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Do We Really Want a Revival?

WaveYou may think that’s a strange question. Of course we want a revival. We pray for revival. We sing about revival. We see the need all around us.

Even though all that is true, it still doesn’t mean that we want a move of God. Why would I make a statement like that? It all comes down to history.

I love history – especially church history. I enjoy reading about the lives of godly men and women who have done exploits for Christ. I encourages me to learn about the past revivals and awakenings that have swept not only our land, but others around the world.

It gives me hope for the future and presses me forward in my calling to prepare us for that next wave. But there is a problem I see looming on the horizon. It’s something that the church is going to need to wrestle with before very long.

It might even be the greatest hindrance to us entering the next move on God’s agenda. It’s something that’s unique to our generation of believers.

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another — and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Hebrews 10:23-25

This passage clearly references the last days when it talks about us seeing the Day approaching. There are some clear commands for us to observe as God’s people.

First, we must hold to our hope in Christ without swerving to the right or the left. We can’t be distracted by what’s going on in the world.

Next, we need to be involved in each other’s lives. Spurring is not comfortable, either for the giver or the receiver. We’d much rather live our lives with any thought to the needs or struggles of those around us.

But it’s the third statement that concerns me the most. The writer is talking to a people in the habit of missing church meetings. I don’t believe he was only talking about Sundays, but all through the week.

What concerns me is this; because he references the last days, he makes it sound like it will become harder and harder to meet together near the end. In fact, that’s exactly what we’re seeing right now.

God’s people have learned from the world to fill up their schedules with so many good things. I fear that many are going to miss out on the best thing that God has planned for us.

From a look at history, it’s obvious that revival isn’t convenient. You can’t add it to your schedule in the free hour you have next Thursday at 4:00.

Revival is a move of God that goes on every day for weeks, months, or even years at a time. Do we really want that? Are we really willing to rearrange our lives to accommodate God’s will?

A bigger question I have is this. Is God waiting for us to simplify our lives in preparation for a move of God? Is He waiting on us to open up our schedules to more fellowship, prayer, and worship activities?

Pray for revival. Pray for a change in the hearts of believers.

Question: How much time do you have in your schedule for a revival?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

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Posted by on April 4, 2014 in Revival, The Church

 

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The Greatest Roadblock to Revival

Give UpLet me start by apologizing.  I don’t usually want to air my dirty laundry in these posts.  But since the goal of this blog is to promote a revival in our generation, I felt that I needed to say this.

So, I’m sorry for letting my emotions get the better of me, but today’s post is coming from a heart that desires to see change.  The body of Christ needs to wake up, from the leadership on down.

While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”  So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.
Acts 13:2-3

This verse talks about a prayer meeting that was held at the church of Antioch.  During this meeting, Saul (later to become Paul) and Barnabas were called into a missionary work.  Their work changed the world forever.

This morning I was at a prayer breakfast hosted by an association of churches that we are involved with.  It was called because of some needs and transitions that our churches are experiencing.  It was to be an hour of prayer, with a half hour of breakfast provided beforehand.

There are just over 100 churches in our association.  All of the pastors and leaders were called and invited to the meeting.  What do you think the response was?  There were 8 of us there to pray.

Just 8.  Of those 8, 4 of them were on the committee that hosted the prayer.  At this point, I have to say that it was a wonderful time of prayer.  Those who attended were there to seek God.  We had a great time in the spirit.

But on the way home, I had to think about what we’re missing.  We need revival in our land.  We know that.  We talk about it.  When someone brings it up we all nod our heads in agreement.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t give birth to revival.  Prayer brings it about.

In the above verse, Saul went to this meeting.  I’m sure he had other things to do.  At that point he was vocational.  He was a tent-maker who taught at his local church.  What if he decided that he was too busy to get to that prayer meeting?

I hear pastors complain all the time about the prayerlessness of their people.  “We can’t get them to come out to the prayer meetings we call.”  Where are these pastors when they are called to pray?

To be fair, I understand that many have vocational jobs during the week and they can’t take the time off.  I understand that others may have some transportation or health issues.  I don’t have a problem with these.

