Showing posts with label Cane Ridge Revival. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cane Ridge Revival. Show all posts

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Why the Cane Ridge Revival Holds Prophetic Hope for America's Third Great Awakening - DANIEL K. NORRIS CHARISMA MAGAZINE

Barton Stone, the pastor at the Presbyterian Church there had sent word far and wide inviting everyone to come "camp on the grounds" during their first annual communion service.  He promised it would be, "one of the greatest meetings of its kind ever known."  It didn't disappoint.

Why the Cane Ridge Revival Holds Prophetic Hope for America's Third Great Awakening

Barton Stone, the pastor at the Presbyterian Church there had sent word far and wide inviting everyone to come "camp on the grounds" during their first annual communion service. He promised it would be, "one of the greatest meetings of its kind ever known." It didn't disappoint. (Chris Light/Wikimedia Commons)
It had been a long journey through the forest and hills of Kentucky just to make it to the log cabin church in Cane Ridge yet tens of thousands found the outcome to be well worth the effort. Barton Stone, the pastor at the Presbyterian Church there, had sent word far and wide inviting everyone to come "camp on the grounds" during their first annual communion service. He promised it would be, "one of the greatest meetings of its kind ever known." It didn't disappoint.
By Saturday afternoon it was estimated that more than 25,000 people had descended upon the fields surrounding the church. Stone had expected thousands, but this was more than he could have imagined. It was immediately apparent that the covered platform he had constructed outside the church would not suffice for so many. So Stone dispatched seven separate ministers into the fields to contend for a harvest among the people. Stumps, carriages, and fallen trees became platforms for preachers as they ministered to different sections of the multitude simultaneously.
In the crowd that afternoon was a mother with her two teenage daughters standing at her side. They were listening to a Baptist minister who stood before them on a stump. He preached with powerful words about the deadly consequences of sin. As they listened, the two daughters were suddenly seized with conviction. They cried out from the depths of their souls and then fell to the ground like two dead women. This was a new and strange sight for everyone in the crowd.
The mother, a devout woman who loved the Lord, became very concerned. She bent over the two girls, fanning their faces in a frantic attempt to wake them up, but to no avail. It was an hour later when one of her daughters finally stirred just long enough to cry out with a piercing scream, "Mercy, Lord! Mercy!" She then fell back into her trance-like state.
Both girls laid there motionless for hours upon the ground with the most awful look of terror upon their faces. From time to time they would awaken, let out a blood curdling cry for mercy and then return to their agonizing slumber. The wretched despair they carried on their countenance lasted for a few hours before it finally broke. It was suddenly replaced with the most beautiful, heavenly smile. "Precious Jesus!" one shouted as she rose to her feet. The whole of her being had been transformed. The encounter was forever life altering.
The young woman was filled with such fire and zeal that containing it was impossible. She opened her mouth and immediately began to preach the gospel to all those who surrounded her. Her voice belted across the crowd as if it were amplified with a supernatural force. It caused a stir, and a new crowd began to gather around her.  As she spoke, dozens of men and women were struck down to the ground like men slain in battle, each experiencing a similar encounter as she had just had. This wasn't an isolated incident. Similar scenes were breaking out all through the fields that day. That weekend, countless souls were won to the Lord in the most incredible fashion (Trail of Fire, page 39).
Oh, that God would do it again in our nation and do it like Cane Ridge!
The story of the Cane Ridge revival is one that stirs something deep within the spirit. I found myself moved in a remarkable way as I studied and wrote about this extraordinary move of God in Trail of Fire. I know I am not alone. Every year thousands make the trek to Cane Ridge, Kentucky, to visit that old log cabin meeting house. They go to learn about and to remember this remarkable move of God. Some go in hopes of capturing a burning ember of that ancient fire. All leave with the same prayer resounding in their hearts, "Lord, do it again, like Cane Ridge!"
It is very much like what the psalmist Asaph invites us to do. He writes, "I will remember the works of the Lord; surely I will remember Your wonders of old. I will meditate also on all Your work and ponder on Your mighty deeds" (Ps. 77:11–12, MEV).
There is great benefit in looking back at the stories of the past to be encouraged by all God has done.
Consider the work of Cane Ridge for a moment. This was 1801. The United States was barely 25 years old, and Kentucky had just joined the Union less than 10 years earlier. The new nation was quickly growing as more and more people continued to venture West. The days of Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening had already begun to fade as the U.S. expanded. Once again the moral foundations America once knew were slowly eroding. Churches were few and far in this vast land. As people moved farther and farther away from their churches, they began to forsake the Lord. This was the wild frontier, where the only rule of law was a gun or a rope. It was a time when wickedness abounded and very few people professed real faith. It was a spiritually dark time for America.  
Yet in dark times, the light of the gospel shines brightest. The fire that fell in Cane Ridge sparked a movement. Revival spread across the American frontier like wild fire driven by a stiff wind through the dry brush. In the years following, there was an exponential explosion of church planting. Similar camp meetings were organized in several states. Though none ever matched the attendance of the original meeting at Cane Ridge, the effect was undeniable. America was once again awakened!
I'm certain there are many who wonder if it is possible for God to move again in such a powerful way. They have concluded that America is too far gone to experience another great awakening. Cane Ridge shows otherwise. This revival that took place 215 years ago offers us great hope today. Look back at what God did and let it bring you to the revelation that He can and will do it again!
My friends, revival will always be God's remedy for an ailing land. Revival is the moment that the Lord Almighty invades a community, the slumbering saints are awakened and sinners are reborn. True revival offers total reformation for individuals, communities and even nations.  
Yes, America is experiencing a spiritually dark time once again. The founding principles that brought us great freedom and prosperity have been forgotten. America is lost. But don't lose hope! Consider the works of the Lord. In times of great darkness or spiritual drought, these stories remind us that we've been here before, and when we finally turn back to God, He always revives. Look back at the times He has moved across our land. Remember and meditate on the times you've personally experienced the power of His presence. Let those stories fan the embers in your life back to flame.
We need God to do it again, and do it like Cane Ridge!
You can learn more about the Cane Ridge Revival along with nine other moves of God in my latest book, Trail of FireTrail of Fire tells true stories from 10 of the most powerful moves of God. However it is more than a book about what God has done, it is a call to what God is doing. Pick up this book and break free from the dry, dull routines of religion and become a catalyst for revival! 
Daniel K. Norris is an evangelist who worked alongside Steve Hill bringing the message of revival and repentance to the nations. Together, they co-hosted a broadcast called "From the Frontlines." Norris also hosts the Collision Youth Conference that is broadcast all over the world. He can be contacted
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Tuesday, September 1, 2015

