GOD’S VESSELS ON EARTH
What is revival? It could means many things to many people. To some people revival means repentance or confession of sin, but to others, revival means reaching out to the lost. Yet to another it means more experiences and manifestations of God. Revival is all of these things plus more and each person has his or her own idea of what revival is. But God’s word tell us what a revival truly is about.
I have watched revivals that have came and have gone. We have lived through several waves of revival, for example the Charismatic Revival and the Faith Movement. The amazing thing is when revival begins, we don’t realize that it has begun. When it’s over we named it as the Charismatic Revival but when you are in that movement, you don’t realize that it was the revival.
We have also seen how revivals can die and how it doesn’t continue onwards. Therefore we need to look at God’s word so that we could live our life based on that revival. If you are living in the perfect will of God all the time then revival actually doesn’t affect you much. All you have is more fellow brethrens living in the perfect will of God like you. And we are supposed to live in the revival all the time.
From the time Jesus came to this earth until the time when he was thirty years old, Jesus was living in the revival although nobody knew that. His life pleased God and the Bible tells us that when Jesus went into the waters for baptism and came out, God in heaven declared ‘This is My Son in Whom I am well pleased’. There was a manifestation and He has not done a single miracle yet. That was His first water baptism under John the Baptist. For thirty years there was a revival in the home of Joseph and Mary and nobody knew it.
See many people have different concepts of what revival is. A revival needs to be guided. For example in a revival when people began to repent, we got to also lead them from repentance into holiness otherwise it goes into what I call witch hunting and condemnation. So we have to guide a revival. We have to flow with the Spirit of God to guide the revival and to see the kind of revival that God wants to bring forth.
We will look at some revivals in the Bible and show forth some principles involved in the revival. Some people who don’t know enough of revivals made a statement that there is no need of any leaders during the breakout of a revival. That’s not true. That’s one of the major issue of why revival dies. Lets turn to Acts 2:17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh. I want you to take note that God did not said that He will pour out His Spirit upon an organization or a building but that He will pour out His Spirit upon all flesh.
We will look at three principles on revival and we want to look at some foundations behind revival. Foundation means that a revival is based on certain conditions and if those conditions are removed the revival dies. There are also other conditions about how to continue a revival but a revival begins only when certain conditions are present. A place can get anointed when the Lord sends forth His Spirit in a move of God. God can put His name on a place but He cannot put His Spirit in a place because the only place in the New Testament where the Holy Spirit dwells upon now is human temple. Gone are the days of the Old Testament when God would have a figure and a type of dwelling place like the Tabernacle of Moses and the Temple of Solomon. And even for the tabernacle of Moses and the temple of Solomon, the key criteria in what took place was God placed His name on those places. Solomon’s prayer in II Chronicles 6 mentioned that God placed His name upon the temple that they built for Him. Solomon himself admitted that no building could contain God. The heaven itself could hardly contain Him, how much less the earth and the buildings made with men’s hands. So Solomon recognized that and prayed that God may put His name on that temple and God did put His name on the temple by His Shekinah Glory coming in. The fire of God came down and sanctified the place. A place can be sanctified, a house can be sanctified, and a building can be sanctified and set apart for God. The sanctification means ‘set apart for God’.
But when Solomon died, the temple was still there but the revival stopped. Why did the revival stopped and the temple was still there? It is because the Spirit of God comes on human flesh and not on a place. When you don’t have human flesh to contain the Spirit of God, the revival stops. We read about how at different times revival came by different men in the historical books of Kings and Chronicles. And if you read in the Old Testament how revival came during the time when they were backslidden, you will always find a man or a woman involved. There is no revival without human vessels. When a good king came and wanted to serve God, revival came. And you remember the revival of Jehoshaphat, the revival of king Hezekiah and the revivals that brought forth Josiah. See there are human vessels and there are human lives involved. The first foundation of revival is that God uses human vessels above organization, above buildings, above any place. We need to recognize that the Spirit comes on all flesh.
