One Touch from Jesus

unnamed

Good News – worth sharing widely.

Ordinary Christians doing what Jesus told us to do.

A village comes for healing as one lady’s eyesight is restored

What would you do? Imagine you are kneeling ready to pray for a lady who is sitting in front of the entire village and you have just preached that Jesus is able to heal the sick, raise the dead and cleanse the leper.

It’s that heart stopping moment when everyone’s eyes are suddenly on you to be the earthly vessel though which Jesus is going to move to back up the message you have just preached….

The woman says she has pain in her leg and back and then that she can hardly see! I know what i would do if I’m totally honest! I would start with getting rid of the pain in the back and celebrate that one move before then going on next to the leg in order to build up my faith before attempting the eyes. Not our team member Steve (right). Here’s what he did….

As bold as a lion he goes straight for the eyes and here’s an extract from his healing journal of what happened next:-

* After preaching to villagers. I invited a 50-60 year old woman to the chair to demonstrate God’s healing power. She had very little vision and back & leg pain. I commanded sight to full restoration. No shift on 1st attempt. 2nd attempt – slight change. 3rd attempt – full sight regained!! She was then able to name individuals in the audience in semi darkness!!

Acts 4:13 – “When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.”

One “touch” from Jesus is all it took

It was my privilege last week to lead the 2015 HOTS [Healing On The Streets – nice with Bath, England!] Bath India team into an adventure that resulted in numerous healing and miracles, salvations and 36 people baptised.

Yesterday I received a call from one team member saying that on their return to England, everyone they have been praying for has been encountering His Presence, and many are falling out under the power of the Holy Spirit – “I’m just not used to this kind of thing!” they said. I was able to explain that this is (should be) the normal Christian life.

Luke 6:19 “And all the people were trying to touch Him, for power was coming from Him and healing them all.”

I hope you enjoy this latest newsletter and take the chance to connect with some of the equipping opportunities it offers.

Paul Skelton

HOTS Website – Healing On The Streets

HOTS Facebook – Healing On The Streets

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BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

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Young Christians sharing Good News on the streets of Brisbane, Australia

Mitch1 prayYoung Christians sharing Good News on the streets in Brisbane

This afternoon we met Craig. Christie stopped him to tell him that Jesus loves him & asked if we could pray for him. He said yes!

When we prayed for him, he opened his eyes, jaw dropped & said he felt tingling in his face, in his words said “It’s Him” whilst pointing upward, smiling.

Craig was shot in the head by an intruder in his home one night in front of his son in 2009 (his son living in fear ever since). He let us take him to dinner & shared his story/scars of when he was hit by a car too, also how his father died in his arms.

Mitch dinnerHe couldn’t believe that we wanted to take him with us, saying “This doesn’t happen.” He said he usually puts his hand over his face because people always point and laugh at him – visible hole on the top of his head (bullet still lodged in his skull).

He said he would love to come to the conference [Todd White at Glory City Church] although he couldn’t stay long & on the way to the conference he asked more about God. Christie shared with him about Jesus and the Holy Spirit.

He thanked her & she was able to pray with him as he gave his life to Jesus in the taxi. The taxi driver was in shock, forgot to put his meter on so my mate blessed him with a $40 tip, we told him Jesus loves him too.

Craig wasn’t able to stay long at the conference so when he headed out, Mitch followed him to drive him home then Todd White walked past, Mitch asked Todd to pray with him, turns out Todd & Craig had a lot in common, including being shot at with the same kind of gun. Todd shared more of Jesus with him, they hugged then Craig asked if he could come back to church with his son – Mitch introduced him to the pastor to exchange details.

Craig said he couldn’t believe how nice everyone was & couldn’t wait to get home & read his new Bible.

We are all so blown away by how God aligned everything, & we were able to be a part of this! Everyday out there are opportunities to love people. God said we only need faith as small as a mustard seed. There’s nothing like when you get to break past fear!! So many people let us pray with them tonight, God is so real & the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead lives in us! Craig is overwhelmed with joy and so amazed he now knows God’s love. He will never be the same. ‪#‎normalchristianlife‬
— with Tammi O’neon.

Healing

RJ 04 Healing 1

RENEWAL JOURNAL 4: HEALING

Renewal Journal 4: Healing – PDF

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Renewal Journals Index – 20 issues

 

All Renewal Journal Topics:

1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,
3 Community,   4 Healing,   
5 Signs & Wonders,   
6  Worship,   
7  Blessing,
   8  Awakening,  
9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
   12  Harvest,   
13  Ministry,
   14  Anointing,   
15  Wineskins,   
16  Vision,   
17  Unity,
   18  Servant Leadership,  
19  Church,   20 Life

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CONTENTS:  4  Healing

RJ 04 Healing 1Missionary Translator and Doctor, by David Lithgow

My Learning Curve on Healing, by Jim Holbeck

Spiritual Healing, by John Blacker

Deliverance and Freedom, by Colin Warren

Christian Wholeness Counselling, by John Warlow

A Healing Community, by Spencer Colliver

Divine Healing & Church Growth, by Donald McGavran

Sounds of Revival, by Sue Armstrong

Revival Fire at Wuddina, by Trevor Faggotter

The Healing Power of Prayer

Reviews:
Healing by Francis MacNutt; 
Power Healing
by John Wimber & Kevin Springer; 
Healing through Deliverance
by Peter Horrobin;
Healing in the Now by John Blacker;
All Together in One Place by Harold Hunter & Peter Hocken (eds)

Renewal Journal 4: Healing – PDF

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EDITORIAL

HEALING FOR WHOLENESS IN SPIRIT, SOUL AND BODY

The cover photo shows Grant Shaw with Leah WaqaGrant Shaw and I attended the Sunday service at the Upper Room church in Port Vila, the capital of Vanuatu in the South Pacific.  There Leah, a nurse, told how she had been dispensing medicines at the hospital that week when parents brought in their young daughter who had been badly hit in a car accident, and showed no signs of life – the monitor registered zero – no pulse.  Leah felt unusual boldness, so commanded the girl to live, and prayed for her for an hour, mostly in tongues.  After an hour the monitor started beeping and the girl recovered.

Grant joined me on Pentecost Island in Vanuatu.  South Pentecost attracts tourists with its land diving – men jumping from high bamboo towers with vines attached to their ankles.  Grant prayed for a jumper who had hurt his neck, and the neck crackled back into place.  That young man and his father both gave their lives to the Lord right there in the village.  Grant prayed for a son of the paramount chief of South Pentecost.  He was healed from a painful leg and later he invited the team to come to his village to pray for the sick.  No white people had been invited there to minister previously.  More were healed there in Jesus’ name.  The full account is in South Pacific Revivals by Geoff Waugh (2010).

Healing is a tough subject, especially if you or your loved ones are sick!

Attitudes to ‘the healing ministry’ and theologies about healing vary greatly. At one extreme lies the claim that everyone can and should be well, and if you have enough faith in God you will be healed; at the other extreme lies the claim that healing, if it occurs, now happens through medical science.

People at the first extreme tend to avoid medical help, trust in God alone for healing, and deny any ‘lying symptoms’. However, they usually acknowledge the importance of healthy food, exercise, rest and positive attitudes – which people at the other extreme also acknowledge.

The truth, I believe, doesn’t just stand somewhere in the middle, but in both. God heals. His healing power is always at work in us with every heartbeat, every breath. Life is his gift to us. Healthy living contributes to good health. Oranges and Vitamin C tablets promote health. So do healthy attitudes. So does prayer, and faith.

We know that being healthy is good, not bad. We go to a doctor or we take medicine because that can help overcome sickness and restore health.

Most of us pray for healing, for others and for ourselves. We usually appreciate others praying for us. We pray for others in many different ways.

It may be the general ‘God bless them’ prayer or our wish for their well being. It may be the more specific ‘Heal them, please God’ or ‘Lord lay your healing hand on them’. It may be the still more specific prayer with a person as we lay our hand on them in Jesus’ name. It may be the even more specific prayer or command, led and anointed by the Holy Spirit, through various gifts of the Spirit including healing, miracles, faith, prophecy, words of knowledge or wisdom, discernment of spirits, or tongues and maybe interpretation.

And sometimes we don’t pray for healing, but it happens anyway!

More difficult to understand is when we do pray for healing, we do have faith, we ‘trust and obey’ and yet healing does not happen, as far as we can see. We have to acknowledge that we don’t ‘see’ very far yet. There is a mystery in healing, as there is in living. We don’t understand the mystery of life, nor do we understand a lot about eternal life.

However, we know that God gives life, and sustains life. We can learn more about how to co-operate with God, including learning how to pray more effectively, believe more truly, and love more fully.

Healing is complex. Most healing takes time, but intervention through prayer or medicine can speed up the process, sometimes dramatically. Healing also involves the whole being – spirit, soul and body (1 Thessalonians 5:23). These are inter-related.

We are also learning more about blockages to healing such as unforgiveness, unbelief, unhappiness, and unwillingness to yield fully to God. These can be removed in a loving, caring environment.

One major discovery in charismatic renewal, and in similar ministries, has been the reality of God’s healing grace revealing the Father’s love, such as through compassionate prayer in Jesus’ name in the power of the Holy Spirit. This ministry of love and compassion increases everywhere now.

Those who live and worship in places or among people where there is love, compassion, forgiveness, faith, courage and support for one another are especially blessed, for all these facilitate healing. As we yield to the Spirit of God among us, these abound, and so does healing. This is part of the Lord’s purpose and commission for his church – to be a loving and healing community.

We believe that Jesus healed, especially in compassion for people. He commanded and taught his disciples to preach the good news about the reign of God, heal the sick and cast out evil spirits. Jesus is the same – yesterday, today and forever. His commission is the same still. We are learning again to humbly and courageously obey him in the power of his Spirit. There is more to learn and do yet.

This issue of the Renewal Journal aims to help you do that. David Lithgow, Jim Holbeck, John Blacker, Colin Warren, John Warlow and Spencer Colliver tell of their discoveries and understanding of healing. Sue Armstrong and Trevor Faggotter describe revival movements which also include healing through prayer.

The next issue of the Renewal Journal, Number 5 (95:1), looks at Signs and Wonders including an overview of their place in the church throughout history and their explosion in revival movements today. Subsequent issues are planned for topics such as worship, prayer and compassion. These take on new meaning and expression in renewal ministry.

The Renewal Journal will continue to carry articles on renewal and revival across all churches and in the community. Please pray as you read! May God bring healing to the land as we repent and believe the good news of God’s great grace.

© Renewal Journal 4: Healing, 1994, 2nd edition 2011

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See Also


The Ministry of Jesus – Healing

He woke up totally healed, by Daniel Kolenda

He woke up totally healed

by Daniel Kolenda

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cfan1Have you ever drifted off to sleep . . . and suddenly woke up totally HEALED?  When you’re sitting in the presence of God, it can happen.

In fact, that’s exactly what took place on night 3 in our Great Gospel Campaign in Accra, Ghana.

It was one of those nights that is hard for me to describe. As always, our emphasis was on the preaching of the Gospel of salvation, to which many thousands responded.

But when the Gospel is proclaimed the inevitable result is miracles.  Even though I hardly said anything about healing, the Holy Spirit loves to confirm the lordship of Jesus and manifest His Kingdom through supernatural demonstrations.

“And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.”  (Mark 16:19-20)

And on this one particular night, we saw so many hearings: A man blind for ten years healed. A woman with an issue of blood healed. A deaf man healed. A lady threw her walking stick away. A woman took off her neck brace. I even danced with the woman who had been crippled.

But the most moving testimony came at the very end. A man, who had been deaf for almost two years, had just arrived in town by train. He had a long lay-over for his next connection so he unwittingly ventured into the city center (Independence Square, where our campaign was being held).

He was a Muslim. He had no intention of coming to a Gospel meeting. He could not understand anything that was going on anyway … so he laid down and went to sleep. (He was about to make a divine connection.)

When he woke up, to his utter amazement, he could hear!  He came to the platform and stood before me trembling, overcome with emotion. He had a look of shock on his face. “My name is Mohammed,” he said, and he  proceeded to tell me his story.

I asked him if he knew who had healed him and he said it is “The messenger of the Almighty God  .. Jesus.” The whole thing was so raw and fresh. I could see he was struggling to come to terms with what he had just realized. “Jesus is, Jesus is … he is a God,” he said, as though the thought had just occurred to him.

He said, “Even the Koran says if you do not believe in Jesus Christ you are not a good Muslim.” He seemed to be trying to justify this to himself.

But I wanted to make it clear for the thousands watching this unfold. “Jesus is not just a messenger.” I said, “He is the SON of the living God. He is the Way, He is the Truth and He is the Life…”

He jumped up and down and shouted, “I thank God. I thank. God. I can hear. I can hear.” By the end of our conversation, he seemed to be settled and completely sure, but he desperately wanted to get the message to his wife.

So he boldly announced the name of the city where he lives and in his own words he said, “My wife is not watching this  … but I persuade anybody who knows me and sees my face    …  that my name is Mohammed (he also shouted his last name) and you can tell my wife that Jesus is the Son of God. And tell her that I am healed. I am healed. I can hear. I can hear.

I wish you could have seen the crowd. No football team has ever received such enthusiasm – they were jumping and dancing and shouting with joy unspeakable and full of glory. It is a moment I will never forget.  YOU HELPED TO MAKE THAT MIRACLE MOMENT HAPPEN for that dear man. Your prayers and your financial support make you a key part of EVERY single miracle o salvation and healing in our meetings.

cfan2There are more men and women (just like Mohammed) who need to find out that Jesus is the SON of God; that He can save their souls; forgive their past; and heal their hurts.

Please ask the Lord what you should give and sow into this soul-winning soil … and make your next gift a personal act of obedience to His leading in your heart.

You have no idea just how much your prayers and gifts matter. But God does … and He sees and knows how to supply, bless and multiply every seed that you sow …  according to His word.
(2 Cor 9:8-10)

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda, 2014
www.cfan.com

See video on:
http://danielkolenda.com/2014/12/31/mohammed-confesses-jesus/

GENERAL BLOGS INDEX 

BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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He woke up totally healed:

He woke up totally healed, by Daniel Kolenda


Eighteenth Century Revivals: The Great Awakening and Evangelical Revivals


A Flashpoints 1Revival Fires

Summaries of Revivals

Eighteenth-Century Revivals:

The Great Awakening
and Evangelical Revivals

See also Revivals Index – https://renewaljournal.com/revivals-index/

1. Eighteenth-Century Revivals: Great Awakening & Evangelical Revivals
2. Early Nineteenth-Century Revivals: Frontier and Missionary Revivals
3. Mid-nineteenth Century Revivals: Prayer Revivals
4. Early Twentieth Century Revivals: Worldwide Revivals
5. Mid-twentieth Century Revivals: Healing Evangelism Revivals
6. Late Twentieth Century Revivals: Renewal and Revival
7. Final Decade, Twentieth Century Revivals: Blessing Revivals
8. Twenty-First Century Revivals: Transforming Revivals

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The powerful revivals of the eighteenth century spread through Europe, especially England, and to North America. They became known as the Evangelical Revivals in England and the Great Awakening in America. They grew out of the outpouring of the Spirit of God on small communities of refugees which has suffered severe persecution in Europe.

Flashpoints
1727 – August: Herrnhut, Saxony (Nicholas Zinzendorf)
1735 – January: New England, North America (Jonathan Edwards)
1739 – January: London, England (John Wesley, George Whitefield)
1745 – August: Crossweeksung, North America (David Brainerd)
1781 – December: Cornwall, England

1727 – August: Herrnhut, Saxony (Nicholas Zinzendorf)

Zinzendorf
Zinzendorf

No one present could tell exactly what happened on the Wednesday morning of the specially called Communion service. The glory of the Lord came upon them so powerfully that they hardly knew if they were on earth or in heaven. The Spirit of God moved powerfully on those three hundred refugees in Saxony in 1727. One of their historians wrote:

[Church history] abounds in records of special outpourings of the Holy Ghost, and verily the thirteenth of August, 1727, was a day of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. We saw the hand of God and his wonders, and we were all under the cloud of our fathers baptized with their Spirit. The Holy Ghost came upon us and in those days great signs and wonders took place in our midst. From that time scarcely a day passed but what we beheld his almighty workings amongst us. A great hunger after the Word of God took possession of us so that we had to have three services every day, at 5.0 and 7.30 a.m. and 9.0 p.m. Every one desired above everything else that the Holy Spirit might have full control. Self love and self will, as well as all disobedience, disappeared and an overwhelming flood of grace swept us all out into the great ocean of Divine Love.

