A Revival Manifesto
A REVIVAL MANIFESTO
Our standpoint and the way ahead
On reading the manifesto:
This item will require a little extra from its reader as it is a compact, concentrated text. Each sentence contains large volumes of spiritual reality and are statements produced to capture a great wealth of ideas and thoughts. Therefore, we ask the reader to read slowly, read several times, to meditate and pray and to consider the written word to be a path of pursuit.
The Purpose of a Revival
God is Father, our Father. He is the beginner, the originator of all things. His Word defines, it gives life and purpose. Our Lord and saviour, Jesus Christ is the very epitome of God's thought and the focal point of the purposes of Heaven. The Spirit of the Father permeates and upholds all things; the Spirit of God is the bringer of holiness and through his operations all things are lifted into its specific role in serving the eternal purposes of God. In Christ, and only through Him, does man find rest and purpose in an eternal "unto God" - Rom 6:11.
Revival holds a returning to origins, a turning back to original intentions and purposes. The new, that which is truly alive and full of life, is that which is properly anchored in the old, in what God has stated as absolutes. The Father brings newness of life by taking His people back to beginnings. It is no small thing, it is indeed a tremendous task to recover and settle in the purposes of God. Man is not sufficient for this. Human enthusiasm and effort will not level with the standards of Heaven. God is the originator of the retracing of the paths of old, of an ascent to the holy hill of Zion. "A glorious throne, set on high from the beginning, is the place of our sanctuary." Jer 17:12.
Revival holds a specific and definitive authentification of the Church. A returning to the eternal purposes of God holds an ever growing correspondence to that which is to be found in Christ. Maturity equals christlikeness. The fruits of the presence of God in His Church are signs and wonders which cannot be spoken against. Fidelity, faithfulness, perseverance, veracity, godliness and humility are all aspects of the priestly ministry of reconciliation - these things are from God, signs of His presence and wondrous operations of the Law of the Spirit of Life; 2 Cor 5:18, Rom 8:1-2.
Quality, otherness, plumb line and a solid and sensible testimony by the indwelling Holy Spirit are words and concepts describing the content of the authentification of the Church. The very heart of the reviving influence is something which cannot be explained in human terms, it is an element brought in into human existence which has its origin in a realm beyond the created world. One small sentence summarises: "As in Heaven, so on Earth" - a prayer to be prayed, a measuring rod to be applied, a state and order of being to be pursued.
The necessity of correspondence, the call for veracity, the common loss of dignity and majesty and the absence of the glory of God are major incitements opening man's heart and the content of the speaking into his conscience driving him to prayer for revival. "Thou son of man, show the House to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities and let them measure the pattern." Eze 43:10.
The revival to be expected in the near future is one which focuses the House of the Lord and the Throne to be established among the people of God. "You are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit." Ef 2:22. This building will by its very presence tell about Heaven in a manner which only Heaven itself can speak. The Spirit of Truth, the Spirit of Holiness is the Spirit of prophecy testifying to the work and presence of Jesus Christ among His people, in His people. The purpose of revival is the formation of a people for His praise in the very knowledge of the holy. Isa 43:21, Prov 9:10.
The revival which by necessity lies ahead, which is prepared and made ready for God's Zion, for the assembly of the hungry, for the company of the committed, for the solemn gathering of peacemakers, this revival will produce a call to the people of God to represent fullness, the attaining to the measure and stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ, the growing up in all aspects unto Him. The revival which by necessity lies ahead will present the possibility for a renewal of minds and hearts, a putting on of the new self which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. Its keyword ought to be correspondence, a sacrificial identification with the fundamental purposes of God, a state of being and a mode of operation in which - only in which - the glory of God may be expected to be seen and experienced.
Every effort directed towards a reviving of His people for the sake of reaching divine goals will come from Him who is the beginner and originator of all things, and the goal will be a solemn, eternal "unto God". In this we will be required to follow hard after the Lord with sacrificial willingness and persistence.
The Necessity of Revival
The perennial burden of the Lord: Ears shut to His voice and eyes blinded by contemporary cultural impressions. Consciences insensitive to heavenly perspectives, perception blurred and twisted by spectacles proportioned for this world. Hearts of stone, barren fields, grain falling on shallow land only to be burnt by the sun. An unrepentant people. A straying nation.
