If revival comes to your church and to your Sunday school class, expect people to leave. If revival comes to your heart, expect to lose â€œfriends.â€ Right before I quit writing this devotional in the summer and just in the last two days since I began writing on revival, 8 people have asked to be removed from this devotional list. All of them had asked to be added; they were not in the original group.
That is to be expected because the gospel is offensive. Now I am not to be offensive, but the truth of Godâ€™s Word offends. And when people fall away it is not a separation of the wheat from the tares; that will only come when Jesus returns. It is more like in John 6:66:
â€œFrom that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.â€
From what time? Go back and read John 6:41-71 to see what it was Jesus preached, but suffice it to say that He was preaching on the exclusivity and sufficiency of His coming sacrifice on the cross.
Todayâ€™s church trout swim from church to church looking for a pastor that will preach from the NTFV Bible (New Touchy Feely Version) and they donâ€™t have far to swim to find one. The vast majority of Christians when looking for a church look to see what type of worship music, childrenâ€™s ministry, and fellowship they have to offer rather than looking to see if this is the church God would have me serve Him.
Beloved as long as we have a consumerism Christianity we will not see revival come to America.
So what do we do?
We deal with our sin the way David dealt with his; he got down to the root of it all. Thatâ€™s how you pull weeds out of your garden!
â€œFor I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Your sightâ€”that You may be found just when You speak, and blameless when You judge.â€ (Psalm 51:3-4)
This question will no doubt cause more of you to ask to be removed from this list, but I’m curious as to how bad you think your sin is? Thatâ€™s what God asked me this morning: â€œDavid, how bad is your sin?â€ Thankfully I overcame the urge to say, â€œWhat sin Lord?â€
But like David when I stand before the Holy God I must acknowledge my transgressions because my sin is always before me, no matter how much I try to pretend. It may be the sin of self-righteousness, haughtinessâ€¦regardless the sin of my heart it is always before me. That means it is always on my mind. A truly saved person cannot live with a guilty conscience. If youâ€™re okay with your sin youâ€™re probably not really saved, or you have strayed dangerously far from Jesus. The Prophet Isaiah tells us that we cannot run from our sins:
â€œFor our transgressions are multiplied before You, and our sins testify against us; for our transgressions are with us, and as for our iniquities, we know themâ€¦â€ (Isaiah 59:12)
You see that? I know my sins and I can try to pretend that I donâ€™t but the bottom line is that against God, God only, have I sinned and done this evil in His sight. I can try to justify it, ignore it, water it down, but it is still a violation of Godâ€™s law and wanton disobedience to His commandments and I have sinned against God.
Embrace that truth because there is liberty for your soul in it! Donâ€™t run from it; donâ€™t hide from it; donâ€™t deny it; EMBRACE IT!
When you do then you acknowledge Godâ€™s righteousness and His justice in showing my sinfulness. Beloved that is what confession is; it is agreeing with God and admitting that He is right and I am wrong. That is no great feat but sometimes I act as though I have found the Holy Grail when I admit this. Shame on me!
Look again at what David said when Nathan confronted him:
â€œSo David said to Nathan, â€˜I have sinned against the LORD.â€™â€ (2 Samuel 12:13a)
I have sinned against the LORD. Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Your sight.
May my heart willingly, gladly confess my sin in such a way, and may I acknowledge my sinful nature before God.
Beloved that is the Truth and God desires Truth to be anchored to our souls.
More on that tomorrow.
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Copyright Â© 2010 David Jeffers