FIRST-PERSON: Lord, bring us to repentance
TAYLORS, S.C. (BP)--Recently, I have been calling our Southern Baptist Convention to ask God to send his reviving Holy Spirit. I believe that the future of our convention and our churches will be based on God’s willingness to give us His reviving power. I believe that that reviving power is needed in several areas. Last week, I focused on the need for God’s spirit to transform our churches.
Today, I call us to seek the reviving Holy Spirit of God in personal repentance and confession.
Second Timothy 3:1-5 paints an accurate yet sad picture of our society today. It tells of what we have become. It speaks about people who have become reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God. Verse 5 gives the real reason behind all this for it describes people who are “holding to the form of religion but denying its power.” The heart of every problem is a problem of the heart. God commands us to love Him supremely and our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:34-40). If we love ourselves supremely, we will not love God or our neighbors.
In this world, there is God and people and things. We should worship God, love people, and use things. If we start worshipping ourselves, we will ignore God and start loving things and using people. This is a formula for a miserable life.
I am afraid we have become people who worship ourselves, or at least have become arrogant in our actions and attitudes. We have felt that we can exalt one cause to the exclusion of other clear biblical commands and causes.
We must be on a mission together to be Jesus people. Our emphasis must be on allowing His Holy Spirit to confront us and to bring us to true repentance and confession. We need the power of God exhibited in our lives, our churches and our convention.
Let us together pray for God to do a work that only He can do. Let us remember the words of II Chronicles 7:14 which tell us what needs to happen before God is going to bless us with His reviving Holy Spirit, “and My people who are called by My name humble themselves, pray and seek My face, and turn from their evil ways, then I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land."
Frank Page is president of the Southern Baptist Convention and pastor of First Baptist Church in Taylors, S.C. Visit his website at www.sbc.net/PresidentsPage.