Lets turn to 2 Chronicles. Solomon had a tremendous revival but Solomon backslided. The temple was still there but when Solomon backslided I want you to know the revival started tapering off. There is no such thing as a revival without a leader. When you think about the revivals in church history, names like John Wesley and George Whitfield are associated with the first great awakening. Charles G. Finny is associated with the second great awakening and Martin Luther with the Reformation. There is no revival without human leadership who yields to God. I mean we could all be gathered in one place and the Spirit comes but if no leader comes to guide what the Spirit wants to do, the presence of God will not do anything. We need to recognize that God uses human vessels. They may not be perfect vessels but they will always need to be yielded and consecrated vessels.
2 Chronicles chapter 10 and 14 tells of the state of backsliding in the days of King Rehoboam and King Asa respectively. These were periods when God tried to move but could not because He didn’t have a vessel to move through. Then came along King Jehoshaphat in chapter 19 and 20 and they got the revival because the leader recognized God. King Jehoshaphat was a godly king, in tune to God and called upon the people to turn to God. A revival broke forth and you read about the miracle in chapter 20 of God restoring all those things that He wanted to do in Israel. They had a revival because they had a godly leader. There is no such thing as a revival without a leader.
When you think about the Wales revival; they had leaders. We only heard about one leader, Evan Roberts, but there were several others. That is God’s method and God’s pattern. He has set forth five-fold ministry and we need to understand the methods of God. In 2 Chronicles chapter 21 and 22 the revival stopped the moment Jehoshaphat died. The revival stopped because the revived people lacked leadership and the revival died because they began to grow cold and they slowly backslided in chapter 21 and 22. In chapter 23 Joash was crowned king and although he was young there was another man, Jehoiada the priest who led the revival (verse 14). Every time you see God moves you will see names mentioned. Some times the names were not mentioned but I want you to know it is the pattern in God’s word that God moves though human flesh. You can have the best organization that reaches out to every nation of the world but behind it there is someone whom God anointed and chose. Usually the moment the person dies; unless somebody else takes on the anointing, the whole organization begin to become a monument without a movement. That’s how revival dies.
People start crying, “We got this organization going and the person dies but the organization is still going on and we still can carry on”. They forgot that God doesn’t anoint an organization. God doesn’t anoint a place. You can have the most run-down barn but have a person like William Seymour and you have the Azusa Street Revival. You read about the Azusa Street revival. Do you think that there was a leader there? You say ‘the Holy Spirit is the leader’ but the Holy Spirit ordains and appoints leaders, to oversee and to guide the move of the Spirit. It is the deception of the devil to destroy a revival when we say that we now have the Holy Spirit and we don’t need leaders. That’s how revival dies.
I want you to look at the example of our Lord Jesus Christ. For three years He ministered His heart out and tremendous revival followed with multitude got saved. Although there were multitudes following, He knew they needed leaders to continue to encourage them to press on and behind the scenes, He was training these twelve disciples and later the whole bunch of others who are unnamed. That’s behind the scene. Jesus left no book behind for He never wrote a single book. Jesus never left an organization behind because there was no organization; those eleven disciples left plus the seventy looked like a very disorganized group. But Jesus left behind human beings whom He had poured His life in.
Let’s understand this first principle that God ordains human vessels as part of His revival. People need to be led where the Spirit of God is there. They need to know what to do when the Spirit comes. Jesus did not let His disciples carried on by themselves after His departure. He actually told Peter to lead the whole group. He knew that even though John was close to Him, Peter was the one whom the Father wanted to lead the group. In Luke 22:31-32, He told Peter "Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers." And these were things that Jesus spoke into Peter’s life because He knew that Peter had to lead the group after His departure. Jesus understood this principle of human vessels perfectly and if He could put His life into those vessels; the revival will move forth from God.
I have observed little groups trying to take off. For example, we have a group of intercessors since the church started several years ago but that group never grew because it’s waiting for the right leader. When the right leader comes along, it just grew. You can have the best plan. You can have the best team, the best goal setting, and the best objective but it will never grow until the leader that God ordains take his place. And usually it’s very strange, for the leader whom God appoints is very reluctant to take the leadership because of humility. And so they don’t tend to come up very fast because they wait for recognition rather than push their way. The leader that wants to push the way is usually not the one the God sent. And so it takes time. I observed a group sometimes can go for seven years and the leader is right in their midst and they don’t know it. If that leader were from God, he or she would have humility and will not push his or her way around and will wait till the group recognized him or her. But the group sometimes doesn’t recognize fast and so it goes for sometime until finally everyone has their turn and everyone has tried. And it should not be usually the case because many a time, we try to serve God in our own strength, with our own ideas and with our own talents. But God has ordained how something should be done and Father God has been sitting down patiently for six to seven years till we finish all our ‘games’, exhausted all our energy and had tried every trick in the trade or every principle in the book.
