The Church has often been taught about the times of refreshment that came during seasons of revival. The first such recorded time was the birth of the Church on the day of Pentecost. This is where 3,000 people were saved (Acts 2). In Acts 4 and 5, God continued to add to the Church daily while there was unity and purpose of heart amongst His people. This released great signs and wonders that confirmed the resurrection of Christ. Additionally, in Acts 9, after Saul was converted, the Church enjoyed a season of blessing, growth, and renewal.
There were also great revivals in Old Testament times during the reigns of King David and King Solomon. There was repentance and revival during the reigns of Kings Hezekiah, Josiah, and others (2 Samuel, 1 Kings, 2 Kings).
While God sends great revivals that are necessary for the church, many people don’t realize there are also seasons when God purges His church (John 15:4-7). He allows us to go through severe times of testing (like Israel did in the wilderness), during which the true motives of God’s people are revealed. Hebrews 3-4 relate how God was angry with the Jews who hardened their hearts with their incessant complaining and unbelief during times of testing. This resulted in God’s favor being lifted from a whole generation who subsequently died in the desert and never saw the Promised Land. 1 Corinthians 10:1-14 teaches that the failure of the Jews during this time of testing is also relevant for today and serves as a warning to the contemporary church.
Thus, there are seasons of revival for growth and seasons of testing for purging that God allows so that, ultimately, His Church will be pure so that she can fulfill her destiny in the Kingdom of God!
Although it seems we are presently in a global time of testing for both the world and the Church, there are also seasons of testing and purging for ...