Count Nicholas Ludwig von Zinzendorf (1700-1760), the benefactor and 27-year-old leader of that community, gave this account at a meeting in London in 1752:

We needed to come to the Communion with a sense of the loving nearness of the Saviour. This was the great comfort which has made this day a generation ago to be a festival, because on this day twenty-seven years ago the Congregation of Herrnhut, assembled for communion (at the Berthelsdorf church) were all dissatisfied with themselves. They had quit judging each other because they had become convinced, each one, of his lack of worth in the sight of God and each felt himself at this Communion to be in view of the noble countenance of the Saviour. …

In this view of the man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, their hearts told them that he would be their patron and their priest who was at once changing their tears into oil of gladness and their misery into happiness. This firm confidence changed them in a single moment into a happy people which they are to this day, and into their happiness they have since led many thousands of others through the memory and help which the heavenly grace once given to themselves, so many thousand times confirmed to them since then.

Zinzendorf described it as “a sense of the nearness of Christ” given to everyone present, and also simultaneously to two members of their community working twenty miles away.

The Moravian brethren had grown from the work and martyrdom of the Bohemian Reformer, John Hus. They suffered centuries of persecution. Many had been killed, imprisoned, tortured or banished from their homeland. This group had fled for refuge to Germany where the young Christian nobleman, Count Zinzendorf, offered them asylum on his estates in Saxony. They named their new home Herrnhut, ‘the Lord’s Watch’. From there, after their baptism of fire, they became pioneering evangelists and missionaries.

Fifty years before the beginning of modern missions with William Carey, the Moravian Church had sent out over 100 missionaries. Their English missionary magazine, Periodical Accounts, inspired Carey. He threw a copy of the paper on a table at a Baptist meeting, saying, “See what the Moravians have done! Cannot we follow their example and in obedience to our Heavenly Master go out into the world, and preach the Gospel to the heathen?”

That missionary zeal began with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Zinzendorf observed: “The Saviour permitted to come upon us a Spirit of whom we had hitherto not had any experience or knowledge. … Hitherto we had been the leaders and helpers. Now the Holy Spirit himself took full control of everything and everybody.”

Converted in early childhood, at four years of age Zinzendorf composed and signed a covenant: “Dear Saviour, be mine, and I will be Thine.” His life motto was, “Jesus only”.

Zinzendorf learned the secret of prevailing prayer. He actively established prayer groups as a teenager, and on finishing college at Halle at sixteen he gave Professor Francke a list of seven praying societies he had established.

The disgruntled community at Herrnhut early in 1727 criticized one another. Heated controversies threatened to disrupt the community. The majority belonged to the ancient Moravian Church of the Brethren. Other believers attracted to Herrnhut included Lutherans, Reformed, and Anabaptists. They argued about predestination, holiness, and baptism.

Zinzendorf, pleaded for unity, love and repentance. At Herrnhut, Zinzendorf visited all the adult members of the deeply divided community. He drew up a covenant calling upon them to seek out and emphasize the points in which they agreed rather than stressing their differences.

On 12 May, 1727, they all signed the ‘Brotherly Covenant’ dedicating their lives, as Zinzendorf had dedicated his, to the service of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Moravian revival of 1727 was preceded and then sustained by extraordinary personal and communal, united prayer. A spirit of grace, unity, and supplications grew among them.

On 16 July Zinzendorf poured out his soul in a prayer accompanied with a flood of tears. This prayer produced an extraordinary effect. The whole community began praying as never before.

On 22 July many of the community covenanted together on their own accord to meet often to pour out their hearts in prayers and hymns.

On 5 August Zinzendorf spent the whole night in prayer with about twelve or fourteen others following a large meeting for prayer at midnight where great emotion prevailed.

On Sunday, 10 August, Pastor Johann Rothe, a Pietist friend of Zinzendorf and minister of the Berthelsdorf parish church, was overwhelmed by the Spirit about noon. He sank down into the dust before God. So did the whole congregation. They continued till midnight in prayer and singing, weeping and praying.

On Wednesday, 13 August, the Holy Spirit was poured out on them all at the specially arranged communion service in the Berthelsdorf church. Their prayers were answered in ways far beyond anyone’s expectations. Many of them decided to set aside certain times for continued earnest prayer.

On Tuesday 26 August, twenty-four men and twenty-four women covenanted together to continue praying in intervals of one hour each, day and night, each hour allocated by lots to different people.

On Wednesday, 27 August, this new regulation began. Others joined the intercessors and the number involved increased to seventy-seven. They all carefully observed the hour which had been appointed for them. The intercessors had a weekly meeting where prayer needs were given to them.

The children began a similar plan among themselves. Those who heard their infant supplications were deeply moved. The children’s prayers and supplications had a powerful effect on the whole community.

That astonishing prayer meeting beginning in 1727 lasted a century. Known as the Hourly Intercession, it involved relays of men and women in prayer without ceasing made to God. That prayer also led to action, especially evangelism. More than 100 missionaries left that village community in the next twenty-five years, all constantly supported in prayer.

One result of their baptism in the Holy Spirit was a joyful assurance of their pardon and salvation. This made a strong impact on people in many countries, including the Wesleys. Their prayers and witness profoundly affected the eighteenth-century evangelical awakening.

See Moravian Revival 9-minute video on 24/7 Worship and Prayer: https://renewaljournal.com/2019/03/14/24-7-worship-prayer/

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1735 – January: New England, North America (Jonathan Edwards)

Jonathan Edwards
Jonathan Edwards

Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), the preacher and scholar who later became a President of Princeton University, was a prominent leader in a revival movement which came to be called the Great Awakening as it spread through the communities of New England and the pioneering settlements in America. Converts to Christianity reached 50,000 out of a total of 250,000 colonists. Early in 1735, an unusually powerful move of God’s Spirit brought revival to Northampton, which then spread through New England in the north-east of America. Edwards noted that

a great and earnest concern about the great things of religion and the eternal world, became universal in all parts of the town, and among persons of all degrees and all ages; the noise among the dry bones waxed louder and louder; all other talk but about spiritual and eternal things, was soon thrown by….

The minds of people were wonderfully taken off from the world; it was treated among us as a thing of very little consequence. They seemed to follow their worldly business, more as a part of their duty, than from any disposition they had to it….

And the work of conversion was carried on in a most astonishing manner, and increased more and more; souls did as it were come by flocks to Jesus Christ. From day to day, for many months together, might be seen evident instances of sinners brought out of darkness into marvellous light … with a new song of praise to God in their mouths…
Our public assemblies were then beautiful: the congregation was alive in God’s service, every one earnestly intent on the public worship, every hearer eager to drink in the words of the minister as they came from his mouth; the assembly in general were, from time to time, in tears while the word was preached; some weeping with sorrow and distress, others with joy and love, others with pity and concern for the souls of their neighbours….

Those amongst us who had been formerly converted, were greatly enlivened, and renewed with fresh and extraordinary incomes of the Spirit of God; though some much more than others, according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Many who before had laboured under difficulties about their own state, had now their doubts removed by more satisfying experience, and more clear discoveries of God’s love.

Describing the characteristics of the revival, Edwards said that it gave people

an extraordinary sense of the awful majesty, greatness and holiness of God, so as sometimes to overwhelm soul and body; a sense of the piercing, all seeing eye of God, so as sometimes to take away the bodily strength; and an extraordinary view of the infinite terribleness of the wrath of God, together with a sense of the ineffable misery of sinners exposed to this wrath. … and … longings after more love to Christ, and greater conformity to him; especially longing after these two things, to be more perfect in humility and adoration. The flesh and the heart seem often to cry out, lying low before God and adoring him with greater love and humility. … The person felt a great delight in singing praises to God and Jesus Christ, and longing that this present life may be as it were one continued song of praise to God. … Together with living by faith to a great degree, there was a constant and extraordinary distrust of our own strength and wisdom; a great dependence on God for his help … and being restrained from the most horrid sins.

Video: 1st Great Awakening in America: Jonathan Edwards – J Edwin Orr

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1739 – January: London, England (John Wesley, George Whitefield)

George Whitefield
George Whitefield
John Wesley
John Wesley

When the New England revival was strongest, George Whitefield (1714-1770) in England and Howell Harris (1714-1773) in Wales were both converted at 21 in 1735. Both ignited revival fires, seeing thousands converted and communities changed. By 1736 Harris began forming his converts into societies and by 1739 there were nearly thirty such societies. Whitefield travelled extensively, visiting Georgia in 1738 (the first of seven journeys to America), then ministering powerfully with Howell Harris in Wales 1739 and with Jonathan Edwards in New England in 1740, all in his early twenties.

At the end of 1735, John Wesley (1703-1791) sailed to Georgia, an American colony. A company of Moravian immigrants travelled on that vessel. During a storm they faced the danger of shipwreck. John Wesley wrote in his journal for Sunday 25 January 1736:

At seven I went to the Germans. I had long before observed the great seriousness of their behaviour. Of their humility they had given a continual proof by performing those servile offices for the other passengers which none of the English would undertake; for which they desired and would receive no pay, saying, “It was good for their proud hearts,” and “their loving Saviour had done more for them.” And every day had given them occasion of showing a meekness, which no injury could move. If they were pushed, struck or thrown down, they rose again and went away; but no complaint was found in their mouth. Here was now an opportunity of trying whether they were delivered from the spirit of fear, as well as from that of pride, anger and revenge. In the midst of the Psalm wherewith their service began, the sea broke over, split the main sail in pieces, covered the ship and poured in between the decks, as if the great deep had already swallowed us up. A terrible screaming began among the English. The Germans calmly sung on. I asked one of them afterwards: “Were you not afraid?” He answered, “I thank God, no.” I asked: “But were not your women and children afraid?” He replied mildly: “No, our women and children are not afraid to die.”

Back in England in 1738 after John Wesley’s brief and frustrating missionary career, the Wesleys were challenged by the Moravian missionary Peter Bohler. In March 1738 John Wesley wrote:

Saturday 4 March I found my brother at Oxford, recovering from his pleurisy; and with him Peter Bohler, by whom (in the hand of the great God) I was, on Sunday the 5th, clearly convinced of unbelief, of the want of that faith whereby alone we are saved.

Immediately it struck into my mind, “Leave off preaching. How can you preach to others, who have not faith yourself?” I asked Bohler whether he thought I should leave it off or not. He answered, “By no means.” I asked, “But what can I preach?” He said, “Preach faith till you have it; and then, because you have it, you will preach faith.”

Monday, 6 March I began preaching this new doctrine, though my soul started back from the work. The first person to whom I offered salvation by faith alone was a prisoner under sentence of death. His name was Clifford. Peter Bohler had many times desired me to speak to him before. But I could not prevail on myself so to do; being still a zealous assertor of the impossibility of a death bed repentance.

Both John and Charles were converted in May 1738, Charles first, and John three days later
on Wednesday 24 May. He wrote his famous testimony in his Journal:

In the evening I went very unwillingly to a society in Aldersgate Street, where one was reading Luther’s preface to the Epistle to the Romans. About a quarter before nine, while he was describing the change which God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone, for salvation; and an assurance was given me, that he had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death.

Later that year John Wesley visited the Moravian community at Herrnhut. He admired their
zeal and love for the Lord, and he prayed that their kind of Christianity, full of the Holy Spirit, would spread through the earth. Back in England he preached evangelically, gathered
converts into religious societies (which were nicknamed Methodists because of his methodical procedures), and continued to relate warmly with the Moravians. Evangelical revival fires began to stir in England and burst into flame the following year.

1739 saw astonishing expansion of revival in England. On the evening of 1 January the Wesleys and Whitefield (recently back from America) and four others from their former Holy Club at Oxford University, along with 60 others, met in London for prayer and a love feast. The Spirit of God moved powerfully on them all. Many fell down, overwhelmed. The meeting went all night and they realised they had been empowered in a fresh visitation from God.

Mr Hall, Kinchin, Ingham, Whitefield, Hitchins, and my brother Charles were present at our lovefeast in Fetter Lane, with about sixty of our brethren. About three in the morning, as we were continuing instant in prayer, the power of God came mightily upon us, insomuch that many cried out for exceeding joy, and many fell to the ground. As soon as we were recovered a little from that awe and amazement at the presence of his majesty, we broke out with one voice, “We praise Thee, O God, we acknowledge Thee to be the Lord.”

This Pentecost on New Year’s Day launched the revival known later as the Great Awakening. Revival spread rapidly. In February 1739 Whitefield started preaching to the Kingswood coal miners in the open fields near Bristol because many churches opposed him, accusing him and other evangelicals of ‘enthusiasm’. In February about 200 attended. By March 20,000 attended. Whitefield invited Wesley to take over then and so in April Wesley reluctantly began his famous open-air preaching, which continued for 50 years.

He described that first weekend in his Journal:

Saturday, 31 March In the evening I reached Bristol, and met Mr Whitefield. I could scarce reconcile myself at first to this strange way of preaching in the fields, of which he set me an example on Sunday; having been all my life (till very lately) so tenacious of every point relating to decency and order, that I should have thought the saving of souls almost a sin if it had not been done in a church.

Sunday, 1 April In the evening, I begun expounding our Lord’s Sermon on the Mount (one pretty remarkable precedent of field preaching) to a little society in Nicholas Street.

Monday, 2 April At four in the afternoon I submitted to be more vile, and proclaimed in the highways the glad tidings of salvation, speaking from a little eminence in a ground adjoining to the city, to almost three thousand people. The scripture on which I spoke was “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor.”

Sometimes strange manifestations accompanied revival preaching. Wesley wrote in his Journal of 26 April 1739 that during his preaching at Newgate, Bristol, “One, and another, and another sunk to the earth; they dropped on every side as thunderstruck.”

He returned to London in June reporting on the amazing move of God’s Spirit with many conversions and many people falling prostrate, a phenomenon he never encouraged. Features of this revival were enthusiastic singing, powerful preaching, and the gathering of converts into small societies called weekly Class Meetings.

Initially, leaders such as George Whitefield criticized some manifestations in Wesley’s meetings, but this changed. Wesley wrote on 7 July 1739:

I had opportunity to talk with Mr Whitefield about those outward signs which had so often accompanied the inward work of God. I found his objections were chiefly grounded on gross misrepresentations of matter of fact. But the next day he had opportunity of informing himself better: for no sooner had he begun (in the application of his sermon) to invite all sinners to believe in Christ, than four persons sank down, close to him, almost in the same moment. One of them lay without either sense or motion; a second trembled exceedingly; the third had strong convulsions all over his body, but made no noise, unless by groans; the fourth, equally convulsed, called upon God, with strong cried and tears. From this time, I trust, we shall all suffer God to carry on His own work in the way that pleaseth Him.

Both John Wesley and George Whitefield continued preaching outdoors as well as in churches which welcomed them. Whitefield’s seven visits to America continued to fan the flames of revival there.

Revival caught fire in Scotland also. After returning again from America in 1741, Whitefield visited Glasgow. Two ministers in villages nearby invited him to return in 1742 because revival had already begun in their area. Conversions and prayer groups multiplied. Whitefield preached there at Cambuslang about four miles from Glasgow. The opening meetings on a Sunday saw the great crowds on the hillside gripped with conviction, repentance and weeping more than he had seen elsewhere. The next weekend 20,000 gathered on the Saturday and up to 50,000 on the Sunday for the quarterly communion. The visit was charged with Pentecostal power which even amazed Whitefield.

Video: 1st Great Awakening in America: George Whitefield – j Edwin Orr

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1745 – August: Crossweeksung, North America (David Brainerd)

David Brainerd
David Brainerd

Jonathan Edwards published the journal of David Brainerd (1718-1747), a missionary to the North American Indians from 1743 to his death at 29 in 1747. Brainerd tells of revival breaking out among Indians at Crossweeksung in August 1745 when the power of God seemed to come like a rushing mighty wind. The Indians were overwhelmed by God. The revival had greatest impact when Brainerd emphasised the compassion of the Saviour, the provisions of the gospel, and the free offer of divine grace. Idolatry was abandoned, marriages repaired, drunkenness practically disappeared, honesty and repayments of debts prevailed. Money once wasted on excessive drinking was used for family and communal needs. Their communities were filled with love.

