The seeds of revival are always nurtured in the hearts of the humble. And so it was with the great Welsh Revival of 1904. It was in a young coal miner named Evan Roberts that God imparted a burning vision for spiritual revival. Evan Roberts did not possess the gifts of a great intellect or eloquent speech, but simply a burning passion for Jesus. While other young men were sailing boats in the bay, young Roberts was faithfully attending prayer meetings.
Though only 26 years old, Evan Roberts had no time for youthful entertainment
and pleasure. "Day and night without ceasing, he prayed, wept and sighed
for a great spiritual awakening . . ." Roberts writes, "for ten or eleven
years I have prayed for revival. I could sit up all night to read or talk
about revivals." Eventually Evan Roberts was turned out of his lodging
by his landlady who thought that in his enthusiasm he was possessed or
somewhat mad. "He spent hours
praying and preaching in his room until the lady became afraid of him, and asked him to leave."
The role of Evan Roberts in the Welsh revival was anything but conventional.
Often he would simply lead the people in prayer or read the Scriptures.
Then at other times he sat silent, while, one after another, people confessed
their sins or gave testimony of Christ's victory and power. There were
also glorious times of worship which lasted literally hours. Roberts merely
gave humble instruction from time to time and let the Holy Spirit do the
rest. He was a constant
example not of how to preach, but of how to be led by the Spirit.
The Welsh revival was a mighty invasion of the Spirit; God's Kingdom
radically manifested on earth. "The earnings of workmen, instead of being
squandered on drink and vice, were now bringing great joy to their families.
Outstanding debts were being paid by thousands of young converts. Restitution
was the order of the day. The gambling and alcohol business lost their
trade and the theaters closed down from lack of patronage. Football during
this time was forgotten by both players and fans, though nothing was mentioned
from the pulpits about it. The people had new lives and new interests.
Political meetings were canceled or abandoned. They seemed completely out
of the question since nobody was interested. The political leaders from
parliament in London abandoned themselves to the revival meetings. The
man-made denominational barriers completely collapsed as believers and
pastors worshipped their majestic
Lord together." One of the outstanding features of the revival was the confession of sin, not but among the unsaved alone, but among the saved. All were broken down and melted before the cross of Christ.
Throughout the revival, Evan Roberts constantly stressed the necessity
of dealing honestly with sin, complete obedience to the Holy Spirit, and
the preeminence of the Lord Jesus Christ. Evan Roberts was instrumental
in bringing healing to an entire country because he cared and wept and
prayed. He embraced the broken heart of God and offered it back up through
prayer and intercession. As a result "wherever he went, hearts were set
aflame with the Love of God!"
This article was taken from The Watchword newsletter, volume
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