extraordinary phenomenon. And as that water pounded, I thought, oh, this is a picture. This is a graphic, physical picture of revival. I painted that picture at the end of the book as a picture of revival, and then I ended with, are you ready?

I knew something was at the door. And look, there are people, God gives them dreams. They have a dream of something that's going to happen in advance. That's virtually never the way God speaks to me.

There are other people that the Lord will give them a word, and on, you know, three months from now, this is going to happen. That can happen. It certainly can happen. It's generally not the way things happen with me. What happens with me is I begin to sense something. I begin to see it in my inner eye. I begin to know it. And then when I see the signs of it, maybe like the doctor who recognizes the symptoms, I can recognize something's here, something's close, something's at the door. So it's not so much by revelation as much as by spiritual observation. And again, there are things you'll see before I see because that's where you're gifted.

That's where you have experience. So I knew something was ready to burst, and when Brownsville began, okay, this is the beginning of the thing I've been praying for. It was 11 months into the revival before I could actually get here. Eleven months. Steve had invited me down, oh, five, six months earlier, but Steve held the evangelist there, my friend. It was months more before I could actually get there. So the revival was 11 months in when God called me there and called me to serve as part of the leadership and raise up the school of ministry, et cetera. But the very first night I knew this is the beginning of the thing I've been praying for.

Again, at that point, it was 11 months in. At that point, tens of thousands of people had already professed faith in Jesus or had come back to the Lord. Overall, over the five years that the revival ran, it was, well, recorded people coming to the altar at that one church building. So different people, because their names were entered in a database, different people who responded to altar calls, so that would include believers getting right with God, that would include backsliders coming back to God, that would include the lost being saved for the very first time. Over 300,000 different names of people responded to the altar calls.

So by this time, 11 months in, there were many thousands, tens of thousands who had responded. The fruit was there. But during the worship, there was that unique sense of the presence of God in an unusual way. If you've been in thousands of church services, you know, okay, the Lord's moving, wonderful. There's his fellowship with him in prayer that's wonderful that we experience on our own, but then there are these seasons of intensity and, okay, that was happening, that was happening. And then knowing how many people had been gotten right with God and Steve showing me some of the testimonies, this one transformed, this one transformed, and watching the exuberance of their worship and joy, I knew, okay, this is the beginning of the thing I've been praying for.

God was moving powerfully in other places, this is where he had brought me the beginning of the thing I had been praying for. How about now? How about now, can we say that we are getting close to, or that revival's already here, or what's happening at Asbury now, six days straight in, can we say it's God? I want to play a clip for you. This was posted at the beginning of February, around February 2nd, so I believe 12 days ago now. This was posted on YouTube calling for a collegiate day of prayer at Asbury, referring to the outpouring that took place 50 years ago. This was posted about five days before the Spirit fell at Asbury.

Right, let's play clip number one. Fifty years ago, something extraordinary happened on one college campus. I thought I had seen everything, but today I saw something that I have never seen before. It started at 10 o'clock yesterday morning, it didn't end at 11 o'clock yesterday morning, it didn't end at 11 o'clock last night.

In fact, as Jim and I took the air, it was still going off. It all started when one student gave his testimony. That was followed by another, and the testimonies have been going ever since. And as it spread, people began coming in from all around. Something happened to me as a teenager where God moved in the inside of me and set me on this trajectory of following him. This is what has happened to so many of us, and this is what we need to see happen in this generation of college students.

Someone got on their face. I believe with all my heart that people prayed for me, and now I love him at my age. It's the church's responsibility. God, would you show your mercy on him, on her, just the way you did with me? Because this is their only hope. We need him to change their hearts so that they can change the direction of our nation. We're asking you, please join us. Join us for this day of prayer. Join us in praying for these young people.

