Category Archives: -Revival What Ifs?

Revival What Ifs: What if The Welsh Revival Happened Today–In America?

The entire nation of Wales was touched by the Welsh Revival (1904-1906). It is said that the effects are still felt among some of the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of those who participated in the Revival. Over 100,000 came to Christ, pubs were closed, police had little of nothing to do, and sports had difficulty finding enough members to field a team.

image The revival started with a few unknown young people, including Evan Roberts, 26  who had worked in coal mines and as a blacksmith before receiving a call into the ministry and had just begun his formal training when the Holy Spirit fell. Here’s a good website about the revival if you want to know more.

What if something like the Welsh revival happened today?—In America…

1. Most churches would not know what to put in their bulletins. After all there really is no order to the services. Usually a couple of hymns are sung, a solo or a testimony from the young folks who came along with Roberts, prayer for an hour or so, then Evan Roberts simply declares that everyone should:

1. Confess all known sin

2. Deal with and get rid of anything ‘doubtful’ in your life

3. Be ready to obey the Holy Spirit instantly

4. Confess Christ publicly

Then the holy Spirit falls on the place and folks are there for hours–no one wanting to leave.

2. Some folks will probably want to know what the heck ‘sin’ is?

3. Some will observe that getting rid of everything ‘doubtful’ sounds rather ‘religious’ and Old Testament—where’s the Grace in that?

4. Some of the ‘mega’ churches with televised multiple services would want Roberts and his crew to limit the revival services to exactly 55 minutes.

5. Liquor stores and bars would try to sue Roberts and churches for the loss of business and revenue.

6. The Police union would demand that the cities keep all their police on the payroll even though there’s little for them to do.

7. Restaurants near the larger churches would be unhappy because noon rush now hits between 2 and 4 and there is no way to plan for it.

8. What if there was a Sunday baseball game and nobody came including some of the best players?—Ditto for Football?

9. What if hardly anyone went to the ‘R’ rated movies anymore? Wonder what Hollywood would say about it–or do?

10. Adult books stores would have a hard time staying open & porno websites would lose their traffic.

11. State lotteries would go bust and Gambling joints would close.

12. Secularists and atheists would declare that revival is bad for the economy and needs to be controlled–the ACLU and liberal judges would agree.

13. The entire nation would be transformed as 3/4 of the people in the USA would come to Christ and change their lifestyle.

…If something like the Welsh revival happened today—In America!             *Top

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Revival What Ifs: What if John Wesley was Preaching Today?

image John Wesley (1703-1791) is said to have preached over 40,000 sermons and traveled more than 250,000 miles (400,000 km). He is most famous for his open-air revival services held in fields and parks throughout Great Britain.

Following an experience at Aldersgate, John believed that God had called him to bring revival to the nation. Thousands attended his services and tens of thousands were saved.

His brother Charles Wesley, supplied the music for the services. He wrote hundreds of new hymns that became popular during the revival and still grace many Hymnals today.

Many ministers in the Church of England opposed his ministry and denounced him as "promulgator of strange doctrines", "fomenter of religious disturbances"; as "a blind fanatic", and "leading people astray and claiming miraculous gifts".

Sometimes officials tried to stop his meetings and there were actually riots on a number of occasions.

He had a major falling out with fellow revival evangelist George Whitefield over Calvinism, John became a strong advocate of Arminianism.

 

What if John Wesley was preaching today? …

1. Some would point out that the meetings weren’t sponsored or recognized by any authorized church.

2. Many of the parks he would try to preach in are now dominated by Muslim Imams and teachers, actual riots would follow for sure. After that, he would be excluded from certain Muslim dominated communities.

3. The Atheist organizations would be up in arms that he was using public land to spread his hate speech on. The officials need to do something about this religious fanatic.

4. Some would complain that the music by Charles Wesley was too popular and reminded them of songs usually sung in the pubs. (actually did happen)

5. The chief headhunter of Bible Answers Radio inc., would point out that Wesley’s Aldersgate experience–where he says: "I felt my heart strangely warmed", was similar to Mormons who claim to have felt ‘a burning in their bosom’.