Part of his journal for Thursday 8 August reads:

The power of God seemed to descend on the assembly “like a rushing mighty wind” and with an astonishing energy bore all down before it. I stood amazed at the influence that seized the audience almost universally and could compare it to nothing more aptly than the irresistible force of a mighty torrent… Almost all persons of all ages were bowed down with concern together and scarce was able to withstand the shock of astonishing operation.

On November 20, he described the revival at Crossweeksung in his general comments about that year in which he had ridden his horse more than 3,000 miles to reach Indian tribes in New England:

I might now justly make many remarks on a work of grace so very remarkable as this has been in divers respects; but shall confine myself to a few general hints only.

1. It is remarkable that God began this work among the Indians at a time when I had least hope and, to my apprehension, the least rational prospect of seeing a work of grace propagated amongst them. …

2. It is remarkable how God providentially, and in a manner almost unaccountable, called these Indians together to be instructed in the great things that concerned their souls; how He seized their minds with the most solemn and weighty concern for their eternal salvation, as fast as they came to the place where His Word was preached…

3. It is likewise remarkable how God preserved these poor ignorant Indians from being prejudiced against me and the truths I taught them…

4. Nor is it less wonderful how God was pleased to provide a remedy for my want of skill and freedom in the Indian language by remarkably fitting my interpreter for, and assisting him in, the performance of his work…

5. It is further remarkable that God has carried on His work here by such means, and in such manner, as tended to obviate and leave no room for those prejudices and objections that have often been raised against such a work … [because] this great awakening, this surprising concern, was never excited by any harangues of terror, but always appeared most remarkable when I insisted upon the compassions of a dying Saviour, the plentiful provisions of the gospel, and the free offers of divine grace to needy distressed sinners.

6. The effects of this work have likewise been very remarkable. … Their pagan notions and idolatrous practices seem to be entirely abandoned in these parts. They are regulated and appear regularly disposed in the affairs of marriage. They seem generally divorced from drunkenness … although before it was common for some or other of them to be drunk almost every day. … A principle of honesty and justice appears in many of them, and they seem concerned to discharge their old debts. … Their manner of living is much more decent and comfortable than formerly, having now the benefit of that money which they used to consume upon strong drink. Love seems to reign among them, especially those who have given evidence of a saving change.
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1781 – December: Cornwall, England

A Humble Attempt Reprint
A Humble Attempt
Reprint

Forty years after the Great Awakening began the fires of revival had died out in many places. Concerned leaders called the church to pray.

Jonathan Edwards in America had written a treatise called, ‘A Humble Attempt to Promote Explicit Agreement and Visible Union of God’s People in Extraordinary Prayer for the Revival of Religion and the Advancement of Christ’s Kingdom on Earth‘. It was reprinted in both England and Scotland and circulated widely.

John Erskine of Edinburgh persisted in urging prayer for revival through extensive correspondence around the world. He instigated widespread combined churches monthly prayer meetings for revival called Concerts of Prayer.

An example of the prayer movement was the effect in Cornwall in the 1780s. On Sunday, Christmas Day 1781, at St. Just Church in Cornwall, at 3 a.m., intercessors met to sing and ray. The Spirit moved among them and they prayed until 9 a.m. and regathered on Christmas evening. By March 1782 they were praying each evening until midnight.

Two years later in 1784, when 83 year old John Wesley visited that area, he wrote, “This country is all on fire and the flame is spreading from village to village.”

The chapel which George Whitefield had built decades previously in Tottenham Court Road, London, had to be enlarged to seat 5,000 people, the largest in the world at that time. Baptist churches in North Hampton, Leicester, and the Midlands, set aside regular nights for prayer for revival. Methodists and Anglicans joined them. Converts were being won at the prayer meetings. Some were held at 5 a.m., some at midnight. Some unbelievers were drawn by dreams and visions. Some came to scoff but were thrown to the ground under the power of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes there was noise and confusion; sometimes stillness and solemnity. But always there was that ceaseless outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Whole denominations doubled, tripled and quadrupled in the next few years. The number of dissenting churches increased from 27 in 1739 to 900 in 1800, 5,000 by 1810 and 10,000 by 1820. It swept out from England to Wales, Scotland, United States, Canada, and to some Third World countries.

That eighteenth-century revival of holiness brought about a spiritual awakening in England and America, established the Methodists with 140,000 members by the end of the century, and renewed other churches and Christians. It impacted the nation with social change and created the climate for political reform such as the abolition of slavery through the reforms of William Wilberforce, William Buxton and others. John Howard and Elizabeth Fry led prison reform. Florence Nightingale founded modern nursing. Ashley Cooper, the Earl of Shaftesbury, reformed labour conditions.

The movement grew. William Carey, Andrew Fuller, John Sutcliffe and other leaders began the Union of Prayer, calling Christians to pray together regularly for revival. By 1792, the year after John Wesley died, this Second Great Awakening (1792 1830) began to sweep Great Britain and America.

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See also Revivals Index – https://renewaljournal.com/revivals-index/

GENERAL BLOGS INDEX

BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Healing Evangelism

Healing Evangelism

The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness cannot overcome it (John 1:5).

Revival continues to explode in spite of, and in the midst of, darkness such as the brutal massacres of Christians and others in North Korea, North Africa, Syria and the Middle East.

Local

Local Australian examples of healing evangelism, for example, continue to increase.  Many churches now have ministry teams that pray for people at the end of each service.

Joel Shaw, a young pastor at Glory City Church in Brisbane leads youth in prayer healing evangelism in the streets and malls of Brisbane, along with others.  Here’s a recent example from him:

Chris
Chris Turner

“I am just on a total high from last night! After church we went down with the young adults to Kangaroo Point.  Chris Turner [youth pastor] and I were talking about all the opportunities that were all around us.  As we were walking from one location to the next we saw this big bunch of young people smoking and rabbling around.  Chris stopped and called out to them.  At first they didn’t even acknowledge that he was there.  Chris called out a second time in a louder voice “HEY GUYS!”  Their conversation died down and they started to listen.

“Chris said, “Have you guys seen any miracles?”  Some jeered, some were serious and others quite friendly.  Within 30 seconds there was a guy who admitted to having a knee problem, One prayer and he was instantly healed!  A girl stepped up saying that she had period pain and she was also instantly healed.

“A guy next to me started to talk to me about his elbow.  He had heaps of pain and limited movement.  By this stage it was electric.  I knew there wasn’t a chance this guy wouldn’t be healed, so I said, “Watch this!” to the other guys around me and began to pray.  I felt the presence of God go through me and he stumbled backward.  “WHAT THE @#$%!” He exclaimed, moving his arm around vigorously.  He began to jump around and continue to stream expletives in total shock that he had been healed.

“By that time I had lost track of the other miracles that were happening all around me.  Immediately another guy comes up to me and said to me something along the lines of “I need help, I have a lot of sin!”  It was because of the miracles and the presence of God he was convicted of his sin!  The loving kindness leads us to repentance.

So as I hugged the guy with the healed arm for the 5th time, I proceed to share about the price that Jesus paid for his sin.  Turns out he had been to church but was desperate to encounter the supernatural so had delved deep into witchcraft and other new age practices.  I prayed for him, and he said he was so overwhelmed by God’s presence.   …  We got his number and his address and he is coming to church on Friday.   Seriously Kingdom life is the most exciting life!  That was an opportunity we could have easily walked by.”

Global

Andrew Chee and pastors pray for the paramount chief
Andrew Chee and pastors pray for the paramount chief

During the last few years I led teams of young people from these churches on missions in the South Pacific.  Healings, deliverance and salvation increase with each visit.  Everyone prayed for in one pagan village reported their pain had gone, and for the first time ever the paramount chief asked for healing prayer for himself.  When Andrew Chee and the pastors prayed for him the pain left.  Previously he had burned a Bible given to him.  Now he is saying that a church can be built where he burned the Bible.

Last year a team saw everyone healed that they prayed for on Pentecost Island, Vanuatu.  The testimonies opened the way for more salvation, deliverance, and people being filled with the Spirit and equipped for powerful service.  That includes detecting and removing magic and witchcraft.

Grant Shaw with nurse Leah Waqa
Grant Shaw with nurse Leah Waqa

Grant Shaw, Joel’s brother and now pastor of Kingdom Culture Church in Brisbane, joined me at many revival meetings in Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands.  We saw God move powerfully on hundreds of people, especially at a national youth conference in the Solomon Islands.  One young man, healed at the conference, that night prayed for his mum and brother in their home and they both were healed.  He had never done that before.  We prayed with nurse Leah Waqa in Port Vila (the capital of Vanuatu) who that week had been led to pray in the hospital for a girl who had died after being hit by a truck.  Leah prayed for the girl for over half an hour of Spirit-led prayer commanding her to live.  The girl lived.

I have written more about this and the resulting transformations in South Pacific Revivals and the expanded Flashpoints of Revival.  See also “21st Century Revivals in the South Pacific”.

We live through amazing revivals globally this century.  One of the most obvious is with Iris Global, with Roland and Heidi Baker.  They write:

Joel & Candice Shaw with Roland & Heidi Baker
Joel & Candice Shaw with Roland & Heidi Baker

Iris Global (previously Iris Ministries) is a holistic ministry that we began in 1980 as we took small evangelistic street drama teams to Asia on short-term mission trips. Our emphasis was the creative presentation of the Gospel, and our ministry grew greatly. But we were so impacted by the condition of the poor that we changed direction drastically and began to stop for the one and prove the love of God by first addressing the temporal needs of the broken and humble, “the least of these.” We focused on the bottom of society rather than the top. Now, after coming to Africa and starting with street beggar children in 1995, we have seen a people movement spread across the ten provinces of Mozambique. Massive desperation for God rising out of a long history of repression, poverty and natural disasters has fueled revival, one that is sparking more fire in nations around the world. And signs and wonders are following all the way.

“What began as a ragged band of young beggars, thieves and delinquents has developed by the power of the Holy Spirit into a closely-knit national family of thousands of churches and a broad ministry encompassing Bible schools, children’s centers, church-based orphan care, primary education, medical clinics, constant evangelistic and healing outreaches, farming, well drilling and much else. Our vision in the Lord is constantly increasing.

“But most of all we proclaim Jesus. He is our salvation, our prize, our reward, our inheritance, our destination, our motivation, our joy, wisdom and sanctification — and absolutely everything else we need, now and forever. All His grace and power flow to us through the Cross and no other way. We are glad to be known as social workers and humanitarians, and to have a reputation for doing good. But all is in vain if we do not bring to the people faith in our God and Savior Jesus Christ. We want to be known by His Name, first and foremost. And we do not expect fruitfulness to come out of anything but intimacy with Him …”    (http://www.irisglobal.org).

The Light still shines.  We can live in the Light.

Or, to use another picture, we can hoist our sail of faith and catch the wind of the Spirit blowing powerfully in the earth.

Revival Blogs Links:

See also Revivals Index

See also Revival Blogs

See also Blogs Index 1: Revivals

GENERAL BLOGS INDEX

BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Reinhard Bonnke’s beginnings in Africa

Reinhard Bonnke’s Beginnings in Africa

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Reinhard Bonnke’s beginnings in Africa:
https://renewaljournal.com/2013/03/19/renewal-journal-survey/

See also: “This Disco is a Church”
Immune to Fear, by Reinhard Bonnke
See also: Reinhard Bonnke’s final crusade in Africa
See also: Reinhard Bonnke – 1940-2019 – a Tribute – 2019

 

Bonnke
Reinhard Bonnke

German missionary to Africa, Reinhard Bonnke (1940-2019) founded Christ For All Nations (CFAN) which now ministers to millions.

Converted at nine, he had a missionary zeal.  As a teenager, Reinhard saw Johannesburg in South Africa in a vision of a map of Africa.  At 19 he headed off to the Bible College of Wales to train as a missionary, even though he couldn’t speak English.  Three months later he was preaching in English!  There he learned practical principles of living by faith.

After a short pastorate in Germany where he married Anna, they left for German Pentecostal missionary work in Africa.  Working as traditional missionaries from 1967 to 1974 in Maseru, the capital of the small landlocked country of Lesotho, they saw meagre results. 

The early days in Lesotho (1974)

Near the end of that time Reinhard’s interpreter broke down during his message at a healing meeting one Sunday morning and sank weeping to the floor because of God’s awesome presence.  Waiting for the interpreter to recover Reinhard ‘heard’ the Lord speak ‘words’ which amazed him: “My Words in your mouth are just as powerful as My Words in My own mouth.”

The ‘voice’ repeated the sentence.  He ‘saw’ it like a movie in Scripture – Jesus told the disciples to speak in faith and it would happen.  “I suddenly realized that the power was not in the mouth – the power was in the Word,” said Reinhard.

Then, when the interpreter had recovered enough to speak, as he was preaching Reinhard ‘heard’ the Spirit say, “Call those who are completely blind and speak the Word of Authority.”

He did.  About six blind people stood.  He boldly proclaimed, “Now I am going to speak with the authority of God and you are going to see a white man standing before you.  Your eyes are going to open.”

Taking a deep breath Reinhard shouted: “In the name of Jesus, blind eyes open!” 

The power of his voice jolted even those on the stage.  It felt as though a flaming bolt of lightning was let loose in the building.  His voice was still resonating against the bare brick walls when there was another shout.  This time it was the shriek of a woman’s voice.  What she screamed shattered the silence that hung over the congregation: “I can see!  I can see!”

She had been totally blind for years.  The other blind people also saw.  The place erupted in excited cheers.  A woman handed her crippled boy through the milling crowd to Reinhard who sensed the power of God on the boy and watched amazed as his crippled legs shook and straightened.  He was healed.  The meeting went for hours as people screamed, shouted, danced and sang.

At the end of 1974, Reinhard relocated to Johannesburg and established Christ for All Nations (CFAN).  Early in January, when he was ill, he had a vision of Jesus similar to the Joshua’s vision (Joshua 5:13-15).  He wrote:  “I was very sick.  I didn’t think I would make it.  I went to doctors.  Nothing helped.  I was crying to God: ‘Lord what are you doing?  What is your plan?’  One afternoon I retired to my study.  A thirst for prayer came over me and I was hardly on my knees when I saw a most wonderful vision.  I saw the son of God stand in front of me in full armour, like a general.  The armour saw shining like the sun and burning like fire.  It was tremendous and I realised that the Lord of Hosts had come.  I threw myself at His feet.  I laughed and I cried … I don’t know for how long, but when I got up I was perfectly healed.”

When Reinhard flew to Gaberone in Botswana to buy time on radio there the Lord told him to hire the 10,000 seater sports stadium for a crusade.  The local Pentecostal pastor who agreed to help prepare for the crusade was amazed.  He had only 40 in his congregation!

The crusade in April 1974 with Reinhard’s evangelist friend Pastor Ngidi started in a hall which could seat 800.  On the first night 100 attended.  Healings happened every night, abnd people fell to the floor overwhelmed.  That was new to Reinhard.

By the end of the first week 2,000 people were packed into the hall.  So they moved into the stadium!  Thousands attended.  People were saved and healed every night and over 500 people were baptised in water within two weeks.

One night in the stadium, the Holy Spirit urged Reinhard to pray for people to be baptised in the Holy Spirit.  So he asked an African co-worker to give a message on the Holy Spirit.  Reinhard felt dissatisfied with talk because it didn’t mention tongues.

About 1,000 people responded to the call to be baptised in the Spirit.  As soon as they raised their hands they were all flattened shouting and praising God in new languages on the ground.  Reinhard had never seen anything like that before.  It continued to happen in his crusades.

Reinhard used an enormous tent which could seat 30,000 people.  Then the crowds grew so large no tent could hold them.  Some of CFAN crusades in Africa have reached huge open air crowds of 600,000 to 800,000 people and even over 1 million.

Lagos 1.6 mil.
Lagos 1.6 mil.

Reproduced from Flashpoints of Revival and Revival Fires.