The perennial burden of parts of the Church: Why do we have to go on without renewal and revival? And the answer is a classic one: We are content to live without it, addicted to mediocrity or mistaking it for sensationalism and sensuality, dreaming our minds away into a folly of fantasy. Ours is a time marked by complacency and indifference, our own realm of existence is ruled by lethargy and a lack of conviction.
The revival desperately needed is one of exchanging the prevalent addiction to mediocrity for an uncompromising stance as to seeking the Lord and a thorough vindication of His word. The revival desperately needed contains a substantial element of turning away from the common rationalisation of mediocrity. The revival so desperately needed recovers sobriety, sensibility and a serious seeking of true spirituality - 1 Pet 4:7-8. The awakened church becomes aware of the fact that the church at large has been squeezed into a mould of pretence and vanity, enticed and deceived by the world - gr. Kosmos, a diadem, a costly masterpiece, blazing and flashy in appearance but directing the mind set thereon off of the beaten path.
To live rightly before the Lord, we must think rightly about God. Revival is never simple. Returning to principles and absolutes requires thoroughness and persistency. Fragmentation and oversimplification are diseases picked up at certain modern schools of theological and prophetic thinking in which greatness and dignity have been dismissed as obsolete. The bankruptcy of pragmatism will with all its devastating power reach each and every instance given over to shallowness and generalisation. The ministry of the interior must come and the games played at the outer court will end.
The perennial burden of the Lord: A people which eagerly seeks every heavenly blessing, trying to bypass the necessity of repentance and sanctification. A people which expects restoration without holiness. A people which enjoys what they call glory, an earthly phenomenon containing no heavenly substance, a substitute and a matter of pretence. As the backbone of this stance we find a humanistic frame of mind at work in redefining man's position in regards to the cross of Christ, the sacrificial submission of man and the authority of God - items misunderstood and inverted in certain groups of churches, the majesty of God lost and with this the loss of a reverential fear of God.
The expression of the presence of God, the climate of a revival which will impress and revolutionise is constituted by righteousness, goodness and truth. The expression of the presence of the Lord is melted hearts which will bring the hardest heart to the point of melting. The expression of the presence of the Spirit of Life consists of exchanging the form of godliness for its living power. Revival is a voluntary and determined return to the fundamentals of Heaven, a panting after communion with the source of all being, a desperate searching for the Saviour.
The Prospect of Revival
The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver refined in an earthen furnace, purified seven times. Psa 12:6. The promises of a quickening, the prospects of revival, are as bright as the word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place. 2 Pet 1:19.
Revivals are regulated by law, the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus. A personal awakening is bound up with a growing experience of heavenly realities, of truth. An awakening is the law of Life in operation. A desire for revival opens for the law of Life to begin its penetration of minds and hearts. "Behold My servant, whom I uphold; Mine elect, in whom My soul delighteth; I have put My spirit upon him, he shall make the right to go forth to the nations." Isa42:1. The law of Life revives, it makes the right to go forth, it brings justice, it convicts and sets free. Revivals are regulated by law. Revival is set forth as, perhaps, the brightest promise in the Word of God, it is set forth as a law which cannot be overruled.
Revival - an ongoing event in the innermost being of man. Revival - the law of the Spirit of Life at work in man's inward parts. Revival - the ministry of God, the administration of God in the interior. Revival - the reality of the indwelling Christ. Revival, an operation undertaken by God, God alone; but a work to be pursued, desperately pursued by man according to the promise inherent in life itself.
Revival - a sudden intensification of the worship of God. Revival - a sudden intensification of the awareness of the realities of Heaven. Revival - a sudden intensification of the necessity of adhering to and radically adjusting to the law of the Spirit. "The chief end of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever." Revival - a realisation of the meaning of man; made according to one purpose alone, to be worshipers of God. Revival - God bringing his created beings back to their aim and purpose. Is not God sufficient for this? Did he produce the means for this, but somehow being hindered and restricted in this effort? Revival is God's design. Recovering what was lost is a fundamental pursuit of Heaven, and He, the God of hope, will not relent.