"RE-DIGGING THE WELLS OF REVIVAL: My Visits to Cane Ridge and Wales" - Dutch Sheets

My Visits to Cane Ridge and Wales"
Dutch Sheets, Dallas, TX
The Elijah List

Scripture makes it clear that the Lord accomplishes His purposes on the earth not through one man or movement, but through the labors and legacy of many across multiple generations (Hebrews 11:39-12:2). Working through a divine timeline that extends beyond a single lifetime, the Lord desires that we honor and build upon the foundations laid by those who have gone before us. In Genesis 26, we are told that when Isaac dug water wells, he didn't get to start with his own. Isaac recognized his hereditary right and responsibility to re-dig and restore the ancient wells of his father Abraham, which the Philistines stopped up after he died.

It was after re-digging his father's wells that the Lord appeared to Isaac and pronounced over him the same blessing previously spoken over Abraham. Not long after that, the Lord allowed Isaac's servants to unearth his very own well. 

I have spent more than a decade of my life teaching about the synergy of the ages; exhorting Believers that in order for us to move forward in fulfilling God's purposes for our generation, we must reach back to remember, honor and add to what He has done through previous generations. 

Through a recent sequence of events, however, the Lord once again invited me to tap into some historic wells of revival in order to release a fresh river of His glory to flow into our generation. (Photo via Dutch Sheets)

A few months ago, I was invited to minister at a small log cabin-style church in Kentucky, which happens to be the site of the historic Cane Ridge Revival of the late 1800's. During that powerful move of the Holy Spirit, tens of thousands of people came by wagon to the hillsides of Kentucky, hungry to hear the preaching of the Word and bask in the glory of God for days at a time.

At these camp meetings, it was common to see dozens of ministers preaching simultaneously across the countryside, while multitudes were strewn along the ground, being moved upon by the extremely weighty presence of God. This revival swept through the southern states and beyond, helping to birth the Second Great Awakening! I found it most interesting that the Lord set up my itinerary in such a way that from Cane Ridge, He sent me to Wales—another extremely significant site of revival history!

