[anzac] SLAIN in the SPIRIT - IN REVIVALS!

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From: "REVIVAL List" <prophetic@...>
Date: Thu, 01 Feb 2007 14:55:11 -0700
NOTE:  To bring balance to the "Toronto" topic and hopefully
round it off - below is an interesting piece about people being "slain
in the Spirit" in Revivals down through history. Please note that in
many Revivals it was largely CONVICTION OF SIN that caused this.
-Most insightful.... And at the end there is a link to another eye-
opening article on 'Toronto' by Derek Prince - which I think is a
"must-read" on the topic of "manifestations".
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REVIVAL EXPERIENCES: SLAIN In The SPIRIT
-by Greg Gordon.

Various accounts of spiritual phenomena during revival

EXTREME CONVICTION

Times of revival bring forth many exuberant and prevailing experiences
on the soul and body of men. During these times the phenomena
that are involved can be easily seen as something that is extreme
and not proper. By looking at the history of revivals we see clearly
that phenomena such as “falling under” and being “smitten down”
was simply a response to the extreme conviction upon the souls
of men. True revival preaching brought forth much strong
exhortations and pleadings upon the sinfulness of men and the
holiness of God. For any sinner or carnal Christian that heard this
preaching would have these type of manifestations because of the
deep work of God in conviction and guilt upon the conscience. In
modern day Churches preaching that produces conviction, or
shows the lost sinner the condemned state he is in, is considered
by most legalistic! To bring forth the “terrors of the law” is a thing
from the past and is not considered relevant anymore. It is hoped
simply through reading these various accounts from past revivals
that the reader will realize the true reason for the “experience” of
falling under in the Spirit of God. This type of discernment and
study is required in our day of perverted and dubious workings of
false Spirits and doctrines of devils. The counterfeit has been
alongside the truth since the beginning, I give this example from
the 1623 Ulster revival:

“There were now many converts in all the congregations which
have been mentioned, and Satan observing the prosperity of the
gospel amongst them set himself to perplex them by discrediting
the work of God in their hearts. This he did by a counterfeit of the
operation of the Holy Spirit on several persons at Lochlarne,
whom he caused to cry out during public worship, and some of
them were affected with convulsive pangs. The number of persons
thus affected increased daily, and at first the ministers and people
pitied them, hoping that the Holy Spirit was at work with them. but
when they had conversed with them, and found that they did not
discover any sense of their sinful state or any longing after a
Saviour, the minister of the place wrote to his brethren, inviting
them to come and examine the matter, who when they had
spoken with them saw that it was a mere delusion of the destroyer.
The next Sabbath, an ignorant person in Mr. Blair’s congregation
made a noise, but immediately, says Mr. B., ‘I was assisted to
rebuke that lying spirit which disturbed the worship of God, and I
charged the same in the name and authority of Jesus Christ, not
to molest that congregation; and through God’s mercy we met
with no more of that sort.”

The FALLING

During the revival in Cambuslang in 1742 under the ministry of
Reverend M’Culloch there were many phenomena that surrounded
the revival meetings especially the occurrence of “falling under,” as
it was termed in those days. “As to what these young men termed
‘the falling,’ it was a way of speaking among scoffers at the time,
occasioned by the bodily distress which, in many instances,
accompanied conviction. the work was much objected to in
consequence; but when the intimate connection of soul and body
is considered, it will not appear surprising that great outward
agitation should mark the emotions of a soul fully awakened to
the dread realities of judgement and eternity.”

Paris Reidhead in his sermon “ten shekels and a Shirt” gives two
accounts of this phenomena during times of revival: Wesley was a
preacher of righteousness that exalted the holiness of God. When
he would exalt the holiness of God, and the law of God, and the
righteousness of God, and the justice of God, and thewisdom of
His requirements! And the justice of his wrath and his anger! Then
he would turn to sinners and tell them of the enormity of their
crimes and their open rebellion and their treason, and their
anarchy. And the power of God would so descend upon the
company, that on one occasion it is reliably reported that when
the people dispersed there were 1800 people lying on the ground,
utterly unconscious! Because they had a revelation of the holiness
of God and in the light of that they’d seen the enormity of their
sins and God had so penetrated their minds and hearts that they
had fallen to the ground! It wasn’t only in Wesley’s day; it was
also in America, New Haven, Connecticut, Yale. A man by the
name of John Wesley Redfield had continuous ministry for three
years in and around New Haven. Culminating in the great
meetings in Yale Ball, the first of the Yale Balls’ back in the 18th
century. The policeman were accustomed during those days, if
they saw someone lying on the ground, to go up and smell his
breath. Because if he had alcohol on his breath they’d lock him up;
but if he didn’t, he had Redfield’s disease. And all you needed to
do if anyone had Redfield’s disease was just take him into a quiet
place and leave him until he came to. Because if they were
drunkards, they’d stop drinking, and if they were cruel, they’d stop
being cruel, and if they were immoral, they gave up their immorality.
If they were thieves, they returned what they had. For as they had
seen the holiness of God, and seen the enormity of their sin; the
Spirit of God had driven them down into unconsciousness because
of the weight of their guilt! And somehow in the overspreading of
the power of God, sinners repented of their sin and came savingly to Christ.

