(Photo: Elevation Church via The Christian Post)
A megachurch in Charlotte, N.C., is kicking off a 12-day “Holy Ghost, old-school revival” on Wednesday in hopes of seeing God move in a big way this new year.
Elevation Church is bringing in “world-class” speakers – including LifeChurch.tv founder Craig Groeshel, Pastor T. D. Jakes of The Potter’s House, and Christine Caine of Equip & Empower Ministries – for what it is calling the “Code Orange” Revival.
Code Orange is meant to imply a heightened sense of urgency. The website states: “Probably the most fitting example that relates to our revival is the description for the Code Orange stage of a volcano: Exhibiting heightened or escalating unrest with increased potential of eruption, timeframe uncertain.”
The hope for the revival is for it to be “an eruption of [God’s] power and movement among us in 2012,” according to Elevation.
“The purpose of this revival isn’t to develop a bunch of lazy Christians where we can all get fat and happy off the Word of God but so that we can become what Ezekiel (Old Testament prophet) calls a 'vast army' or what the disciples experienced in Acts 2 when on the day of Pentecost 3,000 people were saved that day,” said Elevation Pastor Steven Furtick on Sunday.
He noted that “even in a religious city like Charlotte there's a lot of dead, dry religion” and what he wants God to do is “revive us, bring us to life in a brand new way.”
When he first got the idea for Code Orange he wasn’t sure “if this came from God and this is the best idea I’ve ever had, or the worst idea I’ve ever had and I should just forget about it," he said in a video.
But he couldn’t shake the idea and began thinking about doing an “old-school revival.”
He wanted to bring in some of what he considers the best preachers around to speak to those in Charlotte and via streaming on the Web. And when they all accepted his invitation in record time, Furtick felt this was something God wanted him to do – even if it’s the “craziest, most asinine thing” he’s ever attempted.
Ministry Today defines revival as, “Extraordinary, beyond what we would consider the normal work of God.” So to prepare for their revival, Furtick preached on “The Anatomy of a Move of God” this past Sunday.
He told attendees that in order to see God move in a big way according to Scripture, they need a desperate situation, unreasonable obedience, bold preaching, the Spirit's power and unified believers.
He admitted 12 straight nights of revival would be grueling but calling it “unreasonable obedience,” he told the congregation, “Sometimes you just have to obey God and let Him explain it later.”
The Code Orange Revival is about setting the stage for 2012, he said, and seeking the presence of God. Elevation’s website states, “Twelve is a significant number in the Bible. There are 12 tribes of Israel. Twelve apostles of Jesus. Basically, it's a number that points to the idea of completion or wholeness, especially in relation to the people of God.”
The number 12 also has special significance for those who attend Elevation. Furtick said that at each of the 12 nights they will also highlight one of the core elements from their church – called The Code.
The Code is very similar to LifeChurch.tv’s “Vision & Values” statements, one of which states: “We will do anything short of sin to reach people who don’t know Christ: To reach people no one is reaching, we’ll have to do things no one is doing.”
Because of Elevation’s relationship with LifeChurch.tv and their pastor, whom Furtick calls “his pastor,” they will kick off the event with a message from Groeschel.
The Elevation website states that “LifeChurch.tv [has] had an incredible influence on our Pastor, our staff, and our church as a whole.”
The following night Pastor Jentezen Franklin, senior pastor of Free Chapel in Gainesville, Ga., and Irvine, Calif., will speak to crowds. He has also written a New York Times best seller, Right People, Right Place, Right Plan.
Church staff are preparing for thousands of people. Over 11,500 people attended one of their six locations last weekend, so they expect many more for the revival.
“We're going to see the presence of the Spirit of God in power, not in a spooky, weird way where you have an encounter with God that gives you goosebumps but doesn't change your life but in a way where after you've encountered God dead bones begin to rise up and your life is set in a new direction,” said Furtick. “I don't want to see any of your lives fall short of what God wants for you this year.”
Other speakers that will be featured at the revival include Matt Chandler of The Village Church, Ed Young of Fellowship Church, James MacDonald of Harvest Bible Chapel, worship leader Israel Houghton, Kevin Gerald of Champions Centre, Perry Noble of NewSpring Church, and Stovall Weems of Celebration Church.
The revival is open to the public in Charlotte for free. Events will start each weeknight at 7:00 p.m. with regular worship services on Sunday.
The Code Orange Revival will also be streamed live online for free starting at 6:12 p.m. on weeknights, 4:12 p.m. on Saturday, and 5:12 p.m. on Sunday. Visit The Elevation Network to watch the Code Orange Revival live.