Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Is revival coming to New England?

A couple of you have sent me this article from CBN concerning a "joyous revival" which is being predicted to sweep New England. Clearly God is preparing to do something in this region, but we would be very wise not to announce that something is happening when it is not; neither should we ever describe anything as revival before the time. True revival and transformation involves, as it did in the case of the Welsh Revival, a fundamental shaking of the entire society, and not a mere blessing:

It is estimated that 100,000 were converted throughout Wales during the revival just as Evan Roberts had predicted. Not all these turned out to be genuine but the effect of so many coming under the influence of the spiritual awakening meant that whole communities were transformed overnight. Crime was completely eradicated from some areas so that magistrates were given white gloves. Pit managers reported increased coal output and swearing diminished so much that the old pit ponies were disorientated. Outstanding debts were repaid and longstanding quarrels were settled amicably. The churches of the land were full of people praising God and praying fervently for the salvation of others, young and old, not only in the Sunday services but at the weeknight prayer meetings as well. Sir John Morris-Jones, one of the leading literary figures of the time, was amazed at the elevated language that uneducated people used in their prayers.

National as well as local newspapers gave day by day reports on the progress of the revival in different parts of the principality. Men and women, boys and girls, were seen calling on God on railway station platforms, train compartments and buses, while prayer meetings were held underground in the coal mines and in student common rooms. Notorious sinners were remarkably converted. Public houses were not only forced to close but in some cases the landlords were themselves transformed by the work of the Spirit.

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