Revival of a nation, should God be pleased to grant it, begins in the church.
As we take thoughts captive to obey Christ, we must not forget to obey him ourselves. How easy it becomes to hate other men’s sins more than our own; a nation’s drift more than the church’s. For the past two thousand years, it has been the “time for judgment to begin at the household of God” (1 Peter 4:17). And if God sees fit to begin at the household of God, so should we. Is this not the focus of all our New Testament letters?
Our gaze should turn first within, on the vitality of Christ’s church, and this can and will be a blessing for a nation. Our God has, in history, spared nations — or at least Zoars — for the sake of his righteous few.
What Might God Do Now?
Isn’t it amazing that God orchestrates his world, including the rise and fall of nations, with such a consideration for his people?
The Christian church, even when abused or ignored, is the backbone of any land. God rules the world in consideration of their good (even when their “good” includes refining fires of persecution, 1 Peter 1:6–7). His curses and blessings, his ways and his mysterious acts of providence, all serve his own glory and the eternal benefit of his people — neither impeding the other.
Yet we can feel so small, so insignificant, so powerless. Perhaps we believe ourselves a dutiful afterthought of a God busily lording the world. We can look at the celebrities, the wealthy, the elite, and think that they hold all the influence.
But while great men in expensive suits make great speeches about important decisions, the Monarch of mankind bends his ear to little children. He who holds the hearts of kings in his hand (Proverbs 21:1) considers how all decisions will affect them.
Should we not rightfully believe that the command center of this world, the place where real influence is wrought, is in the secret place of faithful Christian living? Even Queen Mary knew this when she confessed, “I fear John Knox’s prayers more than all the assembled armies of Europe.”
If God spared the lives of many for a few, if the heroic efforts of individual men, through faith, “conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight” (Hebrews 11:33–34) — what might a praying, loving, waiting, expecting church do in a nation like ours?