The benefits of revival meetings are realized now, and will extend into eternity. Some of the special benefits that are derived from such meetings are due to the concentration of group efforts, such as special prayer times, invitations being given to neighbors and friends to attend, and a group concern for all of the church to be revived. The night after night use of the Gospel Hammer that breaks the stony hearts as Jeremiah tells us, will be effective, along with the use of the Word through which the Holy Ghost comforts and strengthens the believers.
The blessing of revival meeting serves as an encouragement in our sometimes strenuous life, giving us real vitality to press on in life. By this revived encouragement, one goes on facing the tests and trials in life with a renewed zeal for our Lord.
One benefits from being established more firmly in old and newfound truth, and is thereby encouraged to new and deeper commitment of life. Many have been the resolutions made while we were sitting under revival exposition of the Word, and we humbly say, “Thank you, Lord, for helping us live true to them.” an appreciation for such a Christian heritage often lifts our spirits and a longing of the soul is for this to continue to be available for all succeeding generations.
Many of us can remember the night, the building, the bench, the evangelist, the feeling, and the benefit of the revival meeting where we accepted Jesus christ as our Saviour. As we now give the invitation or sit in the audience as an invitation for receiving salvation is given, we remember the struggles we had, and also remember the victory won. These experiences put within us a renewed sense of concern and interest for the salvation of other lost souls. A real benefit then in a revival meeting is when the angels of heaven are made to rejoice with us in the salvation of others.
We appreciate the benefit of heart searchings. As one brother said, “I enjoy revival meetings very much, because they bring out the true me and give me a stronger desire to serve my Lord in spirit and in truth.” The process it sometimes takes to uncover the hardened conscience of the “true me” can often be effectively done in revivals. When a person is willing to repent in sorrow and contrition, the benefit is the strengthening of the inner man, as well as adding new strength to the church group. It is therefore true as one has well stated, “The revival must begin in me for the church to receive a real benefit.”
The strengthening effect of revival meetings is a real vital benefit, because it seems after a real revival meeting, love flows more freely, concerns for each other are more keenly felt, forgiveness is easier, work in the congregation is done more earnestly, little mistakes can be overlooked more readily, and a deeper concern for the lost among us and about us is felt. The benefit, therefore, is that the church is given an extra push.
In Psalm 85 the question is asked, “Wilt thou be angry with us for ever? Wilt thou draw out thine anger to all generations? Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?” The Psalmist pleads, “Shew us thy mercy, O LORD, and grant us thy salvation.” Finally he says, “…for he (the Lord) will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints: but let them not turn again to folly.” Otherwise revival as no benefit.
Reprinted from the EMT November 1976