By John Abiola
I will like to use this medium to invite you to join us for the annual prayer and fasting programme for revival in Nigeria on October 1. The location is wherever you find yourself on that day. It could be you alone, it could be a group. It important thing is to link up with us to do this prayer.
If God used one man to cause revival in the apostate, and lawless Israel, then, there is hope for Nigeria.
“And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word.
Then the fire of the Lord fell….. And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord, he is the God; he is the God.
And Elijah said unto them, Take the prophets of Ball; let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and slew them there.”
And it came to pass in the meanwhile, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. (1kings 18:36,38,40,45)
One of the most remarkable revival
This revival in Israel is one of the most remarkable revivals the world has ever seen considering the high level of wickedness, apostasy, corruption, and famine that was prevalent in the land.
Darkness in the land grew gross, and people turned from God to worship Baal. No king, prophet, priest, or spiritual leader was active. None was bothered about Israel’s fate. None was there to call the people to repentance and to God.
No repentance, righteous and faithful preacher to rebuke sins, confront king Ahab of his wickedness and evils. No one could anyone challenge the murderous queen Jezebel who sacrificed the flesh and blood of the innocent and righteous Israelites on the altars of Baal and Ashtaroth. She murdered many prophets, killed Naboth, and took his inheritance.
There was no one to repent of his sins, leaders, and national sin. No prophet to preach repentance to the sin-mesmerized, stubborn, stiff-necked, and Idolatrous children of God. There was no one who qualified in the court of heaven to meet God’s standards and principles of answers to prayers to stand in the gap as an Intercessor. No one to bend his knees in consistent, persistent, and agonizing prayers and fasting for revival and deliverance of the people and the nation except Elijah the Tishbite.
Elijah had no certificate, title, or theological experience. He did not belong to any organization, institution, structure, or platform. Elijah did not hold seminars, conferences, or raise funds. Yet, God used him because of his passion for Him and hatred for sin.
And through his preaching of repentance and fervent prayers for restoration of Israelites to true worship and to God, Heaven opened and great fire from God fell.
The place was revived. Rain fell for the first time in three and half years of drought, and recession. And the children of Israel fell to their knees for the first time in many years and confessed, repented of their sins, and wickedness.
They turned back to God genuinely and publicly, proclaiming loudly after many years, and in presence of 850 prophets of Baal and groves declared: ” The LORD, he is God; the LORD, he is the God”.
The whole Nation was reformed and transformed. Famine stopped. The ruling principalities, powers, and demons were dislodged and the whole nation was cleansed.
Has God changed?
Has God changed? is God partial? NO! He is looking for the Elijahs in our nation and in the world. You can be the Elijah of our time. No nation has ever experienced a new life without spiritual revival. Every nation that has people of proven integrity has experienced a revival at one time or the other.
Israel, Great Britain, Germany, Wales, America, and South Korea just to name but a few are examples of these countries. The decadence of Nigeria and the world calls for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit, spiritual revival, and awakening like we had in the 70s.
This spiritual revival will emanate from one believer to other Christians till it affects the whole nation and spread out to other nations of the world. Nigeria is experiencing the darkest period in the history of her existence. Godlessness, all kinds of Anti-Christ activities, and war are holding us by the jugular
How to get a new order in Nigeria
We are experiencing the most chaotic times politically, economically, and spiritually in the nation of Nigeria.
*What is the solution and who will bring a change?* The only thing that can give us a new and better Nigeria is a spiritual revival and it must begin in the church and from an individual.
God said, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” ( 2chronicles 7:14).
Jehoshaphat was one man,”And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. And Judah gathered themselves together, to ask help of the Lord: even out of all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord” ( 2 Chronicles 20:3-4).
Ezra was one man, “Now when Ezra had prayed, and when he had confessed, weeping and casting himself down before the house of God, there assembled unto him out of Israel a very great congregation of men and women and children: for the people wept very sore”( Ezra 10:1)
Turning our nation is possible
If the Church would fast, repent and fervently pray for revival, God will pour out His Spirit and turn our nation around. Multitudes of sinners would be swept into God’s Kingdom and our nation will fulfill her prophetic destiny of revival.