Believe that God can usher in something new through the power of our prayers. Join us on February 23rd, live from Asbury University. Lord, do it again. It's The Line of Fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on The Line of Fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks friends for joining us on The Line of Fire, 866-34-TRUTH. This call for prayer, for awakening on college campuses, was planned out, obviously months in advance, to be held at Asbury College, February 23rd. This particular YouTube clip was posted about five days before the Spirit fell at Asbury College, talking about the outpouring that began 50 years back in 1970, and that ignited campuses, ignited young people around the country. That doesn't get your attention? That doesn't make you say, whoa, I almost get goosebumps hearing this.

Francis Chan talking about how his life was transformed during those times as a teenager, etc. So this is another way of God getting our attention. And there was a call for corporate prayer at Asbury College for an awakening across the nation on college campuses and with young people, obviously building on decades of prayer, people crying out. And now, and now, before it even happens, the Spirit falls dramatically, unexpectedly?

Let me just give you this update. This is from, oh, only a little over three days into the outpouring at Asbury. And one of the professors there said, hey, we're seeing students, buses of students coming from, so this is over three days ago, buses of students coming from Anderson University, Bethel University, Mishawaka, Campbellsville University, Eastern Kentucky University, Georgetown University, God's Bible School, Cincinnati, Indiana Wesleyan University, Lee University, Midway University, Mount Vernon University, Ohio Christian University, Olivet University, Oral Roberts University, Ohio State University, Purdue University, Southern Wesleyan University, Spring Harbor University, Taylor University, Trevecca Nazarene University, University of Kentucky, United in Ohio, and University of Cumberland.

And who knows how many others have come since then. And as happens in revival, people go because God's doing something unusual in a particular place. They go either they're encouraged by what they see that builds their faith, or they go and they themselves are impacted. They go they themselves are ignited or they come to repentance and they bring it back with them.

It's happened through history with revival. So I don't need to go anywhere. Well, obviously, just you and the Lord on a certain level, you can get everything you need on a certain level. But why are we part of local fellowships?

Because we need to be around other people and we learn from them, we receive from them, we give to them. You say, well, that's just local church, this is different. Well, why do you go to a Bible conference? If you have the Bible, you and God, why do you go to a Bible conference? Why not just you and God and the Word? That's enough. On the one hand, we have everything we need in Him. On the other hand, He works through the entire body.

So if He's choosing to move in a particular place, wonderful. Be blessed, refreshed, encouraged, strengthened, encounter God on a deeper level, and then go back home and plow the fields. You don't have to.

You certainly don't have to. But I can't imagine teaching against it. I would teach against people becoming, quote, revival junkies, where they go from place to place to place to place to get a new spiritual high. Absolutely. But if God's moving somewhere, you want to witness it, you want to see it, you want to be encouraged.

Maybe you bring young people and they see other young people be in touch, like, wow, it frees them. All right. In November, I wrote an article titled, I See Thousands of Holy Fires Across America. I had no question whatsoever that God was beginning to pour out His Spirit in powerful ways. And we were gonna see thousands of places all over America, churches left and right, meetings left and right, tent meetings left and right, with God moving, with God moving.

I absolutely knew it was coming. And just to give you further encouragement, then we're gonna get to brass tacks, how we evaluate what is and is not revival. I want to play clip number two for you. This is from the Line of Fire broadcast January 30th. So again, this is before revival broke out at Asbury. But I want you to hear what I was saying on the radio January 30th.

Let's play clip number two. Further word of encouragement. And the main thing I want to just take a few minutes to share with you. I wrote an article a few weeks ago, about a thousand holy fires that I saw coming across America. I've been feeling for years now, just just in my gut, I couldn't tell you exactly why, but just in my gut, that the next outpouring that we see in America and the next revival movement won't be primarily like Brownsville, where people flock from around the world in America, or another city congregation in another country where everyone just came flocking. But rather, here in America, I see this so clearly in my heart, my mind, hundreds, thousands of holy fires, meaning thousands of churches burning bright.

