Watchmen On the Wall - FRC

Prayer Targets: Hastening Revival; Nadler & God; For the People Act; PVS


March 4, 2021

Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. (Matthew 24:35)

Dear Praying Friends,

Dr. Daniel Juster (Wheaton College, B.A., McCormick Theological Seminary, M. Div., Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Philosophy of Religion, New Covenant International Seminary, Th.D.) is an ordained Presbyterian minister and has been involved in the Messianic Jewish movement since 1972. The founding president, then general secretary of the Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations for nine years, and senior leader of Beth Messiah Congregation (Rockville, Md.) for 22 years, he is now part of the apostolic team that governs Tikkun International Ministries. Director of Tikkun America, Dr. Juster provides oversight to 23 congregations and ministries in the U.S. Author of many books, he and his wife Patty live in Israel outside Jerusalem and travel four months every year. They minister under the name, Restoration from Zion. These excerpts are from his article "Revival: Is There Anything We Can Do?":

Those who are following the American situation regarding Christianity and politics recognize the upheaval, controversy, the disappointments, prophetic questions, and so much more. Progress for righteousness in society and through politics can only be lasting in a context of a revived and growing Body of Believers in a nation that is producing quality discipling church communities that change the nation's culture. Revival is the center of our hope whether we enter a time of respite and restoration in the United States or revival prepares us for the great tribulation.

I have argued theologically, along with streams of Bible interpreters, from Puritans, Lutheran Pietists, to the revivalists in the 17th to 20th centuries, that there will be massive world revival that will enable the completion of world evangelism on this side of the Millennium. That revival will be in Israel as well and a key to Israel's salvation. Acts 2, in this view, was a great first installment of Joel 2, but the ultimate fulfillment is just before the return of the Lord and includes the final signs described there. I have good historical consensus and scholarly support for this view. However, there have been many revivals in the interim.

In 1968, J. Edwin Orr, of Fuller Theological Seminary, the historian of revival, spoke at Wheaton College. He presented the case that great progress for the Gospel was an outworking of outpourings of the Spirit. His writings give great detail. Richard Lovelace of Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, in his Dynamics of Spiritual Renewal argued similarly.

I saw how an outpouring at Wheaton college in my wife's junior year transformed the campus in 1969 and again in the 1990s. Beth Messiah, my congregation, was touched and influenced by widely known revivals and renewals in Florida, and Canada. We had many visiting leaders connected to those outpourings. The effect was that a large number of believers gave themselves radically to Gospel ministry. We sent dozens into full time ministry. It was amazing.

But again, is there anything we can do to foster revival, an outpouring even if it is not the final and great one for which we pray and hope? Charles Finney, the great mid-19th century evangelist, argued Lectures on Revival, that if conditions are met, there will be revival. Lovelace, a more Calvinistic historian, argued that concerts of prayer were keys to revival with God's sovereignty much more in view; that people cannot make a revival happen. But can we make it more likely?

Here are gleanings from my studies on revival and my own experiences.

  1. Revival is much more likely when a people are prepared to hunger and thirst for revival. How does this happen? By preaching that centers on revival, first the biblical texts and then the stories of revivals and what happened and can happen again. Fostering this longing in a growing group of prayer partners and in congregations often precedes the revival.
  2. Revival preachers are keys to revival. They can call people to repentance and dedication. This does happen as a product of revival, but there is also a pre-revival preparation. Having revival and ministers that moved in the power of the Spirit was a key to what was produced what happened among us in the 1990s. We encouraged people to visit where such outpourings were taking place and sought to bring it to our community. We would not allow our desire for Jewish indigeneity and identity to be a barrier to this. We also embraced manifestations that some were somewhat different for us but not abnormal historically. We did not shut down what made us uncomfortable. We prepared our people for this (See psychiatrist John White: When the Spirit Falls in Power).
  3. Then, we must know and prepare for revival so the fruits of revival will not be lost. I am sure many think they would like to see a revival but are not aware that revival will upend their lives if they yield to what God wants to do during such times. Evenings will be taken up in powerful evangelism with extraordinary manifestations of God presence and power during revival meetings. Some people will be so touched by the Lord that they will spend hours in his presence. We see this in the record of the ministries of Jonathan Edwards, Ludwig Von Zinzendorf and the Moravians, John Wesley and the Methodist revivals, Peter Cartwright, Evan Roberts and the Welsh revival, Azusa Street, and the Pentecostal revival movement. Randy Clark in his book, There is More, gives a good summary. The parallels in all these revivals are similar and amazing.
  4. God may be more likely to send such a revival when there is preparation for stewarding it. We may need to teach larger groups of new believers in addition to smaller groups like the Methodist Bands. This is the Acts 2:42 model. God may be more likely to send revival when he He knows there are people will to pay the price that receiving revival will entail.

