God's Order for Revival

Bible Book: Acts  2 : 42-47
Subject: Revival; Awakening
Introduction

We have just went through a series of revival meeting with Bro. Bill Sturm. Was that revival? Did we have a good revival? Did we have a great revival? What kind of revival did we have? Did we just meet down here for 5 sermons over 4 days just to say we have had a "revival meeting" or did God really break loose and move among us? Only one got saved; but one did get saved. What are the results of a good revival? I believe that we can look at God's word and see what His order for a revival is. The early church is a good example. Peter's sermon (verses 14-41) at Pentecost had just taken place, 3000 men had been converted and the church was having just a time of total break-out for Jesus. I believe the end of this chapter speaks volumes about what happens when God's people just let go and allow the Holy Spirit of God to take over. Lets' look at Acts 2:42-47 and see what it says.

I. We Will Live Steadfast Lives verse 42

Galatians 5:25

We will live lives that are faithful. We will live consistent lives. We will be faithful at all times. Do you know the difference between reputation and character? Reputation is what men think you are; character is what God knows you are. Galatians 5:25 "If we live in the Spirit let us also walk in the Spirit." That word "steadfast" means to be firm and unwavering in purpose, loyalty or resolve. The apostles had resolved themselves to be faithful men. To continue in the day to day activities that Jesus had taught them. Remember, the apostles had seen Jesus for 3 years live a consistent lifestyle with them. He was in private what He was in public. They watched as he steadfastly spent time in prayer with His Father. They watched as He continually lived a holy life in their presence. He didn't preach and teach and then get off to the side to tell an off-color joke. He didn't proclaim to the Pharisees truth and then live a lie when He was alone with the 12.

Now the church, these new converts-filled with the power of the Holy Spirit were also living faithful lives; steadfast lives. The power of God has broken out in the early church and faithfulness was the first evidence. Not only faithful lives but also.

II. We Will Fear God verse 43

Matthew 10:28, "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." (KJV)

Is our text and Matthew 10:28 telling us that we need to literally fear God? You know that for years I have taught and listened to others teach that, no, we don't really need to fear God. You see, what this text is telling us is that we should respect God. I mean, after all, God is our Father, God is Love, and we should never be afraid of him. Now, I love my children. I love my son but if you were to go and ask him if there have been times that he has been afraid of me if he is honest he will say, "YES." You say, "Bro. Andy is that healthy?" I'm telling you if he has been rebellious, then yes, he should be afraid. Now, that is the example of an earthly father/son relationship. What about the heavenly Father/child relationship? Folks, I'm telling you that if we were honest we would admit that everyday without exception we are rebellious towards God at some point. It may be just a thought, an attitude, or it might be open sin, but we are rebellious people.

The early church recognized this and we actively repenting of their sin. They feared God and they feared his reaction to their sin. They did not want to offend a righteous holy God and lived their lives as such.

Does this mean that God is standing up in heaven with a heavenly baseball bat ready to smack us if we get out of line? No, Our heavenly Father is ready to forgive, He is merciful, and He is a gracious God. But if we get into sin and do not remember His righteousness, His holiness, and remember just whose we are-then, yes, He may just use that Heavenly baseball bat to get our attention. Revival will cause us to fear God and live obedient lives.

III. We Will Have Unity In The Church Verse 44

Galatians 5:26, "Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another." (KJV)

Most causes of disunity in the church are because of carnality. We just get up in the flesh and begin to get jealous of somebody; we start picking at somebody; we don't like someone else getting the credit, I mean a myriad of reasons that don't amount to nothing.

IV. We Will Give To The Church Verse 45

Acts 2:45, "And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need." (KJV)

The early church was obedient to what the Spirit of God asked of them. They were willing to support the work financially. They were faithful in giving to the church. They were faithful in providing for the needs of each other. ILL: SHERWOOD AND THE FAMILY LIFE CENTER

When God's people get excited about God's work being done God's way then the money will be there and be there in abundance. Why? Because when you are walking in the Spirit you will desire to be in on what the Spirit is accomplishing. ILL FUNDRAISERS

V. We Will Have Joy In The Church Verse 46

Acts 2:46, "And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart." (KJV)

Think about what we have gone through in this passage so far. God's people: living steadfast, faithful lives; God's people living obedient lives with a healthy fear of a Holy God; God's people not living lives seeking glory, not picking at one another, not being envious if someone else gets a little praise; God's people giving generously to God's work desiring to see the work of God get accomplished. Who wouldn't want to be a part of that church! Man, with all that going on there will be joy in God's church. There will be happiness in God's church. It will be a place you can't wait to get to! Won't have to beg people to show up; they will be knocking the door down to get in.

I seen an article the other day that really hit the nail on the head. The article said that there are two major things that keep people out of the church. One of them I can't remember but the one that really struck me was: fighting in the church. (ILL Church with two-tone carpet; church Van-Youth want built-in video game systems; Senior adults want added steps, video system to watch Gaither Videos; hunters want the van painted camouflaged; Tennessee people want it painted orange; Georgia people want it painted Red; Paper plates illustration.) Who wants to go somewhere that there are fights all the time? But contrast that with the early church. WOW!

Because of the joy-they had fellowship in the church. They loved being with each other so much that every time they got together they ate together.

VI. We Will Have Praise In The Church Verse 47

Imagine; a church that is faithful, obedient, united, giving, and filled with joy. That will be a church that is filled with praise. Talk about what praise is. Talk about attitude of praise. Talk about what praise isn't.

VII. We Will Have Salvations In The Church

Then finally we will have salvations in the church. Folks, twice in my lifetime I have been blessed to be a part of a church that this happened in. Lost folks just couldn't stay away. They had to come in and see what was happening. All because the people of God allowed God to make a difference in their lives and then allowed that difference to show through. Folks, it is when we allow the Spirit to take over that Jesus is lifted up and He promised us that when we lift Him up He will draw all men unto Him. When that happens we will have salvations in the church.