From Jesus Movement to Asbury Revival (before and beyond)

Phyllis Beveridge Nissila

It seems that a Holy Spirit revival has broken out at the Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky, that is to say, it has come to visible fruition from seeds planted by individual prayer warriors, and watered in small groups, prayer closets, and prayer meetings preparing the spiritual ground for many years.

I came to Christ at the tail end of the last noteworthy revival called the “Jesus Movement” back in the 1960s and 70s on the West Coast. Asbury also participated in that.

Thinking a revival like that was something brand new, as the young are wont to think, over time I have come to realize and appreciate all of the prayer that “went down” for us, before then, ever since the previous revival of record (the “Healing Revival” of the 40s and 50s) as the initial highs of that earlier movement waned and the growth period of discipleship ensued (to last a lifetime), expanding and deepening in those who stayed with Christianity while others, disappointed in the loss of some of the excitement of the early, glory days, left for one reason or another*.

I have come to realize we veterans of the JM and earlier might have some encouragement–and warnings–for participants in today’s iteration of what the Holy Spirit is providing for us all no matter where we are and, hopfully, through us, impacting our nation if not the world as well, for Jesus Christ.

Here are a few things I would offer:

  • Where the Holy Spirit is, He glorifies Jesus. Keep your eyes on the Prize.
  • Many articles and books and song lyrics will arise from this over time but it’s the Word of God and the Word Made Flesh that matter.
  • Beware of new doctrines, revelations, and experiences contrary to classic Christianity.
  • Include continuous spiritual warfare in your prayers of praise and in your excitement over all the Holy Spirit is doing for all God’s people today because *Satan loves him some counterfeit revivals, signs and wonders, too, but he won’t be glorifying Jesus Christ or sticking to the Word of God.
  • Find a local Bible-believing fellowship in which, and with whom, to grow. (Personal note: when I visit churches, I check to see what “programs” they might promote, and what books they keep stocked in the church library or gift shop–here is where discernment should be turned on “high”. Ideally, there will be only Bibles free of charge. I recommend those published before the 1970s as many modern revisions reflect the secular “woke” spiritual culture much of which is false doctrine.)
  • If you can’t be where the action is, you can at any time, on any day, and in any place begin your own personal revival by turning back to God, getting back to Bible reading, and praying for God’s Spirit to lead, guide, and direct you, for revival is always personal–even amid a crowd.
  • “…the greatest of these (gifts of the Holy Spirit) is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13).



Later on the same day: this podcaster gives some good advice:

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4 Responses to From Jesus Movement to Asbury Revival (before and beyond)

  1. Thank you Phyllis. Great advice in these times of widespread apostasy and deception.


    • pbn says:

      You’re welcome.

      And I think we are especially vulnerable to deception these days when social media (ever subject to technological “adjustments” and “remote control algorithms,” you might put it) can so easily influence the hearer/viewer’s mind, emotions–and spirit. Not to mention how quickly this can happen.

      Assuredly, however, that which is genuinely of the Holy Spirit will produce the fruit of the Holy Spirit.


  2. Dale Rudiger says:

    Looking forward to seeing the “Jesus Revival” movie when it comes out on Wednesday. Kelsey Grammer as Chuck Smith.


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