A lot of prophets are saying this is a whole new era for the church right now. GOD is tearing up old ways of doing things and bringing new blueprints to his church.
One thing I like to do is look at where God is really moving right now on the earth and see if I can spot some kind of pattern or theme as to what the Lord is doing. Here is one right now that may mess us up a little.
When we think of revivals in the past few hundred years they were usually spearheaded by an evangelist. From Finney to Brownsville, the main feature of a revival was an evangelist preaching a gospel message each night. Right now I see this happening much less. I can point you to several moves of God right now where the primary speaking gift is not an evangelist but an apostolic teacher.
This takes us right back to the book of Acts (a sustained move of God) where they were not devoted to the evangelists preaching but to the apostles teaching.
I believe in this new era, revival services will look less like gospel meetings and more like Bible studies. There will still be extended times of worship, there will still be powerful salvation altar calls, there will be glorious ministry times complete with all the manifestations and signs of outpouring. The thick glory of God will be felt and experienced by all. But the pulpit will be filled with anointed teachers sharing the principles of the kingdom, showing people how to live in and sustain a move of God daily. Revival services will be less “bring a flag and a shofar” and more “bring a Bible and a notepad.” There will be teaching, training and equipping right at the centre of outpouring services.
People will hunger for the glory atmosphere but will also hunger for the the word. This means teachers are going to learn how to minister, not in a classroom environment but in a revival atmosphere. Teachers are going to have to become comfortable with the spontaneous, the unusual and the unpredictable. There will also be a demand to not just teach but to lead people into an encounter, which will take teachers into a place of stretching.
And what of the evangelist? Will there still be a place for the evangelist? Absolutely! But here is the exciting bit. Historically evangelists have been used to ignite a revival (which is part of the job) but then expected to sustain a revival by preaching nightly in revival services. This has meant they have spent more time preaching to Christians rather than the lost. In this new era as teachers sustain revivals the evangelists are leaving the buildings! I see evangelists in the new era speaking less at revival services and conferences and more taking teams on the streets sharing the gospel with unbelievers, moving in signs and wonders outside the church building.
This is what I see God doing in many places right now. Apostolic teachers spearheading outpourings of the Spirit in churches and evangelists taking the gospel to the streets. I believe this will become the pattern of the new era and will bring a maturity and sustainability to the revival movement. What do you think?