Revival equals recovering. Revival holds a bringing back to, a returning to. Revival contains an apprehending, a capturing of for the sake and purpose of. Revival according to Paul: "Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect: but I press on, if so be that I may lay hold on that for which also I was laid hold on by Christ Jesus." Phil 3:12.
Revival equals a returning to true worship, to spiritual, Spirit-imbued worship. In days ahead there will be a capstone, a top stone, a head stone positioned in the temple of the Spirit - Zech 4:7. It will be done in days when the people set to the side for His praise fully understands and becomes totally involved in undefiled worship. Revival holds an apprehension and a formation of a people who will be bearers of the newness of life according to the law of the Spirit of life.
God is the initiator of the building of this temple, He is apprehending and preparing, He is the giver of life. The House of the Lord, the administration and ministry of the House of the Lord will be the very focus of the revival to come. The throne, and the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, will stand as the point of integration and evaluation in the awakening to come. Heaven, as it is, is the means of revival and therefore the absolute guarantee of the possibility of revival. Law, the law of the Spirit of life will go forth from the throne, it will spring forth from Zion.
The Conditions of a Revival
A final bankruptcy of pragmatism and self-sufficiency is one fundamental condition for revival. Spiritual values and heavenly practices are all of the Living God and meant to please Him. No flesh will ever succeed in surviving the fire of the altar.
A demarcation line between the Church and the world, a rebuilding of the wall between that which is secular and that which is holy is to be considered a necessity. Heaven will not form a compact or end up in any alliance with what is declared to be earthly.
The way ahead is the way back, back to a priestly position regarding the fundamentals of the Cross. We may not allow ourselves to think that a real revival, a solid awakening can ever occur unless it is characterised by a return to that great and final sacrifice of the Lamb of God, who is the eternal propitiation for our sins and by whose precious blood atonement was for ever provided for all who repent and give themselves to God. Without the shedding of the blood there is no remission of sin and unless the blood of Christ is preached and the cross lifted high before the eyes of men, how can men be saved and brought to spiritual maturity.
Veracity, fidelity to what is true and godly is a requirement to be delicately considered and persistently pursued to its uttermost end. Law will spring forth from Zion. The holy hill of God is the very place unto which a repentant sinner expectantly looks to hear truth being spoken in love. We ought to pray ourselves into this fact and consider it to be a human right to be guarded and to be provided for to satisfy the need represented in each and every human being.
A true revival does not deliver spiritual blessings without repentance and viable regeneration. A true revival does not offer restoration without holiness. A true revival does not mimic the glory of God, heavenliness is a substantial other.
A solid revival anchors in the sobering fact that we are aimed to be servants of the most high God, the Lord of lords. A reversal of this order inherent in creation results in a moral collapse and is in itself an incitement for revival. Revival recovers priestliness and servanthood.
A revival holds a reorientation, a turning back to the Word of God as being the instructive master and a severing sword. A reviving is a reviving according to the Word, Ps 119:107. Revivals begin by praying for men who would give themselves to the Word, who dare to give themselves to the burning furnace of the refiner. Revivals begin by men of stature and maturity produced as they have been spent in a long, solitary pursuit of God. Men of this category will be instruments able in their preaching to touch consciences. Men of this category will be able produce a preaching that makes Christians pray and sinners weep. They are men who have been brought back to the Word for the sake of obtaining life, spending their lives and thereby giving life.
Revival is never without demand. "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem." Ps 51:17-18. Man is required to take an unrestricted, uncompromising, self-sacrificial stance. Revival never comes without the cross as the radical other, the radical cure. Revival condemns flesh. It takes us far beyond and very much deeper than an "accepting Christ" in an overheated, sensual atmosphere generated by motivational speakers and the suggestive beat of contemporary Christian music. It means the destruction of the flesh. Radical conversion, radical alteration, radical change of goal and course, radical behavioural change. It touches the inward parts, a touching which will produce substantial changes in the outer court. Revivals appear as a practical outworking among men of the controversy of the Lord. And indeed, this controversy holds large proportions. God begins the process of judgment in His own House.
