Greatest Question

by | Oct 3, 2019 | Christianity Today | 11 comments

As you read this our tent is going up. Thousands know we are coming. A rare kind of unity exists between leaders here, and an amazing anticipation is in the air. We have more volunteers and prayer warriors for this event than any previous tent crusade. There is a buzz on the streets.

Many who are involved in this outreach are starting to talk about an awakening. They seem to sense that we could see a revival—and they don’t mean just ‘a good meeting’—they mean a moral outbreak that could sweep an entire region into the kingdom of Christ. I am talking about Dinuba, California.

So tonight I am pondering a great question: What starts a revival?

Here we are, two thousand years after the church began, and Christian theologians still don’t know what starts a revival.   Authors by the dozens release new books to tell us what the “steps for revival” are.  No sooner are they out, than the Spirit falls in a manner that totally contradicts their books.   As soon as we add a “step” to revival, God steps over our step…

Often past revivals are no help because history shows that the old revival usually opposes the new revival.  It seems dangerous to be tagged an expert on revival.  As the old rock song says, “If I claim to be a wise man then it surely means that I don’t know.”

Revivals have started in more ways than you or I can imagine.  Some began among children.  Some started in prisons. Some were touched off by the very people the church despised the most.  Has God kept us clueless about revival because He knows that anything that we can analyze we will try to control? It is certainly in us to do that, and there is no getting around it.

So why isn’t the devil happy?  We are divided, disorganized and ignorant of his devices.  There is no major threat of revival in America, am I right?  But the evil one does not relax.  Does he know something we don’t know?   Like maybe revival has never been actually caused by the church?  Does he remember how many times revivals have hit him by surprise?  Does Satan respect one aspect of revival more than we do—that revival can strike at any moment, in any place, through any believer?

Okay, let’s face it, it is truly beyond us to know how to start a revival, and Satan doesn’t know how to stop one.  That, dear pilgrim, is called an impasse.  Only God can break the tie.  So what can we do?  Brace yourself:  WE NEED TO LOOK AT GOD!

Satan is watching God more than he is watching us because we, my friend, are not the threat.  Here is a love/hate triangle:  God is looking at us, we are looking at the devil, and the devil is looking at God.

WE NEED TO LOOK AT GOD.  Get this, and you have taken a giant step forward.  We need to be watching God.  But that is so simple and obvious.  So, if it is that simple and obvious, then why aren’t we doing it?  Why in fact are we doing everything else but that?  Again, is it because Satan knows how to busy us with stuff that seems holy, but is irrelevant to revival?

Even our prayers are often not directed at God.  They are merely a set of statements we have been told to make, and statements we have been told will supposedly cause God to work.  Face it! God refuses to operate within our formulas.  He operates from a secret:  “The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him, and He will show them His covenant.” (Psalm 25:14)

God is looking for a relationship with those who want revival.  Exodus 31:18 is a strange verse.  It says, “And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon Mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.”  Israel has been waiting for centuries to gain legitimacy, because with the Law comes an identity and a legacy.  So why does God instead delay it for weeks so He can commune with Moses?  Here’s the rub: You want revival, but God wants you.  

Is it possible that in all of our arduous efforts we have overlooked the most amazing simplicity in the entire universe:  “If you abide in Me and My Words abide in you, you shall ask what you will and it shall be done.” (John 15:7)  Can it be that simple?

Revival is the natural result of getting so close to God that His secret takes hold and that ignites a chain reaction with others who suddenly cannot live without intimacy with God, and so and so on.

When can we know that revival has started?  In my studies, I have noticed a common denominator among the great revivalists who have led the great revivals.  They had an unshakable conviction that a revival had already started.  No matter what anyone said or did, they would not back down from the confession “revival is here!”   Much of their preaching was devoted to this conviction.

Jesus said, “Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!”  (John 4:35)

Revival-starters kept an infectious declaration going, no matter what.  Though the people around them felt that revival was months or years away, the revivalist says, “NO! IT IS ALREADY HERE!”


Again I ask, when can we know that a revival has started?  I got my answer one day at the beach when the tide was out.  Gentle white foam tickled my toes.  And the still small voice of the Lord spoke to me, “No matter how small that wave is, it is an ocean wave.  It is a relative of the tsunami.” 