Moving From Well to Well

The nation of Wales is the place where revivalist Evan Roberts was baptized in the fire of God and commissioned by the Lord as a leader in the world-reaching Welsh Revival of the early 1900's. So many people were radically saved in that spiritual outpouring, that the nation of Wales experienced societal transformation. Judges had no cases to try, and law enforcement officials had no crime to deal with, so they formed traveling evangelistic singing groups!

The presence of God was so strong among the common people that pubs closed down, sporting events were cancelled, thousands of depressed and drunken miners came to Jesus, and hundreds left everything behind to give their lives on the foreign mission field. It is believed that since the 1900's, there has never been a revival in world history that cannot trace its roots back to the nation-shaking Welsh Revival.

Wales was also home to Rees Howells, another significant contributor to revival history. His life of intercession, chronicled in the biography, Rees Howells Intercessor, has greatly influenced many people and movements of prayer, myself included. After being powerfully swept into the Welsh Revival, this former miner-turned-missionary devoted the rest of his life to serving the purposes of God for his generation—in the place of prayer.
In 1924 Howells founded The Bible College of Wales to train others in what the Lord had taught him. That place soon became a house of prayer for all nations, with students and staff joining Howells in fighting world battles on their knees. 

What transpired on that small campus unquestionably affected the course of world history, and has left a legacy of prayer that the Lord is inviting us to lay hold of today. (Photo of Dutch and Ceci Sheets and friends in front of The Bible College Of Wales, via Dutch Sheets)

Fighting The Battles Of The Kingdom 

Howells' intercessors prayed all through World War II, engaging in the spiritual warfare necessary to take down the demonic powers encroaching upon the governments of nations through the dictatorial leadership of men like Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini. They also prayed fervently through the 1948 UN-mandated vote on Israel's status as a nation. Even after Howells' passing, their ardent intercession continued under the leadership of his son, Samuel. They prayed through the Cuban missile crises, the Cold War between the US and the USSR, and also helped pray in the signs and wonders movement of the 40's, 50's and 60's.

Their story could be likened to Moses' hilltop intercession affecting Joshua's frontline battle. Scripture states that as long as Moses held up the staff of God in his hand, Joshua and Israel prevailed, but when Moses let his hands down, the enemy prevailed.

Through this prophetic act of intercession—lifting up the rod, which represented the authority and power of God—the Lord faithfully responded by releasing victory on the battlefield (Exodus 17:8-16). Likewise, Howells and his intercessors continually "held up" spiritual authority in the heavenlies while soldiers experienced miraculous breakthroughs, enabling them to execute victory on the battlefield.

During WWII in particular, God would give Howells prophetic insight concerning what was going to happen next and where they needed to strategically focus their intercession. After class each day, these devoted intercessors would contend in travailing prayer for hours and hours on end, sometimes praying through the night. They were determined to match in the spirit realm, the level of intensity and self-sacrifice experienced by heads of nations and soldiers on the frontlines of battle. (The Blue Room where Howells and his intercessors prayed, via Dutch Sheets)

Impassioned about fulfilling their godly calling, Howells said, "If I am not called up to fight, and I know another way to help them and I don't do it, I ought to be killed instead of them. They are facing death...for you and me. If they suffer more than we suffer for them, it will be our lifelong shame." (From Rees Howells: Intercessor, Chapter 36 – Russia, North Africa, Italy, "D" Day)

Howells and his students gave their lives to fighting the battles spiritually as if they were called to the frontlines of the war. And with each new assignment, these hidden intercessors prevailed in their prayers, and the world marveled and breathed heavy sighs of relief at such dramatic turnarounds.

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Redigging A Well

Despite the rich revival history at The Bible College of Wales, this spiritual well had fallen into disrepair. After the death of Howells' son, Samuel, the directors of the school found it too costly to maintain the campus and keep the school running. For decades, the property went further into decay and was about to be sold to a developer for housing. The Lord, however, had other plans and saw to it that this spiritual well was preserved and unstopped. He moved upon the heart of a pastor from Singapore, who not only caught God's vision for restoring that place but also was willing to pay the price to make it happen. This pastor raised 10 million dollars to purchase and restore the historic Bible College of Wales so that people from around the world could drink from this well of revival once again!