The Price of Revival
God is the creator, the originator of life. He gives life, but there is a price to be paid by man. Revival comes one way, God's way. This way of the Lord is at any given moment a sacrificial way. Eph 5:1-2. The price to be paid is to learn to live sacrificially, to live priestly. The centrality of the cross and its implications in fellowship, in controversies, in communication and in the breakdown of relations will never become overstated or overestimated. This is the perennial burden of the Lord - Oh, that my people would listen to and apprehend, take heed to and be healed by the Gospel of the beloved, my Son, and His complete obedience unto death for the sake of bringing life.
The cross carries a message of totality as to the failure and breakdown of human ability and sufficiency in recovering the glory and dignity intended for mankind. The cross of Christ brings the heart of man to a halt in its efforts to produce religiously that which only Heaven can give. It is placed and planted in the reality of man to develop an utter completeness regarding the emptying and abandonment of self-efficacy and self-glorification. This process is meant to reduce man to nought for the sake of creating a noble personality, maturing in Christ unto dignity and godliness. It will continue in its course "till we all attain unto the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a fullgrown man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ". Ef 4:13.
A revival brings each and every man involved back to the cross, to see and apprehend the comprehensiveness and sufficiency of the meaning of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. A reviving of the inner man brings insight and revelation into the mystery of the centrality of the cross even in the resurrection aspect of the Christian life. Life, heavenly life, heavenly quality will flow from a broken vessel and from such a vessel only. Life, the life of the Lamb which was slain, springs fort according to the law of the grain of wheat, according to the law of the Spirit of life. Life, heavenly life is given to be given away. Efforts to encapsulate it will end in a total loss. A dreadful thing it is to accept that all things must have its source in and come from God to be pleasing to God.
Blessed are the poor in spirit. . . Blessed are those who dare to accept a complete dependency on God in everything, for Him to be all in all. Blessed is the man who comes to an end of himself. Blessed is the man who realises and accepts the emptying and the dependency to be a benefit, even the greatest of them all.
Who is sufficient for these things? And who is competent for this? Who is qualified for this? And who is adequate to these things! 2 Cor 2:16, various translations.
Blessed is the man who surrenders his position, his throne. Blessed is the man who commits his life to the greater course, a different kingdom, to a far greater and nobler pursuit than the protection and preserving of his own. Blessed, revived is the man who allows himself to be spent for the sake of living a priestly life.
A revival, a day of power will find a point of beginning in the willingness of the people of God - Ps 110:3. Revivals are commonly to be experienced among those who wait for the Lord to come as redeemer, as life-giver and as sanctifier. Revivals are to be found to appear as a response to the availability of the people of God. The very waiting on God is the mystery and the main trait of a revival at hand and of a revival at work. Willingness creates a day of power. Waiting on God formulates the format of the day of power. Willingness and waiting, perseverance and prayer assist God in His day of power. Revivals begin as men bend the knee in persistent prayer, revivals consist of prayer and intercession, revivals are generated in the prayer chamber, revivals are sustained in righteous prayer, revivals revive and reinstate praying, revivals will never last without much prayer, a revival co-insides with the willingness of man to give himself to prayer.
The climate of a revival is tempered by the fire of a furnace. Its fire is lit to be a refiners fire. A fire is conditioned and purposed to bring life, so does a revival . Fire devastates, so does a cross-centered revival. The fire of the Lord does not allow itself to be captured and controlled, a revival lies in God's hands. A revival fire must be tended to and restricted from abuse. Man must take his hands off of its development, yet stay with it to guard it and fan it. The climate of a revival brings probing and testing of man's innermost aspirations. It brings out his best and isolates his worst. A revival is like a refiners fire, it cleanses, it sheds light, it brings integrity and integration. It restores and brings forth eternal, imperishable qualities. Its fire is like hell to the unrepentant and it certainly burns the love of God into every willing being. It is indeed the climate of the melted heart established for the sake of the melting of hearts.