Principles alone won’t get you anywhere although principles are important because it’s the man or woman God chose. Sometimes He waits for a very long time and that’s why the Bible says that God is longsuffering. It was not just long but it’s long suffering, meaning He was not waiting with pleasure. When we grieve the Spirit, God becomes the victim and we become His enemies; for the scriptures in Romans 8 stated that the carnal mind is an enmity against God. That’s a strong statement from the Holy Ghost. So He is sitting and waiting as we keep doing things that make Him suffer in longsuffering. If God is not longsuffering I don’t know if this earth can last that long. But He is. And finally we give up and said, “O Lord this is not taking off, please help” Father God finally says, ”I have been waiting for you all this while. If you only ask Me. Do you know that little brother there; the one that you all don’t like. That brother who doesn’t comb his hair and wears slippers to church? Whose shirt and trousers that doesn’t match. He who doesn’t socialize much with you all, doesn’t join you in tea breaks, does not talk much. And that is why you all don’t like him. Well that’s the one I want you to appoint as leader over all of you.” And since they all have finished their energy; usually they are willing to do it. Which is why usually it takes time for that to take place but it should not be that way. And finally the others begin to recognize that God was ordaining that one brother who was despised in their midst. They give room to his leadership and invite him to take over the leadership role. When that guy takes over the role suddenly the gift comes. It was not suddenly; it has been waiting all the time and they began to grow. The problem was no human leader ordained by God. Therefore it is not just human leaders but human leaders ordained by God.
And I see churches sometimes struggling for certain things to take off. They have done every trick in the book. They have gone to church convention after convention and have tried everything. But their problem is the mistake made in the first foundation; which is no right leadership. If only they would get the right leader over them. Therefore remember God’s principles; He uses human vessels. There are many functions needed to be done in a church and the pastor could give the person the ‘how to do’ for youth work or how to witness and make them follow it to the letter and it will still not work. All those are important and we will touch on in a later session. But the first and foremost is they must get the right leader. Sometimes it takes time for a leader to show up. But when the right leader shows up and you give the right leader the right authority, it takes off.
See in the book of Acts they struggle too in many things they wanted to do. In Acts 2 the Holy Spirit came down upon all flesh; a hundred and twenty of them. But what to do next after the Spirit came with three thousand people crying out as they saw the move of the Spirit and asking what is happening. There was confusion. When the Spirit of God moves there can be confusion because the Spirit of God began to bring to the surface everything and that is why you need a leader to sort out the confusion. And you need to start sorting them out. In Genesis one the Spirit hover over this earth; there was chaos because the Spirit is stirring and stirring. When the wind starts blowing on your face and you try to comb your hair in the wind, it will only go in one direction. When the wind blows it’s hard to sweep the floor, that’s why you need leadership because all the people are confused. They said these people were drunkard in Acts 2. It says in verse 7 they were all amazed and they were all looking at what is happening and interpreting different things. There are many interpretations to one move. I want you to know the same thing happen when the Spirit of God moves, that there will always be four or five interpretations but only the leader who leads knows which interpretation is correct.
Every time the Spirit moves there will be a group that doesn’t know but ask a lot of questions. This is the first group. In verse 12 it says there was confusion because there were various groups of people asking what this move of God mean and there were different interpretations of the mighty move of God. The second group is the ‘interpreters’ who will analyze scientifically and said, “O based on my scientific analytical knowledge of what a drunkard man looks like, these peoples fit the typical description of drunkenness according to medical evidence.” There is the third group that uses their mind to interpret the things of the Spirit and suggest ‘O this means this, this means that and this’ but their conclusions never edify. The Bible says in I Corinthians 2 that the things of the Spirit are foolish to the carnal mind and Romans 8 says that the carnal mind is an enemy of God because these carnal people stop themselves from getting into the move of God and they will stop other people from getting the move too. So here we have the third group that use their minds and wanted to interpret that they were full of wine.