6. Several very fine reform blogs would point out that John Wesley was an arminian heretic. Others would say–"Well, maybe not a heretic, but just plain wrong on many major theological issues." bottom line–his teaching is not to be trusted or supported.

7. 100+ blogs would report that John Wesley was unfit for the ministry; that he had an affair with a married woman or at the very least made improper advances, when he was on a mission and ministering in America, and then had to escape back to England before he was disciplined or defrocked (Actually true, though Wesley says that he really wasn’t a believer at the time).

8. The news media who cover the meetings would point out that Wesley is completely intolerant when he says that ‘everyone should repent’—including the homosexuals, I guess. Then he says that everyone should believe in Jesus like he does—even Muslims and news reporters presumably. Such bold intolerance should not be tolerated.

9. The Methodist Church would probably kick him out for being far too conservative and intolerant of others who disagreed with him, including many of the Bishops and Methodist seminary professors.

10. RelTV would cover the meetings and broadcast them 24/7, and Wesley would become a regular celebrity in the American colonies (USA and Canada).

11. His face would be on the cover of every one of the Grocery checkout Mags along with Paris, Jole, and Brad. There would be interviews with the married lady in question—the first one on 59 Minutes with Barbara Wawa.

12. Wesley would also have thousands of supporters who would point out that tens of thousands of people have come to Christ through his ministry…that he had an incredible God-given anointing for evangelism…that when he preached, the Holy Spirit would fall on the place and move the hearts of everyone there in a special way. Sometimes, even men who came to cause trouble and start a riot would end up being converted to Jesus instead. A Sovereign work of God indeed!

….If John Wesley was preaching today!             *Top

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Revival What Ifs: What if "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" was Preached Today?

image Jonathan Edwards preached his famous ‘Great Awakening’ sermon- "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God", on July 8, 1741 at Enfield, Mass. (later Connecticut). When I studied "Sinners…" in seminary it was presented as a bad example of ‘hell fire’ sermons that no modern minister would or should ever dare to preach. In Church History class, it seemed like no one could figure out why it became so famous.

Obviously, you had to of been there and the Holy Spirit had to of shown up in an amazing way, and from all accounts that certainly was the case. According to reports of the occasion, Edwards quietly read the sermon with very little flare, but when he started talking about natural un-regenerated people being held in the hand of God over the fiery pit of Hell, a great commotion broke out in the congregation with quite a few folks being convicted by the Holy Spirit. Here is an excerpt from the sermon:

"So that thus it is, that natural men are held in the hand of God over the pit of hell;

they have deserved the fiery pit, and are already sentenced to it; and God is dreadfully provoked,

his anger is as great towards them as to those that are actually suffering the executions of the fierceness of his wrath in hell,

and they have done nothing in the least to appease or abate that anger,

neither is God in the least bound by any promise to hold `em up one moment;

the devil is waiting for them, hell is gaping for them, the flames gather and flash about them, and would fain lay hold on them, and swallow them up;…"

It is said that when Edwards spoke with this imagery of Hell, that some in the church that day actually felt and saw the fiery pits of hell beneath their feet and smelled the burning sulfur. Historians find those accounts to be suspect (I don’t). However, regardless of what really happened, many came to Christ that day following Edward’s invitation at the end:

Therefore let everyone that is out of Christ, now awake and fly from the wrath to come.

The wrath of almighty God is now undoubtedly hanging over great part of this congregation:

let everyone fly out of Sodom:

"Haste and escape for your lives, look not behind you, escape to the mountain, lest you be consumed" [Gen. 19:17]

What if Edwards preached his famous sermon today? Probably a better question- could it be preached today?:

1. The board of Elders would meet to vote on whether Pastor Edwards should be retained.

2. The UCC denomination would distance themselves from Pastor Edwards ‘negative’ theology. Pastor Jeremiah Wright would probably be a spokesman at a press conference.

