The Phenomena of Revival
A Sermon on Acts 2:12-13
And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.” (ESV)
Great awakenings by God are often accompanied by great physical and mental phenomena. During revivals, men and women are described as being “struck” – falling to the ground and fainting. Supernatural knowledge about the future is given to ordinary people. What are we to make of these revival testimonies about prophesy and physical phenomena? Should we dismiss such things as hysteria or brain washing? Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones pushes back against the Western tendency to describe these kinds of things in naturalistic terms. While acknowledging there can be mixture of false phenomena with the true, he cautions Christians not to merely dismiss these physical phenomena based upon a dry intellectualism. Such reasoning could result in Christians quenching the Holy Spirit. Instead D. Lloyd-Jones reminds us that these kinds of phenomena are always accompanied by a response from bystanders. It is either a response of doubt, amazement, or mockery. This was the experience of the early Christians in Acts 2:12-13. It has held true throughout the history of revivals as well. The Christian response, says Dr. Lloyd-Jones, must test such things. Nevertheless the whole person can be impacted by a great movement from the sovereign Spirit. Listen as Dr. Lloyd-Jones seeks a balanced approach in this controversial topic.
About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.