Maybe not on that full intense level like you saw at Brownsville, which can only be sustained for a period of years. But a deep, powerful outpouring with radical conversions, with people being dramatically touched, with lives being dramatically changed. I mean, I've seen it so clearly in my heart, in my mind's eye, in my spirit. And as I'm traveling to more and more places, I'm seeing more and more places where there's a tremendous emphasis on prayer and fasting, where the Holy Spirit is given free rein to move, where young people, this is one of the biggest signs, young people flocking, I'm talking about on fire, flocking to the meetings, new converts being baptized, great worship. I'm seeing this in church after church across America. Now, I'm not in thousands of different places, obviously. I'm out here and there and every month going to different places. But as I've been going to one new place after another or places I've been to before, where it seems the tide is rising, I believe that we are in the early stages of the first waves of the next revival movement in America.

Let me say that again. I believe that we are in the early stages of the first waves of another revival movement in America. I believe that the tide will continue to rise. I believe that more and more churches will be seeing an outpouring. I believe that more and more churches will be seeing young people flocking.

I believe that more and more churches will be seeing radical, dramatic, beautiful, wonderful conversions. All right. So is that clear enough, friends?

Is that clear? Do you think perhaps that I have some credibility with you? Do you think perhaps that we've got a track record that you can say, OK, Dr. Brown, you seem to have some spiritual sense on this?

Look, it's one of our goals to function as sons of Issachar, understanding the times and understanding what Israel should do, right? Understanding what's happening and how do we as God's people respond? And let me also point out young people flocking.

We keep talking about young people flocking, young people flocking. Something has been going on. I then get two calls, texts yesterday from two pastors whom I know, one that I've had somewhat of a mentoring role in recent years and another that I've just gotten to know more recently, a man in the 60s. I've been in both of their churches, one of them last month and the other one in November, seeing firsthand what God is doing.

And they both sent me these reports. We had an incredible move on Sunday. The Holy Spirit fell dramatically on Sunday. One pastor saying the two services, 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., just merged into one service because people didn't leave in the first and people getting dramatically saved. There's an atheist coming on stage saying, I go here with my wife. I'm an atheist and God told me I'm supposed to be up here and give my life to Jesus.

He said it's very uncomfortable but he said it in my ear loudly. I need to give my life to Jesus. I'm an atheist and spontaneous baptisms after the service.

One after another after another. And then accounts of miraculous healing and just this glowing voicemail and Facebook testimony and further information. And then this other pastor, he said we just had hundreds of people filled with the Spirit and spontaneous baptism. Same word, spontaneous baptism.

So it wasn't planned but people just wanted to get right with God or make a public confession in baptism, a public profession in baptism. And then he said there was a woman who was blind in one eye. She was healed during the worship, glaucoma blind in one eye and healed during the worship. Friends, God is moving. And then I heard from another pastor who said that he heard from bunches of churches where the Spirit fell on Sunday. Something is happening, friends. For those who have eyes to see, for those who have ears to hear, for those who have hearts to believe, something is happening. If you say, man, it's so dry and dead where I am, be encouraged.

God is moving. Share testimonies with your flock. Encourage fellow leaders. Why not us? Why not here?

Why not now? If you make room, if you open your hearts, if you open your minds, God will come. Friends, let me encourage you. Visit our website, askdrbrown.org, A-S-K-D-R brown.org. Type in the word revival and you will see many, many articles, videos, free resources. And then in our bookstore, in our online store, many books are written on revival. So we've got tons of free resources. Free resources. We've got other things you can purchase. Take advantage of these. You will be blessed. We are here to help you and equip you.

I want to play a clip on the other side of the break from Jim Garlow. He's an Asbury grad. He's in touch with senior Asbury leadership about what's happening there. And he's talking about a very intense D.C. prayer meeting that you want to hear about. I want to share an on-site report from Professor Craig Keener who sent it to me last night, his comments on what's happening. And then we will get into the specifics from here on as to how to discern whether something is really revival or not. As I mentioned, my resources.

Remember, our newest resource about to be released early March, but we'll get it to you before then. Why so many Christians have left the faith, responded to the deconstructionist movement with unshakable, timeless truth. Is the Bible still relevant? Is our message still applicable to society?

How do we deal with the shifting sands that we live in today of our culture? This book will open your eyes, help equip you, and it's a great way for you to support our ministry as well. We'll sign these. These are exclusive pre-orders through us, numbered, signed individually to you.

