Can we learn anything in 2007 from the revivals of old?
Evangelicals feel frustrated because of all that has been going on in society in recent years. English and American evangelicals in 1730 felt much the same way. Years of political and social effort had not succeeded in bringing reform. Amazingly though within a decade they experienced what is now called "The Great Awakening," during which time their nations' political and social cultures were radically impacted by Christian values. How was this possible?
CHARACTERISTICS FOUND IN THE REVIVAL
Prayer. Evangelicals in the 1700s learned that corporate prayer was a prerequisite for outpourings of God's Spirit. The revivals in many places were preceded by days of prayer and fasting. Jonathan Edwards believed that corporate prayer was more effective than just the combined prayers of individuals. Prior to Pentecost we can see the evidence of this so look at this verse. Act These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brother.
Can you see that they were united in prayer?
Leadership. God raised up leaders to guide the movement. Jonathan Edwards was the theologian of the awakenings and his writings were a powerful influence even until the end of the following century. Jonathan Edwards was no stranger to revival. When he was just twelve years old (in 1715) the church his father, Rev. Timothy Edwards, pastored experienced a remarkable stirring and pouring out of the Spirit of God resulting in an unusual number of conversions (for these days) and many more awakened to the condition of their souls. He wrote in his History of the Work of Redemption that whenever true Christianity seemed to be on the verge of extinction, "God granted a revival and sent some angel or prophet or raised up some eminent person to be an instrument of their reformation." George Whitefield was a dramatic and powerful orator, able to deeply move audiences with his sermons. John Wesley was an administrative genius who established an extremely effective small-group structure of "class meetings" which kept the revival fires burning..
Doctrine. Revival preachers back then focused on the great Reformation doctrines of justification by faith and the atonement. They emphasized God's judgment and then his grace.
Emotionalism. The revivalists unashamedly appealed to people's emotions. They felt that their listeners' problem was not a lack of knowledge but a need to take action. They abandoned the formality of notes and preached as the Holy Spirit led.. Harry S. Stout says, Whitefield preached as though there were no tomorrow. A contemporary reported, "Sometimes he exceedingly wept, stamped loudly and passionately, and was frequently so overcome, that, for a few seconds, you would suspect he never would recover; and when he did, required some little time to compose himself." After Whitefield preached at
5. Music. They found that a powerful anointing came through Worship music, because singing hymns in praise of the Lord stirred peoples hearts.
6. Open-air meetings. Whitefield preached in open spaces where large crowds could gather. Wesley took the message to jails, inns and ships, as well as outdoors. They did not just gather in holy huddles behind closed doors.
7. Persecution. At times these preachers faced fierce opposition from hecklers, gangs of attackers and the press.
8. Testimonies. Reports of revival in other places often sparked new outbreaks as lay people who had been there first shared firsthand accounts of what the Holy Spirit was doing.
9. Holy Spirit. The 18th-century revivalists expected the Spirit to manifest His presence in powerful, visible ways. Edwards believed that the Spirit could be discerned, that he moved a congregation "by a mighty invisible power," and he sometimes caused a "visible commotion." This happened in the 18th-century awakenings. During a lecture in 1741, for example, a Scottish minister asked, "Where is the fruit of my poor labours among this people?" At this some of his parishioners cried out, in the most public manner, of their lost and undone condition, saying, they now saw hell open for them, and heard the shrieks of the damned and expressed their agony not only in words, but by clapping their hands, beating their breasts, terrible shakings, frequent faintings and convulsions; the minister often calling out to them, not to stifle or smother the convictions, but encouraged them." At a communion service during the next year in
10. Social action. A greater concern for the poor and downtrodden often resulted from these revivals. Jonathan Edwards taught that it was the Christian's duty to be charitable. Whitefield devoted a great deal of his energy to an orphanage he founded in
We can conclude that the 18th-century Christians experienced a deep and powerful spiritual renewal which can be more effective in transforming a culture than political action.
Revival leaders of that time often faced fierce opposition. On several occasions rioters climbed into trees behind Whitefield's pulpit to "shamefully expose" themselves or urinate in his direction. Wesley often had rocks thrown at him, and was sometimes mobbed and beaten by gangs incited by jealous parsons, or squires. Edwards was hounded by liberal detractors in the press. His own church ejected him form its pulpit, partly because of the high evangelical standards to which he called its members. As a result, Edwards spent most of the last eight years of his life exiled to a lonely mission church on the frontier. Stories of revival helped spread revival. Edwards and the church in
The next year George White-field arrived in
In February, 1742, M'Culloch sent the people home, charging them to "fall on their knees before God, and with all possible earnestness, as for life itself, to beg of Him His Holy Spirit to renew and change our hearts and natures, and to take no comfort in any thing till we get it".
They were not kept waiting long. Within days a young woman cned out in the church: "Christ says to me He will never leave me or forsake me!" The effect was electric, with many weeping and others crying aloud for joy, and M'Culloch needing three hours to counsel the enquirers.
Now the Holy Spirit was really at work. Complete households fell under conviction of sin. People would burst into tears in the street. One young woman, noted for her timidity, preached under the anointing of the Holy Spirit to a large crowd with compelling power. A visiting minister wrote of how some that were previously notorious sinners had now the meekness of the Lamb. On
All night in the fields could be heard the voices of prayer and praise.
News spread throughout the country and by the time of Whitefield's next sermon in July the crowd numbered upwards of 20,000. Whitefield wrote to John Cennick "Such a universal stir I never saw before. The motion fled as swiftly as lightning from one end of the auditory to the other. You might have seen the thousands bathed in tears; some at the same time wringing their hands, others almost swooning and others crying out and mourning over a pierced Saviour."