All the hundred and nineteen kept quiet but the leader whom Jesus himself appointed stood up and said, “Let me now give you the correct interpretation”. And he interpreted it from the scriptures and explained the moves of the Spirit. Then there is the fourth group, in verse 37 When they heard this, they were cut to the heart. They were the three thousand among the crowds that were in Jerusalem for the special feast of Pentecost. They were cut to the heart and wanted to be in the move and they were asking, “What shall we do. Tell us what to do?” A hungry group and these are the group that needs to be led. That’s the fourth group.
I have personally seen the Spirit of God moved. When His presence comes people weep, people cry, people confess their sins and told everything to God and dedicated their life and then they go home and do nothing. Can the revival of God continue? No! Do you know that there will be a fourth group asking, “Tell us what to do?” That’s where the leaders need to come up and said, “Let me tell you what to do. This is what you must do”. Of course there is the fifth group, the hundred and nineteen and these were those who supported what Peter said. Noticed sometimes people said, “We don’t follow one leader. We follow twelve”. There were twelve; one replaced Judas Iscariot but only one of the twelve became the chairman. You can only have one chairman. There is no two and Peter was above the rest and not necessarily because he was better than the others but because of the plan of God.
God has a plan for every life and it doesn’t mean that being a leader that they are more faithful and they got more reward than you. Not necessary. To me, I treat leadership as a job assignment by God. We have nothing to boast about for being a leader. There is nothing to be proud about in being a public limelight. There is no difference from the persons who are in the background doing all the work. Therefore there is nothing that anyone can boast because we all are just assigned by the Almighty God to take different position on this earth as soldiers in the Lord and to be faithful to where God places us. If you are in the Air force you do the duty of Air force properly. If you are in the back line in communication you do your part well. There is where the intercessors are like. They are the ones operating the radio. They tell the commander what the general is instructing. They support from behind. It’s important to know our place in the army of God. Usually in any church, we have a committee who runs the church and usually in that committee you will find one domineering figure that dominates the team.
In the Bible God uses one man or one woman at any single time. There may be four or five anointed ones in the same period but one is appointed as leader over the rest. It is just the pattern of God. When you have Moses, you have Aaron, you have Miriam, you have Joshua and as long as Moses was alive Joshua must take his second position. He cannot take the first position. Later on when Moses goes home to be with God then Joshua becomes the first fiddle. But he learns to take his position in the army of God. We need to learn how to take orders and how to give orders. We need to learn the flow of the Holy Spirit of God. So here in the book of Acts we see that there is a fifth group; the hundred and nineteen who had the same experience that Peter had and who have been with Jesus the same as Peter had. But they recognize that only one can be appointed to go and tell the rest and the Holy Spirit sent Peter. In Acts chapters 1 right up to chapter 8, Peter took prominent place among the apostles.
So there was revival and there were waves of revival in different things that took place. In the book of Acts 3 the number came to about five thousand after a miracle that Peter did in the Lord. Again the leadership was there. Now look at Peter and look at John. Most of us would rather submit to John’s leadership than Peter’s leadership. You know why? John is a jolly good fellow but John was not like that originally. Remember John and James was known as sons of thunder. Somehow John got redeemed and he turned out to be one of the gentlest apostles. John was known as the apostle of love. Most people would think that John would be the natural leader but God chose Peter, the one who engaged his mouth before his head. His personality is rough and tough like a fisherman. He will tell you off but that’s whom God chooses. You got to recognize his leadership even if you don’t quite like the person. It’s good that God puts different people together to work within a church so that the church can be built in the way God wants.
So we realize that God ordains leaders and the leaders that God ordains are not necessary those you choose or prefer. Moses was the youngest in his family of Aaron and Miriam and in the natural order it’s harder for a younger brother to have an older brother submitting to him. You already have natural family dynamic working against it but God has His strange ways showing. David was the youngest small fry of a family of eight brothers. So his seven bigger brothers always looked down on him and his oldest brother Eliab scolded him on the day when David was going to do a mighty work for God. But God did not choose Eliab but David.
