by Matt Sorger
Saturday, March 6, 2010, during a time of worship the Lord spoke to my heart. I was caught up in His presence when the voice of God spoke these three things to me:
1. Church gatherings are about to experience a fresh wind of God’s Spirit as whole meetings will be caught up in His manifest presence.
2. Mantles are very soon to be released over the church empowering people to do extraordinary things for the Kingdom of God. Those who have been in a place of hiding and preparation are about to come forth in power.
3. The voice of the Lord will not be just heard from the pulpit with anointed preaching and teaching, but the voice of God will also be heard from the pews. A fresh anointing for the corporate prophetic utterance is about to be revived. God’s voice will be heard through His people.
As I pondered these three revelations, the Lord also began to speak to my heart about a shift that is coming into our mindsets concerning revival.
God is transitioning the church from a “revival culture” to a “resurrection power culture”. There is a difference between the two. A culture is a set of beliefs, values, practices, mindsets, actions, and behaviors practiced and esteemed by a group of people. Culture marks and characterizes your way of life.
Prophetically God is bringing His people into the time of the “third day.” If there is a third day, then there must be a first and a second day. I want to explain to you what this means and how it will impact your life in this next season.
Hosea the prophet talks about the process of transitioning from the first to the second to the third day and what each day signifies. Hosea’s prophecy can apply on multiple levels, as prophecy often does. It can apply to your personal journey in God as well as the corporate journey and process of God’s people.
Hos 6:1-2 “Come and let us return to the Lord, for He has torn so that He may heal us; He has stricken so that He may bind us up. After two days He will revive us (quicken us, give us life); on the third day He will raise us up that we may live before Him. [Isa. 26:19; Ezek. 37:1-10.]
“Come and let us return to the Lord.” The first day is marked by a turning to the Lord. It is all about rending our hearts and fully repenting of everything that grieves God’s heart in our lives. Acts 3:19 declares “So repent (change your mind and purpose); turn around and return [to God], that your sins may be erased (blotted out, wiped clean), that times of refreshing (of recovering from the effects of heat, of reviving with fresh air) may come from the presence of the Lord.” (AMP)
To repent means to “change your mind and purpose.” It means to change your way of thinking and what motivates you. Repentance causes you to turn around and walk in the exact opposite direction of your sin, back towards God. This complete turning towards God causes all of our sins to be cleansed and removed and releases a fresh wind of God’s presence in our lives. His refreshing then brings restoration from the effects of sin. True repentance brings not only a change of mind and motive, but also changes our behavior. Repentance brings true inner change producing an outward transformation.
“After two days He will revive us (quicken us, give us life)” Day two is marked by revival.
Revival means “to quicken and give life.” Revival means to bring something that is dead or dying back to life again. Revival is for the church. Revival brings an awakening to the hearts of God’s people. Revival causes us to be filled with the fresh life of God. It stirs us from spiritual complacency and apathy and ignites a zeal in our hearts for the things of God. It creates a passion in us for intimacy with God and for the things that move His heart, such as the lost.
In revival the church is refreshed, restored and set on fire again. Spiritual passion is ignited. This is when God encounters us in a profound and deep way awakening our hearts for Him. We often experience deep inner healing, freedom and personal victory during this stage. God’s manifest presence becomes so real to us as we spend time fellowshipping with Him and just “laying on the floor” under His glory.
While day two is glorious, we can’t stay there! So many love day two so much that they never want to get off the floor. They love the goose bumps and encounters. They could just stay there forever. Entire “revival cultures” have been formed around day two. But God has more for us!
“On the third day He will raise us up that we may live before Him.” God is bringing us into “Third Day Living”.
On day one we repent and turn to God. On day two we are revived, awakened and refreshed. On day three we are raised up to live before Him with power.
God is transitioning the church from a “revival culture” to a “resurrection power culture”. Day three is all about being raised up in resurrection power.
This is so clearly seen in God’s prophecy to Ezekiel in Ezekiel 37.
