“Experiencing God” Author Sees Hope for Revival

by Michael Ireland (WorkLife.org) Return to Articles

According to Dr. Henry Blackaby, author of the best-selling “Experiencing God” study series, which has now sold over 3 million copies, this is the most biblically illiterate generation he’s ever known in 40 years of ministry.

However, Blackaby, who has recently provided notes for the newly published “Experiencing the Word” Holman Christian Standard New Testament, does see hope for American Christianity through his contact with the Christian leaders of corporate America.

Blackaby shared his insights into early 21st century American Christianity at the recent National Religious Broadcasters convention in Dallas, Texas.

Blackaby has been a pastor, missionary, college president, and member of the executive staffs of the North American Missions Board, International Mission Board, Southern Baptist Convention, and LifeWay Christian Resources. He is known around the world for his emphasis on biblical revival and spiritual awakening. He currently serves as president of Henry Blackaby Ministries.

Blackaby was privileged to be among those involved in the great Canadian Awakening in Saskatchewan, Canada, in the early 1970s.

“My observation, after 40 years of ministry, is that this is the most biblically illiterate generation I’ve ever known,” said Blackaby.

“God’s people do not know the Scriptures,” he said. “And they’re not guiding their lives by the Scripture — they’re guiding it by psychology and sociology. And the world has conformed the people of God. God intended that the people of God shape the world, and right now it’s the other way around. I would say ‘Get back to the Word of God — seriously.’ You can’t spend 15 minutes a day in the word of God and make any difference at all.”

Blackaby sees hope for America in several areas. In recent months Blackaby believes the greatest work of God is in corporate America among the CEOs of the top Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 companies.

“I think it is the choice of God,” he said. “In Portland, Oregon, the businesses agreed to shut down for two hours over the lunch hour just so people could pray. Well, a million people came to faith in Christ in one year. Ratio to population, if that happened today, we’d be looking at 20 million people coming to faith in Christ in one year.

But it began in the business community with the businessmen — churches did get involved — but it was primarily businesses,” he said.

Blackaby said he is currently working with an associate reaching more than 60 CEOs of the Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 companies in America. “These are the top businessmen, the movers and shakers,” he said.

Asked if this was a departure for him, Blackaby replied: “No, because (with) my dad being a businessman, and a godly businessman, I’ve always had a heart towards the business community. But I’ve never seen the activity of God this deeply in the business community as I do right now.

“When I talk to these CEOs, I tell them you’ve got to spend an unhurried time with God — do it in the morning. They said ‘You don’t understand how busy we are.’ I said ‘You don’t understand the nature of the God who wants to meet you. Have you recently told God you don’t have time?’ I said, ‘I don’t know what time you have to get up, but you get up early enough to have an unhurried time with God.’ “

On a recent conference call among the top CEOs, Blackaby said he was told by one corporate leader, ‘I took you seriously, and I’m getting up at 4 o’clock in the morning. It’s been the greatest time-saver I’ve ever known. Because what God says to me in the early hours shapes the direction of my day; I know what to do and what not to do.’ He said ‘I didn’t realize that that meeting with God was the greatest time-saver.’ Then he said, ‘I led my first employee to the Lord in my whole life because God gave me a direction and I began to see Him at work.’

“So I would say somehow the people of God have got to take seriously a fear of God. Meeting with God, getting directions from God, and then living it out to the letter. Don’t read all the books of men — read the book of God. Get a translation that’s easy to understand, and don’t get a paraphrase,” he said.

He added: “We stand one generation away from paganism. But somehow we’ve got to get to the leaders. And the leaders in America are success-oriented. They’re personality-oriented. We’ve let the world shape the ministry. So staff goes to Disney World to find out how to do marketing. That’s an abomination to God.”

Blackaby recalls an encounter with God when he was about 9 or 10 years old, “where He convinced me that He was God and I wasn’t.

“From that day to this, I’ve never approached God in any other way than that. I don’t try to instruct God, I don’t try to tell Him what I want Him to do for me. He is God and I am not. And it has shaped everything I have done and has created a holy trembling when I open the Scripture. I’m so grateful that God intercepted me and then kept me from a whole lot of things,” Blackaby said.

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