Playing the odds (Part 2)

Posted: November 12, 2010 in Leadership, Me and God, Me and people, The Bible

“Playing the odds” is a simple three-part-blog-entry that attempts to learn from history, for the ultimate benefit of my kids… -and myself.

Thought provoking encouraging facts:

Some historical facts about revivals in the last centuries (‘revival’ meaning not the special week long series of meetings at a local church but as the unusual awakening of interest in the things of God by believers and non-believers with effects that transcend local churches, communities, cities and even nations)

1. The First Great Awakening (1727 onwards) – Herrnhut, Wesley, Whitefield, Brainerd

  • 150 new Congregational churches began in a 20-year period
  • 30,000 were added to the church between 1740-1742
  • Moral results and changes were equably noticeable in society
  • Nine university colleges were established in the colonies
  • Early missionary desire began to emerge

2. The Second Great Awakening (1792 onwards) – Jonathan Edwards, James McGready, Camp Meetings

  • Began in a time of great spiritual and moral decline after the American Revolution and French Revolution, with the spread of Rationalism
  • The Methodists alone grew from around 72,000 at Wesley’s death in 1791 to almost 250,000 within 25 years
  • Missionary Societies and great missionary interest
  • Great movements among colleges in the USA
  • Up to 25,000 people at single camp meetings on the frontier

3. The Resurgence of 1830-1842 – Finney, Darby, Mueller, Moody, Student Movements, Missionary Outreach

  • Finney has a huge influence in the USA
  • Darby and Mueller have a large influence in Great Britain and Europe
  • Impact in Scandinavia, central Europe, South Africa, the Pacific Islands, India, Malabar, and Ceylon
  • D.L. Moody and the beginning of Crusade Evangelism
  • Thousands of volunteers for missionary work, especially among university students
  • Revival hit Japan in the early 1880’s, increasing the adult membership from 4,000 to 30,000 in five years (1883-1888). Also revivals reported in India, Africa, South Africa, Madagascar, Australia, Central and South America

4. Third Great Awakening (1857-1862) – Prayer Meetings, William Booth, Spurgeon

  • Businessmen’s Prayer meeting in New York with Jeremiah Lanphier
  • “Prayer Meeting Revival” – no great “names” leading it
  • 1 million converted in USA in one year
  • 1 million converted in Great Britain in one year
  • Worldwide impact

6. The Welsh and Worldwide Revival (1904-1910) Evan Roberts, Pentecostal Movement

  • Beginnings in South Africa, Australia, Japan; Spread worldwide with approximately 5 million converts
  • 100,000 converted in Wales in 6 months; crime rates brought down to almost nothing; police and law enforcement ‘out of work’

Most historians and scholars agree about the two  common activities that seemingly sparked these outstanding waves of Christianity with tangible effects in society: Deep commitment to prayer across ages, denominations and interests, and systematic study of the Bible.

Stay tuned for the final part of  “Playing the odds”

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Comments
  1. […] Me and people, The Church 0 One of the topics i am always passionate about reading is when revivals happened in history. ‘Revival’ not meaning the special week long series of meetings at a local church with a […]

  2. […] 250,000 miles, gave away 30,000 pounds, and preached more than 40,000 sermons. His life forged the first great revival and a large movement worldwide. Some of the off-shoots today of his work are: The United Methodist […]

  3. […] can happen! It has happened! – several times in history. Now we are daring to ask God, “Would you do it in our community?” “Would you use us to bring […]

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