Saturday, May 30, 2009

Pentecost History and the Need of Drawing Resources from Fresh Fire

At this Pentecost (May 31) season, many Pentecostals mourned the passing away of Rolf McPherson. Pentecost history will remember him as a man of faith in Modern-day Pentecostalism.

The Pentecostals worldwide celebrated Azusa Street Centennial in Los Angeles three years ago. With the outpouring of the Holy Spirit one hundred years ago, many Christians had their passion renewed. They began to read the first Pentecostal experience at the resurrection of the Lord in the second chapter of Acts with a different perspective. Yes, for centuries, the Church had lost track with the power of the Holy Spirit as recorded in the book of Acts.

Thank God that by centennial He has raised and anointed a number of Generals for His Kingdom. It is noteworthy that God began to bring women into public ministry. In fact the first astounding display of Glossalalia (utterances of tongue) was given to a lady. It traced back to 5 years before the Azusa Revival. That is, on 1st January, 1901, when Pastor Charles Parham laid hand and prayed for a lady Bible School student by the name of Agnez Ozman, she spoke in a foreign tongue. For three days consecutively she spoke in Mandarin which she had never learnt. She even could not speak her own mother tongue of English over that period of time.

Prior to the Azusa Revival, women were not allowed to take the forefront ministry. However, when new denominations were formed after the Azusa Revival, God moved greatly among the sisters in Christ who were on fire for souls. Denominations like The Assemblies of God and Foursquare Gospel had even sent out many women missionaries.

Women who made an impact in Pentecost history include Aimee Semple McPherson and Kathryn Kuhlman. Both of them ministered under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. God confirmed His Words with signs and miracles.

I am interested in Church histories. The Bible itself is a History Book. I am also interested in visiting historical sites. Histories will remind us about the faithfulness of God, as well as the successes and failures of God’s saints. Histories served as a mirror for us to reflect so as to make comparisons. No doubt the Holy Spirit by His own sovereignty will move in diverse manners in different ages. Nevertheless, by comparing we allowed ourselves to thirst for more portions of His anointing.

The Holy Spirit today is the same Spirit in the days of Acts. The difference is that we need to move out from history. Do not draw our resources from old fire of the book, but from fresh fire of everyday living in the Lord. So make this Pentecost the most meaningful ever in your Christian walk with God. For many, the Holy Spirit has already come upon us and thus received His power. Yes, we always liked to plead for signs and miracles. But the ultimate purpose of power enduing upon us is for us to become a powerful witness for Christ.

312 Azusa Street
Apostolic Faith Gospel Mission Church in 1906

The same site today is turned into a car park
What a waste!
It is known as Little Tokyo as Japanese Corporations
have bought over quite a substantial area

Allen points at the road sign of Azusa Street

216 North Bonnie Brae Street
The house belonged to Richard and Ruth Asberry
Where Pastor William Seymour led Prayer Meetings

Angelus Temple founded by
Aimee Semple McPherson

Sanctuary of Angelus Temple

The former residence of Aimee Semple McPherson

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