It's a way you can support our ministry, help the line of fire spread around the nation, and a way that you can really get edified and blessed. So here is the number to call. 1-800-538-5275. 800-538-5275. Or go online, AskDrBrown.org.

Just click on store and you can take advantage of the special offer. Alright, we're going to continue to dig in to the subject of how to recognize, how to discern revival when it's really coming. We've got a powerful clip to play for you, some great quotes. We're digging into the teaching of Jonathan Edwards.

Stay right here. It's the line of fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks friends for joining us on the line of fire as we talk about how to discern revival. So far I've been talking about when you see things happening in a culture, where you see things beginning to move in the church, you get a sense of God at work. I said yesterday that God came as a refiner's fire and brought up to the surface in the last two, three years, brought up to the surface in America. So many of the sins of the church doesn't do it to embarrass us, but to cleanse us.

The impurities are brought to the surface by the fire. So many scandals, and I don't say this to throw stones at people. We all stand by God's grace, but so many scandals and the failed prophecies and the political divisions in our midst and the way certain churches responded to COVID and better and worse than others, et cetera.

A lot came up to the surface. God's brought us to deeper humility, deeper contrition, recognizing we can't do it. We fail.

We fall short. Not today giving more of a sense of things you look for, things you sense that are beginning to happen and you recognize, okay, this is God. This is a move of God. So Professor Craig Keener, one of the world's foremost New Testament scholars and as deeply grounded in the Word as any human being I know on the planet, also a lover of God, lover of the Spirit, and he teaches at the seminary. So I asked him last night, I said, hey, give me something I can share with my listening and reading audience.

He said, the Bible doesn't use the word revival in our usual sense today, but it does talk about outpourings of the Spirit. And that's what we've been witnessing at Asbury. Many have prayed for this for years, but nobody planned it.

And so far as I know, nobody was expecting it in this timing. The chapel started like normal at 10 a.m. on February 8th, just hasn't stopped. Worship has been student-led. One of the worship leaders is somebody I met a couple of years ago when she was a freshman. She stopped me as I was walking across campus, never having met me, and asked her if she could pray for me. So I got down on my knees and she prayed for me over at the seminary. Some students have arrived in recent years saying that God had given them visions of revival, breaking out at the seminary.

One international student got such a burden of prayer for revival that he was devoting himself to prayer and fasting and visibly lost a lot of weight. I could go on, but all this to say, even though what's happening was not planned, neither is it random. God has had people in place and years of prayer have gone before this. And with the intercollegiate day of prayer coming next week, the timing wasn't planned by people, but it sure looks like it was planned by God. The heart of the emphasis is God's holiness and consecration to Him.

Administrators have been going without sleep, trying to stay on top of things. As you can imagine, when God does something special among his people, there are others who want to make themselves rather than God the center of attention. So the leaders are working hard to keep outside entities from compromising the sacredness of what is transpiring. Of course everyone is welcome to join in to worship the Lord. Pray for the leaders at Asbury to continue to have wisdom to shepherd what God is doing. And as I understand it, chapel service, not like famous speaker, famous worship team, chapel service, brother speaks, student feels to confess sin, if you stick around, it just breaks out.

It just happens. You say, well I went there, I didn't see much. Well, did you stay a few days?

Did you take in things over the course of day and night? Were you there when the building was packed and people were going after God? Have you heard twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, a hundred testimonies of people whose lives have been transformed?

Well if not, you really don't have anything to say. If you were there just for a few minutes in and out or part of a service, you really don't have much to say. But when you've been there and you see what's happening on a wider level, obviously God has broken out in a powerful way. And those that have been there for decades, those that were there for the outpouring in 1970, they've got some experience too.

They've got some insight too as well. So during the Great Awakening in the mid-1730s into the 1740s in America, principal figures used Jonathan Edwards, George Whitefield over from England, there were attacks, there were controversies. People saying it wasn't really God. It wasn't really God.

