How to Recognize a Biblical Revival

In talking with believers in different places, it can be seen quickly that there are different views of what happens when revival truly comes. Believers will not know, however, if what they seek has truly come or not unless they can recognize it when they see it.

First, let me say what it is not. It is not having meetings called revival meetings. Probably most of these never see real revival – even though the intentions are good. Speaking for these meetings, I must say that I believe that they are generally on the right track.

Secondly, it is not speaking in tongues. I know some people may not like hearing that. However, the Bible says in I Co. 14:22: “Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not: but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe.” Tongues are for unbelievers, and let me add that they are not for today.

Thirdly, a real revival is not a “feel good” church meeting. Feelings and emotions can be roused by a good speaker, or by music, or even by testimonies. Bible revivals often did not have these elements.

Biblical revivals are not always the same. Each one may be a little different, or there may even be some major differences. This is partly because God is not going to be put in a box, but He will never contradict His Word, either. Some great revivals of the past had some unique features.

In general, it is rather easy to recognize when revival comes. It will have several evidences that will separate it from a mere meeting. These will include:

  1. God will have the main stage.

When there was a revival in the Bible, particularly in the Old Testament, individuals did not have the main stage. While there were human instruments, such as Moses, Samuel, Elijah, and others, they were only the instruments which led to revival.

When the glory of God filled the Temple at its dedication, the focus was on God alone. The priests and even Solomon, etc., had to get out of the way because the focus was on God’s glory. This is not saying that God’s glory is visible in a real revival today, but the focus will be on God alone.

  1. Sin will become very sinful.

God’s people will see themselves for what they really are in the eyes of God. They will see what their sin has done to them and how it hurts God and their relationship to Him. This usually leads to sincere brokenness of heart and confession with genuine repentance.

  1. There will be a humility not often seen.

Revived Christians will not seek to glorify themselves in any way. It won’t even cross their minds. In fact, they will talk about their own unworthiness and magnify God’s great worthiness in saving, forgiving, and cleansing them. Christ will be spoken of often.

  1. There will be a great hunger for God, His Word, prayer, and meeting with other believers.

Like the disciples immediately after Pentecost, we are told that: “And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers” (Ac. 2:42). They also were “continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house” (Ac. 2:46).

  1. There will be a strong concern for the lost with bold witnessing.

Because the Lord commanded believers to go and be His witnesses, revival means an empowering for that very task. Notice that sometime after Pentecost: “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness” (Ac. 4:31).

  1. A genuine concern for other believers

Right after Pentecost believers gladly gave of their possessions to be able to meet the needs of other believers. We see this in Ac. 2:44,45: “And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.” The love of Christ for others was evident.

There are apt to be some other indications of the presence and power of the Holy Ghost in a real revival, but these are a few of the most obvious. They are obvious because things aren’t normally happening that way.

For True Revival,
Evangelist Mike Valles

If you are interested in obtaining helps to grow in Christ, please visit my webpage.

You may also want to see the following posts:

Why Revival Is Needed

As I look around at churches and at Christians, I sadly must report that I do not believe that most Christians are revived. In fact, I honestly must say that I doubt most Christians today have ever seen one, either, and many other preachers I know agree. While I have attended some revival meetings lately, I cannot honestly say that I felt that there was a true revival in those meetings – the kind that only the Holy Spirit can produce.

I am not seeking in any way to belittle those churches or pastors, and I cannot set myself up as a standard. However, the truth is that we Christians need to see much more happening in our churches and in America than what is happening now. If there is any hope for either, we must get revived.

There is little doubt amongst many Bible-believing preachers that we are in the Laodicean church age, spoken of by John in Revelation 3:17,18: “Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.”

John’s description (really the Lord’s description) of that particular church age is not a good one. It shows a church where the world seems to have impacted it more than the church impacted those around it. The people in it were more concerned about their own welfare rather than the welfare of those around them. They also had become comfortable in this world, rather than being pilgrims traveling through it.

A pilgrim, like Abraham, sees himself or herself as someone who is merely passing through this life, headed for a better one. They are not trying to earn their way, because Christ has already fully provided it for true believers. Hebrews 11:14,15 tells us that people who call themselves pilgrims or strangers here “declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned.”

If we are truly pilgrims in that sense, then we need a different set of values, goals, and riches than what the world offers. Christ’s solution to the Laodicean church’s problem was: “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.”

True pilgrims need to travel light, and not be bogged down with the problems and burdens this world presents to us. As we let Him open our eyes to the things He desires for us to be and to do, and to live for that “better country, that is, an heavenly,” we will discover that “God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.”

Oh what a day that will be when we see Him, and to know that He is not ashamed of us! If seeing Him does not excite you, my Christian brother or sister, revival is needed. We cannot please Him as we ought, souls will not be won, and rewards will be lost, if we are not revived. If you are not sure what that means, look at how the Christians of the New Testament lived. They boldly proclaimed His Name that others might also be saved and become part of the family of God!

Are you revived? May God help us to seek His face until we are. May He help you and me to not be part of the indifferent Laodicean church where Christ Himself was found to be outside – forgotten, ignored, and wanting to bless but unable to do so.

He waits for us to invite Him to be Lord (Boss), and when He is, He will revive and use you and me to have a greater impact on those around us.

God Bless,
Evangelist Mike Valles

If you are interested in obtaining helps to learn more about salvation or how to grow in Christ, please visit my webpage.


You may also want to see the following posts: