Print Sermon

These sermon manuscripts and videos now go out to about 116,000 computers in over 215 countries every month at www.sermonsfortheworld.com. Hundreds of others watch the videos on YouTube, but they soon leave YouTube and come to our website, because each sermon directs them away from YouTube to our website. YouTube feeds people to our website. The sermon manuscripts are given in 34 languages to thousands of people each and every month. The sermon manuscripts are not copyrighted, so preachers can use them without our permission. Please click here to learn how you can make a monthly donation to help us in this great work of spreading the Gospel to the whole world, including the Muslim and Hindu nations.

Whenever you write to Dr. Hymers always tell him what country you live in, or he cannot answer you. Dr. Hymers’ e-mail is rlhymersjr@sbcglobal.net.




REVIVAL, RESURRECTION, AND GRACE

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Lord's Day Morning, April 27, 2003


"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all" (Acts 4:33).


The church at Jerusalem experienced the first great revival. In fact, Christianity was born in a revival. What does revival mean? There are lots of theories about what it means, but most of them are wrong. Revival is very simple. It means the awakening and conversion of lost people. Conversions are at the very heart of revival.

Three thousand people were converted to Christ on the day of Pentecost, according to Acts 2:41,

"Then they that gladly received his [Peter's] word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls."

That was only the beginning of the revival! It went on day after day!

"And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved" (Acts 2:47).

But there was opposition to the revival. Satan hates to see people getting saved. And the Devil - yes, I believe in the Devil - the Devil stirred up the captain of the Temple and the Sadducees,

"Being grieved that they taught the people, and preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead. And they laid hands on them,  and  put  them  in  hold  [in jail]  unto  the  next  day" (Acts 4:2-3).

Even though Peter and John were put in prison, the revival went on and

"Many of them which heard the word believed; and the number of the men was about five thousand" (Acts 4:4).

The next day the rulers and elders and scribes, and the high priest brought Peter and John out of prison. These rulers were totally against the Apostles' preaching. They did not want them preaching that Jesus had risen from the dead! They were seated in their courtroom, and they brought in the prisoners, Peter and John.

"And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this?" (Acts 4:7).

Peter stepped forward and began speaking to those religious rulers. Peter said to them,

"Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole…Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:10, 12).

He said that no one but Jesus Christ, whom God has raised from the dead, can save you! No one but Jesus Christ can give you salvation!

When they saw the boldness of Peter and John they marvelled [they were astonished]. "And they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus" (Acts 4:13). Then they put Peter and John outside while they tried to figure out what to do. Finally they called them back in and "commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus" (Acts 4:18).

But Peter and John answered them,

"Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard" (Acts 4:19-20).

They were compelled to speak about what they had seen! What had they seen? They had seen Jesus! They had seen the resurrected Christ! They had seen His body - risen, flesh and bone, from the dead! Christ was alive. They saw Him alive. They said, "We cannot but speak the things which we have seen!" (Acts 4:20).

The religious leaders didn't know what else to do,

"So when they had further threatened them, they let them go" 
      (Acts 4:21).

And the revival went right on! Nothing could stop this move of God!

"And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness" 
      (Acts 4:31).

That, my friend, is revival! And that brings us to our text,

"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all" (Acts 4:33).

Here in our text are found three principles that happen in a revival. This is what we are praying will happen in our church. When we pray for revival, this is what we are praying for. This is what happens when a church is shaken and the Holy Spirit comes down.

I. First, in revival there is great power in the preaching.

There may have been some power before. Some people may have been converted before - now and then. But when revival comes it can be said, "And with great power gave the apostles witness."

When the revival power of the Holy Spirit comes down on a church everyone will know. The preaching will be "with great power." It won't just be the preacher going through the Bible, teaching it verse by verse. Oh, no! There will be great power in the preaching. It isn't something a preacher can plan out. It isn't something you can prepare for. It isn't something you can organize. They are planning a big Billy Graham meeting in a couple of weeks, just two hours from Los Angeles, in San Diego! They will plan it all out. They will organize it. There will be a lot of professional so-called "Christian music." Graham will give three or four of his old sermons. Hundreds of people will come forward. A great organization will try to "follow up" on them. But a month after Billy Graham is gone, no one will even know that he was there! That's not revival! Billy Graham himself has said many times that it is not revival.  That's a man-made religious spectacle!

But what happened in Jerusalem was not like a Billy Graham meeting at all! One little church, the church at Jerusalem, had 8,000 converts in a few weeks! And nobody had to "follow up" on them! The Lord followed up on them!

"And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved" (Acts 2:47).

That is revival! Converts are added to the local church by the Lord! God follows up on them! God brings real converts into the local church! A so-called Billy Graham, Charles Finney "convert" is usually no convert at all! Any so-called conversion that doesn't take a person into the local church every Sunday will not take that person into Heaven when he dies! If it doesn't add you to the local church, it won't add you to the church of the firstborn in Heaven! Not in church? Not converted! Tell them I said it - and put it on the website!

"And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved" (Acts 2:47).

That's revival! Everything else is a counterfeit!

"And with great power gave the apostles witness…" (Acts 4:33).

Revival preaching has great power. It has great power to hold people's attention. It has great power to bring people under conviction,

"Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?" (Acts 2:37).

