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Revival, Salvation and Healing this Eastertide

by The Rev. Nigel Mumford

If my people, who are called by my name, will 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.
2 Chronicles 7:14

About fourteen months ago I was nudged. The nudge came to expand my horizon to go beyond healing and to pray for revival, “You want me to do what Lord?” To be honest I did not want to do this – hey, I’m British and this smacked of major extrovert behavior! “Not really my cup of tea, Lord. Thanks all the same!” I then found the above verse from 2 Chronicles 7:14 and began to see that healing, salvation and renewal all go hand in hand. After someone is healed a deeper relationship with the Lord is often sought. Salvation and faith is renewed; ergo revival!

The “Formula” for revival is clearly laid out in 2 Chr 7:14. Look at the “cause” and “effect” if people do four very simple things: 1) humble themselves, 2) pray, 3) seek the face of Christ, and 4) turn from our wicked ways. Then God will forgive us and heal our land. HELLO…can we do this? Can we accept this? Can we honor this - this Eastertide? This a time of renewal, revival and resurrection? Can our faith and hope be resurrected with the Lord, bringing it out of the tomb, out of darkness and into the light?

We know Jesus preached the Kingdom AND healed the sick (Luke 9:2) and he sent His disciples out to do the same. He got peoples attention through healing, then told them about the Kingdom. In some cases, it was the other way around! He healed, then brought people into salvation. Healing and salvation go hand in hand. (Luke 1:77, Acts 4:12). The Greek word “Sozo” means “healing and salvation.” Classical Greek, the language of medicine’s birth, does not differentiate healing and saving or health and salvation. It is very interesting to note also that the Latin word “Salve,” the derivative of salvation, means to heal, the ultimate expression of healing. (Salvation) is forgiveness. We put a salve, an ointment, on a wound. We put a paper cut in our mouth and cover it with saliva! I now see why the Lord gave me that Holy nudge, “Time to get out of your comfort zone, Mumford - time to get out of the boat!”

Fourteen months ago we began to pray for revival at Christ the King SLC. Many came from a number of denominations. I covenanted to do this for six months, but God had other plans! After six months a woman said we should do this for nine months; gestation! After nine months I realized we had to keep going. The Lord made it clear that we should keep going until no one showed up!

Looking at the history of revival, the bishops and my mentor, Francis MacNutt, were concerned about the “flash in the pan” evidence of history. Many revivals lasted only one or two years. The question was, “How can we pray that this be a sustained revival?” Having recently spent a few days with some of the nation’s top healing ministry people in Jacksonville FL, it was clear that we are witnessing pockets of revival within the healing ministry. We are witnessing a different kind of revival; a revival of the healing ministry; a revival of “The Forgotten touch” (coincidently the title of my new book available June 2007 Seabury Press). It is a revival of what the Lord taught. He is again getting our attention, both individually and corporately, in the conjoining of health and salvation – a revival of the healing ministry and rekindling of faith.

Not long ago, while preaching at Calvary church, Stonington, CT., a man stood before the congregation to tell us that two years earlier, after being prayed over, he was instantly healed of Menier’s disease. In one touch, the nasty effects of nausea and dizziness were gone. The congregation’s faith was uplifted and their faith renewed. The essence of Jesus’ teachings was again revealed – Jesus, the same, yesterday, today and forever. (Heb.13:8).

WWW Free dictionary, Wikipedia, on Christian revival: “A revival or awakening is a movement of the Holy Spirit bringing about a revival of New Testament Christianity in the church of Christ and in its related community. Such an awakening may change an individual in a significant way; or it may move a congregation or the churches in the city or district, or the body of believers throughout a country or continent; or indeed the larger body of believers throughout the world.” Yesterday I received a phone call from a woman in Sri Lanka asking for prayer for healing. The special outpouring of the Spirit, often described as like a wave, affects the reviving of the church, which is moved to engage in evangelism, teaching, and social action. For revival to take place in a Christian, or a group of Christians, there must be repentance. When a revival took place in the past, people were confronted with their sin and confessed it. Until this happens no one can be revived.

From the evidence I see, and from talking with others in healing ministry, I believe that the body of believers is being healed in exactly the same fashion of two thousand years ago. Even with major turmoil within the church, healing in all its expression is being revealed and restored as we seek first the Kingdom of God.

The resurrection is here. The renewal is here. The promise of Jesus is, “If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” (Matt 21:22). This Easter boldly ask to be revived, restored, renewed and healed, and come to a new and sustained salvation in the healer - the risen Lord. The Lord is Risen. He is risen, indeed. Let your soul be uplifted and filled with hope, healing, love, compassion, and the resurrection of faith.

I close with a passionate quote and something to ponder from Francis MacNutt, “People are dying because people are not praying for them!” Be well, do good works and for God’s sake, love one another.

God bless you,
Fr. Nigel+

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