Will you not revive us again: that your people may rejoice in you?
I. WHAT IS THE TIME FOR SUCH A PRAYER AS THIS?
1. When we can remember some gracious acts of God in the past. After some mercy drops, it becomes us to cry for showers of blessing.
2. After tokens of Divine displeasure.
3. When saints feel languid.
4. When efforts seem to be useless.
5. When we have among us a number of persons who are backsliding.
II. THE NEED OF SUCH A PRAYER. Who needs it?
1. The minister. If the preachers grow dull and sleepy, there is no wonder that the people do so; therefore, give us a special place in your supplications that we may be kept right for your sakes, and for Christ's sake, and the Gospel's sake.
2. All the leaders of our Church. Often, dead deacons and dead elders prevent a church prospering; therefore, let us pray earnestly for the leaders of God's Israel, "Lord, revive them again. Put more spiritual life into them."
3. The same is true of all the members of the Church without exception. How much they need reviving!
4. And all the workers, too.
5. The hesitaters.
6. The careless ones.
7. The outside public, who never go to hear the Gospel at all.
III. THE ESSENCE OF SUCH A PRAYER. It means —
1. Dependence upon God.
2. Confidence in God.
3. Importunity with God.
IV. THE NET RESULT IF THIS PRAYER BE ANSWERED. It seems rather singular, does it not? — that the psalmist should put as the reason for a revival that God's people should rejoice in Him. You and I do not always estimate things aright. Preaching is only the stalk; conversion, prayer, praise, — these are the full corn in the golden ear. In the garden, the leaves may represent the work that is done; but the flowers are the praise that is rendered. In a revival, part of the result is the conversion of men, but the result is the praise of God; and that revival brings forth most fruit that gives to God the most glory. I reckon that we have served God when we have fed the poor, when we have taught the ignorant, when we have reclaimed the wanderer; but I am equally sure that we have rendered acceptable sacrifice when we have prayed to God, when we have delighted ourselves in Him, when the joy of our heart has in silence exhaled towards Him. So, therefore, if God will be pleased to send a revival, His people will rejoice in Him because they are revived. They will be thankful that their spirits are plucked away from their languor and lethargy; and then they will begin to rejoice with the joy of gratitude because God has done such great things for them; and then sinners will be converted, and straightway saints will rejoice over sinners saved. Now, as you come to the communion table, I want you to try to rejoice in God. "But I am mourning about myself," says one. Well, mourn about yourself, if you like; but do rejoice in God. "Oh, but I am troubled in my circumstances!" Well, but a child of God should rise above circumstances, and rejoice in God. There is more in God to cheer you than in your circumstances to depress you.
( C. H. Spurgeon.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?