The following has been used in prayer groups in South Wales to encourage people to pray for revival.
1 Concern for the State of the Church
- Its decline in numbers– most mainline denominations will become extinct this century.
- Methodists, URC, Welsh Independent & Welsh Presbyterian probably extinct by 2040.
- Church in Wales faces “meltdown” by 2030. I.e. massive closure of buildings due to congregations too small to maintain them, and too few clergy.
- Its decline in doctrinal standards – E.g. rise of liberal and other non-biblical doctrines often propagated by the colleges that train ministers.
- Its decline in moral standards. E.g. worldliness; tolerance of sin; acceptance of homosexuality within the church.
Response: Rev 2:5 Remember therefore from where you have fallen and repent and do all the deeds you did at first. Rev 3:2 Wake up and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die … remember what you have received and heard and keep it.
2 Compassion for the State of the Lost
All born into this world are under sin and condemnation. There is only one way to be free – through faith in Jesus Christ. There is no other plan of salvation. If they stay in this situation the result is eternal punishment Rev 20:10 “they are tormented day and night, for ever and ever”. We tend to tone down conversion to statements like “become Christian” “know Christ for themselves” “make a commitment”. In reality they need saving.
Response: Speak the gospel to all and persuade them to seek Jesus Christ. Doing this is not just a matter of obedience to a command, but should come from the compassion of ones who received God’s mercy towards those who will not seek it, before it is too late. 2 Cor 9:22 I have become all things to all men that I might by all means save some. Rom 10:1 my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved.
3 Distress over the State of Society
The decline in society’s moral standards, its attitude to justice both within and around the world, its accumulation of wealth at the expense of its spiritual poverty and the material poverty of other parts of the world.
Response: 2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
4 Sorrow Over the State of Our Own Souls
Our lack of: spiritual life; growth in grace and holiness; love for Christ; desire for worship, the word, and his presence; love for others.
Response: To seek Jesus Christ to renew and revive us by his Holy Spirit. Eph 3:19- to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
5 Grieving Over the Lack of Glory Given to God
All the above are bad in themselves, but worse is what they say about God. A poor church, ungodly society, lifeless believers and the lack of people saved, diminish His glory. This should grieve all Christians; the Lord Jesus is not getting the good attention He deserves.
Response: Pray and repent of the things we do to diminish God’s glory so that he will us, and through us change other Christians, church, society and save the lost. Psalm 79:9 Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us, and forgive our sins, for your name’s sake!