Eze 37:1-10 declares “The hand of the Lord was upon me, and He brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. And He caused me to pass round about among them, and behold, there were very many [human bones] in the open valley or plain, and behold, they were very dry. And He said to me, Son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord God, You know! [I Cor. 15:35.] Again He said to me, Prophesy to these bones and say to them, O you dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. [John 5:28.] Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath and spirit to enter you, and you shall live; And I will lay sinews upon you and bring up flesh upon you and cover you with skin, and I will put breath and spirit in you, and you [dry bones] shall live; and you shall know, understand, and realize that I am the Lord [the Sovereign Ruler, Who calls forth loyalty and obedient service]. So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a [thundering] noise and behold, a shaking and trembling and a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. And I looked and behold, there were sinews upon [the bones] and flesh came upon them and skin covered them over, but there was no breath or spirit in them. Then said He to me, Prophesy to the breath and spirit, son of man, and say to the breath and spirit, Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath and spirit, and breathe upon these slain that they may live. So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath and spirit came into [the bones], and they lived and stood up upon their feet, an exceedingly great host. [Rev. 11:11.] (AMP)
First there is a divine alignment of the bones. This alignment signifies things being put in their right place. The bones are shaken and brought together. When we turn in repentance to God we get rightly aligned and joined to the rest of the body.
Once proper alignment happens then God revives the body by breathing into it. This is when God revives and awakens His people. It’s a glorious second day.
But then God continues to move and eventually not only is the body filled with new life, but then it is raised up where it stands on its feet, an exceedingly great army!
This is the third day!
God is causing us to move beyond personal and corporate revival to the place of moving forward as His great army in the earth. This is where we are so filled to overflowing in the second day that now God’s power, glory and grace overflow from us to everyone around us. Now we begin to live before God in resurrection power. This is where we move in His dominion Kingdom authority to see His power go forth in the world around us. This is when we get off the floor from “soaking in His presence” to being mobilized, equipped and empowered to do great and mighty exploits!
This is the THIRD DAY.
HEAVY LATTER RAIN – IT’S TIME FOR FULL MATURITY AND HARVEST
Then Hosea prophecies “Yes, let us know (recognize, be acquainted with, and understand) Him; let us be zealous to know the Lord [to appreciate, give heed to, and cherish Him]. His going forth is prepared and certain as the dawn, and He will come to us as the [heavy] rain, as the latter rain that waters the earth.” Hos 6:3 (AMP) As we move into the third day we see the release of a heavy latter rain. In Joel 2:23, as the people rend their hearts and turn in full repentance to God we see God restoring not only His people spiritually, but even the seasonal rains. When Israel rebelled they lost their harvest and the seasonal rains were thrown out of sync. As God restores the former and latter rain we see something glorious happen. In Joel 2:24-26 God causes the threshing floors to be full of grain and the vats to overflow with new wine and oil.
There were two annual rains in Israel. The former rain and the latter rain. Both had a significant purpose and came at a specific time and season. The former rain would come down around Sept/Oct. Its purpose was to soften the ground so the seeds could be planted. The latter rain would come down around April. This rain came for the express purpose of bringing the harvest to maturity.
Hosea specifically prophecies about the latter rain. This is the harvest rain. God is bringing His people to a place of harvest. Harvest speaks of full maturity. As the church begins to live in true resurrection power, not only will God’s people come to full maturity, but the full harvest of souls will come in. We are in the season of the latter rain where God is bringing His people to maturity so we will be fully empowered to reap the last days harvest in the earth.
It’s time to shift and move with the Holy Spirit into the next season. As God revives us, we must also move with Him off of our comfortable church floors into the world where His resurrection power will be seen. Get ready to be a part of the THIRD DAY CHURCH that God is raising up in these last days.
Repent, be revived and awakened, then be raised up in power to go forth during the time of the latter rain to bring in the last days harvest. You were created to be a part of God’s great army to go forth and release His power and glory into the world around you.
COPYRIGHT MATT SORGER 2010