But 8 – out of all the pastors and leaders of 100 churches.  Where’s the revival we seek?  It’s in our hands.  We must remove the roadblocks.  One of the biggest is the lack of prayer from the top down.

Again, I ask your forgiveness for my ranting in this post.  But my heart’s desire is to see a move of God sweep this nation in my lifetime.  Whatever it takes.  Even the “sacrifice” of prayer.

Question: How often do you pray for revival in our nation?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2014 in Prayer, Revival, The Church

 

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A Prophecy for 2014 #prayforrevival

ClockI have found that the Psalms have lined up with current affairs since the year 1900.  Over the past 10 years or so I have preached from a Psalm each year and it’s been amazingly accurate.  The Psalm for this year is Psalm 114.

When Israel came out of Egypt, the house of Jacob from a people of foreign tongue…
Psalm 114:1

This psalm uses both Israel and Jacob.  They refer to the same person, yet they’re different.  He started out as Jacob, but his name was changed after an encounter with God.  His new name, Israel, literally means conquered by God.

The Lord knows where you’re at.  It’s time to go deeper.  There’s a call going forth this year for the church to leave Egypt.  We’re too much a part of our society.  It’s time for us to break from the world.

Judah became God’s sanctuary, Israel his dominion.
Psalms 114:2

But the Lord starts where you’re at.  Israel is the whole nation.  If you’re part of the crowd, then become God’s dominion.  We’re not living for ourselves like the world does.  We must come under the dominion of the King.

Judah refers to the tribe from whom the kings were chosen.  They consistently served the king.  There are those who have set apart Christ as Lord.  For these believers there’s a further step.

You must become God’s sanctuary.  Literally – God’s clean, holy place.  It’s one thing to see yourself as owned by God, another to see yourself as His sanctuary.

The sea looked and fled, the Jordan turned back; the mountains skipped like rams, the hills like lambs.
Psalms 114:3-4

This is the miraculous intervention of God.  But it’s not just for survival.  This is God’s intervention for a people who are moving forward.  God wants to do the miraculous for those who are obedient.

The sea refers to the Red Sea.  This was for those who chose to leave Egypt.  If you choose to make a break with the world, then God will give you supernatural assistance to do it.

Becoming His sanctuary is crossing the Jordan into the Promised Land.  If you want to take that step, then God will supernaturally open up the way.

The key is that you have to take the first step.  Israel didn’t wait for the sea to open up before they left Egypt.  Then, when they got to the Jordan River, they had to step in before it parted.  We need to make the first move by faith.

Then you’ll get to the mountains and hills skipping.  That’s the new things that God wants to do once you’ve surrendered to His will.

Why was it, O sea, that you fled, O Jordan, that you turned back, you mountains, that you skipped like rams, you hills, like lambs?
Psalms 114:5-6

Now a question is asked.  Why is God making it as easy as possible for us to obey His call?

It’s getting late; His coming is drawing close.  We need to prepare for the final harvest.  We’re partying in the house, while the grain is starting to rot in the field.

20 years ago this was largely an anti-spiritual society.  The concept of God or miracles was distasteful to the world.  Now the entertainment industry is all about magic, vampires, werewolves, zombies, and superheroes.

That’s actually a cry for the supernatural.  But the church must wake up to show what’s true.  There’s a reason God wants to perform miracles.  It’s to bring people to the cross.

Tremble, O earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the God of Jacob, who turned the rock into a pool, the hard rock into springs of water.
Psalms 114:7-8

God wants to get the world’s attention.  He does this by bringing the refreshing waters of revival to the church.

It seems like I preach this every year.  But that’s because this has been God’s call for many years.  Every year revival depends on our response.

It’s time to see the hand of God at work.  If we will become God’s dominion, God’s sanctuary, then we will see a miraculous revival in our land.

Question: What does it take to see a revival?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2014 in Revival, The Church

 

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Lives Laid Down for the Scripture #Revivals past

MountchurchI’ve been posting about the first great move of God after the Dark Ages.  The Lord was using His people to restore the Bible as the foundation for faith and practice in the church.