See also: 17-year-old Evangelist sparks Revival in South Africa

See also: “This Disco is a Church”

See also: Reinheard Bonnke’s final crusade in Africa

BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Reinhard Bonnke’s beginnings in Africa:
https://renewaljournal.com/2013/03/19/renewal-journal-survey/

See also: “This Disco is a Church”
Immune to Fear, by Reinhard Bonnke
See also: Reinhard Bonnke’s final crusade in Africa
See also: Reinhard Bonnke – 1940-2019 – a Tribute – 2019

 

 

Divine Healing and Church Growth, by Donald McGavran


Divine Healing and Church Growth

Dr Donald McGavran was the founding Dean of the School of World Mission at Fuller Theological Seminary.  His seminal books Bridges of God (1955) and Understanding Church Growth (1970, 1980) pioneered church growth research.  This ground-breaking paper, was presented to the Christian and Missionary Alliance Missionaries at Lincoln, Nebraska in 1979.  

Renewal Journal 4: HealingPDF

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Renewal Journal 4: Healing
Renewal Journal 4: Healing – PDF

Article in Renewal Journal 4: Healing – with more links to healing blogs

 

Also in Renewal Journals bound volume 1 (Issues 1-5)

The problem of church growth faces all of us.  Many of us are working where we have had little growth.  Wherever our churches are sealed off, ethnically, economically, or educationally, the people from other classes of society do not ordinarily join us.  This very common problem affects not just the Christian and Missionary Alliance.  You have less of it than some other missionary societies.  This problem has faced me.  For the last 25 years I have been thinking of this on the world scene.  For 25 years before that I was thinking of it in the Indian context.  So for about 50 years I have been considering this difficulty.

As I have been reviewing church growth around the world, I have seen that it frequently correlates with great healing campaigns.  That is why I am speaking about Divine Healing and Church Growth.  Where the church is up against an insuperable barrier, there no matter what you do, how much you pray, how much you work, how much you organize, how much you administer for church growth, the church either does not grow, grows only a little, or grows from within, not from without.  Under such circumstances, we need to lean heavily on that which is so wonderfully illustrated in the New Testament, namely the place of healing in church growth.  You remember the two villages of Lydda and Sharon where it is recorded in the book of Acts that all Lydda and Sharon turned to the Lord.  Two whole villages in a day! When did that happen? When Aeneas was healed by Peter.  This great ingathering was preceded by a remarkable case of divine healing.

American missionaries, who have grown up in a highly secular society, usually take a dim view of divine healing, considering it mere charlatanism.  After long years of sharing that common opinion, I now hold that among vast populations, divine healing is one of the ways in which God brings ruen and women to believe in the Savior.  Missiologists ought to have a considered opinion on the matter.  They should not brush it off cheaply and easily.  Administering for church growth in part means arranging the stage so that divine healing can take place.  Look at the evidence of divine healing.  Withold judgment until the evidence has been reviewed.  There is much more evidence than I am able to present in one short address.

My considered recommendation is that missionaries and Christians in most populations ought to be following the biblical injunction to pray for the sick (James 5:14-15).  When notable healings have taken place, great efforts should be made to multiply churches.  When healings have taken place in your denomination or any other denomination, when the Pentecostals mount a great healing campaign, then say to yourself, “This is the time to strike, while the iron is hot.”

I now lay before you a few cases of divine healing that have come to attention from various sources.  The first is a case of healing carried out by American Presbyterian missionaries.  I quote a report from India about the operation of these ministers, visiting India for a brief period.

Everyday there was preaching in the evening and teaching in the morning.  They lived with us as brothers.  They visited and preached in 24 of the 278 churches we have.  The work of the Holy Spirit was experienced throughout the preaching ministry.  Reverend Little was blessed with the gift of healing power.  All those who came to the gospel meetings with a rea.1longing for healing were wonderfully healed.  Every night Reverend Little had to minister for more than 4 hours.  People who were healed came forward and witnessed about their healing.  Hundreds of people were healed.  Thousands were able to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord.  People were made whole physically, mentally and spiritually.  Some of our pastors were healed from serious illnesses, including Rev.  J.  Thompson, Rev.  S.  Yesunesan, Rev.  E.J.  Victor and Rev.  Moses Israel.  Those who were suffering from chronic diseases were healed.  A woman who was suffering from asthma for 21 years was healed.  A man who was deaf for more than 40 years was healed.  So many blind people were able to see.  Lame people were healed.  People who were suffering from bleeding were healed.  Reverend Wilson shared how more than 2 weeks after Little and Wallace had departed, he would visit a church and find people still praising God for the healing they had received.  He discovered that there were a number of Hindus who had received Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour among the thousands who experienced salvation.  It was customary for Dick Little to ask the people to renounce their gods before repenting .and accepting the Lord Jesus into their lives.  Apparently a number received their healing as Christ Jesus came into their hearts.

The second case comes from the CMS Newletter.   This is written by the General Secretary of the famed Church Missionary Society whose headquarters are just across the Thames from Parliament Building in London.   Here is what is published:

Perhaps there is no more impressive example in recent years of healing than Edmund John, younger brother of the Archbishop ofTanzania, with his great healing mission over a 3 year period of ministry form 1972 to 1975.   Not only were vast numbers of people healed, exorcised, moved to open repentance, led to or brought back to Christ in great gatherings, but also in quiet, ordered proceedings.   All that happened was related to the central apprehension that Jesus is Lord; and amazing response for the lax Christians and the newly drawn Muslims alike.   John’s death at the end of the astonishing blaze of ministry to his people left behind in many places a church spiritually and numerically strengthened.

The third case is from Bolivia, from a United Methodist.  This man studied at the School of World Mission in Pasadena and went back to Bolivia a convinced church growth man.   His letter is addressed to me personally.  In it he says:

It is most striking that the district of our church which has really broken new ground in growth is our very own Lake District where we have worked for 16 years.   This is the rural Aymara Indian district.  This growth really began to gather momentum during our absence and has been strongest during the last year.  So new is this that we do not yet have proper statistics on what has taken place.  The mother church of the district in Ancoraimes, our mission station, has increased its Sunday morning attendance six fold.  They hold week meetings that have usually average 250, this year have averaged over 600.  For the first time in the history of our work, a majority of approaching consensus has turned to Christ in a single community, practically the whole village became Christian.  This was shown dramatically on May 31, 1973, the traditional fiesta date, when the community celebrated their first community Christian Fiesta.  Of the 170 families, 160 have turned to Christ; five our of six zones of the community, which is called Turini.  The lay pastor of the Ancoraimes church, Juan Cordero, was the key man in this movement.  Mum’s the word, please do not say anything about this.  Dr.  McGavran; mum’s the word on the following factor.  Preaching has been accompanied by healing.  Over and over this has been the case.  The lay pastor has been practically mobbed on occasion, but he has stood his ground and has virtually obliged interested persons to hear him out on the gospel before he will pray for healings.

The fourth case of healing followed by growth is one  in which the gift fo healing was exercised by a layman, a recent convert, not by the minister or missionary.   In Tamilnadu, India, the Evangelical Church of India, planted by OMSI of Greenwood, Indiana, has grown from a few hundred in 1996 to more than fifteen thousand in 1982.  During 1983 the church expects to plant fifty more churches  –  one a week.

After 1970 growth was accompanied by healings and exorcisms.  What convinced multitudes to follow Christ was that with their own eyes they saw men and women healed by Christ’s mighty power.  Evil spirits were driven out in His name.  The Holy Spirit was at work.

The fifth case is from the Mekane Yesus Lutheran denomination in Ethiopia.

Eighty three percent (83%) of our congregations give healing from illness and exorcism as reasons for their growth.

In summary, it is clear from these five cases and much more evidence that the growth of the Church has often — not always, but often — been sparked by healing campaigns.

There are 200,000 East Indians in Trinidad.  In 1950 a couple thousand were Christians, the sons and grandsons of people converted by Presbyterian missionaries.  Except for those, very few Hindus or Moslems then living in Trinidad had become Christians.  In the late fifties there was a healing campaign, and when the educated Indian community, which had scorned Christianity, saw their own people healed in Jesus’ name, they said, “Here is power!” Hundreds became Christians.

The seventh case is a remarkable one from India.  Suba Rao was the headmaster of a government school –a member of one of the middle castes and a wealthy man.  He had laughed at baptism.  He had hated missionaries.  He had thought of the church as an assembly of the low caste.

One of his near neighbours and close friends fell sick.  For two years his sickness was not healed and gradually wasting away.  He went to many doctors to no avail.  One night while Suba Rao was asleep, the Lord Jesus appeared to him and said, “Will you will go and lay your hand on that man’s head and pray in My name, I will heal him.”  Suba Rao woke up and laughed, thinking, “What a funny dream” and went back to sleep.  The next night the Lord Jesus stood by his side and said, “If you go and lay your hand on that man’s head and pray for him to be healed, I will heal him.”  Suba Rao woke up; he didn’t laugh this time and he didn’t go back to sleep, but he didn’t lay his hands on the sick man either.  He said, “That’s impossible!”  The third night the Lord Jesus appeared to him.  He got up at once and went to his neighbour.  He laid his hand on the man’s head, prayed for him, and in the morning the man said, “I feel much better.  Do it again.” the man was healed.  Suba Rao threw out his idols.  He started to read the Bible.  He started a Bible study class among his neighbours.  But he still ridicules baptism.  He has not joined and church.  But he proclaims himself a follower of the Lord Jesus.  The healing of people in Jesus’ name became his chief occupation.  Joining the church, which there is composed very largely indeed (98%) of the lowest castes of Indian society is, he thinks, an impossible (and perhaps an unnecessary) step for him.  Still the Lora Jesus heals men through him  (Mark 9:39).

What do healings of this kind — repeated thousands of times — mean for us, living in the world today?  “Like a comet blazing across the skies, this faith healer suddenly appeared among the small churches planted in this land in the last 20 years.”  News notes to this effect have reached sending churches in America again and again in last 20 years, from many different lands and many different denominations.  The biblical saga continues.  In one congregation of none, under the faith healer’s prayers, marvellous cures occurred, crowds gathered, thousands attended, members of important wealthy families were cured, the press carried front page articles on the events.  Night after night discarded crutches were gathered.  Night after night the testimonies of the blind who now see, the paralyzed who now leap, the deaf who now hear were most impressive.  Faced with the enormous power of the riser and reigning Christ, men and women in increasing numbers confessed Christ, turned from sin and other gods, were baptized and incorporated into new and old churches.  A new era developed, churches began to multiply in many denominations.  Baptists grew, Methodists grew, Lutherans grew, Pentecostals grew, and on and on.  The evangelization of this country took a great leap forward.  Events like these occurring in many lands have caused heated discussion among American Christians.

During the last 100 years, Western Christians have been heavily secularized and saturated with scientific thinking.  They believe diseases are caused, not by God’s will, but by germs.  And these diseases are cured by drugs; malaria by quinine, colds by Contac, atherosclerosis by open heart surgery.  As Christianity has spread throughout the world, missionary physicians have proved enormously more effective than the mumbo jumbo of witch doctors, herbalists, faith healers of the animist world.  The missionary doctor gave the patients penicillin and offered prayer to God for their cure.  They were cured.

The Christian doctor would say it was not by unaided prayer but by using the medicine that God has given to mankind.  This Christian interpretation of the healing process and the part played by unaided prayer and faith differs from the rationalists view, and yet it holds that, as a matter of fact, God does not act independent of physical means.  That, my friends, is the atmosphere in which we all live.  Secular man believes that there is no God; the causes of illness which can be measured and manipulated by men are the only reality.  These causes can be physical, chemical or psychological.

To such 20th century thinking, faith healing is at best mistaken and at worst charlatanry.  The faith healer is either a self-deluded enthusiast or a clever manipulator of men.  If people claim to be cured, maybe they were not really sick in the first place, or have temporary feelings of well being induced by the excitement of the moment due to crowd psychology.  The “healed” may even be planted t the faith healer to build up his reputation.  The power of hundreds of thousands who believe alike and express their belief vividly is a real factor in human affairs and has been used by politicians.  merchants, priests, and magicians from time immemorial.  Westerners and Eastern secularists are highly sceptical about any power available to man other than what man himself generates by one mean or another, Faith healing causes lifted eyebrows and superior smiles.

To most people in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, however; disease is inflicted by spirits.  It is cured by super-human powers regardless of what people in America think.

Witches eat up the life force of other men.  An angry neighbor casts an “evil eye” on a woman and she grows weaker day by day.  A wandering evil spirit devours a baby and the baby dies.  A demon causes an illness which no medicine can cure.  Western medicine may help some people, but Africa is full of mysterious powers which the white man does not know, and only those who know the secret source of black power can heal African affliction.  These evil powers must be overcome by superior powers.

In Spanish America the Curandero has great power.  His incantations, potion, sacrifices, and medicines marvellously heal the sick.  In Asia, Africa, and Latin America, perhaps 98 out of 100 persons believe that superior power drives out inferior power.  In Europe and North America the impersonal, mechanistic system of scientism fails to satisfy millions.  Therefore, they, too, eagerly believe I the occult, extra-human powers.  Satan worship flousrishes.  The mysterious influence of magic words, rites, robes, stars, yogis, and gurus fascinates many people in Europe and North America.  Christians in North America and Europe have a special problem with faith healing.  Why?  Because their religion wars with their science.

Faith healing unquestionably occurred in biblical times.  The New Testament Church rode the crest of a tremendous, continual manifestation of faith healing.  One of the may passages reads as follows:

Now many signs and wonders were done among the common people and by the hands of the apostles, more than ever, believers were added to the Lord.  Multitudes, both men and women, so that they even carried out the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and pallets, that, as Peter came by, at least his shadow might fall on some of them.  The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing the sick and those afflicted with evil spirits and they all were healed (Acts 8:12-16).

Yes, Christians have a problem in the Western society.  Their sciences war with their Christian faith.  Divine healing was an essential part of the evangelization as churches multiplied across Palestine and the Mediterranean world.  What are we Christians to make of all this?  Is there something here that we can use?

Many educated Christians have been more secularized than they realize and are antagonistic to divine healing.  They write it off as superstition and fraud; it leads people away from sound medicine and counts many as healed who are still sick.  They say divine healing is a massive deception.  They think that divine healing is using God for our own ends.

Some educated Christians say that in addition to the human mechanism and material means which God uses, He sometimes acts in sovereign power.  He retains the right to act outside His laws which we know in order to use higher laws which we do not know.  He ordinarily operated through His laws, but He is not bound by them.  When it pleases Him, He intervenes.  Such Christians hold that the best possible world is one in which most of the time a just and loving God rules through laws.  But occasionally, when He sees fit, He uses a higher law.  Such Christians view healings in the name of Christ as demonstrations of the power of God.

Some would add that the healings are a mixture of God’s acts and man acts, thus we see many incomplete healings, and failures of healings, due to lack of faith or sincerity.

Some hard-headed Christians, who would normally be highly sceptical about divine healing, have gradually come to accept healing campaigns upon seeing he great numbers who throw away crutches, plus those healed of deafness and blindness and cured of heart disease.  They have seen large numbers of recent non-believers rejoicing at Christ’s power, singing His praises, hearing His word, and praying to Him.  The facts overwhelm the hard-headed.

Finally, some Christians believe that God has called them to actively engage in healing the sick, exorcising evil spirits, and multiplying churches.  They deliberately use the vigorous expressed faith in Christ which abounds in a healing campaign to multiply sound churches of responsible Christians.

All Christians ought to think their way through this matter and realize that here is a power which a great many of us have not sufficiently used.

Healing campaigns have occurred in Buenos Aires with Tommy Hicks in 1954 and Guayaquil, Ecuador, in the mid 60’s.  The latter was a very interesting case.  The Full Gospel Church had three mission fields with growing younger churches in Brazil, the Philippines, and Panama.  In their other fields converts were not being won, congregations were not multiplying.  In the late sixties in Guayquil healings took place in a small way.  Immediately, a big tent was flown in from Los Angeles and pitched right where the crowd gathered.   For the next six weeks every night in that tent faith healing followed the preaching of Christ.  Twenty branch churches were planted in various parts of the city.  Guayaquil became a mission field where churches multiply.