During these and other meetings men and women trembled and wept and some fell down as dead. Joy as much a part of this work as was sorrow over sin. Many believers found themselves so moved by a sense of the Saviour's love as to be lifted almost into a state of rapture. The phrase 'joy unspeakable and full of glory' occurs frequently in the Cambuslang records and undoubtedly depicts the experience of many, among both the new converts and the established Christians.
The results of the revival were considerable. M'Culloch himself, limiting his estimate to his own parishioners, speaks of over five hundred genuine conversions, but hints at hundreds more among the many visitors. Within seven years it was estimated that church attendance in the
In mid-November 1741 Rev. Nicholas Gilman of
True Biblical Revival always re-establishes the Supremacy and Glory of Christ as the primary focus of the Church, Will You not revive us again, that Your people may rejoice in You?(Ps 85:6).
Sources : Gerald McDermott, National & International Report,
http://www.jesus.org.uk/ja/ Revival Fires.
It appears to me that there is much confusion throughout the church relating to the
I was probably nearly as sceptical as the next person when I heard of the goings on in
What was happening in this church? The, then Senior Pastor Kevin Peat had paid a visit to
Yes, I have been slain in the Spirit, too many times to count, have even shaken with the Spirit, moved like a pretzel with the Spirit, wept at times and experienced the so called laughing phenonemen. So I do see the Holy Spirit at work in those things? My answer is most definitely. Are their imperfections within the
Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You;
My flesh longs for You
In a dry and thirsty land
Where there is no water.
Psa 63:2 So I have looked for You in the sanctuary,
To see Your power and Your glory.
Psa 63:3 Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You.
Psa 63:4 Thus I will bless You while I live;
I will lift up my hands in Your name.
Psa 63:5 My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness,
And my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.
Psa 63:6 When I remember You on my bed,
I meditate on You in the night watches.
Psa 63:7 Because You have been my help,
Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.
Psa 63:8 My soul follows close behind You;
Your right hand upholds me.
I know a greater peace in my spirit than I have ever known. I know God as my healer and my provider.
Mat But seek first the
Does my faith always arise to the occasion, nope, have I got it all of pat no, I am a work in progress, but I know I am growing up in Him. Its taking a while I got saved at the age of seven and I still have a long way to go. This one thing I Know I love Jesus Christ and He loves me.
Look above at Revival History.During these and other meetings men and women trembled and wept and some fell down as dead. Joy as much a part of this work as was sorrow over sin. Many believers found themselves so moved by a sense of the Saviour's love as to be lifted almost into a state of rapture. The phrase 'joy unspeakable and full of glory' occurs frequently in the Cambuslang records and undoubtedly depicts the experience of many, among both the new converts and the established Christians.
There is unspeakable joy in Jesus and it can bring with it uncontrollable laughter at times. Our church was called to prayer and fasting Monday, through to Wednesday this week and last night at the Watchman meeting at end of it, I found I went into a state of laughter, that was the first time in a couple of years that I was so overcome with laughter and it was just out of joy. I love Jesus and my desire is to know Him more and to share His love others, to see people move into the fivefold ministries and take the full gospel message to the people out there. I seek after God, I want to walk in faith and share the Gospel and the Fathers Heart of God with others.
Act 4:31 And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.
Act 13:52 And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.
Rom 15:13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
All scriptures taken from NKJV..
Are we going to go into a winter of discontent?
We are in danger of entering a winter of discontentment,
Many Christians at the moment are feeling disillusioned,
And there are many feeling angry at God and disgruntled,
We as believers are not walking united in one accord.
Some having run with the recent outpouring are disappointed.
For it all seemed to come to an end at the end of Lakeland,
But it was God, who stirred a hunger in you for more of Him,
He wants each one of us to keep pressing on in to Him.
The people of God are imperfect and leaders may fall,
Now more than ever He wants us to press in and give Him our all,
He calls us now to humble ourselves and fast and pray,
And He wants us to enter the secret place and here what He has to say.
For real revival always, always starts with an awakening in our hearts,
He wants us to learn from the mistakes made in the past,
We must be well grounded in the Word and in relationship with Him,
We need to spend time in His Presence and at His feet learn.
But we must never give up for God has promised to pour out His Spirit,
And all over the world hearts of Gods people are being stirred,
For we are going to be made ready for the return of our King,
So for now let us in one accord our dear Saviours praises sing.
It is time for the body of Christ to spend time seeking His face,
He wants us His bride to start giving Him His proper place,
We need to put aside discontentment and turn our eyes on to Him,
For true long lasting revival can only come when its all about Him.
So, we Gods people need to repent right now for allowing the enemy in,
He is very subtle and comes like a thief trying to kill steal and destroy,
But when we become disillusioned we go head first into sin,
And the Lord Himself says to us, Come to me and I will restore your joy.
I have never left you I have always been there for you, I just gave you a taster,
My people you were not ready, you will be purified and then comes the power,
A mighty new wave of the Spirit is on its way and I do not want you to miss it,
You will no longer walk in your own strength but in the might and power of the Holy Spirit.
So , dont give up, do not enter the valley of despair for fresh joy comes in the morning,
Even through your times in the valley seek my face and you will be rejoicing,
Fix your eyes on me, for I will guide you right up to the top of that mountain,
And my dear friends I assure you that you have a future hope that is certain.
Irene McGough October, 2008Revival fires continue to be kindled even if they have dimmed slightly in places, Lord make us be ready to be set totally ablaze with your precious Holy Spirit.