SMITTEN DOWN

In the Irish Revival 1859 this account of falling under the Spirit was
given: "When the conviction as to its mental process reaches its
crisis, the person, through weakness, is unable to sit or stand,
and either kneels or lies down. A great number of convicted
persons in this town and neighborhood, and now I believe in all
directions in the north where the Revival prevails, are "smitten
down" as suddenly and they fall as nerveless and paralyzed and
powerless, as if killed instantly by a shotgun. They fall with a
deep groan, some with a wild cry of horror--the greater number
with the intensely earnest plea, 'Lord Jesus, have mercy on my
soul!' The whole frame trembles like an aspen leaf, an intolerable
weight is felt upon the chest, a choking sensation is experienced
and relief from this found only in the loud, urgent prayer for
deliverance, usually the bodily distress and mental anguish
continue till some degree of confidence in Christ is found. Then
the look, the tone, the gestures, instantly change. The aspect of
anguish and despair is changed for that of gratitude, and triumph,
and adoration. The language and the looks, and terrible struggles,
and loud desperate depreciation, tell convincingly, as the parties
themselves declare, that they are in deadly conflict with the old
serpent. The perspiration rolls off the anguished victims; their very
hair is moistened. Some pass through this exhausting conflict
several times; others but once. There is no appetite for food; many
will eat nothing for a number of days. They do not sleep, though
they may lie down with their eyes shut."

FALLING UNDER

The Cane Ridge revival of 1801 had many cases of “falling under”
in the meetings during that time. The majority of people that
experienced these manifestations were the mockers, sinners and
those convicted greatly under the power of God showing their
sinfulness before a Holy God: “At its height, about twenty
thousand were said to have been in attendance. Religious
services of praying, singing, exhorting, and preaching were kept
up day and night. Physical expressions of the excitement were
numerous and sometimes took bizarre forms. The groans and
screams of those under conviction mingled with the shouts of
those who had found release and joy. The fear of hell and
damnation and the hopelessness of the lost would be succeeded
by the bliss of assured salvation. The most common physical
experience was "falling." About three thousand are said to have
been prostrate at the Cane Ridge meeting. Some of the "fallen"
were insensible. Others were aware of what was happening about
them but were powerless to move. Women and children were
especially suggestible and were the most affected. Yet men were
also among "the slain." ... A little later in the course of the revival,
hundreds displayed convulsive physical contortions which were
known as "the jerks." Frequently those who came to remonstrate
or ridicule were themselves sudden victims. Barking, running,
jumping, and trances were common.”

The phenomenon of falling under the power of the Spirit occurred
in the revivals of Jonathan Edwards. His assessment was that a
person may “fail bodily strength” due to fear of hell and the
conviction by the Holy Spirit or due to a “foretaste of heaven.” R.A.
Torrey testified of people falling under the power of God due to
conviction of sin. Praying Hyde relates of the Punjab Prayer
Convention of 1906, “We began to pray, and suddenly the great
burden of that soul was cast upon us, and the room was filled with
sobs and cries for one whom most of us had never seen or heard
of before. Strong men lay on the ground groaning in agony for that
soul.” Jonathan Edwards in his book “Religious Affections” gives
us some words of wisdom relating to this phenomena: “A work is
not to be judged of by any effects on the bodies of men; such as
tears, trembling, groans, loud outcries, agonies of body, or the
failing of bodily strength. The influence persons are under is not to
be judged of one way or other by such effects on the body; and
the reason is because the Scripture nowhere gives us any such
rule.” May God gift His Church with supernatural discernment in
these last days hence our Savior's words: “Take heed that no
man deceive you!” Oh how we need to see changed lives in
response to preaching that brings conviction and contrition. Only
God can change a life and make it holy, that is the true litmus
test of revival!

~To read Derek Prince's eye-opening yet balanced piece on modern
'manifestations', please click on the heading- "CONTROVERSIAL -
DEREK PRINCE ON 'TORONTO'" directly below the Forum at
the following website-
http://www.revivalschool.com

[~Greg Gordon's piece above sourced from- www.Sermonindex.net ]
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