A discussion on revival – part 2

What then is revival?

Can we define it?


Someone once said; “revival in a definition is like David in Saul’s armor, it just doesn’t seem to fit“.  Even after we study and try to define and explain revival, it still remains one of the great mysteries of Heaven.

The dictionary defines revival as; “A restoration to use, acceptance, activity, or vigor after a period of obscurity or quiescence” or; “an instance of returning to life or consciousness; restoration of vigor or vitality”. A returning to life, doesn’t mean that something was dead, rather that it was barely alive and about to die.

As we saw in the previous post on revival, it is not right to speak of revival when referring to people who are being converted, who are first coming to faith in Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 2:1 says; “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins,” and Paul goes on to say in verse 4 and 5; “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.”

People who come to Christ in repentance and new birth don’t experience revival, because they were dead, they experience a new birth. They are Born Again.

Revival refers to re-igniting a flame that was about to die. Literally pouring kerosene on a glimmering ember, bringing a small fire back to life.

Revival as we have recorded in history is when a community is revitalized supernaturally by the Holy Spirit. This revitalization incorporates every aspect of life, including how they relate to each other and their individual spiritual lives.

David Thomas said; Revival is waking up to the fact that you are asleep.

Martyn Lloyd Jones said; Revival is the church returning to Pentecost.

Remembering that Pentecost took place rapidly as the Holy Spirit entered the upper room like a rushing wind. After the Holy Spirit empowered the early church, the movement rapidly affected the whole nation and then the region and eventually the whole world.

When the modern day church experiences the same power that the people in the upper room experienced, and that begins to spread to neighborhoods, cities, and then nations, only then can we say that a revival is taking place.