This was my encounter during a particular period of fasting, repentance, and prayer for revival and salvation of the lost souls of Nigeria and other closed doors nations of the world beginning in 1999. September 7, 8, and 9, 2000. On each of these days, I was prompted from sleep by the Holy Spirit to pray.
Praying with righteous indignation, I had been concerned about the sleeping state of the church, the economic and political situation of the Nation, and the lost souls of Nigeria. In a moment of holy anger, I recalled how God brought Idolatrous and stubborn Israel out of 40 years of their wilderness experience.
This made me retrospect on the 40th year’s independence anniversary of my nation, which was to be celebrated a few days ahead, October 1st. I then desired Nigeria to come out of her spiritual wilderness. These thoughts brought tears to my eyes as I continued in my Intercessory prayer for my nation.
My prayer led me to many faces; I confessed the iniquities of our land, people, and leaders both past and present, both in the circular and religious world. The burden in my heart for revival in Nigeria these days was unexplainable and beyond description.
My soul cry over Nigeria is that it will be delivered from the grip of hell. I held in my hands the national flag of Nigeria, quoted Revelation 12:11, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death” severally on the Nigerian flag, agonizing in prayers, sweats and tears like I just had my bath. Sometimes I laid flat on the floor, at another time I stood up, got up on my knees…
In the process, I had a vision. I saw the Nigeria map in her colour; green- white- green. I saw the map in a pointed hedge like a stem and a mighty wind from heaven blew upon it and set it in motion as it began to turn/ rotate. As prayers intensified, the speed increased.
*National decay: Nigeria- Israel semblance (Ezekiel 22:1-31)*
With Jerusalem’s end approaching, God again told Ezekiel to show the city its sins and the humiliating judgment that these sins would bring upon it (22:1-5).
Powerful people exploited others, without any respect for the laws of God or the dignity of their fellow human beings (6-8). The corrupt city was characterized by lies, abominations, and sexual sins of the worse kind (9-12).
God warned that in punishment for its wickedness, he would destroy the city and scatter its people among the nations (13-16).
As a refiner puts metals into a furnace to refine them, so God would gather the people in Jerusalem for a fiery judgment. But instead of the refining process producing pure metal, it would show that there was nothing but worthless metal.
As the fire of the furnace melts the metal, so God in his anger would punish Jerusalem (17-22).
Jerusalem’s wickedness extended to people in all sections of the community. Leaders made themselves rich through oppression and violence, while priests encouraged corruption by ignoring God’s law (23-27).
Prophets approved of wrongdoing for the sake of their own gain, and the people as a whole took advantage of any who were less fortunate than themselves (28-29).
Not one person among all the country’s official leaders was prepared to work for God in trying to stop the nation from crumbling to ruin (30-31).
God sought for one man,”And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none”( 30)
Revival begins in the Church
If we don’t talk of sin and repentance in our churches, our communities and nation will remain under the ruling principalities and powers of the dark world. If we refuse to change our messages of bread and butter to the Gospel of the kingdom that Jesus preached, commanding us and the Apostles to preach, our nation would not be saved.
If we refuse to wake up to the reality of our own sin and repent genuinely, ask God for forgiveness and turn 360 degrees back to God, our nation will continue to experience God’s wrath and judgements.
If the church is not spiritually healed, the nation will remain in distress, recession and underdevelopment.
If the church remains in bondage and captivity, the nation will never have freedom. If Biblical principles and values are not restored to the church, the nation will not recover its lost glory of the past years. If the church is not revived, the nation will remain dead and continue to experience political, economic, and social upheavals.
If the church remains in darkness, the nation will never be righteous.
If the church is not transparent, the nation will remain corrupt.
If the church is spiritually poor, the nation will continue being poor.
If ritual practices and human sacrifices stop in the church, killings, rituals, kidnapping, and burning of churches in the nation will fade away. Then, we can have a new and better Nigeria.
Our nation has fallen apart
Our nation has fallen apart and we can’t repair it until we acknowledge our personal and national sins. Our leaders, priests, prophets, pastors, and Christians, in general, have turned deaf ears to the consequences of sin. They forget that it was sin that took Jesus Christ to the rugged cross to die a horrific and shameful death.