Indeed, the greatest revivals produced social transformation. Moreover, they made great gains for the spread of the Gospel and growth and multiplication of churches and congregations.

We must understand that the increase of righteousness in culture and government can and will only occur in proportion to the growth in numbers and maturity of faithful, Bible-believing, practicing, and praying believers and the multiplication of solid Bible preaching, teaching, praying, and practicing churches. We simply cannot win our nation back without biblical revival.

Revival:Dt 4:30; 2 Chr 15:4; Job 22:23; Is 55:7; Jer 24:7; Lam 3:40; Hos 6:1; 14:1; Joel 2:13; Zech 1:3; Mal 3:7; Lk 15:20-21; Jas 4:8

Nadler's Dismissal of God -- After U.S. Rep. Greg Steube (R-Fla.) quoted Scripture during his allotted time to speak during the debate over the Equality Act last week, some committee members began to complain among themselves, creating some disorder. Amid the hubbub Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) used the gavel to call the committee members to order. After he allowed Steube to finish, Nadler firmly declared, "Mr. Steube, what any religious tradition ascribes as God's will is no concern of this Congress."

Democrats, irate that the Florida congressman dared quote the word of God on the House floor, unleashed on Rep. Steube. Rep. Al Green (D-Texas) and Katherine Clark (D-Mass.) shamed him for being transphobic and intolerant. But it was Congressman Nadler's response that was the most shocking and revealing. (Read Tony Perkins' Washington Update; Hear Tony & Rep. Steube discuss the exchange on Washington Watch -- go to minute 17:23-24:49)

FRC Vice President for Christian Resources, Dr. Kenyn Cureton, talked with Tony about the Nadler incident and the history of God's word in Congress in the same segment (go to minute 27:27 thru 33:52).

Dr. Cureton: "How ironic... Congressman Nadler is standing in the House Chamber, with "In God We Trust" over the Speaker's podium and the walls ringed with 23 marble relief portraits of great lawgivers, but the only one full face is Moses. So, all the lawgivers are looking to Moses, the supreme lawgiver, for direction. Congressman Steube quoted that divine direction. How sad and ironic that Congressman Nadler, whose back was to Moses, would turn his back on the will of God expressed in his law delivered by Moses and reject over 230 years of congressional heritage in our constitutional Republic." (For anyone interested, I can send Dr. Cureton's documentation of several well received and historic uses of Scripture in congressional proceedings. You can request them by email at prayer@frc.org).

H.R. 1 -- For the People Act of 2021 -- This bill was taken up in the House on Wednesday. If passed, it would essentially make all the irregularities that took place in the election last year legal nationwide. The bill would open the floodgates for even more raucous abuse of our elections. The rule for debate and vote on H.R. 1 passed Monday. H.R.1 is scheduled for debate and action on the House floor Tuesday night. Of course, the Senate will have to take it up. (See If HR1 Passes; Facts About HR1)

Be sure to watch last night's edition of Pray Vote Stand featuring Tony Perkins, Al Robertson, and Rep. Greg Steube.

Thanks for praying!