In South Africa there is an Indian community of about 800,000 that has been solidly opposed to the Christian faith.  Very few Indians became Christians.  About 20 or 25 years ago through a series of healing campaigns, two Pentecostal denominations began to grow among the Indians.  One of those Pentecostal churches is now 25,000 and the other 15,000.  They got their start in healing campaigns in South Africa.  Healing campaigns are occurring today and they will occur tomorrow.  They are a part of today’s context.  When one talks about contextualization, healing campaigns should be mentioned.

Christians, especially missionaries and missionary societies, must ask, “What is the biblical response to divine healing campaigns? What do Christians do when faced with the excitement and faith-heightening of a divine healing campaign?” Many for the first time become able to hear the Gospel with the inner ear.

What ought we to do after a campaign when many decide to become Christian?  The following answer was formed in my mind when I was in the Christian Missionary Alliance field in Ivory Coast, at Yamoussoukro.  A church growth workshop sponsored by the Evangelical Churches and missions was being held.  This amazing story was told by the Ivory Coast pastors and American missionaries gathered there to study the growth of their churches and to find ways of proclaiming the Gospel more effectively.  It illustrates very well the problems and opportunities which healing campaigns bring.

The Church in Ivory coast was typical of many countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America.  Ivory Coast has about 4 million people with the Roman Catholic Church numbers about 30,000.  The Methodist Church dates from 1924 and has 60,000.  Seven small Protestant denominations, with a total baptized membership of about 11,000, have arisen because of the faithful work of American missionaries.  They have a growing rate of 70% per decade, led by Ivory Coast ministers.  About 100 dedicated American missionaries are helping these churches and are doing a multitude of good deed.

Pastor Jacques Giraud, a French missionary tot he West Indies, arrived in Ivory Coast in March, 1973, to dedicate and Assemblies church building in Abidjan.  As the meetings progressed, people began to be healed.  The crowds grew and the meetings were moved to the stadium.  Truck loads of people came from all parts of Ivory Coast.  The papers were full of the event.  The radio broadcast daily concerning it.  Leading government officials and their wives flocked to the stadium.  Pastor Giraud would tell of one of Christ’s miracles and preach for an hour on God’s mighty power to heal.  Then he would say, “I don’t’ heal; God heals.  I ask Him to release His power.  Put your hand where it hurts and join me in prayer.”  He would pour out his heart in believing prayer to God for healing.  After a half hour of prayer he would invite those who God had healed to come to the front; crutches were thrown away, bent and arthritic persons stood erect, blind men walked forward seeing, scores and sometimes hundreds came, some hobbled, some limped, some saw ‘men like trees walking’ but they believed.  God had given them at least a measure of healing.  Thousands were also not healed.

After several healing sessions, Pastor Giraud would begin preaching salvation, repentance, atonement, and sanctification—straight from Bible preaching.  A blind pagan from 600km north promised his fetish a sacrifice if he was healed.  He went by bus to the Giraud meeting.  At the meeting he saw for an instant, but then darkness returned.  He stayed on and heard the gospel.  When he returned home, he burnt his fetish and declared himself a Christian, saying, “I was not healed, but I heard the gospel and I am sure that God is the real power.”

This incident illustrates the truth that a healing campaign has dimensions far in excess of the healings.  Groups of men and women seeing he power of Christ and hearing the message under favourable conditions declare their faith in Christ.  Theirs in not an illumined faith but it is strong enough for them to burn their fetishes.  They can be incorporated into existing congregations and formed into new ones.

After the Abidjan campaign in the very southern tip of the country, a high government official, who had been greatly blessed by the meeting, arranged for Pastor Giraud to hold a healing campaign in his home town of Toumoudi.  He directed the leading government administrator there to arrange, at his expense, a place for meetings, and lodging and food for pastor Giraud and his party.  A campaign similar to the Abidjan campaign was held.  Radio and newspapers again broad- cast the huge nightly meetings.  The next meeting, again on the initiative and expense of leading government officials, was held in the city of Bouake in late August of 1973.  Then at Yamoussoukro, another campaign with Giraud was held.  Pastor Giraud conducted healing campaigns in many towns and cities of the Ivory Coast.

Although he was a minister of the Assemblies of God, it is his practice to direct converts to the local churches and missions for shepherding.  At Toumoudi he had the Alliance missionaries and ministers on the platform with him.  He said to the people, “When you place you faith in Jesus Christ, call these men to baptize you and shepherd you.”

Reverend Fred Pilding, a missionary of the Christian and Missionary Alliance working in Ivory Coast fills in some details in the Alliance Witness, Sept. 26, 1973.

The crusade began in Bouake June 18th and continued for three weeks.  Morning attendance averaged about 4,000.  From 6 to 15,00 turned out in the evenings with a high of 25,00 one Sunday.  The sick were seated on the grass on the playing field and all the others occupied the grandstands.  As the evangelist presented Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever, people became aware of His continuing power today, through a healing receptive place.  It became easier for them to trust Him as Saviour.  A hunchback came to the meeting, grovelling in the dirt, under the influence of demons.  The demons were exorcised in the name of Jesus and he was instantly healed.  The next day he attended the meetings nicely dressed, perfectly calm, and gave his testimony.  Whenever those who were healed testified, witnesses were asked to verify each healing.  Pastor Giraud again and again cited Mark 16:15-18 as every believer1s commission and emphasized that in Christ’s name they were to cast out devils and lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.  He refuted vigorously the title of healer.  His ministry, he said, was to inspire faith in the gospel.  “It is in the name of Jesus that people are healed.”

After the Toumoudi meeting, groups of converts from 81 villages around Toumoudi sought out the Alliance missionaries and ministers, begging them to come and make them Christians.  After the Bouake meeting, responses were received from over 100 villages.  A hundred and forty cards were filled out from one small town alone.  From one village near Bouake 10 cards had been received.  The missionary went to visit this village.  Seeing him, one of the men who had been healed rushed off to get some of the pagan village elders.  While waiting, the missionary said to the children, “Do you know Pastor Giraudls song?” Immediately they broke into joyful singing, “Up, up with Jesus, down, down with Satan, Alleluia!”  People carne pouring out and the missionary preached and then asked, “How many will follow God and leave their old ways?”  More than half immediately said, “We will.”  In another village the Chief said, “Fetish is dead, we shall all become Christians.”  The pastors and missionaries were faced with great opportunities.  The challenge was to take advantage of this enthusiasm, which could dissipate rapidly, and channel these people into ongoing responsible churches of Christians who know the Lord and obey His word.  Nothing like this had happened in their experience in the Ivory Coast, and they were naturally fearful, lest the excitement prove transient as it very well might.

What are Christians to make of faith healings and exorcisms?  Missionaries, other church leaders and evangelists all over the world face many different situations, populations, oppositions, and opportunities.  In some places mission is very largely good works and proclamation of Christ which very seldom .is followed by open acceptance of Jim as Lord and Saviour.  In other places multitudes are accepting Christ and becoming members of multiplying congregations.  In places the entire work is carried on by national pastors and their comrades.  In other places, the missionary is the chief agent.  He recruits, trains, employs, and deploys the national pastor and their comrades.  In other places, the missionary is the chief agent.  He recruits, trains, employs, and deploys the national evangelists and pastors.  each of these men -missionaries and pastors -face a unique situation.

In view of all the evidence, missionaries in training in the (rapidly multiplying Schools of Evangelism and Mission now found in many parts of the world must ask themselves:

WHAT PLACE OUGHT WE TO GIVE TO FAITH HEALINGS AND EXORCISMS?

It would be foolhardy to attempt a single answer which would be equally true for all pieces of the vast mosaic of mankind.  But certain truths may be emphasized.

First, God does give a few Christians the gift of healing.  This is the clear statement of Scripture, and the convincing witness of history.  It would be both unbelieving and foolish to disregard the massive evidence.  It would be unscientific, if you please, to close one’s eyes to the facts of faith healing.  It would be unChristian to deny those parts of the Bible which tell us clearly that on occasion, in response to faith, God does heal in miraculous ways.  Biblical faith requires faith in miracles.  If we cast them out, we cast out the whole Bible, or adopt a system of hermeneutics which destroys while it interprets.

Second, many healings in Christ’s name are incomplete, temporary, or even contrived.  The facts are clear.  Some faith healers are charlatans, and do it for the fame or money they receive.  But this fact must not destroy our ability to see that God does heal in response to faith and prayer.

Third, when healing in Christ’s name has gone on and has attracted wide attention, multitudes can hear the gospel and many will obey it.  This is the convincing witness of the New Testament and of modern history in many parts of the world, including the Western World.  God wishes us to recognize white fields.  When the disciples were saying, “No one will believe.  The harvest you speak of is four months off.  We are just sowing the seed or ploughing the field,” it was exactly then that the Lord Jesus said, “You are wrong.  Lift up your eyes and look on the fields which are white to harvest.  Pray God to send labourers into the ripe fields.”  Pastors of congregations, missionaries at work in new populations, executive secretaries of mission boards, professors of missiology – all ought to practice and teach that healing campaigns are frequently accompanied by periods of great receptivity.  It is required of Christians that they recognize these periods and multiply congregations in receptive populations.

Fourth, God’s man is sometimes faced with highly secular company of Christians who do not believe in faith healings or any other miracles, and who would be put off by any advocacy of them.  They would turn away from something which, to them, seemed impossible.  Facing such an audience, what should God’s man do?

He should do what thousands of ministers and missionaries have been doing during the past century.  He should commend Christ in ways which that audience will accept as commendation.  He should recognize that faith healing claims will turn some people away from Christ.  When God sends him to minister or to evangelize to such people, he must present the gospel in terms which they understand and which raise up no insuperable obstacles before them.

I would hope, however, that even to this audience some of the facts of faith healing could be and would be presented at suitable times.  As modern secular Christians give themselves utterly to Christ, and as they accept the full authority and infallibility of the Bible, they will come to the place in which they too will believe that with God nothing is impossible

Reproduced with permission from MC510: Healing Ministry and Church Growth class notes, Fuller Theological Seminary, 1983, a course taught by John Wimber.

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Randy Clark, founding director of Global Awakening (globalawakening.com), leads short term missions in the power of the Spirit worldwide.  His personal stories are in his books Lighting Fires and There Is More.  The stories here in this article are stories of what happened through the ministry members on their teams and others who were blessed by their ministry.  For over 20 years Randy has been leading teams and equipping people of faith to minister just as Jesus told us to, and as Jesus taught his followers to do.

Jesus was, of course, the world’s best at short term supernatural missions – constantly travelling, as Paul and his teams did later.

This article is reproduced from Chapter 10 of Randy Clark’s book Supernatural Missions (Global Awakening, 2012), “Power Evangelism in Short Term Mission Trips”.  See bookstore on www.globalawakening.com

What is the place of short-term missions in the big picture of world evangelization? It is not meant to replace long-term mission efforts, but to be in cooperation with them. Those who go on short term mission trips and minister in the power of the Spirit often return home with a new passion for what God is doing in the earth. Such trips can also benefit the ongoing work in the field, by impacting large groups of people through evangelistic meetings, bringing impartation and refreshment to the host pastors and churches. By seeing what God does through short-term missions, we may engage in his overall plan in a strategic way.

A Jesus the Model GlobeThis article is also a chapter in the new book

Jesus the Model for Short Term Supernatural Mission:
Biblical Ministry and Mission

Follow these links to Amazon and Kindle

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Outline:

The Effects of Short-Term Mission trips on team members
1.) The “Vicious Downward Spiral” is reversed
2.) Full-time missions service
3.) Connections are created between local churches and the host country leaders or churches
4.) Vision is created for International Ministry

The Effects of Short Term Mission trips on Receiving/Hosting Groups:
Apostolic Impartation for Pastors
A. Brazil
B. Mozambique
C. Russia
D. India
E. Cambodia
F. Norway
G. Mexico
H. Argentina

Summary
Conclusion

Power Evangelism in Short-term Missions

The Effects of Short-Term Mission trips on team members

1.) The “Vicious Downward Spiral” is reversed

Several years ago I ministered at a large Vineyard Church in Champaign, Illinois. I had known the pastor for many years and was shocked at the change of atmosphere in his church from the last time I had ministered there some years before. The church had continued to grow numerically, but there was a noticeable difference in the people’s expectation for God to move in their midst. I felt such a spirit of grief that I found it hard to speak.

Later, when I met with the Pastor Happy Leman and his staff, the executive pastor asked me a very important question. This question would change the way I looked at inviting people to come with me to minister in other countries. Prior to that time, I felt somewhat awkward inviting people to go with me, as if what I was doing was self-serving. But, after this question I have never felt that inviting someone to go with me to the nations was self-serving. The question was, “What do you do to keep your expectation for healing high?” The executive pastor continued, “Our doctrinal belief hasn’t changed since you first met us years ago. Then, what we believed doctrinally we expected to happen in our midst. However, since then, though our beliefs have not changed, our experience has not matched our beliefs. As a result our expectation has dropped. With the dropping of our expectation, our experience dropped, and we see less than before. Now, we are caught in a vicious cycle. Each year it seems like our experience is less, and our expectation drops even more.” He then asked the question, “What do you do to not get caught in this vicious cycle?”

I responded, “I have to go somewhere where there is an open heaven- where there are apostolic leaders who are getting a break through, and minister in that context for a couple of weeks twice a year. During that time I will see more healings than most pastors will see in a lifetime. This builds up my experience and causes my expectation for healing to remain high.” This is what I have been doing for 17 years, and it not only works for me. I see it affect the people who come with me as well. They have their faith raised for healing due to their experience of seeing so many people get healed and seeing God use them to bring healing to people.

I have had several pastors from various denominations come with me to the nations who were so discouraged that they were looking at the want ads in the paper. They felt like they couldn’t continue in ministry unless God refreshed them and touched them. They were “burned out”, discouraged and depressed. I watched these men be touched by the Holy Spirit and saw them experience a whole new zeal and energy for ministry. Depression was broken off. Hopelessness was replaced with faith that God would use them. One of these pastors was 60 years old when this happened to him. The years since then have been the most productive, most exciting and most fruitful of his entire 40+ years of ministry.

Why are short-term mission trips important? The kind I am talking about, the team is the ministry team. They gives words of knowledge and pray for the sick to be healed for hours every day. This is important for the creation of faith that God will use the team members. “This experience changed my life” is one of the most common responses we get on our evaluation forms.

2.) Full-time missions service

Two pastors who have taken more people with me to the nations are Tom Jones and Tom Hauser. When they first started going with me on short-term ministry trips to the nations, Tom Jones was pastoring one of the largest Church of God Cleveland, Tennessee churches in Florida. Tom Hauser was on staff as the Executive Pastor of one of the larger Vineyard Churches on the East Coast in North Carolina. Their churches developed not only a strong openness to the Holy Spirit but also a strong commitment to missions. Both of their churches would have several people leave their secular jobs and become missionaries after going with us on short-term ministry trips. Tom Jones had a total of 6 people become missionaries in 10 years. Tom Hauser had a total of 8 people become missionaries in 6 years. He has seen around 160 go on short-term mission trips. Also, his church helped establish two orphanages and plant 73 churches in Nepal, India, Costa Rica and the US. It is true that there could be other factors contributing to this outcome, such as the fact that both churches were deeply committed to renewal and the outpouring of the Spirit in Toronto. But, when you compare the percentage who went on trips to the percentage who didn’t go on trips in relationship to going into missions or other mercy type ministries, I believe the variable is sufficiently removed to give us a better indication of the effects of the trips.

This is not just true for my ministry trips. I have a spiritual father, Cleddie Keith, who was for many years in the Assemblies of God denomination, and who took people from his church on ministry trips with him. These trips were very similar to mine in that the people were expected to be the ministry team and pray for the people. He has taken several hundred on short-term mission trips. During the last 17 years since the beginning of the renewal, which he was very committed to, over 30 people have gone into missions or full-time ministry from his church.