And as a result, Jonathan Edwards wrote a book on the distinguishing marks of the work of the Spirit of God. And he had nine non-signs. Many have misinterpreted him, some have misinterpreted him, as if these were negative signs. No, no, no, they were non-signs. They didn't prove that the work was from God or wasn't from God.

So I'll give a summary of his signs. That the movement includes very unusual and extraordinary happenings. That doesn't prove it's not from God as long as it's within scriptural principles. Number two, that it produces bodily effects upon people such as tears, trembling, groans, loud cries, agonies of body, or the failing of bodily strength. Edwards writes, the root and cause of things is to be looked at in the nature of the operations and affections that person's minds are under, or whether they be inquired into and examined by the rule of God's Word and not the motions of the blood and animal spirits. So he's saying if people collapse, if they cry out, if they're weeping, if they're shaking, if other things are happening that are unusual, it doesn't prove. It doesn't prove that it's actually from God, but it certainly doesn't prove it's not.

All this unusual stuff happened. I'd be saying, yeah, the Bible didn't tell us to measure based on that. Number three, that it becomes the talk of the town. Well, it must be God.

Well, it can't be God. No, that doesn't prove it. Number four, that it makes great impressions on people's imaginations. Edwards argues, quote, yet it appears to me that such things are evidently sometimes from the Spirit of God, though indirectly, but there is commonly something or other in them that is confused, improper, and false. It's a good little summary that B.J.

R. Arpeza has put together online years back. Five, that it is promoted by use of examples, an attempt to prove the validity of the movement. So, in other words, people share a testimony example of what's happening, and now others hear that. Well, they're just acting it out.

They're just following it. Edwards says it doesn't prove things either way. Number six, that it leads some to do foolish and prudent things. Edwards says that doesn't prove it's not God.

The thing as a whole, you have to judge by the whole, not by the part. Edwards says we are to consider that the end for which God pours out his Spirit is to make men holy, not to make them politicians. So they may do some foolish things.

It's gonna happen. So you ever heard of someone being overzealous, a little too passionate, a little too excited, little worked up? And, yeah, they were genuinely touched by God, but they need to grow a little wisdom here. So Edwards is saying that that doesn't prove it's not God, doesn't prove it is God. Even this, that it includes, quote, errors in judgment or, quote, delusions of Satan.

Even if there's some deception, that doesn't mean that the work as a whole is not from God. And it was Conrad Cherry, church historian, American historian, that said that during the Great Awakening, the chief critic of Jonathan Edwards was Charles Chauncey. And I've read elsewhere, I've never confirmed it, that the height of the Great Awakening, Chauncey's books attacking the revival were more popular than Edwards' books defending the revival. But Conrad Cherry said that whereas Edwards focused on the wheat, Chauncey focused on the chaff. So Chauncey focused, look at this, look at this, look at this, that can't be God, that can't be God. Edwards looked at the whole, looked at the major things that God is doing.

And that's what we must do. Look, it's like if I go visit your church, and during the service, during the sermon, I see two people sleeping. It's like, man, your pastor's putting everybody to sleep. It's like, no, did you notice that 800 other people alert, focused, taking in the Word, being changed? You can always find the negative. Find someone, I'm never going back to that place, worship is loud, there's no presence of God there.

They're crazy in there. And you've got other people, Jesus changed my life for you today, I've never been the same. Well, when the predominant testimony of what God's doing is what's coming forth, then you rejoice, because praise God is real. Number eight, that some affected by it later fall into error or scandal. Edwards argues that there is some counterfeit, there's no argument that nothing is true. Well, Judas, he was one of the twelve, he betrayed Jesus, he knew Jesus better than anybody, and he sold them out, so obviously there's something wrong with that Jesus. How about the ones that Paul writes about, this one forsook me, this one's back, this one holds to this false doctrine. I guess this whole Paul thing is, no, no, those were the exceptions.

People will fall away. Nine, lastly that its preachers focus too much on the terrors of God's wrath. Well, now it might be the opposite, focusing too much on the love of God, or maybe other circles too much on the terrors of God, but either way, Edwards said that doesn't prove it's not God, doesn't prove it is God. So how do you know, then?

