The Necessity of Sanctification to the Work of RevivalBro. David Chancellor
3/5/2006 11:00 AM
1 Corinthians 3:1-7
And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able. For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men? For while one saith, I am of Paul, and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.
Revival is where people in the community are drawn to Christ and to salvation. We need to mature before we can bring others in. People need sanctification for the work of God to move forward.
Paul was telling these that he was glad for their start, but they needed something more for the work of God to progress. For the work to prosper, sides have to go. It is only God’s cause. We have to put our cause away, and take up God’s cause. We’re not out to make people part of “our” thing. We can work to encourage the work in other places as well as here.
Sanctification is what is needed to help the church prosper. When people get totally consecrated to God and his work, things will move forward and prosper. When we want our private interpretation, God’s work is hindered. When God’s people desire to just know what his word says, great work will be done. Sanctification is a necessity for God’s work to prosper.
To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God: And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
This book begins with the first great revival. Jesus didn’t whip up a frenzy, but he told his disciples to wait. He knew something was needed.
Acts 2:1-4, 14-18, 37-41
And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words: For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day. But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel; And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:
Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
This is what they were waiting for. “… the Spirit gave them utterance…” We need what the Spirit has to say.
Peter said, “This is that…” When we share the gospel, we should be able to say, “Look what God has done.” The world needs to see and hear what God has promised, what he has done, and what he will do. People need to hear, “Look at what God has done for me.” Let them know that God is working in the present tense. We still need to be able to say, “This is that.” People need to see a sanctified life.
Peter was trying to convince and persuade. We need to have the Spirit of God within so we know what to do when someone says, “What do I do to be saved?” We need to know how to answer that question. We need that depth of experience to be able to help others. The day of salvation is now. Be able to tell people what to do right then.
Revival is about people getting saved; not about people getting religion. God has to do a work and change lives. He has to do a work in us (sanctification) to enable us to help others. God can still save people today. It will take God working in a consecrated people to see it.
Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
This one had been speaking of Christ, but couldn’t say some things because these weren’t ready yet. You need to be a teacher. You can’t be a teacher without the Holy Spirit. You can’t help and teach others until you have the Holy Spirit. We need to be able to discern good and evil, between right and wrong. We should be able to clarify some things. God can help us to know how to answer people. We can’t expect to be effective if we’re holding something back. We have to turn it completely to God. Keep everything committed to God and his cause.
But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus shortly unto you, that I also may be of good comfort, when I know your state. For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state. For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ’s. But ye know the proof of him, that as a son with the father, he hath served with me in the gospel. Him therefore I hope to send presently, so soon as I shall see how it will go with me.
Paul wanted to send Timothy because he would naturally care. God needs us to naturally care about those that we go to. Others couldn’t be sent because they were seeking their own. Revival won’t succeed if God has to wait on one that would naturally care. The carnal state won’t naturally care about everyone else. Get convinced about the cause of Christ. Be interested in the things of Christ. Be completely committed to it.
When the love of God is within you, you will just naturally care about others. Draw close to God and let him work through you.