During the 18th century, church attendance fell. Science had convinced many people they did not need God. Suddenly, two powerful preachers, Jonathan Edwards and George Whitfield burst on the scene. They led a revival called The First Great Awakening. Edwards preached that famous sermon, “Sinners in the hands of an Angry God.” Whitfield preached in the streets, urging people to repent in their hearts. Some say this spiritual renewal is why slavery later ended in Europe and America.  Some calamities we see today may stem from our choices to reject God’s righteous standards. We see this in Solomon’s prayer, found in 2 Chronicles chapter 6. “If the skies are shut up and there is no rain because your people have sinned against you, and if they pray toward this Temple and acknowledge your name and turn from their sins because you have punished them, then hear from heaven and forgive the sins of your servants, your people Israel.” Now Jesus taught us that not every calamity is a judgment from God. Still, we ought not to ignore that there can be bad outcomes when we willfully choose to defy God’s moral laws.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More

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