How do you know? So Edwards said that you can see by the fruit, the fruit that's born, and the fruit that comes out of it will say that this is a work of God. So according to him, these are the positive signs. The first is that it raises the people's esteem of Jesus.

He writes, quote, the spirit that inclines men's hearts to the seat of the woman is not the spirit of the serpent that is such an irreconcilable enmity against him. So, as I've rephrased this, is the Jesus of the Bible being exalted? Is the Jesus of the Bible being exalted in the preaching, the teaching, the worship? You may come in, I was there for an hour and I didn't hear a clear presentation of the Gospel. Well, maybe the service lasted eight hours, and maybe the people in the meeting were all believers and they didn't need a fresh, clear presentation of the Gospel. They needed to act on what they knew. Or maybe the night before there was a clear presentation of the Gospel for two hours.

Well, the fact a particular person didn't hear it doesn't mean it's not happening. So, overall, is the Jesus of the Bible being exalted in worship, in preaching, in the lives of the people, in the meetings, so you're there for a week, take it in, in the meetings, and then in the people's lives. This will also mean, if genuine, if true, that six months, a year, five, ten years later, you will see in many, many, many of the people touch that Jesus, the Jesus of the Bible, is being highly exalted to that day in their lives.

The second, according to Edwards, is that it works against the lusts and corruptions of the flesh leading to repentance and to seeking righteousness. All right, so that's the second thing, are people repenting. This has been the mark of what's been happening at Asbury, confession of sin, people repenting. You say, but Mike, I thought you said people wouldn't be flocking to one place. Oh, this is going to be happening all over the place.

This is one thing. Already there have been moves for, there are different parts of the country I can bring you to, where for several years there's been a move of God and people have been flocking there from around the world. Yeah, it's just not on that same level of intensity or one place where everyone's coming, but this confirms what I'm saying. There are going to be many such places, but Asbury thus far marked by confession and repentance. So that is a second thing that Edwards mentions. The third is that will increase people's estimation of the Bible. As he said, a spirit of delusion won't incline persons to go to seek direction at the mouth of God. So number one is the Jesus of the Bible being exalted in people's lives in worship, praise, preaching, teaching. Number two, are people repenting of sin, turning to God in contrition and holiness? Number three, is the Word of God being exalted in people's lives? Are they hungry for the Word?

Are they more honoring of the Word? Are they now more committed to live by the Word? And then, he said, number four is that it will convince people of the truths revealed in God's Word, and the fifth sure sign is that it produces genuine love for God and others. One of the clearest proofs that you need to see is when God is not moving and people are attacking each other and criticizing each other in the harshest, ugliest ways. Like, okay, it's clear there's not a move of the Spirit there because there's such a profound lack of love. But when God really moves, walls, barriers come down. I don't mean compromise.

I mean things that divide us that shouldn't. They come down. There's deep love. These were Edwards five signs.

You see these happening in an ongoing way. It's of God. The work is absolutely of God. We'll be right back.

I reflected on the Edwards list as well and thought maybe simplify just a drop because two things you can really combine. So in my order, when I'm looking to see if something's really a move of God, it has these unusual characteristics. People are flocking from all over. There are reports of lives being dramatically changed. There are critics saying this can't be God. It's like, okay, what's going on?

Let me look at this. And then I hear testimony after testimony individually, churches, testimony after testimony, and then this lasting fruit that comes out of it. These, these are the things, these are the things that I, that I am looking for. So number one is the Jesus of the Bible being exalted in the services and in people's lives. Number two, I have the word of God on the second. So are people hungry more for the word coming more under the authority of scripture?

That's the second thing I'm looking for. Third, are they repenting from sin? And then fourth, are they getting a burden for the lost? When I see those things and you see it over and over and quite dramatically, okay, this is God, this is God. That is the only way to explain it. This is God and he is moving. And Asbury has all the marks of a move of the Spirit and I believe it will be proven out over the years that it was a genuine outpouring of the Spirit, part of many things that God is doing in America, even now. All right, I want you to hear this clip. This was Jim Garlow being interviewed by Steve Strang, Jim's well-known pastor, Christian leader, serves with many political leaders around the world, ministers gospel truth to them, an Asbury alum with a PhD in history. Let's listen to what Jim Garlow says about a prayer meeting that took place earlier this month in Washington DC.

