In 1983 Leonard Ravenhill wrote: “There’s going to come an awakening. God Almighty doesn’t care if He sends America bankrupt. He doesn’t care if we have to stand in bread lines. He doesn’t care if our automobiles rust because we have no gasoline… The greatest impediment to this (awakening) will be preachers who refuse to give themselves to prayer and churches that refuse to give themselves to repentance.”
Awakening is a God thing. In our carnal, disengaged state we believers will sleep (and sleep and sleep…) It requires a supernatural response to the Word of the Lord for a soul to be awakened and remain awakened in Christ.
Awakening is also a Church thing. The world can’t wake up. Only those alive in Christ can wake up. The world is dead in their sins and trespasses. The New Testament call to wake up is to the covenant people of God who have had their souls dulled and weighed down by the paradigms, narratives and thinking of the flesh; thoughts that don’t stimulate faith, first-commandment love and the fear of the Lord in our hearts. This happens naturally in a fallen world, and at different times happens to all of us.
Waking up for a believer entails the same response to the Lord as being raised from the dead does for the unbeliever.
• Hearing the Word of the Lord
• Responding with repentance
• Taking up our cross
• Being filled with the Spirit
The Church’s waking up actually stimulates the dead. It gives unbelievers an example of how to respond to the God Who is pursuing them. More importantly, it also directs their gaze to focus on the One Who is calling them to Himself. (Romans 13:12) works for both those being awakened and those being brought to new life in Jesus Christ. There’s one Lord – one faith – one baptism…
Around the world, the Spirit of the Lord is cultivating voices who will “cry in the wilderness”; God-empowered voices that will awaken the slumbering and raise the dead. They have one Message. It’s their Magnificent Obsession: a Man; a crucified, resurrected, Jewish God/Man. The revelation of this beautiful Man is the ruling passion and preoccupation of these voices and their message. EVERYTHING ELSE is a shadow and an expendable extra to the increase of His glory.
Here’s the trick: (And in today’s politically polarized culture it IS a trick) Don’t let someone (no matter how prominent and/or popular) wake you up to a shadow rather than the One casting the shadow. Our waking up is to Him – and nothing else; not political correctness; not threat to liberties; not racism; nor deep-state. The Holy Spirit is singularly invested in waking us up to Him. The Bride belongs to the Bridegroom. He’s the One (and the only One) you want to wake up to. And as we see in John’s revelation of Jesus in Revelation 1, there’s more than enough of Him to wake up to to keep us engaged and enthralled – for eternity.
The truth of the matter is, none of us are as “awakened” as we can be. In Christ, there’s always more to be awakened to. He’s that big.
Revelation shows us how the mature apostle John was “awakened” to a new dimension of awe and fear and love for His “friend”, Jesus. Although John had watched him heal the sick, feed thousands and refute the wisest teachers of his day; although John himself performed miracles in Jesus’ Name; although John was an eye-witness to His crucifixion – felt the earth-quake under his feet – and even walked into his Friend’s empty grave; when Revelation 1 happened to him he still fell as though dead at His feet.
There’s no shame in waking up to more of Jesus. Ever. The only shame is for us to assume that we are fully awake to Him and Who He is.
Come. Let’s let the Holy Spirit awaken us further to the glory of Who He is.
NOTE: We wrote the book “Seek My Face” specifically to help us – the Body of Christ – to be awakened to this beautiful Man in an hour of trouble. If you would like an E-copy you can either email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or download the EBook from Amazon. If you send me your physical address I can also send you the print edition.
Here’s a link to our YouTube broadcast: “Oil for the Hour”: “Being Awakened to the Beauty of Jesus in the House of Prayer” • http://youtu.be/MoKSdTDxQKo
God bless you, beloved.
JSB • May, 2022