A revival needs a man in the gap. A revival will take a man in the gap to begin. Revivals are marked and remembered by its men, by those who dare to stand in the gap. Revivals come God's way, according to God's perspective and intentions but they begin in a man's heart. "I will raise me up a faithful priest, that shall do according to that which is in my heart and in my mind." 1 Sam2:35. A man according to the heart of the Lord. Priestliness according to heavenly measure. Royal stature entirely adjusted according to the Lord's own plumb line. A revival will occur if such a man is raised to stand, to stand firm. A revival will be brought in where the people of the Lord is brought back to a recognition of the price to be paid and a willingness to pay the cost.
A revival will become a reality wherever a company of committed decides to recover the art of crying out to the Lord, wherever the fellowship of the burning heart gathers to partake in carrying of the perennial burden of the Lord. His cry is an "Oh, that my people would. . ." Our cry must correspond to His. Revival begins in a great, common "Oh that thou wouldest rend the heavens, that thou wouldest come down, that the mountains might flow down at thy presence, as when the melting fire burneth, the fire causeth the waters to boil, to make thy name known to thine adversaries, that the nations may tremble at thy presence! Isa 64:1-2 The Church which has renounced its role as a bearer of the burden of the Lord and taken redemption to mean deliverance from pain and problem, even from the sharing in the sufferings of Christ is the one section of the people f God in the gravest need of revival.
Revival begins when we have captured this absolute sense of urgency, when we lift off the yoke of complacency, when we solemnly come together to take part in priestly ministry before the Lord. Revival will become a blessed reality when we gather as a people purposed for His praise.
A covenant to be considered,
declared and earnestly, ardently kept
Jehoiada, the priest, made a covenant between himself, the king, and the people that they would be the LORD's people. 2Ch 23:16
King Hezekiah: It is in my heart now to make a covenant with the LORD God of Israel so that His fierce wrath may turn away from us. 2Ch 29:10
Revivals require commitment. Revivals are kindled and kept alive on covenant ground. Priestly ministry, a function at the core of every revival, stands firmly on the covenants of the Lord. "My covenant with Levi, the priestly ministry, was one of life and peace, and I gave these to him; it called for reverence, and he revered Me and stood in awe of My name." Mal 2:5. Revivals are secured by men who formulate a covenant and enters into a covenant relation with the Lord to stand firm in reverently seeking the face of God. Succeeding in bringing life and peace to the people comes solely on covenant ground.
Priests, intercessors, ministers of life and peace must go through a process of cleansing, a refiners fire. The priestly ministry must, to become efficient, go through a thorough severing by sword. Revival requires a renouncing of the delusive quality of all human glory, demands a giving up of thrones, an abandonment of independence, a letting go of carnal ambition and religious satisfaction, an uprooting of pride and boasting. Revival requires a covenant to be cut which profoundly declares a counting as worthless all things which the Holy Spirit classifies as belonging to the earthly realm. Revival expects a giving up for the sake of the creation of a vessel to carry the newness of life. Revival aims at and carries through a cleansing for the sake of priestly gain. Revival is Heaven substantiated, eternal qualities on display. An apprehending leading to a permanent establishing of a work of these dimensions and proportions must have a covenant conscious heart at its core.
A model for the formulating of a covenant which will set mind and heart rightly before the Lord in regards to the facts of the necessity and prospects of a revival:
Blessed are, truly awakened, spiritually alert and maturing are the poor in spirit - I give myself to the emptying work of the cross.
Blessed are, truly awakened, spiritually alert and maturing are the gentle - I give myself to the formation of a priestly, a sacrificial mindset.
Blessed are, truly awakened are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness - My heart and conscience is in great need of a revelation in this realm.
Blessed are, truly awakened are the merciful - Begin a thoroughgoing work in me unto maturity displayed in the development of spiritual fruitfulness and faithfulness.
Blessed are, truly awakened are the pure in heart - Open my eyes to true spiritual realities.
Blessed are, truly awakened, spiritually alert and maturing are the peacemakers - Produce in us the ability to minister life and peace.
Blessed are, truly awakened, spiritually alert and maturing are those who are persecuted for righteousness - Allow us to become spiritually real, vessels of wonders that by necessity must be gainsaid or reacted to in thorough repentance unto newness of Life.
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