Clip number three. And who spoke back in 70? Who spoke in this one?

I don't know. I did hear last night, I did a little bit of the content of the person who spoke, but this is what's kind of odd. It's sort of a selfless, nameless, faceless revival except for God.

Steve, a week ago, Tony Perkins and I, he's with the FRC, we co-planned and co-hosted an event in Washington DC. It was a national gathering of prayer and repentance. It was at Museum of the Bible. It was at 6.30. There was no breakfast. You had to be in line at 5.30, 5.30 a.m. that is, to go through security. It was cold.

It was snowing lightly in Washington DC. It was kind of miserable weather. So you had to be there. We didn't know how many would show up. Well, it was packed out, standing room only. We had 20 members of Congress come and lead in prayer. And it was all prayers of repentance only. We did not introduce, we announced at the beginning, we're not going to introduce a single person.

Now this is Wednesday, February 1. We're not going to introduce a single person. There'll be no applause allowed. You can't applaud for anyone except for the Lord, and that will come at the end.

We're not going to applaud during this because you'll start applauding for what people say or some music or something. This is 100% prayers of repentance. I did have Ann Graham Lotz speak seven minutes to call us to repentance. Jonathan Cahn spoke seven minutes to call us to repentance.

Carter Conlon, as did Andrew Brunson. But other than those four, nobody spoke. People prayed. Members of Congress came. Twenty of them showed up to pray.

Steve Scalise was there. He read a scripture at our request. And Kevin McCarthy, Speaker of the House, was supposed to just read a scripture.

Instead he says, you know what? I want to pray. And he took off praying.

It was tender. There were some members of Congress that broke down weeping for the nation. One after another, about 30 evangelical leaders before the Lord. I of course planned it and spent a long time planning it. I was backstage it was happening. I even went out to introduce Ann Graham Lotz, and the Holy Spirit said to me right then, why are you on the stage? You're not needed on the stage. I heard it so clearly. And so I said, ladies and gentlemen, and I said, Ann Graham Lotz. And I got off the stage. And I said to my co-leader, Tony Perkins, I said, I don't think we're supposed to be out there. I think we're not needed.

They know what to do. And so we didn't even go out ourselves hardly at all, just a few times when we had to guide to the next thing. But this exploded and went two and a half hours of just repenting before the Lord. And Steve, I got to tell you, there were no egos. There were no prima donnas. Nobody was huffy puffy. I want my attention.

I want more time. They only had a few moments to pray. And I tried to convey to them, the Northern Kingdom didn't think that Assyria would come in. God would allow Assyria, a wicked nation, to come in and destroy them.

The Southern Kingdom didn't learn from them. They didn't think Babylon could be used by God to come in and take them out. And Americans, contemporary Americans, do not possibly think that our sin is so grievous before the Lord, so egregious, that God wouldn't use China or somewhere, China's Communist Party, or somebody to say, we can't fathom that that could ever happen.

I said, it could happen. And at this meeting, we're going to go before the Lord. And we're going to repent for personal sins first, sin in the church second, and then lastly, our national sins.

That occurred February 1 in our nation's capital. Now that was scripted and planned. God still blessed that one profoundly. The one at Asbury Seminary is stunning. It's unscripted. It's un-choreographed, except by the Holy Spirit himself. When it's going to end, per se, I don't know, but like you, I want it to penetrate, first of all, the Christian universities.

And then what would it be like if it went into the secular or state universities? All right. So what a sobering word. What a powerful word. What an encouraging word from Jim Garlo.

Obviously not playing games with the message that he brought. All right. Bowen, high school student asking, what should I do to be involved with revival? Okay, Morgan, our call strainer, is going to get your address. I want to send you a free copy of my book Revival or We Die.

