Signs of Spiritual Awakening Pt. 1
(Taken from the Walking in the Footsteps of Jesus series.)
“A few days later, when again entered Capernaum; the people heard that he had come home. So many gathered that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them.”
Over the past several weeks we have discussed three keys to spiritual awakening including: repentance, leaving everything connected to our old sinful life, and embracing the authority of Christ’s Word.
However, how does a church gauge whether or not revival (awakening) is taking root? What does it look like when it begins to happen? The second chapter of Mark helps us to understand the signs.
Some may say, from an initial observation of the passage, that the presence of a large crowd is a key indication of a great move of God; however, we must bear in mind that although a genuine move of God is going to attract people; so will a concert or good football game.
Some may point to the energy, excitement, and zeal surrounding the event as an indication of revival; yet again these may accompany a genuine move of God; nevertheless they are easily replicated by many secular forms of entertainment.
Looking at the passage, one of the first real tangible signs of awakening is a hunger for the Word of God! People of varying background, economic status, and social groups all pressed in, willing to pack in (standing room only) to hear the words of Jesus. No real awakening can be sustained in our lives without a growing hunger for the Word of God.
When revival becomes preoccupied with signs, wonders, and intense worship; while becoming devoid of the Word of God; the integrity of the revival cannot be sustained.
Praise and worship can lift our faith, but they don’t produce it. Signs and wonders can lift our faith, but they don’t produce it. Faith is the by-product of God’s Word:
“Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.”
At the very heart of a great awakening is going to be a heightened sensitivity to Scripture, a greater commitment to sound doctrine, and increased proclamation of God’s Holy Word.
Pastor Scott Burr