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.
Romans 15:4

It’s obvious from the lives of these people, that they were able to endure beyond the normal experience.  It was their reliance on the Scripture that brought them to this level.

Who were these dedicated believers?

There were the Cathari in France.  They believed that tradition, alone, is not a basis for faith.  So they started printing and circulating Scripture.  Pope Innocent III actually called for a crusade against them.  Not only did he wipe them out, but the entire local population as well.

Another name to remember was Peter Waldo.  Around this time he started preaching the Word of God and circulating Scripture.  His followers were called the Waldensians.  They fared a little better.  When the order was given to kill them all, they were able to flee.  This community of Christians escaped to the mountain caves of Northern Italy, where they still exist today.

One of the more famous names of this move was John Wycliffe, from England.  Again, his goal was to preach the Word and get the Scripture into the hands of God’s people.  His followers were called the Lollards.  Unfortunately, they had to give up their lives for the faith.  They were martyred by Kings Henry the IV and V.

In many cases, the problem with our humanity is that we don’t want to know that we’re wrong.  The fact is that I need Scripture to correct me and then show me how to get back on solid ground again.  Many don’t want to admit their need for change.  Especially when there’s political power involved.  That was a big reason that they crucified the Lord.

The list goes on and on of those who started preaching a new way of following Christ – using the Scripture as the standard of their lives.  It includes such men as St. Jerome, John Huss, John Calvin, and Martin Luther.  Many people don’t know that Luther was actually working on a German translation for the common people to read.  Most of these saints of God were persecuted and killed.

Their commitment is summed up pretty well in a line from the dedication page of the KJV Bible: “So that if, on the one side, we shall be traduced by…persons at home or abroad, who therefore will malign us, because we are poor instruments to make God’s holy Truth to be yet more and more known unto the people, whom they desire still to keep in ignorance and darkness;”

I am eternally grateful for their sacrifice so that I could have a foundation for my faith.  And, so that you could know the truth of God for yourself.

Question: What’s the best way to show our gratefulness to God for our unlimited access to the Scripture?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on July 10, 2013 in Revival, The Church

 

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The First Move of Restoration #Revivals past

Bible1In my last post, I talked about the church’s descent into the Dark Ages.  It was a horrible time in history.  Many people ask, “How could all this have happened?”  What about all that the Bible teaches?

The bottom line is, that at that time, the Church was the ultimate authority in the life of the believer.  Their teaching was viewed as infallible.  The clergy would not allow the common people own a Bible.

“We’ll explain to you the truth you need to know.”

Around 1300 A.D., it seems that God finally said, “Enough – I’ve got to prepare my bride for my coming.”  The Lord had to rearm his church.  As I look at the flow of history, I see that God was restoring the armor of Ephesians 6.  The bride had to be dressed and ready for the Lord.

Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist,
Ephesians 6:14a

First thing that was needed to be restored was the Belt of Truth.  This is what the church desperately hungered for at that time.  We need a foundation of truth.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16-17

I would never have known truth without Scripture.  I need to be taught the principles of God.

It seems that the church was without hope at this time.  The door to heaven was locked and the priests had the only key.

I think that it’s no coincidence that the printing press was invented during this period.  I also believe that it was a direct result of the move of God.  The first book printed with this new technology was the Bible.

The above verse tells me that sometimes I need to be rebuked, to be told when I’m wrong.  It’s how I react that tells whom I serve.  Am I willing to listen to the Holy Spirit and change, or am I hard-hearted and rebellious?

Thus, some of the greatest persecution of God’s people began.  Unfortunately it was not from unbelievers, but from the organized church, itself.

God started moving in the lives of His servants.  It was small at first.  Believers who wanted to read and study the Bible for themselves.

It’s hard for us in the United States to fathom this.  Most Christians have more than one Bible in their home.  We have access in stores and online.  We’re free to read Scripture whenever and wherever we want.

Throughout history this has not always been the case.  In my next post I’ll wrap up this series by recounting some of the precious saints of God who laid down their lives for us to have the abundance of Scripture that we now enjoy.