3.) Connections are created between local churches and the host country leaders or churches

People we took on our first few trips to Mozambique to work with Heidi and Rolland Baker of Iris Ministries, became a great blessing to their ministry. Many of these pastors and businessmen continued to provide support to their ministry. Terry Inman’s Assembly of God church in California has been supportive with finances and with people going to serve. Alan Hawkins, pastor of a Charismatic church in New Mexico, has made several trips to minister with Iris Ministries. Tom Hauser has made many trips and has sent several couples and individuals to work with Iris since his first trip to Mozambique. On our first trip, we had people from Australia and the United States with us. Two of the people came back as full time missionaries within one year of that first trip.

What I hadn’t expected though I should not have been surprised, was how my own interns and students from our school would be sent to help Heidi and Rolland. Will Hart and his wife Musy, were recently married when they led a trip for me to Mozambique. I received an email from Heidi. “Randy, will you give Will and Musy to me? I am in need of them!” I told her of course I would and that if they wanted to go, I would bless them. They went and spent three years serving Rolland and Heidi after Will had already spent three years serving me. In Mozambique, they would have their first two children, born at home without a doctor or midwife. They only had a book to read. Then Jean Nicole, another one of my interns, went and became a missionary with Heidi. He married another Iris missionary named Teisa. Today, they are working with Iris South Africa. On my last trip to Mozambique, I took Timothy, a young intern of mine. He is very bright and graduated first in his high school class. He loved our time in Mozambique and wants to move back there with his new wife. The two plan to help Heidi and Rolland as Timothy continues his theological studies.

One of the most exciting short-term ministry trips we do is to Brazil in July each year. It is called the Youth Power Invasion. Each year 125-200 youths from America, ages 13-29, join with several hundred youths from Brazil. We spend a week teaching the youth in the day about how to preach, heal the sick, receive words of knowledge, and lead ministry teams. At night the youth divide into 4 groups and go with me and other key leaders to conduct services for healing and impartation in the local churches. The second week our key speakers come home and the youth lead the teams. They often see up to 8,000 healings during those two weeks! Many of the young people are so impacted that they quit their careers or schooling to take two years to be trained at our Global School of Supernatural Ministry in Mechanicsburg, PA.

From my trips to Brazil, I know of many families that have continued to go to minister on their own in the country. From Tom Hauser’s church and Tom Jones’ church, several couples and individuals have gone as longer-term missionaries. From our Global School of Supernatural Ministry we have people who first went to Brazil with us that are now going back long term (five students from our current class and two from a former class including a 74 year old student.) The five students are going to southern Brazil to start a Global School of Supernatural Ministry and hope to have 5-10 other classmates join them next year. The older woman went to be a missionary with an Indian tribe that is in revival as a result of our team going to minister near the reservation where the Baileys work (see chapter 1). This tribe continues to reach out to the other tribes of the same dialect in the region.

Our ministry works with apostolic leaders around the world. When we first started the Global School of Supernatural Ministry, we sent out a letter to ask the apostolic leaders what they needed most. Their response was a school similar to ours that could be conducted in their country. Presently, many of our students between their 20’sto 70’s desiring to go and start ministry schools in Brazil, South Africa,Thailand, England, and India.

Others who went with us to Brazil have gone back to begin orphanages and to work in the favelas (slums) with the poor. Several others who first traveled with us are now taking their own teams into Brazil and other Latin American countries.

On one trip we took with us veterinarian Frank Pak and his wife Robbie to Ukraine. When I wasn’t able to continue coming into the country on a regular basis, the Pak’s picked up where I left off. They have made multiple trips to serve the church including medical trips, trips to work with drug addicts and trips to strengthen the pastors and churches. They now lead their own teams from the church they attend.

In 1996 I led my first team to Russia and continued for about three years to take large teams there. Russ Purcello, pastor of a large independent church in Tennessee, went with me. He had been involved in taking many mission trips to Honduras but had never felt a burden for Russia. However, when I shared about the trip, he felt he should go. Since his first trip, he has continued replicas of my meetings in almost every political region in Russia. God touched him so profoundly that for more than a decade, he and his church have been going into Russia to strengthen the young pastors and leaders. He has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars into his efforts to strengthen the churches in Russia. After my initial three-year commitment to Russia, the door was opened wide for me to work more in Brazil. It was such a relief to see Pastor Purcello continue the much needed training and impartation to the leaders and pastors of Russia that I could no longer reach.

These stories are just some of the fruit from the connections between the local churches and the host church or leaders. Some of these missionaries have received substantial help including hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars, that came through their continued connection with the pastors and wealthy businessmen that went with us. When they saw what was being done, for example by Iris Ministries in Mozambique, their hearts and wallets were opened to the Bakers and the work in Mozambique.

4.) Vision is created for International Ministry

Almost all of the people I have mentioned in the above paragraphs had no vision for international ministry or mission work when they first went with us to the nations. But, for the majority their first trip touched them so profoundly that they made several trips as finances could be raised, and some ended up either starting ministries that reached out to the world or to a local country. Most began these in the country they visited first or the one they visited most on short-term trips with us.

The Effects of Short Term Mission Trips upon the Receiving /Hosting Group

1. Apostolic Impartation for Pastors

Most of our International Ministry Trips are focused on encouraging, equipping and imparting to pastors and leaders who are related to national indigenous apostolic leaders. The exception is Mozambique where Rolland and Heidi Baker are not indigenous, although they are apostolic. (The reason I now use “ministry trips” rather than “mission trips” is because the implications of mission traditionally seem more paternal, when in reality, some of the places we work are far ahead of much of the Western Church.) I will be sharing what some of these leaders have told us regarding the value of our ministry trips to their leadership.

A. Brazil

Brazil is where we have conducted most of our International Ministry Trips. We have averaged about 5 trips per year with about 70 days a year in Brazil by either myself or one of my colleagues in ministry. No other nation has received so much time and resources invested into it from our ministry.

Why have we made so many trips to Brazil? First, when I first went to Brazil, I had already made several trips to Argentina where I worked with Dr. Pablo Deiros and Dr. Carlos Mrarida of the Baptist denomination. Also, I had been working with Omar Cabrera Sr. in his denomination, Vision de Futuro. When I made my first trip to Brazil I told a friend, “I feel like the revival in Argentina has peaked and is diminishing in power. I feel like we are catching the beginning of the wave of revival in Brazil, and I want to ride it to its end.”

Second, I believe Brazil will be the number one missionary sending country in the world in this century. A few years ago, I heard C. Peter Wagner remark that Brazil is the country most in revival. I believe that wherever revival is the strongest is where you will see the most missionaries sent out. I wanted to have a part in this revival by equipping and focusing the revival upon the nations with an emphasis of sending forth missionaries.

Third, around 1999 I was in Toronto just after traveling to Sydney, Australia. While there I had worked with Pastor Frank Huston who was a great apostolic leader, especially for the Pacific area, and was also very prophetic. I was in a season of trying to determine from God what was next. I wanted to know if there was anything God wanted me to know. I had asked God to give Frank a prophecy for me in Sydney, but he did not have one. But, when I was in Toronto, Frank called me out and gave me this prophecy: “As God has used you in Toronto, in the near future God is going to use you to birth revival in six nations. Four of those nations your feet have ‘not touched yet.’” A few hours later, I met with delegations from Korea and Brazil inviting me to come to their countries. I definitely believe Brazil is one of those six nations.

Fourth, as I mentioned earlier, Brazil seems to be the land of my anointing. It is definitely the land of my greatest favor. I went there not knowing how to speak a word of Portuguese, not being part of a denominational heritage connected with the country, and not knowing a soul in Brazil. Today, 11 years later, I have spoken in more churches in Brazil than in the United States, including some of the largest in the nation: Pentecostal – Assemblies of God, Quadrangular Four Square), new denominations that are Pentecostal/Charismatic in nature, Methodist, Baptist, and Nazarene. Most of these churches are over 1,000 in average attendance and some have 8,000, 12,000, 30,000 and 60,000 in just one local church. What have the key leaders of these denominations and churches said to me about our trips? In what way were they beneficial to their churches?

1. Belem – Quadrangular

In Belem, located near the mouth of the Amazon in Northeast Brazil, we worked primarily with the Quadrangular denomination. I was invited by Pastor Josue Bengtson, who is over the Quadrangular Church in that region. They have a total of over 30,000 members among many churches in the city of Belem. His son, Paulo told me, “You are the first American that my father has invited back.” When I asked why, he told me that most Americans his father had invited were proud and boastful. But, our teams were humble. Paulo also told me that he believed their churches had grown rapidly recently due to two main reasons: their commitment to cells and the impact of our trips upon their leaders. He told us that our teams really encouraged their pastors and leadership with not only the teachings on equipping, but also the experiences of impartation that their leaders received through the Holy Spirit in our ministry.

2. Maua – Baptist

Pastor Silvio Galli is the pastor of the Living Waters Baptist Church in Maua, Brazil. When we first came to his church, it had about 300 members and was a small church down a dirt road. It was a traditional Baptist Church, but Pastor Galli was open and desperate for the power of the Holy Spirit. When we first ministered in his church, the Holy Spirit fell powerfully. There were many healings including some of the members of the staff. The church building was too small for the crowd. People were outside listening through the windows, in the hallways and were packed in to 140% capacity. Pastor Galli was very excited about what God was doing in his church.

Three years later we revisited this church. I was surprised when we pulled up to the church. It was not down the dirt road. It wasn’t the same little building that would barely seat 300. Instead, it was right on a main street in the city. The building seated about 1,500. They had multiple services to accommodate the 3,000 weekly attendance. He told me that the rapid growth had come because of two main reasons: one, the implementation of the cell system, and two, the impact of the Holy Spirit upon the congregation. This congregation had experienced a significant corporate impartation during our meetings. There were many healings and more continued after we left. They truly received an impartation to move in the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Six years later we returned to the church. The church building had once again relocated to a building that would seat over 2,000 people. The church had grown to over 14,000 in 6 locations with 9,000 at the main congregation. Again, the power of God came mightily. Pastor Galli again told me that our last two visits to his church were significant in the rapid growth of the church. This time only ¼ of his church could come on each of the 4 nights due to the limitation of the building. On the third night, we had a noticeable increase in the miraculous. On this night blind eyes saw, deaf ears opened and tumors disappeared. One paralyzed person walked and talked after a stroke had taken both abilities away. A cast was cut off the arm of a woman who had been in excruciating pain. All the pain had left her after she heard a word of knowledge about her condition. Knees with no cartilage were healed, and pain from childhood polio left. Movement was restored to an ankle and many other things happened. The following night, a man who was paralyzed from the neck down from MS and couldn’t even move a finger, got out of the wheel chair and walked. There were so many healings. The pastor again told us that the three visits to his church were a major part of the reason for the phenomenal growth of the church.

3. Joinville – Quadrangular

We visited Joinville in the south of Brazil, where we ministered to the Quadrangular denominational leaders. The main overseer was so discouraged that if the Holy Spirit didn’t come powerfully upon the other pastors during our meeting, he was going to resign his position. He didn’t resign because we had a wonderful visitation of the Holy Spirit. On one of the nights, a man came with such horrible neuropathy that he couldn’t lift his feet from the floor but could only shuffle his feet with the aid of a walker. While he was being healed that night and began to walk, his doctor told me, “I am his doctor. He can’t do that. He hasn’t been able to walk without a walker or pick up his feet in years!” Another man was healed of a substantial heart problem. Deaf ears were opened and blind eyes were healed.

Just as importantly the pastors and leaders experienced a powerful impartation and left the meetings encouraged by this fresh visitation of the Holy Spirit. Some received gifts of healing and greater faith for operating in the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

4. Manaus

Manaus is a city in northern Brazil located 1,000 miles into the Rain Forest. We first ministered there in September 2001 with Pastor Rene Terre Nova. He was one of Cesar Castellanos’ original 12 in the G-12 movement. Outside of our ministry and the ministry of Heidi Baker, he does not allow anyone to speak that is not in the G-12 movement. We have made 3 or 4 visits to his church over the last 11 years. As I mentioned earlier, his church was disfellowshiped by the Baptist denomination after the Holy Spirit visited it with healing and manifestations. When the church left the Baptist denomination, it had an average attendance of 700. As of our first visit, it had grown to 25,000 in only 7 years.

I will never forget that first visit about a decade ago. At the time I had only seen a few deaf people healed in my whole lifetime. However, in one night we experienced an amazing outpouring of the Holy Spirit connected with a manifestation of nature. The building did not have walls yet. We began to see rain falling and wind blowing inside the building even though this was not happening outside! Within a few minutes, we had 8 deaf people hearing. On our second visit we had over 40 deaf people healed. The church had grown to 40,000 in one congregation. This time the walls were built, but the main doors had not been installed. Once again the rain and the wind only occurring inside the building were supernatural signs of the visitation of God. Wind blew chairs down in the building when there was no wind outside the building. On our last trip, we had a lot of angelic activity. We saw about 9,000 people healed the last night. The church had now grown to 60,000.

The associate pastor, Aaron, told us that the people of the church had nicknamed our teams, “The Wonderworkers.” They could not believe the people who traveled with me were not professional healers who traveled with me everywhere we went. This was even after I had specifically told them that only about 1/10 of the ministry team were ministers. The other 9/10 were people just like them who had paid to come and pray for the sick and minister in Jesus’ name.

5. Sao Paulo

I want to end this section on Brazil with the first place we went in Brazil. It was a pastors meeting for about 1,200 pastors and pastoras (female pastors) in the state of Sao Paulo. I taught for three days. The meetings were very powerful. Our team of 11 was small in comparison to what they would later become (30-200 with an average of around 70). No one on my team was a pastor. On the second day, I lost control of the meetings. So many people were being healed during the sermon on healing that the noise from the excitement of the crowd was drowning out my voice. Even with proper sound amplification, people were unable to hear me.

The last day, I emphasized that we were passing the baton to the Brazilians to do the ministry during ministry time and that they would be the ones to give words of knowledge. My team would only be coaching tonight. After a time of impartation, they were released to minister themselves the things our team had been doing.

During that trip Pastor Dirceu had been overseeing setting up special meetings for the Quadrangular denomination. The next time I visited, he told me that the few days with our team were the most impacting on the Quadrangular denomination that he had seen in his life. He told me, “Your ministry has impacted our pastors more than anyone else’s we have brought to Brazil.” I asked him, “Why? How were we different?” He responded, “It isn’t that you are more anointed than others. We have brought some of the most famous ministers in the world to minister to our pastors. They are powerful men of God who preach powerfully. But, when they left, we were the same. When you came, you told us how you moved in the gifts of the Spirit. You explained to us how to receive words of knowledge. You told us we would be able to do so. You told us God would impart these gifts to us, and when you prayed for us, He did.” Pastor Dirceu also told me that he had heard of many testimonies of pastors who had gone back to their respective churches and had seen many healings, whereas before they had seen few if any when they prayed. He said, “When you and your team left, we were different.”

B. Mozambique – Pastors’ Conferences

Next to Brazil, there probably isn’t another country that I have been so committed to serving as Mozambique. For many years we sent two teams a year to Mozambique. I knew that my job description, given to me by God in Toronto, was to be a “Fire Lighter, Vision Caster, and a Bridge Builder.” When I was leaving Mozambique after my first visit and was about to make my first visit to Brazil, Heidi said to me. “Randy, when you get to Brazil, don’t forget us. Tell the Brazilians about us. They already speak the language, and it is easier for them to adjust to the culture than for westerners. Tell them this is not the Macedonian Call- this is the Mozambican call.” I was faithful and during my first years of visits to Brazil, I would often use illustrations about Rolland and Heidi. God used this to open the door for Rolland and Heidi to visit some of the greatest churches in Brazil.

Short-term ministry trips are one way of cross-pollinating between different streams in the revival. Casting a vision for Mozambique and building a bridge between Mozambique and Brazil has been one of my primary goals on these ministry trips. It isn’t enough for me to be used by God to “light the fire” of revival in countries. I am to also cast vision for God’s purposes and build a bridge between networks, denominations, countries, and mission sending and mission receiving countries. I am to communicate the truth that missions follows revival, and that missions is one of the greatest evidences of true revival.