Yes, a tidal wave can travel at 500 miles per hour, yet it is still nothing but an ocean wave, just larger.

“A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgment unto victory.” (Matthew 12:20).   This verse is saturated with much meaning, but I will limit myself to the part about the smoking flax.  Jesus is not going to put out any fire, no matter how insignificant it looks, until justice is victorious.

The first time you cried out for America to be saved, God took you at your word and started a revival fire in you. The first syllable that was spoken in prayer for revival at any gathering where women prayed, began the revival.  The first time a pastor told his people how much we need revival, the spark was ignited.

The job now is to cooperate with God for bigger and bigger and bigger waves.  The tide rises as the revival core pays the price of obedience.   If they keep to the intention of the revival, it will intensify.  If they refuse the hand of man, and the ways of Baal, the waves will continue to come, in faithful and ever increasing power.

How else can I say it?  You are a revival-starter, simply by wanting more of Jesus!

Now a special video message from Mario Murillo about what starts this Sunday


  1. Gradams

    I have never started a revival but for whatever my testimony is worth my take would be those callings are just rewards as He is a rewarder of those that diligently seek. It is well beyond the seeking where people talk about they lock themselves in their prayer closet or they fast trying to glean things from God. Those things seem much more spiritual than what I do but to me they would just interrupt my walk with with God. It is a condition of the heart where you pray/seek without ceasing- the communication lines are always open and you throw out anything you want and say yes to whatever God has for you.

    When I was first following God I would never have even thought to be in any kind of ministry. I wanted to hear God speak t me so I could be 100% sure he was real. I sought him that way day and night for what may have been a couple years. I wanted him to appear to me and give me his plan for my life. He has still never appeared to me but at some point when He saw I had no agenda and was not interested in anything but what He had for me he began to reveal his plan for my life and it was different than what I would ever think.

    The think was the position of seeking never changed and he kept adding and adding and it kept bigger and bigger. One day he woke me up and seemed to throw it all out. He asked me if I would really say yes to everything he had for me and asked if I really meant what I said to him about coming as close to what I was called to do as any person (something Tommy Barnett said he used to pray so I prayed it) He started repeating Tommy Barnett sermons to me that I had heard about “we need a new mentality” and “if we give God his best He will give us his best.” He gave me a calling that was completely brilliant and beyond our human ideas of evangelism. He told me that if I continued to walk humbly before him there was no limit to what He could do through me on this earth. He also reminded me of a Tommy Barnett sermon where he talked about reaching a point where there was no one left to call and so saw that He was all I had to help me at that point. That was 20 years ago.

    To this day I just continued to seek at the same level and God has added/revealed more and more. I really don’t pray per say or fast, but I think of myself as praying without ceasing because of the posture of my heart. I listen to some worship music but I don’t even really like worship. Or time He spoke to me that “obedience is the highest form of worship.” Those all may be bad habits of mine but if I ever set off a revival it would be the non-spiritual path to revival.

    A few years ago he I had a dream and God showed me what had happened is the more he saw I was willing to sacrifice the bigger my calling became. Over the years he had also showed me those around me who followed the conventional Christian paths of marriage, jobs, church ministry and let me know their callings are no less than yours but they need to choose. Everyone may not be called to “revival” but I 100% believe God has much greater plans for people than they are walking in and God is going to take the Body of Christ is going to places it has never been before.

    As I type this though I am living in a camping trailer in the middle of a forest with no income, no family in terms of wife and kids, little savings, and am reading this with my one occasional bar of cell phone service. I have a pocket full of God given dreams and I know I am in the center of his will. I am typing this on my phone because I cannot fall back asleep. My walk may not be for everyone but I wouldn’t trade my life for anyone’s and maybe my testimony will benefit someone.

  2. Carolina

    Mario and MMM Team,
    I am nobody important but am a Child of God, a devotee & recipient of Jesus Christ and His power and His salvation.
    This I am sure of because I see it and hear it and know it in my knower, “You all” have already begun a revival and it is obvious that Christ is using You Mario Murillo to speak forth The Truth which is only found in The Person of Jesus Christ, to CA & this nation, and I also know that God Almighty is with You. If that makes for a Divine revival…then we’ve got one!!!??‍♀️?✝︎
    Thank You Jesus and Thank you Mario.

