From Tents to Stadiums, from Stadiums to the Nations

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Posted 2017-06-12 08:48:34 -0700 by /articles?author=matthew-lilley

A prophetic perspective by Matthew Lilley

As my social media feeds have exploded with worship tents all over nation, I was seeking the Lord recently about what He's doing in America in this season. While it seemed obvious to me, I realized everyone may not have the same vantage point that I do. It is sort of an overview of prophetic words many of us have heard as well as a few of my own thoughts thrown in too.

In 2015 God spoke to me that 2015, 2016 and 2017 would see a renewed focus on the tabernacle of David. The years (15, 16, 17) correspond with the number in the reference Acts 15:16-17, which is the prophecy of the restoration of the tabernacle of David. David’s “tabernacle” was actually a primitive tent that hosted 24/7 prophetic worship in Jerusalem for 33 years (see I Chronicles). I know David’s tabernacle has been an emphasis within certain movements for some years but I think it’s safe to say that the awareness of David’s historic worship tent and its modern-day implications on our lives is increasing throughout the body of Christ.

We have seen an unusual emerging of worship tents across our nation in recent years, including the establishment of a 24/7 “David’s Tent DC” in our nation’s capital. Why? God wants to remind us of David’s tabernacle, His manifest presence, the power of worship, and His desire to dwell among people. And to go along with that, He is making worship very public so that all people can experience His goodness. Something about David’s tent and its openness speaks to us about the access humanity has to God’s kingdom and presence through Jesus Christ. The Tabernacle of David is about worship but also about missions and the advancement of the kingdom (see Acts 15:17).

A few years ago I heard the phrase “from tents to stadiums”, and I have not forgotten it. When I first heard this, we had just started setting up “The Jesus Tent” in North Carolina (, with day & night worship and supernatural outreach. It was explosive for us, but tent ministry was not a common phenomenon. But that has all changed in a few years. Just in North Carolina (where I am more aware of what’s happening) the emergence of tent worship gatherings is profound.. A baptist evangelist has been drawing thousands from across the region in Burlington, NC for an old fashioned tent revival, with hundreds repenting and putting their faith in Christ. On college campuses - just in North Carolina, I noticed 24/7 prayer & worship tents set up this past school year at Appalachian State, Campbell, NC State and others. As I write this, on my social media feeds, I am seeing day & night worship tents set up in Wasilla, AK, Birmingham, AL, Bristol, VA and in rural eastern North Carolina. What’s going on?!

Somehow this worship tent movement is both practically and prophetically preparing the way for a Third Awakening in America. I really do believe the next wave (whenever that comes) will be the prophesied “stadium Christianity”. An unbelievable wave of salvations, healings and miracles could be on the horizon! Somehow, I do believe, as has also been prophesied, that the timing of this stadium Christianity will be connected to the death of Billy Graham. Imagine a whole army of nameless, faceless lovers of Jesus walking in the evangelistic grace of Billy Graham, fueled by the most prolific day & night prayer & worship movement in human history!

In many ways, I believe the “tent season” is reaching a unique pivotal moment this fall of 2017, during the Feast of Tabernacles. Tabernacles was the season each year in which Israel would return to Jerusalem and live in… TENTS! It also “happens” to correspond with Awaken the Dawn, an unprecedented gathering on the National Mall in DC with 50+ tents of day & night worship representing each state! I want to encourage you to visit and get involved. But this Awaken the Dawn gathering is less about an event and more about mobilizing a nationwide movement of worship, prayer & missions. I don’t think public expressions of day & night worship will fade away when stadiums start to be filled. In fact, the hope is that the momentum of Awaken the Dawn 2017 will lead to a David’s Tent set up in each state capital in 2018 and this whole thing will go totally viral!

It really is much bigger than the Jesus Tent or Awaken the Dawn or any other ministry expression. This is about God’s love for people, and His desire for relationship with humanity. This is about America coming to Jesus, being awakened, and taking the gospel to the ends of the earth. This is about God having his glory in the nations.

Yes, somehow getting under a tent and singing to Jesus is connected to the world being filled with God’s glory! I am telling you, this tent thing is a GOD THING, and I urge you to jump in. We are going from tents to stadiums and from stadiums to the nations!

Matthew Lilley
Burn 24-7 US National Director

Note: A lot of this article is a compilation of prophecies and words from other people. I am by no means claiming me these as my own unique words, but I am sharing them because they bear witness with me as I pray. So in some ways I am just reminding us of what prophetic voices are already speaking. Intermingled with prophetic words are my own thoughts and prophetic insights. Please take it all prayerfully, test it all and respond as God leads you!

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