1. Beira – Heidi and key leaders – “thousands of churches and millions of people.”

During my first visit to Mozambique, I preached at three pastors meetings arranged by Rolland and Heidi Baker in Maputo, Beira and Chimoio. I do not like ministering in Mozambique. The primary reason is that I don’t feel needed there and feel intimidated by my translators who often have raised the dead. Rolland and Heidi have encouraged me to continue coming because of the importance of the connection between our ministries. When Heidi visited Toronto for her second time, I was ministering there. As I was preaching, she ran to the front and knelt to pray in response to the message. I knew her name and said to her, “Heidi, God wants to know- do you want the nation of Mozambique?” To which she responded, “Yes!!!” I then said to her, “God is going to give you the nation of Mozambique. You will see the blind see, the deaf hear, the lame walk, and the dead be raised.”

The Spirit of God hit her very powerfully immediately following my prophecy to her. Then she heard God speak to her, “Hundreds of churches and thousands of people.” She replied, “How, God? How can this be? My husband Rolland and I have started four churches in seventeen years and it has almost killed us.” God spoke to Heidi a few other things during those seven days and nights as the experience continued. He told her to gather 12 men together and prophesy over them everything that I had prophesied to her, which she did. In just a couple of years, they started over 200 hundred churches. When I visited her for the first time at their Beira base, the Spirit once again fell upon her as well as Rolland and the main leaders who were present. I could tell by the look on the people’s faces that this was not normal for Heidi in Mozambique, though it was normal for her when she visited the Church in the Western world. This time, she went into a vision and saw ships coming with food and supplies and heard the Lord say, “Thousands of churches and millions of people.” She told me that this was easier to believe than the first word of hundreds of churches and thousands of people. Because God had fulfilled the first word, Heidi now had faith for Him to fulfill the second word. These types of experiences are of great value to apostolic leaders in other countries. It helps establish them in the purposes of God and gives them faith to attempt what was given to them in a prophecy or vision.

2. Chimoio – Mountain Vision

We left Beira and went to Chimoio. When we arrived, Heidi preached the first message. Her message was powerful. Everyone was lying on the ground, prostrated in prayer. I could find no room to lie down, since the floor was covered with the bodies of the saints in prayer. I leaned up against a wall and began to pray. I was very much aware of the fact that I was going to be translated from English into Portuguese and from Portuguese to the local dialect. I began to pray, “Oh Lord, I have not come half way around the world to give a teaching. God I must hear from you. What do you want to say to these people? Oh God, I want to see; I want to see; I want to see into the spiritual realm; I want to see!” Suddenly, I thought I might have seen something. I said, “God, what was that? Did I just see something?” I had had a brief mental picture in my mind’s eye, like a daydream picture. I thought I 218

had seen a man standing on a mountain looking over a great amount of land. He was asking the Lord, “Lord, do you want me to go into this land?” I had an impression that the answer was “yes.”

I have never been a seer, and mental pictures were not something I had much experience with. After the meeting I asked Supresa, one of the key leaders of Iris Ministries, to translate as I interviewed Johnny, who had raised the dead. Supresa would soon begin to raise the dead, and has since raised several of them. On the way I asked Supresa if he had open visions, where he wouldn’t see anything except what God was showing him. He told me he did. This intimidated me more.

That night while I was preaching, I gave an invitation for men who had been on a mountain asking God if they were to go into this land to come forward for prayer. About seven men came forward. A few of them were key leaders in the movement, and another two had actually been on a mountain a few days earlier fasting and praying. During this time these two men had seen a vision of a ball of fire moving through the sky and hovering over Chimoio. They heard God tell them to go to this building (the one we were meeting in) and there they would find their overseers. These men eventually became powerful leaders in Iris’ ministry.

In addition, Heidi told me later that she had been praying for months asking God who was to go into the Muslim northern provinces of Mozambique. God gave her the answer that night. Sometime later, I found out that this story was on the webpage of the Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship. It was called, “The Mountain Vision.” How funny! What started out as a very weak “I thought I might have seen something,” was now called the “Mountain Vision.”

3. Pemba – Mrs. Tanuecki

During another trip to minister in Mozambique with Heidi, she invited me to a pastors conference. After preaching and ministering I was once again very much troubled by what seemed to me my own inadequacy. I went to Heidi and told her that I didn’t want to come back to Mozambique. I said, “You don’t need me here. These people are more powerful than I am. They pray better, and they can communicate the gospel better than I can to their fellow Mozambicans. They are raising the dead; what can I do for them?

Heidi stopped me and pointed to a woman in the crowd named Mrs. Tanuecki. She told me, “That woman over there has been involved in raising several people from the dead, but when you touched her and prayed for her, God took her into a trance. She is still in the trance. We do need you to come with your teams to Mozambique. You carry a special grace, a special anointing.”

Later that day, Heidi had four people pray for me, all of whom had raised the dead, and a few of them had raised three or four from the dead. It was a humbling experience, but one for which I was very grateful. I want to receive an impartation for raising the dead.

4. Maputo

As with the section on Brazil, I want to end this one on Mozambique with my very first night in Mozambique and the fruit of that meeting. I was exhausted by the time I arrived. Heidi said, “You might want to rest for half an hour to an hour. Tonight, I want to take you to the dump where we minister to people and then into the city. I also want you to lead devotions with my staff before we leave.”

I was exhausted and didn’t feel like leading devotions for the staff. When we met I asked them, “Why are you here? Tell me your story.” I was shocked to hear that every one of them had been touched either in Toronto, or by someone from Toronto who was carrying the anointing. They were from Israel, England, Canada, United States, and Australia. I began to realize how impacting the Toronto Blessing was upon missions, at least in Mozambique.

While in Maputo I interviewed many people. I remember interviewing the only nurse on the base. At that time there weren’t any doctors on the base and this nurse was working long hours. She was a pretty blond from England, but she was exhausted. She was planning to go back to England in the near future after having fulfilled her commitment. A few days later, I preached a message called “Spend and Be Spent” from 2 Corinthians 12:11. At the conclusion I saw this nurse come forward weeping, touched by the Holy Spirit. She committed that day to stay longer in Mozambique.

Also, I learned quite some time later that on that same day, there was a person on our team from Nebraska named Betty. She too had heard God speak to her about coming back and helping Heidi. She would later return and serve as Heidi’s personal assistant and in other positions for some time. She had no special training or cross-cultural education. She did, however, have a heart that had been touched by the Holy Spirit. Our short-term ministry team had not only impacted the missionaries working in Maputo; the missionaries, in turn, had impacted our team. Those who came to “refresh others” had themselves “been refreshed.”

On my next trip to Mozambique, I was surprised to see several of the people who I met on my first trip who also had been visiting for their first time. They had returned to become part of the crucial leadership team. One man, Steve Lazar, was an educator from Australia. He would begin a school for Iris that would become the #1 rated primary school in Mozambique. Also, from that first trip, several couples from my team would go back as full time missionaries to work with Rolland and Heidi.

I would like to conclude with a strategy God gave me to help Rolland and Heidi. I believed that I was to take the pastors of the largest churches I had relationship with to Mozambique with me. And, I knew that I was to not only invite pastors, but also very successful businessmen. I wouldn’t have to say anything about helping Rolland and Heidi, and I knew that Rolland and Heidi wouldn’t either. I knew that when these pastors and businessmen saw what God was doing through Rolland and Heidi and saw their hearts, they would begin to help them. I had heard God correctly. These people would become some of the strongest financial supporters of their ministry.

C. Russia – Moscow – Pastor’s Conferences

Years ago, I was attending a conference in Kansas City when I heard Terry Law share about his experiences in Russia. At this meeting an offering would be taken up for Bibles for China. In this one offering, $1,000,000 was raised. I had an impression that one day I would lead my worship team to Russia and they would sing in Russian. My church was just getting started and had less than 100 people in it at the time. A few years later, I had an impression from the Lord, “Ask me for $100,000.” I knew it wasn’t for me personally, but I did not know what it was for. I didn’t need to know to obey. I began asking the Lord for $100,000 dollars. This was around 1994.

On Sunday January 1, 1995, I was preaching and told my church, “We are to go to Russia.” I told them that we were to take the anointing that had fallen in our church in 1993 and in Toronto in 1994 to Russia. I said, “I need the worship team to go with me. I now know what the $100,000 is for. We are going to do a Catch the Fire conference in Russia. Begin raising the money, and if you can’t raise enough, I will help you. Oh, another thing- you can’t sing in English. You have to learn Russian and I don’t have a clue how this will happen!”

About a week later I was conducting meetings in Melbourne, Florida where another revival had broken out when I went to preach. This one lasted six nights a week for about eight months. While there, a young man in his early 20’s named Keith Major asked me to pray for him. I asked him, “For what?” He said, “About going back to Russia. My wife and I were among the leaders of one of the first churches started after the wall came down. That is where we met and got married. I want to go back, but don’t know what to do.” I said, “I will pray for you, but could you and your wife eat with me after the meeting?” He said they could.

During our 3:00 a.m. meal, I asked his wife Iwona, “What did you do in Russia?” She replied, “I taught English speaking people how to speak Russian.” Long story short, I asked them to move into the parsonage of my church and to spend time training my team how to sing phonetically in Russian. I also asked her to translate our songs into Russian. This took about a year, but eventually the team and I made it to Moscow, ready to do the first Catch The Fire – Moscow. 222

1. Models for new forms of worship

The Berlin Wall hadn’t been down for long when we first went in the fall of 1995 for our “spying out the land” meetings. Then, we returned in the spring of 1996 with a full team of musicians. I hadn’t any idea how far behind the Russian Protestant churches were at this time. It was like stepping back into what I imagined the American church worship experience looked like in the 1920’s and 1930’s. Many of the songs were American songs that had been translated into Russian. The worship was led by someone who was more of a “song leader” than a worship leader. And, the instruments consisted of a piano and nothing else.

On our “spy out the land” trip, a Russian leader told me, “We Russians are not like you Americans. We will not fall down, we will not laugh, nor will we become drunk in the Spirit.”

The time had come for our meeting and the musicians were on stage. The Izmaillovo Hotel Civic Center was filled to capacity- 1,000 pastors, church planters and worship leaders had come. The $100,000 required now had grown to $130,000 for this event due to inflation. My worship leaders Bob and Kathleen Balassi, my associate worship leader Gary Shelton, the whole worship team and some special musicians from Nashville had all come to help us. In addition to the keyboards, two acoustic guitars, an electric guitar, a bass guitar, asaxophone, a flute, a harmonica and drums were the wonderful vocals of people who once sang in bars with their own bands. We also had a voice major who was so good that she had received a college scholarship and even sang in the Sistine Chapel in Rome for the Pope.

During the first song, the Russians sat there as the team sang the song once through in English. The Russians had no expression and showed no joy. But, when the second time through the English words were pulled off the overhead, the Russian words were put up and the team switched into Russian, the place exploded. At once the Russians rose to their feet, learning the new contemporary worship songs. People shouted, twirled, waved, fell down, got drunk, shook and did many other things. They were not like us Americans. They were more abandoned to this new instrument-filled experience of worship! You could see people taking their video cameras, looking up at the words, and then down to the guitar necks to get the chord progressions. A year later we went back to do a larger event. We had worked on getting the music onto a CD recording to give to them. But, it was already too late. We were told that those songs had gone all over the country. Another fruit of this event relating to worship was what happened to one famous Russian Rock and Roll singer who was newly saved. He had laid his guitar down, not seeing a way it could be used in church. When he saw our team worship, God called him to become a worship leader. He immediately was catapulted into being one of the most famous worship leaders in the former Soviet Union. He would later work with a church in Ukraine.

2. Models for small groups

We also taught about small groups at this meeting. We encouraged them to consider small groups as a way of discipling the new converts. This was an important part of the fruitfulness of our ministry there.

3. Models for Philosophy of Ministry

While there, we emphasized a new kind of leadership- servant leadership, which exemplified humility rather than an authoritarian model. I was very much aware of the typical image many people had of American evangelists who were loud, braggadocios and proud. I have tried to offer a different model wherever we have gone in the world.

4. Impartation – Boris and Oleg and the South African Church Planter

The most important thing that happened at the Catch the Fire – Moscow was the experience of impartation that so many of the pastors experienced. Later, I would learn of two close friends from Ukraine that had come to this meeting: Boris, who was the Rabbi for the largest messianic Jewish congregation in the world in Kiev, Ukraine, and Oleg, who had become the bishop of the protestant churches in Nikolaev, Ukraine. Both men had become overwhelmed by the mighty presence of the Holy Spirit and had returned in the “power of the Spirit” to their cities. I later would meet them and hear their stories, visit their congregation and minister with them many times.

Also, a year after Catch the Fire – Moscow, I met many young pastors who had received gifts of healing at our meeting. They told me many testimonies of healings, miracles, blind eyes that saw and deaf ears that heard. They were very excited and very grateful.

Almost 14 years later, I was ministering for a South African apostle, Nevel Norton. While in his church ministering to his network of pastors, I met a South African pastor, Hugo V. Niekerk, who was touched at the Catch the Fire – Moscow 1996 while he was a missionary. He had since planted over 200 churches in Russia. He told me how powerfully he had been touched in that meeting and how it had impacted his ministry and his faith. Only heaven really knows the fruit of such meetings.

This was also the meeting during which Russ Purcello was touched. Through him, we have been able to continue to impact churches across Russia. As I shared earlier, he continued to go back every year offering other cities what he had seen us do in Moscow. This American pastor has been used to powerfully affect the Protestant Church in Russia.

D. India – Pastor’s Conferences

Krishnagiri –pastor who prayed for woman in a coma, and pastor who promised healing.

In January-February of 2010, I led a team to Bangalore and Krishnagiri, India. Bangalore was predominantly Hindu, but Krishnagiri had a strong Muslim presence. A young apostolic leader named Ravi invited us to come. The focus of the first meeting was equipping about 2,000 pastors. The second meeting had about 600 pastors, but also had a small crusade with 5,000-9,000 people. We decided to expend most of our money on the pastors’ meetings rather than on a larger crusade. There were many spectacular healings, miracles and salvations. No one had ever conducted a healing crusade in this city. A Hindu school with 700 students and teachers were curious and sent a delegate to the meeting asking if we would send someone from our team to tell them about Christianity. A small team was sent, and they prayed for many who were healed. All the students, teachers, and administrators prayed the sinner’s prayer to receive Jesus and some were filled with the Holy Spirit. Afterwards they were concerned about how they would be persecuted by family for accepting Jesus.

The same day, three Muslim women came to the pastors’ meeting, which was held in a public hall. They sat outside the hall, but because the doors were open for ventilation, they could hear everything. At the lunch break, the mother and her sister came and asked to be set free from demonic problems. The daughter, who looked to be in her 20’s and wearing a Berka allowing only her eyes to be seen, had leg problems. The mother was set free from the demonic attack and the daughter’s legs were healed. That night the husband/father came with them to the healing meeting. He was one of the first healed through a word of knowledge. When the invitation for salvation was given, this Muslim family was among the very first to come forward to confess heir sins and commit their lives to Jesus Christ. I have since heard that they are on fire for God and telling others about the great healing power in God’s Son, Jesus Christ. And, God is using them to heal many, including key leaders in the Muslim community.

One pastor at our meetings went straight from the impartation service to a woman in another city who had been in a coma for about a year. When he laid hands on her and prayed, she came out of the coma. Another pastor that week had promised a Hindu teenager who was crippled in his legs that if he would go to the meeting, he would be healed. The boy went with the pastor, but was not healed at the crusade. The pastor was beside himself, since he had promised healing and did not want to be a poor testimony to the Gospel. He didn’t know how to explain the lack of healing to the family. However, when the boy woke up the next day, he could walk. During those 4 days in Krishnagiri, the blind saw, the deaf heard, the lame walked, the terminally ill were healed. The pastors were greatly encouraged.

A few months after these meetings, the apostolic leader from Bangalore and Krishnagiri came to our headquarters and told us about the fruit that continued to happen. The pastors were not seeing many healings before the event, but they were now occurring regularly. Two people had been raised from the dead and over 90 Muslims, including several leaders, had been saved after being healed. Greater prosperity had come to the city in the form of job opportunities offered by the government. Even the land was impacted, as mangos began to grow once again after many years of little to no growth.

E. Cambodia

We have made two short-term mission trips to Phenom Phen, Cambodia. Both were to pray for the pastors and leaders that the apostolic leader, Sophal Ung, had gathered together from all over Cambodia. The second trip also included pastors from Vietnam. There were many who were healed and who received impartations that equipped them to see more healings and more success in their own ministries. Sophal and his wife Debra are very excited about the fruit of those meetings. They continue to invite us back, hoping our schedule will allow another visit with them.

