London’s Christians hear call to be ‘city changers’

London’s Earls Court was packed with thousands of Christians on Friday for a night of worship and prayer for the nation.

The Pentecost 2012 event was co-organised by Hillsong London, Holy Trinity Brompton, and Jesus House, one of the largest Pentecostal churches in the country.

Setting the tone for the evening, Jesus House Senior Pastor Agu Irukwu said it was going to be “explosive”.

HTB’s Nicky Gumbel said: “Who says the church is dying out in this country when thousands of young people gather together for no other purpose [than to praise God]?

“We’re here for one purpose and one purpose alone – to declare over this nation that Jesus Christ is Lord.

“The church is rising up and the name of Jesus is going to be declared over this nation again.”

Worship made up the best part of the night, with worship teams from the three churches blazing their way through favourites like “I Am a Friend of God”, “Happy Day”, “Hosanna”, and “Mighty to Save”.

Across the arena, the capacity crowd gave it their all as they sang and danced along to the stunning worship performances.

The leaders of the three churches took to the stage at various points in the evening to encourage those present to leave the event changed - and prepared to change their surroundings.

Pastor Irukwu likened the situation in Britain today to that faced by Nehemiah in the Old Testament.

“Everything is falling apart,” he said, pointing to the financial crisis, last summer’s riots across England, mistrust towards politicians, and “aggressive secularism”.

In the face of so many challenges, Pastor Irukwu called upon Christians to be “city changers” and “nation changers”.

Just like Nehemiah mourned the destruction of Jerusalem, he said Friday night’s gathering was not about “entertainment” but an opportunity to pray and seek the face of God.

“We haven’t heard and decided to continue with life as usual but we have decided to do something about it,” he said.

“It is not enough for us to come together and pray and worship. There must be some action … you have been called to rebuild.”

Similarly Hillsong’s Gary Clarke told Christians last night that God wanted to plant them in their local church and use them to bring about change.

“When you flourish, your church will flourish,” he said.

The night was one of the main events taking place as part of this year's Pentecost Festival, an initiative of Share Jesus International.

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