All right, so Morgan's going to get your address as soon as I'm done talking. I want to send you a free copy of my book Revival or We Die. First, get a real vision of what revival is, what it could look like. Second, ask God to ignite your own life, to say, God, send your holy fire into my life, a burn in me, a fresh passion for you, a fresh hatred for sin, a fresh love for you, and a love for the lost.

Ask that. Then be encouraged. See if you can hear testimonies of what God's doing in other places.

And then fourth, get with others. Do you have other believing friends at high school? Say, hey, why don't we pray? What can we pray like a little before class or right before, you know, during lunch before we start class again? Or can we gather together? Or if you're homeschooled, you just do it with some other friends.

Say, let's set a time aside each day or once a week. Let's get together and let's pray for revival, for outpouring. And then as God begins to move, run with it, run with it, run with it. That is my counsel to you, sir.

And these high school years can be absolutely formative for the rest of your life. Thank you for calling in. Thank you for your heart.

And we'll get your address now. Send you a free copy of revival or we die. Friends, you know my burden. Get the church healthy. Get the church healthy. It starts spiritually. It starts with our relationship with God. It starts with repenting, with turning to Him, with recognizing something's missing. There's got to be more.

There's got to be more. And we turn to Him. It's frustrating.

It's painful. But we know, okay, without this we will not see the results. So let's take hold of what God's doing. I was just reading from a website with one attack after another about Asbury and they're woke there and they've got a compromised Christianity and there's hyper-emotionalism. Listen, when you encounter God with a fire of God, with the holiness of God, with the intensity of God, there's going to be emotion. And as Jonathan Edwards reasoned, and we had a Jonathan Edwards scholar discussing this a few months back visiting a professor at Yale, Edwards said that if there's not emotion, then something's wrong, something's missing. Something's missing.

And the same ones attacking the hyper-emotion that led to hyper-emotion in Asbury might have been jumping up and down there in the Super Bowl game or getting in a fight with someone screaming at them. Oh, but when God moves holy, this must be sober. Show me that in the Bible. Show me that. And show me in the Bible where God says, don't get too emotional. Don't praise me with too much passion. Don't get too joyful. Don't weep with too much brokenness. Show me that in the Bible. I'm a Word guy.

Show me that in the Bible. All right, so I'm in Hawaii. We've got some special broadcasts come. We're going to really get into some neat subjects the next three days here. I'll be ministering in Kona to the entire student body, all the discipleship training center students at YWAM, pouring in about the Bible and cultural issues. So these should be very, very important days for all of YWAM.

If you could pray for us, that would be amazing. And I continue to be blessed by the vibrant health I experience, healthy eating, exercise, all that. And the supplements have really just kind of pushed me to another level. So a great way to support the line of fire and a great way to bless your body as well is with one of these great supplements from TriVita. And remember, 100% of your first order, no matter how big it is, 100% of it is donated to the line of fire and over a tithe of your ongoing orders are donated and TriVita sponsorship is helping spread this message across the nation which should encourage you. So go to trivita.com, use the code BROWN25, as in Dr. Brown, capital B, BROWN25 for 25% off all your orders.

My friend, Dr. Steng, the rate is TriVita A+. Or call this number 800-771-5584. Tell them that Dr. Brown sent you.

Ask them about any special offers they have or discounts or you could say, hey, I'm looking for help here to supplement something here and they'll give you some expert counsel from their vantage point as well. All right, friends, let's seize the moment. Pastors, leaders, let's seize the moment. God is on the move.

Prayers that have been prayed for decades, thousands of days of fasting and people seeking God, believers humbling themselves and saying, God, there must be more. We've hit walls. We've seen reproach. Things are not the way they're supposed to be. The body is so divided. So many lives are hurting. People have fallen away. It's time for a fresh move and hear me, when God moves, people will come flocking.

It's always the same. People will come flocking, including young people. It's time for Gen Z. It's time for the millennials. It's time for even younger. This is the hour we've been waiting for. It's begun. Let's seize the moment.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-21 11:58:23 / 2023-02-21 12:18:38 / 20

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