Throughout the whole world, those who really love God and His Word are crying out to God for a mighty revival by the Holy Spirit. Every revival in history has been preceded by prayer and fasting, and only stops when the prayer movement ceases.
Since the Azusa Street revival in 1906, prayers of the saints have resulted in an outpouring of the Holy Spirit and gifts of the Holy Spirit being released onto the body of Christ. Today, some 630 million people in the world claim to be Spirit-filled Christians.
Our only goal is to see the multitudes presently in darkness and sin to be set free, saved, healed and become members of the body of Christ. The world will not become a better place simply by revolutions as we see in the Arab nations or by the introduction of democratic institutions. Every problem of mankind is due to sin, and the one and only remedy is the gospel of Christ being preached in the power and authority of the Holy Spirit.
We have been privileged to travel and minister throughout China since it opened in 1978, and everywhere we have seen the same phenomena. We have seen countless numbers of Christians rising in the early hours of the morning to pray, often for two hours. Prayer with fasting, praying in the Holy Spirit (which is praying in tongues) and prayer with weeping and travail is the mark of a church in revival.
Churches in China and churches in Korea are similar in that they really know how to pray and lay hold of God. Prayer is loud, intense, accompanied by tears, where people enter into deep intercession. It is certainly not attractive to dignified religious people. Those who pray as such inevitably are those who boldly preach the gospel, with signs and wonders following.
I would like to contrast this with some churches who focus their ministry on praise and worship. They can sing and rejoice in worship for an hour or longer, but find it hard to pray consecutively for even five minutes. This might be a ‘renewal’ bringing life to meetings, but we are not seeing the mighty earth-shaking revivals resulting in miracles and leading to multiple conversions.
In December 2010, with official church pastors, I visited an island in Fujian Province called Pingtan Island. I was told by some government officials that one-third of the population (numbering several hundred thousand people) are Christians. Some of the churches have 4,000 people attending each Sunday. God has blessed them, and they are some of the most prosperous people in the province. They also have started churches all over China. I asked the pastor the reason. He replied, “These are people of prayer. All over China they start churches with prayer ministries. People call on the Lord for hours each day.”
Before that, just before Christmas, we visited another city in Fujian Province, Fuqing City. Even the local government authorities told us 20 percent of the population were Protestant Christians. We spoke in many churches, both Three-Self and large house churches, with up to 500 people in each meeting. When I gave the invitation for salvation, dozens came forward.
We are now also receiving reports of a new revival sweeping parts of Henan Province. Mighty Pentecostal revivals swept this province in the 1980s and 1990s, resulting in some 15 percent of the people becoming Christians, approximately 15 million people. Contrast this to 1949 when there were no more than 120,000 Protestants in Henan.
Many Western Christians seem to think revival and miracles only happen in poverty stricken nations where Christians somehow receive a special grace that brings revival. But anyone in any nation can experience the power of the Holy Spirit. Revival can occur anywhere, and I encourage the reader to pray like never before—you will soon experience a mighty revival! Prayer is the key to revival! Remember China in your prayers too!
Dennis Balcombe is the founder of Revival Chinese Ministries International and a sought-after speaker around the world. He speaks fluent Cantonese and Mandarin. He is currently involved in ministering to the Chinese as well as non-Chinese throughout Asia. Click here to visit his website.