Question: How much do you appreciate your access to Scripture?  How do you show it?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on July 8, 2013 in Revival, The Church

 

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The Rearview Mirror #Revivals past

Cathedral I believe that there’s a great revival coming soon to the church in America.  Sometimes we need to see how God has worked in the past, if we’re going to prepare for the future.

“Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness and who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were cut and to the quarry from which you were hewn; look to Abraham, your father, and to Sarah, who gave you birth.  When I called him he was but one, and I blessed him and made him many.
Isaiah 51:1-2

It’s important to see how far we’ve come.  Sometimes I get discouraged by the present condition of the church.  But when I look at where we started, it’s encouraging to know how close we are to Christ’s return.

Many talk about revival and restoration.  Do we really understand what that means?  We need to look at history because every move of God depends upon the truth He’s already restored.

Let’s go back 2000 years – to the infant church.  It was an incredible time in the spiritual realm.  Thousands of people were saved at a time.  Healings and miracles were commonplace.

The dead were raised.  Jails were opened up.

Yes, there were some “baby churches,” like Corinth, who weren’t walking in their call the way they should have been.  But the power of God was manifest throughout the known world.  The church grew incredibly for 300 years.

Then something earthshaking happened.  In 314 A.D., the Roman emperor Constantine declared Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire.  In this act, he planted the seeds of destruction.  Constantine used Christianity to gain political power.

From then on that spirit started to infect the church.  Think about how the government runs the IRS, welfare, and healthcare.  Now picture the government running the church.

It’s no wonder that the descent to the Dark Ages began.  It was a downhill slide for the next 1000 years.

This spirit of earthly power took root in the church.  The Church, and specifically the popes, claimed the authority to rule over kings.  Many wars were started over this issue.

The practice of simony, the purchase of offices, was common.  Sanctuaries become more magnificent inside and out.  As the worship services increased in splendor, there was a decrease in spirituality.

At one point there was a meeting between Thomas Aquinas and Pope Innocent II.  The Pope showed Thomas the abundance of wealth that the church possessed – money, gold, and art.

Pope Innocent exclaimed, “You see, Thomas, the church can no longer say silver and gold have I none.”

To which Thomas replied, “True, but neither can she now say rise up and walk.”

These and many other abuses were prevalent in the Dark Ages.  As I look back and see what the Lord has taken us from, it gives me hope for our generation.

In my next post, I’ll talk about what God did to bring about a change in that dark period of church history.

Question: Are you expecting to see a great move of God in our generation?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on July 5, 2013 in Revival, The Church

 

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Quartermaster Ministries News July 2013 #revivalnow

It’s a new day!  God is doing new things with me!

This is the first of monthly newsletters that I’m starting today.  My goal is that it will come out the beginning of each month, on a Tuesday or Thursday.

This is to update everyone on what’s happening in the ministry.  I expect new things to be taking place on a regular basis.

First off…

I have joined the Twitter community!

You can follow me @RevNickZacc.  Hopefully, it will encourage you with short thoughts throughout the day.  Sometimes I’ll retweet things that are encouraging me.  Also, you’ll find that I’m starting to use # in my titles, since they’ll be posted on Twitter as they are released. (They are also posted to Facebook and LinkedIn)

Speaking at Churches

I feel the Holy Spirit pushing me to get out and do more speaking (outside my home church).  I feel a need for the body of Christ to be prepared for the coming revival.  The Lord has blessed me with insight into how we should be getting ready and what to be ready for.  Because of this I have a spiritual pressure in me, that won’t let me keep it to myself.  So as these opportunities open up, I’ll start posting my schedule as to when and where these events will be.

Prayer

As a result of all of this…I ask you to pray.  Pray with me for revival to rock the church in the USA.  Pray for the lost to hear the clear message of hope in Jesus Christ.  Pray for me to faithfully follow the course God has for me.  I’ll pray for you, the followers of this ministry, that you would experience the highest and best God has for you in Christ.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
Ephesians 3:20-21

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on July 2, 2013 in Newsletters

 

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