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Wednesday, March 09, 2005

REVIVAL SCENES by Henry T. Blackaby

Henry T. Blackaby is Director of the Office of Prayer and Spiritual Awakening at the North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. He is co-author of Experiencing God (Broadman & Holman, 1995).
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Revival Scenes
We have several generations who know nothing, experientially, of true revival and spiritual awakening. The following are descriptions of prominent features of revival scenes, which should stir your hearts to long for their repetition in our day.

Pervasive, Fervent Praying. All revival begins, and continues, in the prayer meeting. Some have also called prayer the "great fruit of revival." In times of revival, thousands may be found on their knees for hours, lifting up their heartfelt cries, with thanksgiving, to heaven.The accounts of revivals abound with illustrations of pervasive and fervent praying.

In George Whitfield's time, overwhelmed by the Presence of God, people would pray and cry out to God throughout the night. Following a young girl's prayer, a youth meeting in South Africa was filled with the Presence of God, and the young people continued to pray for hours, issuing in the greatest revival during Andrew Murray's ministry.

The great Moravian revival of 1727 began in prayer, and so overwhelmed were the people with the Presence of God, they were convicted to pray 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—and this lasted over 100 years, with astounding results around the world.

In the 1904 revival in Wales, prayer was deep and crushing in the coal mines, in homes, in barns, along the roads, and in almost every place where people met.

In Ulster (1859), more than 100 prayer meetings began instantly, even in graveyards and gravel pits.

In New York City (1857), more than 30,000 people gathered daily to pray, and were "filled with the awesome Presence of God."

Near the end of a prayer meeting in the city of Arnol, on the Scottish Isle of Lewis (1940s), a local blacksmith cried out: "Lord, Your honor is at stake!" At that moment the house shook and "dishes rattled...as wave after wave of Divine Power swept through the house." When this group of people closed the prayer meeting and went outside, they found the community alive with the Presence of God; it was 5 a.m. in the morning.
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