Nehemiah #9 – What Happens When Religion Turns Into Revival?

In Nehemiah 9, Pastor Mark preaches on the difference between dead religion and dynamic revival, on the gift of repentance, and on the incredible, glorious nature of our God.

What happens when religion turns into revival?: Nehemiah 9

=Longest prayer in Bible, covers history of God’s people to the present

  1. Prayer is how we process
  2. Who you really are is revealed in prayer

Dead Religion vs Dynamic Revival

Dead Religion – 141 yrs somewhat spiritual but no zeal/urgency (ME)

  1. External not internal
  2. For approval of men, not God
  3. Hides & does not change your true self
  4. Spirituality w/o the Holy Spirit

Dynamic Revival – sacrifices, 6-hour sermon “amen”, emotional worship (weeping, kneeling), 1 week Bible camp, praying, repenting

Revival – surprising touch of the Holy Spirit accelerating kingdom ministry

#1 Jonathan Edwards – Began preaching 19. Americas greatest theologian. Great Awakening came1734 Northampton Mass. w/young people who drifted away from church, but wanted to meet w/him about his sermons (Sinners Hand Angry Gods).

Jonathan Edwards 5 marks of true revival:

  1. it exalts Jesus Christ
  2. it attacks the powers of darkness
  3. it exalts the Holy Scriptures
  4. it lifts up sound doctrine
  5. it promotes love to God and man

#2 George Whitefield -Began preaching 25 – Preached 18k sermons to over 10 million people during Great Awakening. Planted 150 churches, preached in open air upto 30k ppl w/o microphone. 80% America heard him preach. Farewell sermon on Boston Commons 23k people, more than Boston’s entire pop & largest crowd US history.

#3. D.L. Moody – Began preaching 21. Started w/boys kicked out other Sun School classes. Denied church membership = failed oral doct exam. Reached 100+ million pppl in life. Chicago World’s Fair, preached 130k 1 day. Traveled 1 mill. miles, & preached to 100 million

#4. College revivals – e.g. Yale Edward’s grandson Timothy Dwight =decades long refreshing church leadership. 2nd great awakening 1776-1810 largely college revivals

#5. Jesus Movement – Vietnam war, gender confusion, sex & drugs, eastern demonism, rebellion, economic collapse, hippies = Changed Church

The Gift of Repentance (Nehemiah 9)

the people…assembled with fasting & in sackcloth, & with earth on their heads…& stood & confessed their sins & the iniquities of their fathers… they made confession & worshiped the Lord their God… our fathers acted presumptuously & stiffened their neck & did not obey your commandments. They refused to obey…they stiffened their neck… committed great blasphemies… they were disobedient & rebelled against you & cast your law behind their back & killed your prophets…they committed great blasphemies… they did evil again before you… they acted presumptuously & did not obey your commandments, but sinned against your rules…they turned a stubborn shoulder & stiffened their neck & would not obey…they would not give ear… we have acted wickedly…Our kings, our princes, our priests, & our fathers have not kept your law or paid attention to your commandments & your warnings that you gave them…they did not serve you or turn from their wicked works…we are slaves…because of our sins.

Sinners Options:

1).Deny 2).Celebrate (Pride) 3). Blame 4). Excuse 5). Change subject 6). Shoot msngr

  • Repentance = turn FROM sin (“we” 5x; “they” 30X) & TO God (“you/your” 84X)
  • Jesus says “repent & believe”
  1. Sin is personal & generational & must be repented of personally and generationally
  2. There is no Christianity without repentance (Martin Luther & 95 thesis)
  3. For good to start, the bad must end
  4. Before the Church can straighten out the world, God must straighten out the Church
  5. Not everyone repents (enemies/critics in Nehemiah)
  6. The demonic counterfeit of repentance is tolerance

Our God Is… (Nehemiah 9)

  1. Eternal “the Lord your God from everlasting to everlasting”
  2. The only God “You alone are the Lord, you alone”
  3. Creator “You have made heaven…the heavens…all their host, [and] the earth…”
  4. Sustainer “you preserve all”
  5. Worshipped by angels “the host of heaven worships you”
  6. Covenant maker “You are the Lord…God who chose Abram…you made a covenant”
  7. Divine Deliverer “you brought him [Abraham] out of Ur of the Chaldeans”
  8. Faithful “you have kept your promise”
  9. Righteous “you are righteous”
  10. Miraculous Way Maker you “performed signs and wonders”
  11. Glorious “you made a name for yourself” (Php. 2)
  12. Powerful “you divided the sea”
  13. Judge “you cast their pursuers into the depths, as a stone into mighty waters”
  14. Leader “By a pillar of cloud you led them in the day, and by a pillar of fire in the night to light for them the way in which they should go.”
  15. Law Giver “You…gave…rules…laws…statutes &  commandments…”
  16. Sabbath Granter “you made known…your holy Sabbath”
  17. Generous Giver “You gave…bread from heaven… &…water…out of the rock… & land that you had sworn to give them.”
  18. Good “you are a God ready to forgive, gracious & merciful, slow to anger & abounding in steadfast love, & did not forsake them.”
  19. Merciful “in your great mercies did not forsake them in the wilderness”
  20. Spirit “You gave your good Spirit”
  21. Family Sustainer “40 yrs you sustained them in the wilderness, & they lacked nothing”
  22. Child Maker “You multiplied their children as the stars of heaven”
  23. Enemy Crusher “went in & possessed the land, & you subdued…the inhabitants of the land.. they captured fortified cities & a rich land, & took possession of houses full of all good”
  24. Disciplining Father “they did evil again…you abandoned them to the hand of their enemies…Yet when they turned & cried to you, you heard from heaven, and many times you delivered them according to your mercies.
  25. Constant Savior “in your great mercies you did not make an end of them or forsake them, for you are a gracious & merciful God.”
  26. Sin Forgiver “Now, therefore, our God, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love, let not all the hardship seem little to you that has come upon us…you have been righteous in all that has come upon us, for you have dealt faithfully and we have acted wickedly.”

Nehemiah 9:5 “stand up and bless the Lord” (big letters on all screens incl. LED)

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Mark Driscoll

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