F. Norway

In 1995 I prayed and prophesied over a Baptist pastor in Norway named Leif Hetland. During the prayer, I told him, “I see you in a dark place. All around you is darkness, but behind you is light.  And, I see a multitude of people following you out of the darkness into the light.” The power of the Holy Spirit knocked him to the floor where he shook for 2 ½ to 3 hours. He got up and by the next week was operating in many gifts he never had before. Every person he prayed for was healed. However, he didn’t yet understand the prophecy I gave him. The next year he had his neck and back broken. While recuperating from the injury in traction, he was meditating on the prophecy and realized he was not to remain a Baptist pastor but was to go to unreached people groups. Since then he has led 850,000 people to the Lord in Islamic countries as of March, 2010. This has been done by conducting healing meetings as many Muslims believe in Jesus because of the healings they see. Also, Leif has started over 2,000 Lighthouses of Love in these countries, which focus on healing, deliverance and restoration of lives. God is using him throughout the Western Hemisphere, Africa, Asia, Middle East and Europe. Great healing miracles take place in his ministry even as he endures serious pain from his own injuries. The anointing that led him to the nations has resulted in him being away from his wife and four children for up to 200+ days a year. He even has had threats against his life including several by the Taliban. However, nothing has prevented him from continuing to preach the Gospel and heal the sick.

G. Mexico

Juan Aguilar is an apostolic leader in Mexico City. I took two short-term missions teams with me to minister to his leaders. On each trip the power of God came upon the pastors and leaders. During the first trip, several key leaders in the Baptist denomination were powerfully touched and began to see much more of the power of God in their ministries. Also, many other pastors from diverse denominations and apostolic streams were empowered.

In 2009, I took a very small team to Queretaro, Mexico to minister in another apostolic network of pastors. We taught them how to receive words of knowledge and how to pray for the sick out of a place of dependence on the Holy Spirit. We had a special time of impartation for over 1,000 pastors and leaders. Then, we had a service where we prayed specifically for the terminally ill, blind, deaf and/or crippled. The day after I left, they did it again and saw many healings, some miracles and 11 blind people healed. The pastors were so excited because there had previously been very little healing in their ministries. They exclaimed, “We did receive an impartation!”

One of the miracles that occurred at this event was the healing of a woman who had cancer resulting in a urostomy bag for her urine. She was accompanied by her daughter, who had cancer in her breast. Both women were healed of their cancer and the woman no longer needed a urostomy. Somehow, her organ was reconstructed and was working normally. She was able to go to the bathroom normally before she left the building instead of the urine flowing into the bag.

During this meeting a Baptist pastor came up to me at the end of the meeting and asked to be prayed for by the laying on of hands. I prayed for him and his wife. They fell down, but there did not initially appear to be a strong anointing. They were resting quietly on the floor without much trembling or shaking. However, the longer he was on the floor the stronger the anointing became. About an hour later, I saw him being helped from the building by two men since he was unable to walk. He shook the whole next day, and it was quite noticeable to all who were there. The following day, now two days after the impartation, he ministered in his 10,000 member Baptist Church. He was helped to the pulpit by two deacons. As they tried to help him, the Holy Spirit knocked all three of them to the floor. He was going to pray for the church to receive an anointing, but before he could say, “anointing,” the Spirit came upon him and his church. When this happened over three-fourths of the 8,000 people in attendance fell to the floor or shook under the power of God. And many other manifestations of the Holy Spirit occurred that day in his church. The early service didn’t end until about 4:30 p.m.

H. Argentina – Story of Baptist Church Planter out of Del Centro Baptist Church, Marcello Diaz

About 15 years ago, I went to Buenos Aires, Argentina. While there I ministered at a large pastors’ meeting in a Baptist Church- La Iglesia Evangélica Bautista del Centro. This church was the first Baptist Church in Argentina. At this conference one young pastor, Marcelo Diaz, had been prayed for several times. Near midnight he came to me and asked for one more prayer. When I prayed for him, the power of God knocked him to the floor. I sensed an urgency to tell him to pray for everyone in his new church that he was starting in the area. When he did this the next day, everyone he prayed for was healed, including a woman dying of cancer. The community named this new church plant the “Healing Church”. Today, it is one of the largest churches in that area of the city.

Summary

The most important aspect of the short-term mission trips that our ministry has is the impartation pastors receive, the encouragement that God can and will use them for healing, and the activation of the gifts of the Spirit in their lives and ministries.

Conclusion

I am grateful to know that I am not only leading short-term ministry trips into many countries, but also are so many other pastors who first traveled with me and are now taking teams themselves into many countries. Our network, the Apostolic Network of Global Awakening is only 4 years old, yet already, we are in 1/3 of the countries of the world. Not only are pastors who traveled with me taking teams into the world, but so are itinerate ministers. There has been a real multiplication of effect and a multiplication of countries we are reaching every year. We, or someone in our apostolic network, are taking short-term ministry trips to almost 50 countries a year where people are healed, delivered and empowered to more effectively reach their communities in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Renewal Journals – Contents

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Renewal Journal 10: Evangelism

Power Evangelism, by John Wimber

Supernatural Ministry, by John White

Power Evangelism in Short-Term Missions, by Randy Clark

God’s Awesome Presence, by R Heard

Evangelist Steve Hill, by Sharon Wissemann

Reaching the Core of the Core, by Luis Bush

Evangelism on the Internet, by Rowland Croucher

“My Resume” by Paul Grant

Gospel Essentials, by Charles Taylor

Pentecostal/Charismatic Pioneers, by Daryl Brenton

Characteristics of Revivals, by Richard Riss

Book Reviews: Flashpoints of Revival & Revival Fires, by Geoff Waugh

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Revivals Index

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GENERAL BLOGS INDEX

BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THANREVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Power Evangelism in Short-Term Missions by Randy Clark

See also – Randy Clark describes personal revival beginnings:
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Standing in the Rain: Argentine Revival, by Brian Medway

Standing in the Rain: Argentine Revival

by Brian Medway

 

 

Pastor Brian Medway wrote as the senior pastor of Grace Christian Fellowship in Canberra.

Renewal Journal 11: Discipleship – PDF

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An article in Renewal Journal 11: Discipleship:
https://renewaljournal.com/2011/08/09/discipleship/

 

 It’s hard not to get wet in Argentina.

You can’t help being affected by the climate of revival.

It may take a paradigm shift or two, but if you are open to God,

you’ll definitely get soaked by the revival rain.

 It’s hard not to get wet in Argentina.  In Australia it is relatively easy to stay dry.  I’m not talking about the weather, but about the effects of Holy Spirit revival.

In October and November of 1996 I was one of twenty-five Australians who attended the International Institute conducted for the last seven years by Harvest Evangelism.   Ed Silvoso, the Founder and President of Harvest Evangelism has visited Australia a number of times during the past five years and has introduced a strategy for reaching cities, regions and the nation called,  “Prayer Evangelism.”

Argentina has been experiencing a revival for the last eleven years that has increased in impact each year.  The struggling evangelical churches in Argentina prior to the revival would rejoice if one or two new converts were added to their churches in any single calendar year.  These churches were always small and very segregated.  They were generally hated by the Catholic Church and were often persecuted by the pro‑Catholic governments.  This was the established status quo.

These evangelical/pentecostal churches had their share of dedicated and gifted leaders with every brand and emphasis in the protestant spectrum.  They had good examples of everything: the right message, examples of fine theology and healthy spiritual ethos.  Mission organizations from many nations had sown faithfully and persistently.  But there was little power to impact the ruggedly proud and fiercely independent Argentine hearts.  The cities and provinces remained seemingly impervious to their efforts.

Now things have changed.  In more than sixteen city regions of the nation, the church overall is seeing consistent growth after the proportions of the parable that Jesus taught about seed and ground.  Each year they are seeing “a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown” (Matthew 13:23).  It is now customary for the whole church in a city to see an increase in people being added to the church of 100% per year.

We spent fifteen days in Argentina for three major reasons:

a)        to attend the International Institute,  a gathering of Christian leaders from every part of Argentina and most nations of South America,

b)       to receive a commitment from wonderful South American Christian pastors and leaders to pray for a million hours for revival in Australia

c)        to visit with leaders in some of the cities and gain some understanding of the practicalities of reaching whole regions for Christ.

Factors leading to revival

Our expectations were exceeded on every count.  What I wanted to know was,  “How did a fragmented unattached bunch of small churches ever begin to see revival?” There are probably many reasons: sovereign ones and human ones.  I can’t do much about the sovereign matters, except be fully committed to them. I wanted to see what identifiable human factors may have led to the church in a nation seeing revival.  Here are three that were observed.

1.  Unity through relational networks has given the ministry of the church greater authority.

It’s hard to know who’s who in Argentina.  Just looking at people in a crowded room would not give a clue as to who were the most anointed leaders, nor which “tag” they wore.  I’m not implying that it was an insipid example of people striving to find their “lowest common denominator.”   It was fiery and focused.   It’s just that you couldn’t pick the Baptists from the Pentecostals.  It seems that they have made a strong commitment to proclaim absolutes, not interpretations, when they come together.

As Ted Haggard says,  “Inside the walls of our churches, let’s teach and practice the full menu of what we believe. …. outside the church we must focus on the absolutes. …  The result is that the non‑Christian community hears the same basic absolutes from … a variety of churches.”  What is similarly encouraging is that because the major leaders have not bought the western cultural value of status and importance,  they have less to protect and therefore more to give away.  We had the great joy and benefit of receiving and receiving. “Recibe! recibe! recibe”  was often heard.

The other result is that the key leaders around the nation love each other enough to form a very strong relationship bond.  They can give leadership to the church and help to acknowledge what God is saying and doing because they can speak with a voice that comes from being one in heart and soul.

In the cities, the pastors talk collectively about the church in the city.  They actually think of themselves as one church even though they form different congregations with sometimes very different flavours.  They give leadership to the church in the city from the perspective of a very jealously guarded unity.  The pastors of the larger churches don’t dominate and operate independently and the pastors of the smaller churches don’t feel threatened.  We saw it, heard it and felt it.  It was the kingdom of God right enough.

This unity is not just for enjoyment value.  It has given the church in a given locality greater authority.  It is not to be measured in political or social terms, but spiritual.  The powers of darkness have little power to blind the minds of unbelievers when the church operates in unity.

2.  Uncompromised commitment to evangelism has created a sharper focus

Whatever the strategies to be used, the underlying strength comes from a heart to reach the people who are lost from God.  There are meetings in the churches just about every night.   There is very little emphasis on home groups and home group structures.  Mostly people come to the meetings: teaching, prayer, evangelistic.  The message is preached like any regular evangelical pastor would preach it in Australia.  It would be more demonstrative of course as reflecting the culture, but there is no “secret” message associated with the revival.

People in Argentina are coming to Christ in one of two main ways:

They come in thousands to the altar rail of Carlos Annacondia crusades.  This little dynamic Argentine exudes a measure of faith that has nothing to do with presentation, and everything to do with heart – from spending a lot of time in the presence of God no doubt.

People are also coming to Christ through the prayer supported lifestyle of the average members of the churches.  So much of it is one to one.  If anything this seems to be the growing edge.

As the pastors and intercessors knock out the enemy missile launching sites, the regular soldiers are able to take captives with much greater frequency; I wouldn’t say ‘automatically’,  but I would say ‘more readily’.  They can do this not because they have a level of faith much in excess of that of the average believer in Australia, but because they are focused on evangelism.  It is their chosen lifestyle focus.

This focus allows all the activities of the church to be measured more objectively.  We tend to measure programs on how they will affect the members.  They tend to measure programs on how they will affect the non‑members.  The ministry of evangelism gets the first second and third bite of the cherry in Argentine churches.  People will sacrifice anything.  The pastoral staff of a church all sold their cars at one time in order to make possible a particular evangelistic ministry.  They mean business.  That’s the bottom line.

3.  A commitment to the harvest has uncovered important principles of prayer and spiritual warfare

South America in general and Argentina in particular have become synonymous with prayer and spiritual warfare.  Sometimes this has been a bit controversial in its expression.  I discovered something in Argentina that helped me to put this in a clearer context.  Basically the principles of things like “spiritual mapping” have come from the experience of evangelism, not from a study of spiritual warfare.

No finer example of this process could be found than the experience of Baptist leaders Victor Lorenzo and his father Eduardo.  They had begun to evangelize and found that they have had little impact in some places.

A typically ‘Australian’ conclusion would be to say that it was a ‘hard place’.  These men would be more likely to say that ‘no harvest’ was not an option.  When they looked for the reason for no harvest they began to find that the hardness was due to the exercise of some form of demonic power or influence.  They would give themselves to dealing with the powers as the Bible describes those encounters.  As a result, hundreds and even thousands of people were saved and added to the church.

There were places where successive attempts to plant churches had totally failed. When they began to deal with the spiritual forces of darkness that held these areas in bondage, the same attempts were successful.  This evidence was compelling, but the process was even more enlightening.   The spiritual warfare comes out of a bold commitment to preach the gospel, not out of a textbook on spiritual warfare.

This is the emphasis of the New Testament of course.  Spiritual warfare is not a department of the church where people hive off and play with demons.  Evangelism and spiritual warfare are the same thing.  It’s just that they have discovered that evangelism is more than communication, it is warfare.  The evangelists must be committed to the intercessors and the intercessors must be committed to the evangelists.  The apostles and prophets must work together with the pastors and teachers and they must all work together with the evangelists.  God is raising up these ministries within regions.  Not only in South America, but on every continent.

Conclusion: Not exactly new, but very, very different !

There were some compelling conclusions for me.   The first was the realization that there is really nothing there that’s mysterious or new.  It is different but not new.  The difference will be found in the measure.

  • While we tend to fill our shelves with books and tapes on prayer, they tend to fill heaven with bowls of incense (Rev. 5:8;  8:3,4).
  • While we tend to spend our time reading “fishing” magazines, they tend to spend their time boldly proclaiming the kingdom of God.
  • While we tend to skirt around the edge of our community picking up the few “strays”  and adding them to the church, they tend to focus on “binding the strongman” (Mark 3:27) and robbing the whole house.
  •  While we tend to languish in our cultural and ecclesiastical baggage, they tend to take seriously the matter of finding every way they can to become one, so that the world will know.

That’s exactly what is happening.   The difference in Argentina is that they are so much further down the same road.  They have put in the effort, and paid the price.  They have very little excess baggage.  They set aside non‑essentials.  They have more energy for the main event on the program.  The result is that the kingdom of God is coming not only to Argentina, but to the rest of the world.  As they continue and as they pray for the nations of the world, their  “faith is being reported all over the world”  (Romans 1:8).

It’s hard not to get wet in Argentina.  You can’t help being affected by the climate of revival.  It may take a paradigm shift or two, but if you are open to God, you’ll definitely get soaked by the revival rain.  In Australia we are still looking to the sky for rain.  Our main danger is that when the rain comes we are just as likely to take out two umbrellas, a full length driz‑a‑bone and some gumboots just in case we might get wet.  Wet theology and wet and crinkled church traditions are so messy.  I wonder what the weather man will say on TV tonight? Praise the Lord !

Reprinted by permission from New Day, February 1997, pages 18-20.

(c) 2011, 2nd edition.  Reproduction allowed with copyright included in text.

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1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,   3 Community,   4 Healing,   5 Signs & Wonders,
6  Worship,   7  Blessing,   8  Awakening,   9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
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16  Vision,
   17  Unity,   18  Servant Leadership,   19  Church,   20 Life

Contents: Renewal Journal 11: Discipleship

Transforming Revivals, by Geoff Waugh

Standing in the Rain: Argentine Revival, by Brian Medway

Amazed by Miracles, by Rodney Howard-Brown

A Touch of Glory, by Lindell Cooley

The “Diana Prophecy,” by Robert McQuillan

Mentoring, by Peter Earle

Can the Leopard Change his Spots? by Charles Taylor

The Gathering of the Nations, by Paula Sandford

Book Review: Taking our Cities for God, by John Dawson

Renewal Journal 11: Discipleship – PDF

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