As a student of revival history, a teacher on intercession, and one called to awaken this nation to the purposes of God through prayer, it has always been a great desire of my heart to visit Wales and drink from its spiritual wells. Right after my time of ministry at Cane Ridge, I had the great honor of not only visiting the Bible College of Wales, but also serving as a key participant in the rededication ceremony for this historic well of revival.

During our stay at the Bible College, Ceci and I were assigned to the room of Rees' son, Samuel Howells. This room sits directly above the prayer room where decades of nation-changing prophetic intercession took place—what a privilege! Among the gathering of key leaders from around the world, I was also extended the honor of rededicating Howells' Ebenezer stone of remembrance (1 Samuel 7:12). Similar to what the prophet Samuel did to commemorate Israel's victory against their enemies, Howells set up a huge stone as a continual reminder of the Lord's providence and provision. Inscribed on one side of its marble top is the phrase, "Faith Is Substance." On the other side, the words, "Jehovah Jireh."

When, as part of the rededication ceremony, this remembrance stone was relocated to the center of the campus and anointing oil was poured upon it, we could sense the glory of the Lord. In that very holy moment, God met with me in a powerful way. I was overcome with the Lord's kindness at gathering us all to this place to drink from this historic well. 

In that moment, I pledged to help carry on Howells' legacy of prayer and recommitted my life to raising up a movement of prayer to take out the giants of our day and usher in a Third Great Awakening. (Dutch pouring anointing oil over Howells' remembrance stone during the rededication ceremony, via Dutch Sheets)

The rededication ceremony at the Bible College was not the only special appointment the Lord had planned for me. The same Singaporean leaders that restored Howells' campus also purchased the little church in Wales where revivalist Evan Roberts met with God. During the renovation process for converting that church into a house of prayer, the original Bible used by Evan Roberts during the Welsh Revival was found sitting under decades of dust on the pulpit of the church! I marveled at this find.

Paying The Price

I am so grateful for the Singaporeans who accepted the Lord's invitation to take on the extremely costly and painstaking restoration of this well of revival history. But the investment required for releasing God's river of revival into the nations of the earth doesn't end with restored facilities.

God desires to raise up Roberts-like revivalists and bands of Howells-like intercessors through which He can release a greater awakening and shift the course of nations today. This will require a high level of commitment. These men were so powerfully used of God because they complied with the great extremes God required of them. This is a principle repeatedly seen in Scripture. (Dutch holding Evan Roberts' Bible with Lou Engle and Singaporean Pastor Yang Tuck Yoong, via Dutch Sheets)

As I prayer-walked the grounds of the Bible College of Wales, while I communed with the Lord in the church where Evan Roberts met with God, and even now, I hear Holy Spirit asking, "Who will pay the price in this generation?" 

God used Howells and his intercessors to contend against and defeat the demonic powers and principalities trying to take over the world.

Today, the goliaths of Islam, communism, human trafficking, abortion, and the sexual rights agenda are standing at our door. Never has there been more at stake. We need the same warrior spirit of Howells' era to arise in us—both in the place of prayer and in being a prophetic voice. No doubt, God has a plan. He always does something great in the face of the impossible!

I believe the Lord allowed for the restoration of these spiritual wells in Wales because He is loosing a spirit of contending prayer and revival into the nations of the earth once again. 

I believe we will see a new momentum of intercession—appealing to Heaven and fighting Kingdom battles on our knees, until the greatest Great Awakening the world has ever seen occurs.

You are a part of this! There is a spiritual inheritance available to you. Young people, especially, it is your time to arise! The Lord is anointing you to overthrow the goliaths of our day and contend for the destinies of nations. The Lord is searching for those who will say, "I will pay the price." For those who invest their lives in these costly battles of intercession, He will show Himself strong! (2 Chronicles 16:9).

Dutch Sheets
Dutch Sheets Ministries

Email: click here

Dutch Sheets is an internationally recognized author, teacher, and conference speaker. He travels extensively, empowering Believers for passionate prayer and societal transformation. Dutch has pastored, taught in several colleges and seminaries, and served on the board of directors of numerous organizations. Dutch's greatest passion is to see America experience a sweeping revival and return to its godly heritage. Dutch is a messenger of hope for America, encouraging Believers to contend for awakening in our day and reformation in our lifetime. 

Dutch has written over 20 books, many of which have been translated into over 30 languages. Dutch and his wife Ceci have been married for 35 years and now reside in the Dallas area. They treasure time spent with their two grown daughters, son-in-law, and grandchildren.

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