Everyone has a ministry and a gift from God and we just need to find our place in the ministry and be there. I know how to take orders. We need to learn how to yield to leadership when God flows. And so here we have the revival and Peter was appointed by God to lead. Peter and John were walking one day and the man asked for alms and it was Peter who usually speak up. Then they have Peter and John in Acts 4. I want you to notice in Acts 2, Peter was the spokesman. In Acts 3, Peter was the spokesman. In Acts 4, Peter was the spokesman. So you know who the leader is because the leader is usually the one who speaks on their behalf or those he represents. As a church grows sometimes we forgot that it’s not the organization but it’s the leader that God appoints.
So in chapter six the church multiplied. In Acts 6:1-2, the twelve summoned the multitude. See there was the twelve that was over the church and we know that the twelve had authority. Over the twelve was Peter and probably his right hand man was James or John. Then we realize that they appointed another seven men under them and when they had appointed the seven, their ministry takes off. When you began to recognize people in their right gifting of God, it just takes off. Like Stephen’s ministry and Philip’s ministry that took off. We focus on the fact that they had a great revival there. But let me look at chapter 6:7 Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith. Now that looks unimportant but let me point to what was taking place here. The priests in those days had both secular and spiritual authority and they were people of great influence in Israel. And when those people come in, it was like prominent people coming into the church and when that took place, again there will be a bit of struggle because people will ask who is the leader now. I want you to know Holy Spirit did not choose them. The leader knows the direction that they are going. God has not changed yet. But the old phenomena came when these priests started working. ”This man cannot qualify, he is a fisherman and I am a qualified priest”. God chooses the foolish to confront the wise and straight away you began to have something that had never happened before.
In Acts 10 God was trying to reach out to the Gentiles. I mean the Jews were now reached and there was a strong church that was reaching the Jews. The revival continued and it did not stop there. God the Father wanted to reach to the Gentiles and He spoke to the leader Peter who himself was unwilling. Peter reached his own limitations as he himself struggled with his own life, with his own background, with his own culture to reach the Gentiles. Actually he reluctantly was used by God to preach to Cornelius. God was reaching the fullness of where Peter could reach, that is to the Jews. In Acts 11:1-2, when Peter came back from Cornelius’s house, his leadership was challenged. Do you know the revival could stop if he yielded to them? God still had a leader but when the church grow to great heights I mean three thousands, five thousands and they multiplied, the people lost sight of the leadership. Groups and pockets began to form and the prideful spirit sometimes can take off.
Remember the days of Moses. Moses used to do everything until he told God that he was overloaded and God put his spirit on seventy men. Again I want you to notice it is the anointing that makes them to do that. And the spirit of Moses came onto those seventy people and they began to do different jobs. And Aaron was the high priest and the tribe of Levi were chosen to do different things. The tribe that Kohath was formed was chosen to carry the ark and the things in the holy of holies. That was their job. But Kohath didn’t want to carry the ark. He wanted to be a priest. And the qualification for a priest you have to be of the family of Aaron. He was not satisfied of where he was. And people lose sight of where the leadership was coming from. Aaron himself was not the leader. It was Moses. People lose sight when there was multitude because people cannot see. I mean it is true when you began to grow in size you began to depend on key leaders. One person can only reach to that many people. He cannot reach to more. You can reach to more in a public announcement but to personally reach to them and minister to them and train them, it has to be broken into smaller and smaller groups. The church can grow in size in the book of Acts and they lost sight of the leadership.
Today we have an organizational structure. In those days they don’t have. There were homes opened everywhere and the twelve apostles were recognized by virtue of their appointment by Jesus. If Jesus didn’t appoint them, they would have appointed somebody else. When there was nobody; they will listen to the twelve. Let me tell you when there were twenty thousand people; it’s seldom you want to listen to the twelve unless you respect the twelve who were from Jesus. And Peter the leader came back, after been sent by the Holy Spirit to the Gentiles and in Acts 10:2, who were those who confront him? The circumcised! You know who was the group who insisted the circumcision on the Gentile believers? They were the priests who were converted, the high and prominent people who were converted in Acts chapter 6. They had now formed a Jewish team to champion the Jewish ways on the Gentile converts. They were all right except they must not go overboard.