3. The Professors at Yale University where Edwards graduated from would condemn the ‘exclusive’ theology of the sermon and promise to censure any future books or publications.

3. One lady with an unbelieving husband, in the congregation that day, would be on the evening news condemning the Pastor for scaring them and saying that a loving God would send ‘good folks’  like them to an everlasting Hell.

4. On "55 Minutes" TV show over the next weekend, a psychologist from Harvard would explain how it was all a hoax, that Edwards obviously hypnotized the entire congregation with his ‘hellish’ imagery just to increase the size of his church and get larger offerings. After all, Edwards is a maniac with 10 children.

5. On Bible Radio, the Dr. Smiley the chief cult headhunter would explain that the ‘Hell experience’ was similar to what ‘mind control’ cults subject their members too.

6. Jewish rabbi Dr. Conn on the weekend ‘Religion Dialogue’ TV show would be offended that Edward’s implied that ‘righteous people’ who don’t believe in Christ would end up in Hell. The Right Rev. Dr. Bishop Wonderful of the Episcopal Church would agree and sympathize. Dr. Ali of the Islamic U. would find that it is the first time that he actually agreed with a Rabbi.

Dr. Donald, the famous atheist, would point out that it confirms what he said in his latest book about religion being a divisive force that needed to be controlled. Pastor Charlie of the 20,000 member Valley Community Church would explain that most Christians today preach about the ‘love’ of God and how preaching about Hell is not the norm and actually a bad idea if you want to grow a large effective community organization and church reaching out in today’s culture.

The panel would conclude by agreeing that ‘God’s love for all people’ needed to be stressed today in the face of radical fundamentalist religion.

7. Osama Muhammad the al Queda leader would come on Algazerra TV and lay out plans to send Edwards and his entire congregation to hell in the name of Allah. After all, a visiting Muslim student converted to Christ that day.  

8. There would be at least 10 blog posts about how the service reminded them of the ‘so-called’ Toronto revival. According to reports, there were all sorts of undefinable noises coming from the congregation.  Some sounded like animals and many were flat on their faces just unintelligently moaning and groaning.

God could never be the author of such a confusing uproar. After all, show me in the Bible where anyone ever experienced the fires of Hell beneath their feet!

…If Edwards preached his famous sermon today!             *Top

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Revival What Ifs: What If ‘Azusa Street’ Started Today?

This is the first and maybe the last in a series of posts exploring what it might be like if certain revivals started today.  Enjoy:

image-a dove …..If Azusa Street started today:

1. The LA Fire Dept. would shut down the meetings. Too many folks stuffed in a dangerous wooden barn.

2. OSHA would come by and fine the church for lack of disability ramps, restrooms, and parking.

3. The neighbors would complain because of all the noise and traffic caused by the gatherings. Plus those all night services must stop.

4. The Mayor would order the church banished from the city: " After all, we already have enough churches and not one of them help with the city budget. Besides churches are all suppose to meet at schools or in industrial parks outside the city limits, accept for the old ones which were built by ‘real’ denominations 50 years ago. Also, WalMart was interested in that property and we are just going to have to condemn it anyway."

5. According to the ‘Biblical Answer Man’s’ chief cult headhunter: " The last ones we know of who spoke in tongues were Joseph Smith and Brigham Young of the Mormons in 1835".

6. Fundamentalist Bible teacher, Dr. Cliff proclaims on the radio that "Tongues and all those gifts ceased when the ‘perfect’ Bible came– I Cor.13 proves it!"

7. Google ‘Azusa Street revival’ and you would get 2 pages of critical articles from folks who haven’t been there with theological reasons and expose’s of why it can’t be from God. Then this is followed by 10 folks who claim they went to a service at Azusa Street "with an open mind, but…".

8. RelTV would probably refuse to televise the meetings because…" Pastor Seymour is a horrible speaker and the music is terrible!"

…..If Azusa Street started today!             *Top

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