TEXT: Psalm 51:1-17
TOPIC: Revival, Who’s Going to Experience It?
Pastor Bobby Earls, First Baptist Church, Center Point,
August 13, 2006
Message derived from the Come Alive Bible
Psalm 511 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. 2Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. 3For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. 4Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. 5Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. 6Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. 7Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. 9Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. 10Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. 11Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. 12Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. 13Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee. 14Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness. 15O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise. 16For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. 17The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
Our Lord Jesus once said, "Come unto me all you who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest..."
Have you ever been so tired that you were just totally exhausted? That question deserves rephrasing: "Remember the last time you were absolutely depleted physically?" Some effort was needed to revive you. Recall how delightfully wonderful it was being revived.
That same joyous revival can happen spiritually. Do you need it? Do you want it?
A reporter conducting an on-the-street survey asked a pedestrian: "Do you know what the two greatest problems in America are?" The response: "I don't know and I don't care!" The abrupt reply by the reporter: "Congratulations, you got them both right!"
Two of the greatest problems facing the church today are that many professing believers don't know and don't care that they need revival.
Gradually, ever so impressibly, we grow weak spiritually and don't realize it. Will Herberg, a Jewish scholar who taught at Drew University, once observed that the brainwashing we receive daily from our cultural environment is far more deadly than any rational argument from atheists.
The Lord wants to revive His people. What is revival? Acts3:19 uses a descriptive phrase that sums it up: "...times of refreshing...from the presence of the Lord."
Whenever it happens, Christianity rises up from a state of formality and near depression to a tone of increased vigor and strength; Christians become more faithful to their obligations, and obedience to God becomes the norm.
King David experienced revival and wrote of it in Psalm 51. A study of a portion of this Psalm reveals who will experience revival.
* I.THOSE WHO CONFESS SPIRITUAL FAILURE, Psalm 51:3
*3For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.
Revival presupposes failure. Recently I saw a crowd gathered in a tight circle. Upon asking what happened, I was told someone fainted; and they were trying to revive her."
The Bible use of the word for faint gives us some idea who needs to be revived. It this those who are experiencing:
Jesus said: "...men ought always to pray, and not to faint" (Luke 18:1). The New King James says, "not lose heart."
Are you dispirited, depressed, defeated, disillusioned, or in despair? Those are tracks you need to follow back to their source. Could it be you are deficient in your prayer life and need to be revived? Do you need to pray "revive me."
Hebrews 12:3, "Consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds." The New King James says, "...lest you become weary and discouraged..."
The expression "faint in your mind," and be "discouraged in your souls" means to relax your guard" or "to let our rope." It speaks of losing one's spiritual aggressiveness.
Galatians 6:9, "Let us not grow weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." The New King James say, "...we shall reap, if we do not lost heart."
If you are now reaping a spiritual harvest you are barren. Being barren indicates you have grown faint and need reviving.
Will you admit to: Prayerlessness, Laziness, or Barrenness? If so, you are ready to be revived.
II.THOSE WHO POSSESS SPIRITUAL CLEANSING, Psalm 51:7-13
7Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. 9Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. 10Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. 11Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Notice how very personal David becomes in these verses. Revival is very personal. “Lord, wilt you not revive us again?” Psalm 85:6
David cries out for God to purge him and wash him from his sins and iniquities. In doing so, David experienced:
A. PERSONAL REVIVAL
Abraham evidenced His obedience to God by a show of willingness to offer His beloved son Isaac, and God said, "I will bless you" (Genesis 22:17).
Jacob wrestled all night with the angel of the Lord and refused to let Him go until he blessed him (Genesis 32:36).
Jabez prayed, "Oh, that You will bless me indeed...So God granted him what he requested" (I Chron. 4:10).
B. PURPOSEFUL REVIVAL I
n verse 5, David asks the Lord to 8Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.
David had been broken physically and spiritually over his sin with Bathsheba. He humbly asks the Lord to bring revival back to his life.
C. POWERRUL REVIVAL
Verse 6 finds David pleading with God for a clean heart and a right spirit. 10Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
This is a cry for right direction.
On one of his several expeditions to the North Pole, RearAdmiral Robert Peary experienced a unique phenomenon. At the end of a weary day he stopped his dog team to take a reading on his latitude. To his amazement he was further south than when the day began. The puzzle solved when he found he had been traveling all day on a massive ice flow which was drifting south faster than his dog team could take him north.
That may characterize your spiritual progress. You might need a powerful revival to regain the spiritual ground you have lost by drifting.
David had drifted away from the close and personal relationship he once knew with God. His broken prayer for revival helped to put him back on the right track.
Who’s going to experience revival?
III.THOSE WHO EXPERIENCE SPIRITUAL RENEWAL, Psalm 51:12-17 12Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. 13Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee. 14Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness. 15O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise. 16For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. 17The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
David’s path to renewal was not an easy one. If we are to experience spiritual renewal and revival in our own lives, we should also expect hardship.
Revival demands a returning, a getting down in the ashes of life’s failures, as did David, admitting our weaknesses and shortcomings, confessing our sins and wrongs. Only then, in brokenness and burdened, can we expect to know God’s refreshing winds of revival. Only then will we know the joy of the Lord again in our lives.
May I challenge you to present yourself to the Lord this morning and be willing to do business with God. We must not expect to carry on business as usual and see any significant sign of revival come to our lives.
Are you willing to change your schedule even the pattern of your normal routine in order to experience revival in your life? Only those who do can expect to see genuine revival!