Monday, October 23, 2006

Prayer and Fasting

Friends, I pass this on from Steve Camp. Give it some consideration.

May we humbly make Tuesday, October 31st, Reformation Day a call to fasting and prayer for reformation, repentance, and revival for His church in every nation

One week from this Tuesday, October 31st is Reformation Day--the day Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door at Wittenberg calling a recalcitrant Roman church away from the gross sin of indulgences for legal tender to recapturing the doctrine of justification by faith alone. Today's evangelicalism needs another Reformation--a genuine move of God among His people that calls and returns His believers back to biblical Christianity and the gospel of sola fide once again.This is an earnest plea for a day of prayer and fasting.No fanfare; no programs; no famous religious leaders jockeying for media attention; no K-Street spin; no DVD's or MP3's to profit from; no books to promote; no CD's to sell; no contests to judge; and no personality driven agendas to endure. But simply, God's people taking leave from the duties of their daily lives to humbly seek the Lord to bring revival, repentance, and reform to His church once again.

We need a new Reformation today; we need another Great Awakening! Will you encourage others through your blogs, websites, churches, Bible studies, etc. to humbly and faithfully join in this special day of prayer?

"O Christian, never be proud of things that are so transient, injurious, and uncertain as the riches of this evil world! But set your heart on the true and durable riches of grace in Christ Jesus." -ISAAC AMBROSE“

Oh Lord, send a Great Awakening among your people again according to Your Word; by Your Holy Spirit, for the praise of Your glory, for the spread of Your gospel, for the holiness of Your people. Leave us not in the condition in which we awoke this morning, but conform us by Your grace to Christlikeness so that we may be vessels fit for the Master's use. This only is a work of heaven--for no man can conjure up a genuine move of God; no man can transform the heart of another; no man can stir the conscience to repentance, convict the soul of sin, and invoke contrition over iniquity. All our ways are impotent before You; and even when we have done all to obey You, we are still "unprofitable servants."But the true church marches on her knees; and so may we run into the prayer closet this very hour, shut the door and see what You by Your sovereign grace will accomplish. For "it is not by might, not by power, but by My Spirit" says the Lord.Forgive us Lord for being consumed with the advancement of our own ministries at the expense of others, for measuring the effectiveness of Your work by the size of a church's yearly offerings, and for charging others for that which we have received freely by Your grace. Dash to the ground our paltry plans, our self-devised and promoted reputations, our carefully positioned and politically aligned agendas and alliances.

As my friend once said, "How can we be so dead when we've been so well fed; Jesus rose from the grave, but we, we can't even get out of bed." May The Swordsman, by His divine sword, whittle us down to size as You did Gideon of old, so that we may not find comfort, resolve, or hope in our own strength, wisdom or wealth. May all our lowly boasting turn to tears, all our pride turn to dust, all our vain exaltations of self turn to ash; may our "laughter turn to mourning and our joy to heaviness" until reformation comes... until revival comes to Your people. Break our stubborn hearts with the hammer of Your Word and humble us under Your reverential fear until our deepest longing, passion and joy is found only in Christ Jesus the Lord.”Glorify Yourself for Your names sake only...
Steve Camp Col. 1:9-14
AudienceONE Ministries:

"A true revival means nothing less than a revolution, casting out the spirit of worldliness, making God's love triumph in the heart." -Andrew Murray

“When God has something very great to accomplish for His Church, it is His will that there should precede it the extraordinary prayers of His people, as is manifest by Ezekiel 36:37... And it is revealed that, when God is about to accomplish great things for His Church, He will begin by a remarkable pouring out of the spirit of grace and supplication (Zechariah 12:10). If we are not to expect that the devil should go out of a particular person, under a bodily possession, without extraordinary prayer, or prayer and fasting, how much less should we expect to have him cast out of the land and the world without it!” -Jonathan Edwards

"God's quickening visitation of his people, touching their hearts and deepening his work of grace in their lives." -J. I. Packer”

I did then preach much upon original sin, repentance, the nature and necessity of conversion, in a close, examinatory and distinguished way; laboring in the meantime to sound the trumpet of God's judgments, and alarm the secure by the terrors of the Lord, as well as to affect them by other topics of persuasion: which method was sealed by the Holy Spirit in the conviction and conversion of a considerable number of persons, at various times and in different places in that part of the county." -George Whitefield

“Open heaven Lord and let Your Spirit fall...” Amen?

Monday, October 02, 2006

Idol/Idle Worshippers
This being Part 2 of “Playing Church.”

As we return to take a second look at people “Playing Church,” I call your attention to the fact that, despite all their pretense about worshipping God, the Israelites were really idol worshippers. We were looking at Amos, chapter 5 when we last blogged together. Verse 26 reads this way:

"You have lifted up the shrine of your king, the pedestal of your idols, the star of your god —which you made for yourselves."

Anyone who has ever tried to translate this verse from Hebrew knows it is really a problematic verse. But what is not a problem is understanding that the verse declares Israel to be guilty of idol worship. Idol worship can be defined as “allowing anything to replace God as the constant focus of your attention.”

Israel elevated men – their own kings to a position of worship. They even worshipped other nations’ kings. Healthy respect for kings, queens, other leaders is Biblical. But respect & honor are a far cry from worship. Foolishness like the worship of President George W. Bush that was splashed all over the news last week in the videos from “Jesus Camp,” is contrary to Biblical teaching. As humans we sometimes seek someone to worship. We elevate Rock stars; athletes; actors & actresses? Respect, even love, for these people may not be inappropriate. But the question we always need to ask is “have they replaced God?”

Israel not only worshipped men, they also worshipped material goods. They worshipped the things they made with their hands. The parallels with our own times are endless: money; comfort; power; sex have become gods of our age. How about the lottery?

Our cars, our libraries, even our children can become idols for us. Most are fine in moderation. What we’re talking about is obsession; leaving no room for God, God’s children, God’s work, God’s Word, prayer.

When God gets shut out what we have is idolatry. We ALL need to take heed!