The Bible and the Headlines:
If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
News You Can Use
By David Bachelor, PhD
The Seventies are back again! Which part of the Seventies you ask? Is it riots in the streets, racial tension, the fear of nuclear war in the air and what appeared to be the unraveling of our nation? No. It looks like (to use Time Magazine’s cover story) another Jesus Revolution.
The Jesus revolution in 2023 started at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. Making the 70’s connection, People’s Feb 23rd article noted, “Back in 1970, a similar weeks-long worship event began after a morning chapel service at the school.” The article was titled, “’Revival’ at Christian School Moves Off Campus After 2 Weeks of Continuous Prayer Overwhelms Ky. Town.” Since February 8th the students (and others on social media) have been drawn to the chapel in record numbers.
The New York Times continued the 70’s theme in their February 23rd article, “‘Woodstock’ for Christians: Revival Draws Thousands to Kentucky Town.” The article used snippets from people who learned about the revival on social media and headed for Kentucky. An evangelist from Minnesota remarked, ““It’s like Woodstock, . . this thing that’s happening there is so organic and raw, not flashy, not cool — it’s the anti-cool.”
On February 21st the webpage The Catholic Thing asked, “What’s Happening at Protestant Asbury U.?” The author notes surprise at the daily nearly non-stop worship services going on at the small Kentucky University and then comments, “Area Catholic parishes are looking to see how they can cultivate the same.” May the Lord grant them their request.
On February 15th, the campus newspaper The Asbury Collegian had the story, “When the Dust Settles.” The author explored her own reaction to the events at the Asbury chapel. She went to the revival angry at God and inclined to turn the event into another news assignment. She got more than a story. God met her at the chapel, and she felt her resentments lifted and she was given peace. She notes, “Knowing myself, I am confident this shift is not of my own volition. I was set and satisfied in my resentment, but God had different plans for me.”
February 24th LEX18, the NBC affiliate in Lexington, Kentucky carried the story, “Asbury Revival Ends on Campus, but Students Say Its’ Spirit Lives On.” An Asbury student told reporters, “It’s not going to end. Everybody who’s seeing this, everybody who’s experiencing it whether it’s here in person, whether it’s over the phone, whether it’s halfway across the world, Jesus is in those places the same way they are seeing him here and so revival can happen anywhere at any time.”
The Bible contains many stories of spontaneous revivals. In the Old Testament, the prophet Samuel predicted Saul was going to have an Asbury-type experience, “As you approach the town, you will meet a group of prophets. They’ll be coming down from the high place where they worship. People will be playing lyres, tambourines, flutes and harps at the head of the group. The prophets will be prophesying. The Spirit of the LORD will come on you with power. Then you will prophesy along with them. You will become a different person” (1 Sam 10:5-6). The most famous spontaneous revival is recorded in Act 2. The Apostles were told to wait in Jerusalem until they were imbued with power. On Pentecost the Holy Spirit fell on the believers gathered at the temple and this was visually manifested as tongues of fire above each person. Afterwards, “The believers studied what the apostles taught. They shared life together. They broke bread and ate together. And they prayed. Everyone felt that God was near. The apostles did many wonders and miraculous signs” (Acts 2:42-43).
I hope the Asbury revival continues and spreads all over the nation. If God would do in Texas what He did in Jerusalem and is doing in Asbury, I would even be willing to wear bellbottom pants and be anti-cool (like the 70’s). Come Lord Jesus.