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JOHN WESLEY - Revivalist! by David Smithers
1 year ago
| Prophetic

JOHN WESLEY - Revivalist!
by David Smithers    

On March 9th, 1791, when John Wesley was carried to his grave, 
he left behind him a good library of books, a well-worn clergyman's 
gown, and a much abused reputation. But also, an England moved 
to the very depths and a Church thrilled through and through with 
an awakened spiritual life. John Wesley was a man who truly 
possessed both apostolic vision and gifts, but most importantly 
he was a man who lived in view of eternity. "Consumed by the 
thought of the shortness of time, the great work to be done, and 
the need for haste in doing it, on he marched, preaching, pleading, 
warning and guiding . . ." 

John Wesley was a man mighty in faith and prayer. Time and 
again people possessed with devils were brought to him and in 
answer to prayer the demons were cast out. Not only were evil 
spirits cast out, but the sick were healed as well. As Wesley 
preached, the power of God often came upon his listeners, and 
hundreds would fall under the power of the Holy Spirit. Then, in 
answer, to prayer their souls and bodies were healed. A physician 
became offended at the cries of many who fell under the power of 
God. He attended Wesley's meeting and a lady he knew fell under 
the power. "Great drops of sweat ran down her face, and all her 
bones shook. But when both her soul and body were healed in a 
moment he acknowledged the finger of God." On another occasion 
when Wesley was traveling the preaching circuit, his horse 
suddenly became lame. With no one near to offer help, he stopped 
and prayed. "Immediately the horse's lameness was gone." 

Wesley pleaded with men to repent and by faith make peace with 
God or suffer in an everlasting hell. People who had entertained 
false hopes of salvation had their religious masks torn away by his 
plain preaching. Wesley believed that those who failed to warn the 
sinner and backslider, themselves stood under the judgement of 
Christ. He was determined to declare the whole counsel of God, 
offering the love of God in Christ and giving warning of the dreadful
consequences of rejecting the gospel. Wesley wrote, "Before I 
can preach love and grace, I must preach sin, law and judgement." 

John Wesley, as well as the other early Methodist preachers, was 
both a bold advocate and a living example of sanctification. Wesley 
preached with unceasing zeal that complete holiness was the 
primary fruit of a vibrant faith in Christ. Counseling another minister, 
Wesley wrote, ". . .till you press believers to expect full salvation 
from sin, you must not look for any revival." 

If John Wesley were to make an anonymous visit to the Methodists 
of today, it is doubtful whether many of it's churches would welcome 
him. They would most likely resent his fervent zeal and enthusiasm. 
When he was eighty-three he made a note that he was regretful 
that he could not write more than fifteen hours a day without hurting 
his eyes. Wesley faithfully preached almost up to the very day he 
died. Truly his vigor and zeal in old age were the reward of his 
faithful stewardship of time. He seemed to consider every thought, 
word and deed in light of eternity. 

"Amid all his arduous labors, his innumerable engagements, his 
coming and going, Wesley lived a hidden life of intimacy with God. 
When worn out with overwork he often found new strength in answer 
to prayer." It was Wesley's strict habit to daily spend one hour in 
prayer in the morning, and then another hour in the evening. John 
Wesley shook the world by his preaching because he first shook 
heaven and hell with his praying. His preaching had a sense of 
eternal urgency because he had touched eternity on his knees. 

-Source-

watchword.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=47&Itemid=47

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