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Blog / Revival Is Needed: An Interview with Tony Evans

Revival Is Needed: An Interview with Tony Evans

Dr. Tony EvansWhat is the root of social, economic and political unrest? And why is revival needed in the Christian church?

Bible Gateway interviewed Dr. Tony Evans (@drtonyevans) on the topic of revival. His recent book is America: Turning a Nation to God (Moody Publishers, 2015).

What do you consider to be the root of social, political and economic unrest, no matter where it’s found?

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Dr. Evans: The broad answer is sin. To be more specific, it’s a failure or refusal to align ourselves under God’s standard and to address issues God’s way.

Define what you mean by revival and explain why it’s necessary among Christians.

Dr. Evans: Revival is the return of God’s manifest presence to His people for the purpose of them renewing their relationship with Him, with each other and for the good of the broader society.

It is necessary because much of what God determines to do, or not do, in the world is determined by His relationship to His people.

Why are prayer, fasting, and love important elements in order to bring revival?

Dr. Evans: Fasting says that the spiritual is more important than the physical. Prayer is the means by which God has established for God’s people to invite the spiritual into the physical, and the invisible realm into the visible realm. Love is essential because it reflects the nature of God and it is the means by which we are to manifest our vertical relationship to Him as reflected in our horizontal relationship with others.

What is “God’s manifest presence”?

Dr. Evans: Gods’ manifest presence is where His reality becomes visible to us—it’s not just theological knowledge of it but rather the visible experience of Him.

What do you mean by “the fire that ignites”?

Dr. Evans: The fire that ignites is a reference to the work of the Holy Spirit because He’s often aligned with fire in Scripture—to ignite a fire in us for God and His will and work both in our lives and through our lives.

How well is the church doing its job of building disciples of Jesus?

Dr. Evans: One of the major failures of the church is not a focus on building disciples but a focus on building members. Because we do not have this emphasis on discipleship, we do not have the kinds of Christians on a large scale that God feels comfortable working with and working through due to their low level of commitment to Him.

What should be the goal of discipleship?

Dr. Evans: The goal of discipleship is consistently conforming our decisions to the will of God so that His rule over our lives is visibly seen.

Tell us about your strategies to bring reform to the church.

Dr. Evans: It’s a 3-fold strategy. Phase One is to call churches throughout our land to a solemn assembly, and not allowing illegitimate divisions to come between us and divide us to carry out God’s purposes through us. Phase Two is doing good works in the community, primarily through the adoption of public schools so that the community can see the benefit the church brings to it. Phase Three is having a publicly unified voice on issues facing their community so that God’s perspective on it can be heard by a unified church. Each phase flows out of the other.

Is there anything else you’d like to say?

Dr. Evans: The future well-being of the nation squarely lies in the hands of the church. If the church refuses to step up to the plate than we have ourselves to blame for the devolution of the culture.

Bio: Dr. Tony Evans is the founder and president of The Urban Alternative, a national ministry dedicated to restoring hope in personal lives, families, churches and communities. Dr. Evans also serves as senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas. He is a bestselling author and his radio program, The Alternative with Dr. Tony Evans, is heard on nearly 1,000 stations around the globe every day.

Filed under Books, Interviews