It is time for us to stop compromising with sin for God’s move of the Holy Spirit and revival fire to engulf our Nation, to sweep multitudes of sinners into the Kingdom. Are we ready? Are we prepared to do what Elijah did at Mount Carmel? Are we ready to do what the Israelites did at Carmel? Are we prepared to fast, repent and pray for personal, corporate, and national revival today?
What does revival really mean?_
Unfortunately many church leaders, pastors, and Christians do not understand that the major fruits of revival meetings or churches include conviction of sin, repentance, turning back to God, and holy living to God.
*When God Stepped Down From Heaven. By Owen Murphy.* Owen explained what revival really meant in his book “THIS IS REVIVAL!
When men in the streets are afraid to open their mouths and utter godless words lest the judgment of God should fall; when sinners, overawed by the Presence of God tremble in the streets and cry for mercy; when without special meetings and sensational advertising, the Holy Ghost sweeps across cities and towns in Supernatural Power and holds men in the grip of terrifying Conviction; when “every shop becomes a pulpit, every heart an altar, every home a sanctuary” and people walk softly before God—This is Revival!
Today, the word Revival has largely lost its real meaning. Our present generation, never having witnessed the mighty moves of God in nationwide spiritual awakening such as has taken place in past generations, has little conception of the magnitude of such a “visitation.”
REVIVAL is confused with EVANGELISM!
Heaven-sent revival is not religious entertainment where crowds gather to hear outstanding preachers and musical programs; neither is it the result of sensational advertising
In a God-sent revival, you don’t advertise; people come because Revival is there! Revival is an “awareness of God” that grips the whole community. And the roadside, the tavern, as well as the church, becomes the place where men find Christ.
Here is the vast difference between our modern evangelistic campaigns and true revival. In the former, hundreds may be brought to a knowledge of Christ, and churches experience seasons of blessings but as far as the community is concerned little impact is made; the taverns, dance halls, and movies are still crowded, and godlessness marches on.
But In revival, the Spirit of God like a cleansing flame sweeps through the community. Divine conviction grips people everywhere; the strongholds of the devil tremble and many close their doors, while multitudes turn to Christ!
THE AMERICAN REVIVAL OF 1857
The mighty “visitation” of those days, from which has flowed almost a century of spiritual blessing, represents a challenge even today. Like a spiritual tornado, the Spirit of God swept through the land, and New England became the center of the great awakening, resulting in great numbers finding Salvation.
In some towns it was reported as being “almost impossible, to find anyone who had not been converted.” Like a great spiritual epidemic, tremendous Conviction of Sin swept through the land, and thousands turned to Christ. Drunkards, as they stood at the saloon bars, gamblers as they sat at the card tables, congregations as they sat in churches, even passengers on board, incoming liners came under the influence of this strange and wonderful moving of God and, kneeling in repentance, found pardon.
In many closed and emptied places, new churches began to spring up everywhere; family altars were restored, and the spirit of prayer grew in intensity until anyone could cross the land and find a “mid-day” prayer meeting in almost any town!
It was estimated that as many as 50,000 decisions were made in a week when this gracious visitation was at its height! Following in its wake came mighty preachers of the Word of God. Including D.L. Moody, under whose ministry multitudes were called to repentance; and pioneer missionaries who have taken the gospel to the uttermost parts of the earth.
THE WELSH REVIVAL OF 1904
The year, 1904, stands out in the history of Wales, as a year that will never be forgotten, and those who were privileged to live in those days still speak of its heaven-sent scenes with the greatest awe!
Like a mighty tornado, the Spirit of God swept across the land until mountains and valleys, cities, and villages were filled with the mighty manifestations of God.
Churches were crowded and meetings went on day and night. Prayer, singing, and testimony would sweep over congregations in torrents, And hundreds turned to Christ. Never in the history of Wales had such indescribable scenes been witnessed.
Dr. Campbell Morgan, preaching on this great revival, in the Westminster Chapel in 1904 declared: “Here Is REVIVAL that comes from heaven; There is no PREACHING, no ORDER, no HYMNBOOKS, no CHOIRS, no ORGANS, no COLLECTI0NS, and finally no ADVERTISING!
Now think of THAT for a moment! There were organs, but they were silent; there were ministers but no preaching – they were among the people praising God! Yet the Welsh Revival is a “revival of preaching” for EVERYBODY is preaching! No order, yet it moves from day to day, county to county, with matchless precision, with the order of an attacking force.