  3. Greg Dean

    yes Yes YES!

    I have known this was coming since the 1980s. That we would reach a point where society was so dysfunctional that nothing men could do would make a difference. We see that in government. We see that in the church. At that point it would be a G-D led spiritual revolution. We are there now!

    Mario understands this. He is not in charge. That nothing we as humans can control it. Allow we can do is wait on G-D with prayer and expectation.

    BTW I do not see the word “revival” as being the best way to describe what is happening. You cannot revive what has never existed. We can have a spiritual renaissance within the body of believers however among the unbelievers it will be a spiritual revolution. “Revival” is just too tame a word to give a mind picture of what G-D is bringing forth. We are seeing the beginnings of a spiritual revolution, led by G-D and G-D alone, that will burn across the US then the rest of the world. That is why HaSatan is worried.

    What Mario is doing in California will soon be happening in other areas. It will happen first in places that are strongholds of the left. California, the corridor from DC to Boston, every big city where the left has a stronghold, every college campus. For believers it will be mind blowing!

    Prepare for a great harvest. Your congregation will expand four hundred percent. Be ready to mentor (disciple) them.

    • Carolina

      Mr Dean,
      I like your word Renaissance it was a term used by many for our ministry when we began our ministry 17 years ago. People would often say “back then” to us that the banner symbol my Husband created (he is an art designer and graphic media supervisor) and the gospel teachings we used within our ministry brought to their minds a feeling of first century church Renaissance. Interestingly Mr Dean, one of the definitions for Renaissance is: a revival of or renewed interest in something: from French ‘re’- meaning ‘back, again’ + naissance meaning ‘birth’ (from Latin nascentia, from Latin nasci ‘be born’).
      Oh isn’t that exciting!!…one could interpret also from this terminology breakdown; “a revival and renewed interest by the American culture to be ‘Born Again’ in King Jesus Name”!

  4. Virginia Romero

    God bless you Mario Murrillo Ministries!

    Write the event information on your post on Facebook.


    Thank you!
    I share your posts on Facebook.

  5. kristymctee

    The flower does not strain to bloom because that is what it was designed to do. The Spirit resides within us, the believers. He is symbolized by a “tongue of fire” and the nature of fire is to ignite around itself. I guess my focus should not be on manufacturing enthusiasm or pondering my sins hoping to feel repentant, but just endeavoring to NOT QUENCH what the Spirit brings forth in me, and to be alert to recognize and to rejoice at what he is ALREADY DOING around me.

  6. Anita

    Mr.Mario, I have been waiting and praying for many years for the move of God! I am not looking for a revival. I am looking for a move of God that has never been upon this earth! How could we ever think we could do greater things than our Lord Jesus? Yet He told us we would. I pray that this move of God will began to happen all over this world at the same time. I pray people will not have to travel to find God moving at one place but the Spirit will be moving wherever God’s people are praying and looking for Him! I am so thankful God is raising you up again to begin this great move! May He give you His wisdom for what is coming! God be with you always!

  7. Darlene W

    Such a good and timely word,Mario. Thank you for your insight.It brings encouragement and confirmation.Yes,revival is already here.I see it in our nation and in other nations of the world.Things appear to be in a huge mess,but God is moving.There is an awakening happening but it may not be in the church.It appears to be in the streets and online.A couple of days ago I was wakened early in the morning and thinking on something I heard the Holy Spirit say:whatever capacity you have experienced me in previously has not left or changed.I never leave you or diminish my power.You allow a subtle thought (from the enemy)to come to your mind that I have pulled back,that I am not working.Then I felt His anointing quietly come into the room and rested upon me.He then told me to learn to expect the anointing and learn how to be a good steward of it.To empty all self because I cannot do any thing to manufacture it,but expect Him to come. He will always come.

  8. noel

    Thank you for reminding us of a very basic but indispensable truth concerning what God has always been looking for in His people.

    Deuteronomy 10:12-13



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