One more brief post on revival, mostly containing quotes from Greg Boyd’s new book Present Perfect (ht Jon Tyson). They deal with the “big event” phenomenon that I’ve written about before. That is, the thought that organizing a spectacular, well-attended event will bring about transformation and long-term kingdom fruit.
So Do We Just Wait For Revival?
In my previous post (“Revival and Hype”), I said that since one of the marks of real revival is worship gatherings that are “thick with a sense of the presence of God that is not orchestrated by the presiders” that I am loathe to ever try to “engineer” results or orchestrate experiences. But does that mean there’s nothing we can do? Do we just sit around and wait for something to happen? Is there anything we can do to see these kinds of dynamics affect the communities and people we care about?
Revival and Hype
Tim Keller recently wrote a little article on revival (ht), and in it he described what a season of genuine revival looks like from a historical perspective:
“[T]hey are seasons in which the ordinary operations of the Holy Spirit are intensified many-fold. ‘Sleepy’ and immature believers become electrified through joyful repentance and put Christ in the center of their lives. Nominal Christians within congregations get converted and testify to the fact, which leads to more sleepy believers waking up. In turn, non-believers are drawn in to the beautified Christian community and begin embracing Christ in numbers that defy normal explanations. The ‘church growth’ can’t be accounted for by demographic-sociological shifts or efficient outreach programs in such cases. Most telling of all, the corporate worship gatherings are thick with a sense of the presence of God that is not orchestrated by the presiders.”
Look especially at that last sentence:
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