Some Lessons of the Revival

A transcribed sermon from the Keswick convention of 1905

A. T. PiersonFive weeks have been spent in the personal study and investigation of the great revival movement in Wales, being providentially called to speak to the converts in the revival centres, in hopes to lead them to a deeper experience and knowledge of Christ; and that investigation has left the profound conviction that the Holy Spirit is speaking to the Churches with tremendous emphasis, and that God’s injunction is that sevenfold command in the 2nd and 3rd chapters of the Book of the Revelation: “He that hath an ear to hear, let him hear what the Spirit saith to the Churches.” I desire that not one word of mine may interrupt this voice of the Spirit to the Churches.

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Why Revival Leaves

Why Revival Leaves, by Dean TaylorLate in the 1950s Leonard Ravenhill wrote a book that quickly became a classic on the subject of revival entitled Why Revival Tarries. It addressed the perplexing question: If God earnestly desires to pour His gracious Spirit onto all flesh, then what is preventing it? In other words, what is stopping us from experiencing this outpouring, and what would it take for us to experience real revival like we have read about? I think it is a question that does indeed challenge each of us as we long for more from God and desire to see true revival in our day. But perhaps the thought that should vex us even more than why revival tarries, is the question—why does revival leave? Why, when a people have experienced a genuine presence and outpouring of the living God, would they turn away from it and choose another way?

As I have studied revival and church history, the question that often troubles me when looking at a particular work of God is—what happened that made this group lose every trace of all that God had done through them? Why does the glory of God leave? The Lancaster revivals of the 1950s, the Wesleyan revivals of the 1700s and 1800s, the East African revivals of the 1940s, and even the famous Welch Revival of 1904 are all for the most part gone. Why?

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From Dean Taylor

Dean Taylor at Moriah ChapelFrom Dean Taylor

Greetings to all in Jesus’ name! This last quarter has certainly been a busy one! In November I had the opportunity to travel to Scotland and England with Bro. Denny and two of my sons to speak at a revival conference, hosted by Sermon Index. It was a real blessing in many ways. Bro. Denny preached a powerful message at one of the main services entitled “The Secret of Paul’s Strength.“ I had the opportunity to preach a message entitled “Why Revival—Leaves” to a small group of people. In addition to the preaching, Greg Gordon allowed us to pass out “The Heartbeat of the Remnant” to each person as they registered at the door. The revival meetings were very inspiring. It was also encouraging to meet many Europeans who seemed to have a real desire to follow after God.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the trip was touring many old revival sites. The burden of my heart already was bent on the theme “Why Revival Leaves”. After visiting these old revival spots, sanctuaries, and museums, the burden only intensified. In Scotland, we went to the home and church of the Scottish Protestant reformer, John Knox. This was the man who started the Presbyterian Church. Visiting his church, we were surprised to find that years ago the city had put a parking lot around the courtyard. Later, historians found out that the parking lot was placed over an old graveyard. Later still, the historians realized that this parking lot contained the resting place of their historical reformer. All that remained of John Knox was “Parking space #23.” Amazing! (Picture on front cover)

In London, we were able to visit John Wesley’s house and church. A nice man showed us through the museum with the usual quaint anecdotes—Charles Wesley’s organ, John Wesley’s pulpit, and numerous letters and memorabilia behind glass. As I was reading John Wesley’s gravestone, I noticed that I was standing on Adam Clark’s tombstone, so I moved to the side. The tour guide mentioned that in the 1980s they were considering knocking the whole place down; but the Methodists decided to collect enough money to do restorations and build some offices around the back. In the house, we asked the tour guide for a moment alone, as my two sons (Stephen and Christian) and I knelt in Wesley’s prayer closet...and prayed.

Moriah ChapelFrom there, we took a train to Loughor, Wales to see the birthplace of the Welch Revival. For our lodging we stayed in Evan Roberts‘ house. Evan Roberts was the young man that God used to help send revival to Wales in1904. His house is now a bed and breakfast. The house gave us mixed emotions. On the wall by the parking space is a plaque commemorating Evan Roberts‘ birthplace. However, on the front door was a comical-looking beast with the inscription “Beware the Dragons.” Hmmm... That night I sat in the tiny dining room which was once the prayer meeting room of the great Welch Revival—and again, I prayed.

In the morning we made our way to Moriah Chapel. This was the place where the Welch Revival actually happened. It was a nice service. They no longer have a regular minister, so a lay Presbyterian minister makes his rounds between Moriah and a few other Presbyterian churches. Besides our group, about twelve nice elderly ladies gathered there that Sunday morning. One very dear man, Dyfrig Griffiths, gave us a tour of the chapel and museum. When he spoke of the revival, tears ran down his face. He prays for revival again at Moriah, and speaks of the old days with fondness. As I sat there taking it all in, again my heart cried out…“Why does revival leave?” Hence, much of the burden of this issue of “The Heartbeat of the Remnant” will focus on this very question. May God bless you as you read!

~Bro. Dean

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A Revival in Schleitheim

I would like to take you with me back in time almost 500 years to a little town in Switzerland called Schleitheim. But to understand the arena in which this revival took place one has to go back even earlier. From the time of Christ until the time of Constantine the church had been savagely persecuted. All pre-Christian societies were bound together by a common religious loyalty.

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REVIVAL AT ANY COST!

John Wesley said: “What one generation tolerates, the next generation will embrace.” Sadly we have tolerated a hell-less, eternity-less, sin-less gospel and this next generation is aimed at accepting this as the genuine apostolic original. The true Christian witness seems to be almost overshadowed by false doctrines, false cults, and false prophets. It is time for a holy desperation for revival to arise in God’s people! ~Greg Gordon

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When You Preach

Preaching

When you enter the pulpit make no apologies. You may not be a big preacher but you have just as big a Gospel to preach as any preacher who ever lived.

If you have a God-given message, deliver it. If you do not, the spiritual people will soon discover that you are firing only a dud. No matter how well you clothe a sermon with golden rhetoric and fine sentences, it is not a golden tongue that counts but a tongue of fire.

Leave self out of the pulpit but take Christ in. Do not waste time with a long preface or introduction but reach the truths of your sermon as early as possible. Do not keep on talking after you have finished your sermon. It is better to keep the people longing than to send them away loathing.

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Formula for a Burning Heart

I have previously said that any Christian who desires to, may experience a radical spiritual renascence, and this altogether independent of the attitude of his fellow Christians. The important question now is How? Well, here are some suggestions which anyone can follow and which, I am convinced, will result in a wonderfully improved Christian life.

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