Revival Sermon: Defective Orthodoxy
A Sermon on Genesis 26:17-18
17So Isaac departed from there and camped in the Valley of Gerar, and settled there.
Argument over the Wells
18Then Isaac dug again the wells of water which had been dug in the days of his father Abraham, for the Philistines had stopped them up after the death …
17¶ And Isaac departed thence, and pitched his tent in the valley of Gerar, and dwelt there. 18And Isaac digged again the wells of water, which they had digged in the days of Abraham his father; for the Philistines had stopped them after the death of Abraham: and …
Is revival possible without the teaching and preaching of doctrinal truths? Can there be a revival in the presence of defective orthodoxy? In this sermon on Genesis 26:17–18 titled “Revival Sermon: Defective Orthodoxy,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones denies any possibility of revival without the presence of right doctrine. Listen as he expounds upon the hindrances and obstacles of revival, the failure expected without respect of doctrines such as the Holy Spirit, justification by faith alone, regeneration, the church, and the sovereignty of God. “These doctrines are bare essentials, and without them I see that we have no right at all to pray for or expect the influence and the demonstration of the Holy Spirit of God.” Christians must remember that one can be orthodox but dead if they believe doctrine is an end to itself. Dr. Lloyd-Jones also points out the increase of entertainment, programs, and advertisements among the church that should not be there. He even addresses the overemphasis put on singing that is permeating many churches today. The church must also beware of being right in doctrine and orthodoxy, but wrong in the Spirit. Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches here about the behaviors and actions that must be thrown out in order to avoid this.
- Failure with respect to doctrine is always a hindrance to revival. The church has gone astray in belief and doctrine during times of drought.
- Vital doctrines that must not be neglected or denied include: the sovereignty of God, the authority of Scripture, the sinfulness of man, the person and work of Christ, the person and work of the Holy Spirit.
- Defective orthodoxy: concerned with doctrines about the person rather than the person himself. Stopping at doctrines instead of leading to knowledge and fellowship with the person.
- Lack of balance and scriptural proportion in understanding and presenting doctrines. Excessive emphasis on certain aspects of truth. Knowledge puffs up, love builds up.
- Defective doctrine of the church. Thinking in terms of meetings and movements rather than the gathered saints. The church is God's unit, where two or three are gathered in His name.
- Increase in entertainment. Programs resemble variety performances. This is not the time for singing but for preaching, conviction, and proclaiming God's message.
- Thinking evangelism is more important than the life of the church. Revival starts in the church, then spreads outwards. The church must be revived first.
- Wrong spirit: pride (of life, knowledge, understanding), censoriousness, contentiousness, pettiness, lightness instead of holiness, disobedience, and sin.
- Sin in any form hinders revival. Revival brings deep conviction of sin.
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.