Spurgeon on revivals and charismata

When revival happens there are usually strange occurences which unsettle believers and cast doubt in their mind. People falling over, shrieking, amongst stories of wonderful conversions. It’s not a new problem. Here is Spurgeon reflecting on the revival that was happening in Belfast at that time:

Witness the great revival which is going on in and around Belfast. After carefully looking at the matter, and after seeing some trusty and well-beloved brother who lived in that neighborhood, I am convinced, notwithstanding what enemies may say, that it is a genuine work of grace, and that God is doing wonders there.

A friend who called to see me yesterday, tells me that the lowest and vilest men, the most depraved females in Belfast, have been visited with this extraordinary epilepsy, as the world calls it; but with this strange rushing of the spirit, as we have it. Men who have been drunkards have suddenly felt an impulse compelling them to pray. They have resisted; they have sought to their cups in order to put it out; but when they have been swearing, seeking to quench the Spirit by their blasphemy, God has at last brought them on their knees, and they have been compelled to cry for mercy with piercing shrieks, and to agonize in prayer; and then after a time, the Evil one seems to have been cast out of them, and in a quiet, holy, happy frame of mind, they have made a profession of their faith in Christ, and have walked in his fear and love.

Spurgeon reflected, talked to someone involved in the area and listened to personal testimony. That’s not a bad process to go through before making public comment.

Note that what the world calls ‘extraordinary epilepsy’, Spurgeon called ‘this strange rushing of the Spirit’. I want to be in a church where the Spirit can rush…

Photo by National Library of Ireland on The Commons

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