Again you need strong leadership to prevent people from going to the extreme. Although it looks like an happy ending; in Acts 11 the sad story is that instead of Peter leading them; Peter had to placate them. That is no more leadership. When a leader has to keep pleasing people, he is no more leader. When a leader has to placate people, he is no more leading. And behind the scene in Acts 11, the leadership of Peter was actually being challenged and he had to resort to what the Lord has told him to do.
In Acts 12 we find a change. The brother of John was killed and then by Acts 15 you find another leader in the church. Verse 6 the apostles and elders came together to consider the matter. Verse 7 Peter spoke first and then James who was a half brother of Jesus also added to that; saying in verse 13 and they had an amicable conclusion. By Acts 15 there were three key leaders in the church; Peter, John and James. Galatians 2 Paul looked at the structure of the church in Jerusalem; he knew where the leadership was. He says in Galatians 2:9 when James, Cephas and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that had been give to me. So there were three pillars that Paul perceived in the Jerusalem church. James the half brother of Jesus, who was actually younger that than the others, rose to high position. Jude was another that rose to leadership position. There was a training process going on. Peter was around performing his leadership role with James slowly took over the leadership and then later it was Jude.
But what was happening here is the leaderships in the Jerusalem church reached a point in time where they cannot in themselves reach the Gentiles. Now when God wants to reach to the Gentiles whom did He used? A person. He doesn’t use an organization. Organizations are no problem but organizations are tools to express the way we do things. But behind it must be the right people. So when God wanted to reach to the Gentiles, what did God do? Ordain an organization? No. God looks for a vessel. And there was one candidate, Saul. When God anointed Saul he became Paul; out of his ministry he reached to the Gentiles world. One man without an organization; it a very loose way of doing the things of the Spirit. That’s the way I believe in an organization. It must be loose enough for the Spirit to move and not too rigid so that the Spirit cannot move.
So God uses human vessels. We only got time to touch on that one point but I believe it’s sufficient to bring into our hearts and understanding the fact that God chooses human vessels and the human vessel that God chooses become representative of whatever God wants. Remember what God told the disciples when He sent them out two by two in Matt. 10:40 He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me.
Much as we don’t like it sometimes but a revival is usually personified in a vessel. God doesn’t anoint an organization but God ordains a human being. Fragile and made of clay but yet God has ordained and when the human being is there, the anointing flows into that organization. That’s the way God works. He who receives Me receives He who sent Me. God doesn’t send a tract; He sent Jesus. Jesus didn’t send a book; He sent His disciples. Human vessels represent Him. Every move of God has a human vessel involved.
When you think about Charismatic revival; you think about Kathryn Kuhlman. Much as some people don’t like the way she talks but to reject her is to reject Charismatic revival. God raise Kenneth E Hagin for the Faith Movement. To reject him as a person is also to reject the move of God. See the messenger and the message tie up together. God doesn’t separate the move from the person but of course we need discernment pertaining to the person because when a man goes into error, we are not going to follow along. But the sad fact is when the leader goes into error the move stops. God has to preserve things. And when you talk about the 1950s revival, William Bramham was instrumental for it and because of his ministry, other ministries like Oral Roberts and TL Osborne took off.
It’s still human vessel in whatever God does today. For example in a revival God ordains a person. It’s his destiny and his call to turn the hearts of God’s people back to God. He is like a prophet whom God anoints to rebuke, to scold, to confront and to tell the people to get back to God where they should be. We have to recognize that human vessel. You say, “I accept the revival but I reject the messenger.” You can’t because the moment you do it, you cut off the part of blessing that God is bringing. You could never separate what God is doing from a human vessel. If the messengers themselves do not live their life right with God and they separate themselves from the move of God, God will do a new move. For example Saul in the book of I Samuel, Saul was anointed and David recognized that as long as he is there; he must recognize what God has put in Saul. But when Saul started turning away from God he lost his anointing very early in his ministry and the day he lost his anointing, David took over the anointing minus the position. And it was David who was actually leading the people. The only thing he didn’t have was position.
