2 Chronicles 7:14; “ if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
We have seen that revival is God’s sovereignty on display in response to our prayers. He decides when and provides for revival. But, there is a part we have to play, we need to humble ourselves and pray, but we also need to turn from our wicked ways.
We don’t like that word, it seems very harsh in our 21st century politically correct world. Wicked means sinful and ways refers to a behavior that we have settled into and become comfortable with.
So what are these wicked ways? The Bible gives us some clear guidelines.
- In Revelation 3:15-16 we see that the Laodicean church was wicked because of their spiritual luke-warmness. Are we neither hot nor cold for the things of God?
- In Matthew 6:14, Jesus makes it clear that we are not to hold unforgiveness against anyone. After all we have been forgiven, it is wicked not to do the same for others.
- In John 17, Jesus prays for unity. We fall into sin, when we create division and disunity in the church through gossip and slander.
- By not reading the Word of God and applying it to our lives, that is a wicked way. We are neglecting the Holy Word of God to us.
- In Malachi 3:8, we see that withholding our tithes and offerings is a wicked way, we are literally guilty of robbing from God, by not giving back to him what he has first given to us.
- Then we have the list of moral failures, lying, indifference to evangelism, losing our tempers and idolatry (putting something before God).
Looking at this list, it makes us wonder if we will ever see revival.
We need to strive for purity and holiness, not so set anything unholy before our eyes and not to speak any unwholesome words.
The verse says that we are to turn from these wicked ways, and we will look at this in more detail in the next posting. But the key is repentance. We need to repent and ask God to forgive us of all our sin. True revival always starts with repentance.