No songbooks, but ah, me, I nearly wept tonight over the singing! When the Welsh sing they abandon themselves to their singing. We sing as if we thought It wouldn’t be respectable to be heard by the one next to us! No choir, did I say? It was all choir!”
Today the Sunday School, the Bible Class, and the Family Altar are reaping their harvest. Wales is ablaze for God, already 50,000 converts have been recorded and the great awakening shows no sign of waning. It’s sweeping over hundreds of hamlets and cities, emptying saloons, theatres, and dance halls, and filling the churches night after night with praying multitudes.
Go where you will, into the bank, the store, the trains, and everywhere men are talking about God. If you could stand above Wales, looking at it, you would see the fire breaking out here, and there, and yonder, and somewhere else, without any pre-arrangement.
It is a Divine visitation in which God – let me say this reverently – in which God is saying to us: “See what I can do without the things you are depending on. See what I can do through praying people who are prepared to depend wholly and absolutely upon me!”
Like a tree shaken by a mighty storm, Wales was moved by the Power of God until almost every home in the nation felt its impact. Newspapers, in bold headlines, carried the news of the amazing scenes taking place. So great was the fear of God, and conviction of sin that gripped the people, that in some communities crime disappeared—magistrates were presented with a blank paper, no cases to be tried.
And to commemorate the occasion, they were presented with white gloves! In more than one place, the post office’s supply of money order blanks was exhausted as people sought to make restitution by paying their debts! Saloons and theaters were closed while stores were sold out of Bibles and Testaments.
Members of Parliament, busy attending Revival services, postponed their political meetings. Theatrical companies coming into districts found no audiences for “all the world was praying!” Temperance workers saw the Spirit of God accomplish more in 3 months than they had accomplished in forty years!
Such, then is Revival, a mighty, sovereign “moving of God” in answer to the cries of men and women who have gone down upon their knees to travail before God. A visitation of God, through His Spirit, that pours tormenting CONVICTION OF SIN upon the ungodly, wherever they may be, until multitudes have turned to Christ.
A demonstration of God that closes the dens of iniquity, transforms the lives and homes of multitudes, fills the churches, and causes the influence of spiritual values to be felt throughout a whole nation. A genuine “moving of God” that lays a spiritual foundation for the blessing of God in future generations.
THIS IS REVIVAL
With the ashes of past revivals before us – for those scenes today are only history – we may ask the question: CAN THOSE SCENES BE REPEATED? CAN GOD SEND A SIMILAR REVIVAL IN OUR DAY? This writer is convinced that God can do more than that.
God wants to do it. In every age, the revival resources of God have been waiting to be “turned loose” when God could find men who could stand before Him in holiness, prayer, and faith and make it possible. And to those who travel the highways of the world, there are obvious and encouraging signs that God is again “preparing the way” for a new spiritual awakening.
HEBRIDES which although just the size of a “man’s hand,” is not only one of the most stirring events of our day but under the blessing of God is challenging men and women everywhere to “stand in the gap” for revival in our day.
The spiritual awakening of the Hebrides, between 1949 and ’52 has stirred the hearts of God’s people, not because of its size, but because of its quality, and challenge for TODAY!
In spite of the scattered nature of the country the fact that hundreds have turned to Christ in life-changing conversion, accompanied by such God-given scenes, inspires us with new FAITH for a far greater awakening in our own land.
Just as the tidings of the great awakening of America in 1857, swept across the ocean and brought REVIVAL to Ireland in 1859, so it may be, In the purposes of God, that attention has been focused upon that which God wrought In the Hebrides, that its CHALLENGE OF INTERCESSION may cause a flame of REVIVAL to be kindled IN AMERICA, that will cause the whole land to be swept with a mighty Holy Ghost revival”.
2022 National day of Fasting, repentance, and prayer for revival in Nigeria. Location: Where you are in one, two or more groups is on Saturday, October 1st, 2022, which is our independence day. 6:00AM-6:00PM.
Thank you for joining us. We also thank God for answer to your prayers.
Remember, It is October 1st, every year.
REVIVE US AGAIN SERIES 69.