Let me caution that when God use anyone of us, we must dedicated our life a hundred percent to God because God can put His same anointing on anyone anywhere. When a vessel is unfaithful, God will remove the vessel. Don’t try to remove them yourself. But recognize that when Saul was still alive, the anointing had moved to David. And it was everyone who came under David again you find a leader. See God didn’t use an organization; God used human vessels. And those who came under David they became part of the move of God that God wanted to do. And the day people separate themselves from David, they separate themselves from the move of God. Those people who didn’t come under David perished with Saul. But David was a gracious man. That’s why God used him as a transition; he received those who came from Saul into his camp. That was supposed to be that way because it was supposed to be Saul to have given it to him but Saul didn’t. The people started going to David but there were some people in David’s army who didn’t receive them. Joab was not happy when Abner came to David and Joab in the end lost the continuity. When David died, he didn’t have to die. He could have continued and become a great general but because he separated himself from David, he couldn’t move further than David. When David died; his ministry died because his ministry only came from David. But when Joshua was submitted to Moses and when Moses died, Joshua continued because Joshua was fully obedient and fully submissive. Joab was not fully obedient and not fully submissive. David continued Saul’s reign of the kingdom because David was fully submissive and fully obedient.
So it’s important for us to take note that sometimes when God moves in our lives it’s not necessary just because of you. It’s because of the leadership you are under. You move out of that and suddenly you find your ministry is gone. And you realize that God doesn’t anoint organizations, He anoints human vessels. Now that message is to be imparted into each one of our hearts and the practical application is this: In your own little home groups, in your own little things that you seek to do - don’t think about programs first, programs only come later. Don’t think about ideas first since they only come later. Think about who is supposed to lead. If it’s in your area and you are praying for a home group to come, it is not electing just anyone to get the group going. You have to ask, “O Lord, whom do You choose to lead the group here? God will show you. Sometimes it takes time before that is answered. But when the one whom God chooses” steps into his leadership role, the group will grow from glory to glory. Those that God didn’t choose they would struggle, survive for sometime and die off or keeping struggling all their life.
It’s important to understand God appoints human vessel as leadership. That is the key foundation of the move of God. You show me any revival in the book of Acts without a human being first being obedient and the leader being obedient - there is none! Show me any revival recorded in church history where you don’t have a leader and the revival will die in a matter of time. I want you to know the great Indonesia revival where is it today. The leaders are no more around. There are still parts of it going strong because there is a leader but the leader didn’t have the capacity to move into the international scene.
So when the leader of the East Malaysian revival, Agung Bangau went home to be with the Lord, in my heart I prayed, “God I know the whole village can still ring the bell in the morning and come and pray. But unless you raise up a leader, not four or five leaders but one main leader, it is not gong to last.” Maybe some of the Bible students from the Bible colleges are going to lead because a people without a leader are like sheep without a shepherd. Whether we like it or not, the revival is not going to continue because you pray at four a.m. in the morning and the revival is going to continue, no. The prayer is going to lead them to the stage where the leader be manifested and then they submit to that leader. But if they go without a leader for a long period of time, discouragement sets in the heart of the people. They become like sheep without a shepherd and slowly they are going to be scattered and after sometime you find it is no more.
My friends this is a foundation truth. That God uses clay vessels for His great move. Not because clay vessels are perfect but because that is His method. And the Spirit of God shall come on all flesh. Perhaps in your home meeting you are struggling and struggling. Raise a leader. Because when a leader that is appointed and anointed by God comes, the struggles fade. Directions come. It’s important and it’s true that God uses human vessels. Do you realize that Jesus took a risk when he invested His life into His disciples? He trusted in the fact that impartation from human being to human being is the best assurance of continuity. The best assurance of continuity is human vessels to human vessels, that is why even now I started praying, “O God let me raise up more people to function in this church”. The people next to you may not look like the people God can use. Who could have thought that God could use a backslidden Israelite Egyptian like Moses; fisherman like Peter and a religious fanatic like Saul? We never realize that. And you never know what God can do with the people around you. Do not despise their seemingly lack of ability or stage presence. Some of your own sons and daughter could be potential leaders and yet, you thought they were the most unlikely candidates. We must remember it is God who chooses. He knows more than us and let us yield to whomsoever God chooses.