Prayer Targets: God Revives! War for Marriage; MD Marijuana; National Day of Prayer
April 16, 2014
I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. John 11:25-26
Nations are blessed to the degree that they honor God and his laws. Christians are God's salt and light that influences nations to honor Him. If God's people do not keep the fires of vital faith burning, the Bible, the Declaration and the Constitution are ignored by the powers and people. This Passion Week and Resurrection Sunday let us pray for our nation, that our countrymen will be revived by the same power that raised Jesus from the dead! While Finney's name is better known, many historians point to the ministry of an obscure Kentucky pastor, James McGready, as being used of God as a catalyst for the Second Great Awakening:
In the Southwest, through the joint efforts of the Methodists and Presbyterians, revival became so extensive as to include nearly all of the religious denominations... Logan County, KY, July, 1800, Rev. James McGready, a Presbyterian, held open air meetings attended by all classes, both black and white... Rev. Barton W. Stone wrote, "The multitudes came together and continued a number of days and nights encamped on the ground... It baffled description. Many, very many, exhibited symptoms of life by a deep groan or piercing shriek, or by a prayer for mercy fervently uttered... and obtained deliverance. The gloomy cloud that had covered their faces seemed gradually and visibly to disappear; hope and smiles brightened into joy. They would rise, shouting deliverance... then address the surrounding multitude in language truly eloquent and impressive. I heard men, women, and children declare the wonderful works of God and the glorious mysteries of the gospel. First came humble confession of sins, then fervent prayer; ultimate deliverance came; then solemn thanks to God, then affectionate exhortation to companions to repent and come to Jesus. My conviction was that it was the work of God; and my mind has not wavered since..." Cain Ridge, August, 1801... McGready wrote "The roads were crowded with wagons, carriages, horses, and footmen... between twenty and thirty thousand persons were assembled. Four or five preachers...were in different parts of the encampment, Methodist and Baptist preachers aided in the work... They were of one mind and soul: the salvation of sinners was the one object. We all engaged in singing the same songs, all united in prayer, all preached the same things... many from Ohio and other distant parts. These returned home and diffused the same spirit in their neighborhoods. The revival extended throughout Kentucky, and through Tennessee into Georgia and the Carolinas, visiting the South and Southwest with veritable showers of refreshing grace. Enthusiasm ran wild. As to the genuineness of the revival there can be no question. Communities were transformed, while the godless and profane were influenced by divine grace to enter upon lives of holiness and prayer. Rev. George A. Baxter, wrote, "Something extraordinary seemed necessary to arrest the attention of a people ready to conclude that Christianity was a fable and futurity a delusion. This revival has done it. "
The Awakening was preceded by seasons of earnest prayer. Christians entered into a solemn covenant to spend definite time in prayer for an outpouring of the Spirit of God. Rev. Crisman says: "The ministers dwelt, with great power, on the necessity of repentance and faith, the fullness of the gospel for all, and the necessity of the new birth. They earnestly presented the purity and justice of God's law, the odious and destructive consequences of sin, and the freeness and sufficiency of pardon for all." The morals of the country were reformed, the churches were quickened. Their influence brought new spiritual power and religion became a more potent factor in our national life. The church as an organized force was girded with strength sufficient to enter the arena and engage in deadly combat with the flagrant public evils of the day...Unlike the Great Awakening, this revival was deep and lasting and led to widespread revival which prevailed throughout that period (Frank G. Beardsley, A History of American Revivals, 1904).
This can happen again as we pray. Would you enter a prayer covenant for revival?
Marriage Moving toward Supreme Court - Last week, the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of appeals in Denver, heard oral arguments in Kitchen v. Herbert, appealing the decision by a Utah U.S. District Court that struck down Utah's Marriage Amendment. FRC's Senior Fellow and an attorney, Dr. Chris Gacek says this and a similar case from Oklahoma are likely cases for the U.S. Supreme Court to hear next year, to decide the constitutionality of state laws defining marriage as the union of only one man and one woman. Three lesbian couples originally brought the case. The District Court ruled that Utah's law had interfered with the "fundamental right to marry" guaranteed by the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution. It also held the law unconstitutional on equal-protection grounds, saying Utah law discriminates by prohibiting a person from marrying someone of the same sex. But the judge went even further to say that the Utah marriage law "fails to satisfy the most basic standard of rationality. No reasoned justification can be given for limiting marriage only to opposite-sex couples."
Gacek asks "Are we to believe that for millennia, human beings were, for whatever reasons, incapable of realizing that there was nothing distinctive about maleness and femaleness? Sexual complementarity and the ability to produce children together counts for little, apparently... Our modern age is so ideologically conflicted that it [cannot] acknowledge the emotional and psychological complementarity of the masculine and the feminine... [or that] children need a father and a mother." Meanwhile District Judge has ordered Ohio authorities to begin recognizing homosexual "marriages" performed outside their state (see Will Supremes Restore Common Sense to Marriage Law; Judge Orders Ohio to recognize Out-of-State Same-sex Marriages; Earlier Report: Ban Unconstitutional).
- Pray Ohio will prevail in their appeal against this wrongful order! May the U.S. Court of Appeals in Denver, and eventually the U.S. Supreme Court, shake off the blindness of this age and rule to preserve natural marriage - which reflects the laws of nature, the laws of God and God's intent that marriage reflect the image of Christ and His Church! (Ps 11:3; Is 10:11; 49:15; 2 Sam 23:3; Mt 18:6; Eph 4:17-19; 5:28-32; Jude 7)
Maryland Decriminalizes Marijuana - Having passed both houses of the Maryland General Assembly (S: 34-8, H: 78-55), Gov. Martin O'Malley signed a law to decriminalize marijuana. Persons caught with less than 10 grams of the drug would be subject to a civil fine, but not criminal charges. Widely touted as a Democratic Candidate for President in 2016, O'Malley is signaling how he would govern on a larger stage. Twenty-four states have already decriminalized, legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes or outright legalized marijuana possession and use according to a Pew Study (See Move to Scrap , Alters Brain ).
- May state policies which encourage marijuana use, which serve as a gateway to more harmful drugs and addiction, and that benefit only drug peddlers, be reversed! May those in authority, especially parents, set an example and train our youth to reject mind altering drugs that are dangerous to everyone (Lk 12:35-40; Rom 12:1; 1 Cor 6:12-20; Eph 5:18).
Finally, fewer than 15 days remain until the National Day of Prayer (NDP), Thursday, May 1, 2014. Please be sure to take part in some way. FRC has worked with NDP to produce a free downloadable Church Bulletin Insert. Find an event in your area at NDP's Events page. And don't forget to talk to your pastor about your church observing Call2Fall on Sunday, June 29th. These two important prayer days emphasize that only God's grace and mercy and church-wide repentance (2 Chr 7:14) will turn our nation back to Him! Thank you for praying!