The Ulster Revival - Northern Ireland
How God Used 4 Young People
to bring fire from heaven to Ireland
Like many revivals, the revival of 1859 came against a backdrop of apostasy in the church. The island of Ireland had just suffered the great famine that occurred in the early 1850s, with many young people migrating to America to escape poverty. Throughout the 1850s, there was a cloud of depression that hovered over Ulster, just as it did over the rest of Ireland. However, no matter what the spiritual temperature on earth, the Lord always has a remnant of people who dare to believe God. This was certainly the case in Ulster during the years 1857 to 1859.
It was with a deep desire for God that a prayer meeting began in a rural school near Kells, Ireland. This was the place where the four young men, James McQuilkin, Jeremiah Meneely, Robert Carlisle and John Wallace, could meet weekly to cry out to God by themselves for an Awakening, and study the Scriptures more deeply. The Spirit impressed these verses upon their hearts: I John 2:20 and 27.
On Fridays, each of them carried some pieces of coal and his Bible into their hiding place. They based their faith on the sovereignty of the Holy Spirit, the sufficiency of the Scriptures, and the power of prayer. Thus, they pleaded for three months for a Revival, with no visible result. On the first day of 1858, however, their first victory came, and on every subsequent night there were conversions. At the end of the year, fifty people were attending the meetings, asking for just one thing: that the Spirit be poured out on them and all the surrounding country. Solid conversions in response to specific and insistent prayers served to encourage them greatly.
In 1858 the news of the Awakening in North America came to them through two faithful brethren named Dr. William Gibson and Rev. William McClure, who had just returned from North America and had witnessed firsthand the awakening that was taking place in the church there. It was their report and the zeal with which they delivered it that aroused a deep desire among listeners that the Spirit of God would move in the same way here in their beloved Ulster. They heard how 12,000 businessmen were meeting daily in New York to pray and this set their hearts even more on fire.
It pleased God to use the simple testimony of four young men Connor in a very extraordinary way. Through them, the revival reached the capital of Ireland, Belfast. Pastors who had toiled in vain for years were suddenly surrounded by people conscious of their sins, crying out for the life-giving Word. If it were not for the loving cooperation of Sunday School teachers and other friends, the ministers would soon have become exhausted by the overload of work.
Huge, memorable meetings took place. Neighbourhoods that were notorious fighting spots witnessed the triumph of the Gospel of peace. Bitter adversaries knelt together at the Saviour's feet. Belfast became like the city of God.
In May 1859, the revival was being talked about everywhere; in Belfast, special meetings were being held. One such meeting was at the Great George Street Presbyterian Church, which saw numbers so large that more than a thousand people could not get in and had to be preached to in the street by another minister. Both indoor and outdoor meetings saw hundreds of people repenting and seeking Christ as their Saviour. Revival had come to Belfast. The Belfast Telegraph reported in June 1859 that "in almost every street in the city there are converts. In every family some soul has found salvation, even the marginalized in the street have repented." Sinners all over the city were being saved and entire families rejoiced to receive salvation. Belfast was tasting the forgiving love of the Saviour and the Gospel was in the air. During the first six months of 1859, the revival spread from Kells and Connor to Belfast and beyond.
What was also happening at the time was unity in the Church; all Protestant denominations worked together. It was this unity that made such an impression on the unsaved. Revival was the main theme of conversations. Everywhere in Ulster, people were talking about the things of God, who had been saved or how the revival was progressing. Nights were spent reading the Scriptures, and those who were unable to read would have the Word of God read to them.
In the hundred years following the revival of 1859, all Protestant churches benefited from its rich legacy. It brought about a spirit of unity which, in turn, created a spiritual environment capable of transforming Ulster into the spiritual center of the British Empire. Rivers of living water were to flow from her six counties as she carried the Word of God and her Protestant faith throughout the world.
It is believed that about one hundred thousand people came to Christ in Ulster during this revival period. The true number is known only to God and his recording angel. 1641 was the year of Ulster's horror, but 1859 was his "year of grace", the year that Heaven came down.
Labaredas de Fogo - Rosalee Appleby
REVIVAL IS NOT:
Note: Some items related here may even happen during the revival, but isolated is not revival.
. It is not a movement...
WHAT PRECEDES REVIVAL:
. A time of darkness in society
. Hopelessness in people’s hearts
. Coldness in the churches
PURPOSE OF REVIVAL
To carry out Great Commission
The Great Commission is carried out as the fruit of the revival...
WHAT HAPPENS DURING REVIVAL:
. The Holy Spirit of God is always in control.
. The fear of the Lord come to rests upon all.
. A state of brokenness.
. Unlimited Worship.
. A Strong conviction of sins with confessions
. A State of Repentance.
. A Deep desire for Holiness.
. Many miracles, signs and wonders.
. End to social injustice, violence and crimes.
. Profound impact on society...
RESULTS OF REVIVAL:
- The Church arises (for the Great Commission) in boldness to speak of the love of God to the lost.
- There is extraordinary numerical growth in the Church, membership multiplies supernaturally.
- Society now respects the Church as the Divine Institution it is.
- This revival does not come to liberals, mystics, syncretists and the merely religious, but to a people desperately longing for the presence of God.
- The final phase of revival is the restoration of society to the standards of the Word of God, bringing justice, righteousness, compassion and blessing that should continue through generations.
Revivals, Great Awakenings and visitations from God in the United Kingdom over time
This timeline is to help you get to know and understand God's moves within the UK from when God used a humble man in Ireland (in the 5th Century), Saint Patrick, through many other men and events up until modern times. These men defied the circumstances of their times and made history, being hungry and desperate for the presence of God. Many of them were not understood in their day, but today are examples of people who dared to obey God and in doing so, changed the course of history. Here in the United Kingdom, there were many visitations from the Lord which touched generations both here and around the world, writing chapters of the history of the Church. These amazing accounts demonstrate God's great love for Britain. You will know all or some of the following ‘brave hearts’ for God. We believe that there were many others whom history did not recognise, but they are eternally recorded by the Lord.
We are the next generation that will make history in the UK; WE who are here now on this site, wanting to know more about revivals and about God's next move in the nations of Great Britain.
... If you agree, say Amen!!
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