Revival preaching pricks people in their hearts. They want to know what to do to be saved. They listen to the preacher, and they do exactly what he tells them to do. There is no arguing. There is no fooling around. When you come under Holy Spirit conviction you will mean business! You will tremble like the Philippian jailor, and say, "What must I do to be saved?" (Acts 16:30).

That's what happens when the Holy Spirit of God comes down on a church. The preaching changes your life. You get under conviction and you believe on Jesus - and you get converted! It can all happen in a few moments of time.

"And with great power gave the apostles witness…" (Acts 4:33).

That's the first thing that happens when a revival is sent down by the Holy Spirit of the living God!

II. Second, the preaching in revival centers on the gospel of Christ.

"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection …" (Acts 4:33).

Why, these Apostles couldn't preach anything else! Every sermon in the early church was centered on the resurrection of the Crucified Christ.

On the day of Pentecost Peter preached,

"Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth…ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain [killed]. Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it" 
      (Acts 2:22-24).

Then Peter said,

"Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus [not a ghost or a spirit - that same Jesus], whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ" 
      (Acts 2:36).

Peter couldn't preach without speaking of the crucifixion and bodily resurrection of Christ. In his second great sermon after Pentecost, Peter said,

"The God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go. But ye denied the Holy One and the Just…And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses…Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out" 
      (Acts 3:13-15, 19).

You killed Him by your sin! He died on the Cross to pay for your sins! God raised Him up from the dead! Now repent and be converted! Turn from your sins and put your faith in Jesus Christ! Believe in Christ and be converted - and do it now! That's revival preaching!

Then Peter preached before the Sanhedrin, the council of religious rulers. He preached the same thing - the gospel! He said,

"Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole…Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:10, 12).

That's revival preaching! That's preaching on the crucifixion and literal, bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ! You can't get saved by anyone else. Only Christ, who has risen from the dead, can save you from your sins!

They put Peter and the other Apostles in the common prison (Acts 5:18). They were trying to get them to stop preaching about the crucifixion and the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Then the high priest brought the Apostles out of prison and said,

"Did not we straitly [strictly] command you that ye should not teach in this name [of Jesus]? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine" (Acts 5:28).

They had filled Jerusalem with this doctrine! What doctrine? They preached that Jesus was killed on the Cross to pay for sin - and they preached that He arose, His body came back to life and walked out of the tomb. They couldn't stop preaching the gospel. They had seen Jesus! They knew He had risen from the dead! They filled Jerusalem with this doctrine: Christ has risen from the dead!

John said,

"Which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life…That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you" (I John 1:1, 3).

Yes, revival preaching is centered in the preaching of the gospel - in the crucifixion and literal resurrection of Jesus Christ!

"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus…" (Acts 4:33).

But there is one more point. One more thing happens when revival comes.

III. Third, when revival comes there is great grace upon people.

The full text says,

"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all" (Acts 4:33).

Salvation can only come to you when God's grace comes and pricks your conscience and draws you to Jesus Christ. Some people say that you can get saved any time. I no longer believe that. The Bible says,

"Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts" (Hebrews 4:7).

God limits a certain day for you to hear the gospel and get converted. It isn't just any day, "He limiteth a certain day" (Hebrews 4:7). Today may be your only opportunity to repent of your sins and turn, and believe in the resurrected Son of God - who died on the Cross to pay the penalty for your sins - and has now ascended into the third Heaven - and is seated in His resurrected body at the right hand of God. Oh, today, turn to Jesus. Repent of your sins and believe fully in the Son of God.

Revival could come to our church. God could send it, as He did to the early church. I have personally seen revival twice. I have been in two Baptist churches when the power of God came down. I have seen with my own eyes what is described in our text,

"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all" (Acts 4:33).

Is the "great grace" of God upon you this morning? Are you pricked in your conscience for living a sinful life - without God? Do you have any fear at all of Hell? It takes "great grace" to experience these things. But it takes even greater grace to turn you fully to Jesus Christ. Turn to Jesus. Believe in Him fully. Christ will save you from sin, death, and Hell. Turn to Christ. Believe on Him! Do it now!

If you would like to talk to me about getting saved, just slip out of your seat as we stand and bow our heads. Slip out of your seat and go to the back of the room. Dr. Cagan will lead you to my office. You just go to the back of the room while we pray. Dr. Chan, come and lead us in prayer for conversions while they go.

(END OF SERMON)

Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: Acts 4:23-33.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:

"Because He Lives" (by Bill Gaither).

THE OUTLINE OF

REVIVAL, RESURRECTION, AND GRACE

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

 

"And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all" (Acts 4:33).

(Acts 2:41,47; Acts 4:2-3,4,7,10,12,13,18,19-20,21,31,33)

I.   In revival there is great power in the preaching, Acts 2:47;
Acts 2:37; Acts 16:30.

II.  In revival the preaching centers on the gospel of Christ,
Acts 2:22-24,36; 3:13-15,19; 4:10,12; 5:18,28; I John 1:1,3.

III. In revival there is great grace upon people, Acts 4:33;
Hebrews 4:7.

You can read Dr. Hymers' sermons each week on the Internet
at www.rlhymersjr.com. Click on "Sermon Manuscripts."