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Enjoying God Blog


I’ll bet that title caught your attention, didn’t it? Perhaps you immediately thought that the “prophecies” came in advance and spoke to the beginning of the awakening. No. In fact, they concern its end.

Let me say from the start that I believe what has been happening at Asbury (and now at numerous other universities) is a true God-sent outpouring of the Spirit. I couldn’t care less what you call it: Revival? Awakening? Renewal? What’s important is whether or not God is truly in it, and I believe he is. Now, I say that having not visited Asbury. My perspective is largely informed by what I’ve read online and heard from trustworthy friends who’ve been present for it. But I see nothing in what they say or what I’ve read that would lead me to conclude that this is a man-made or contrived religious event.

That being said, I’m not suggesting that there aren’t fleshly displays, emotional extravagance, and perhaps even unbiblical doctrines being promoted. Name a true revival in the history of the church where these phenomena were not present. Anytime the Spirit of God moves, Satan keeps pace (or so said J. I. Packer). There will always be messes and mistakes and manipulation anytime broken, finite sinners like you and me are involved. I’m not excusing them. I’m not justifying them. I’m simply acknowledging that they exist at every revival, awakening, or occasion of spiritual renewal.

“Ok., Sam. Get to your point. What are your prophecies?”

Before I go any further, a word of clarification. What I’m going to share aren’t prophecies in the biblical sense of the term. They are observations that come from recurring realities in church history and common sense. So, yes, I used the word “prophecies” to grab your attention! It worked, didn’t it? And yes, I do believe in the contemporary validity of the spiritual gift of prophecy.

The first “prophecy” is this: the awakening at Asbury will end. In fact, every revival or awakening in church history has ended. That is the one common factor in all revivals. They come to an end. Even the most glorious and biblical and beautiful of revivals cannot continue forever. God never intended them to. After all, people eventually have to go back to work, back to school, back to mowing the grass and changing diapers and shopping for groceries and all the many activities that make up life on the earth. It simply isn’t possible, nor desirable, that people spend every waking hour in corporate worship and prayer. Of course, I wish people would spend more time than they do in praise and intercession and mutual encouragement and praying for the sick to be healed. But life goes on, and its responsibilities and obligations don’t disappear when revival comes.

So, although it may seem obvious, it still needs to be said: the Asbury awakening will eventually come to an end. The students will return to class. The professors will continue to teach. The visitors from around the country will go home. And that’s ok. More than ok, it is inevitable.

And that leads to my second “prophecy” concerning the events at Asbury. When the awakening ends, the many caustic, cynical, cessationist critics (although, be it noted that not all cessationists are caustic, cynical, and critical!) will point to its termination as sure-fire proof that the events at Asbury were anything but revival. “Look,” they will say, “if this was a real outpouring of the Spirit, it would continue unabated. It ended because it was fueled by the flesh and out-of-control emotional excesses.”

Well, no. The fact is, there isn’t anything that happens at Asbury or at other God-sent awakenings that won’t elicit the ire of so-called “discernment” bloggers. They live in perpetual fear of emotion, even when one’s feelings or affections are ignited by a revelation of divine and biblical truth. They denounce as demonic or as contrived or as psychologically induced virtually everything that happens among charismatics. After all, so they tell us, God wouldn’t bless with his presence and power people who pray in tongues and pray for the sick and passionately worship with hands raised or humbly repent on bended knee.

I suspect you were looking for something more sensational in my two “prophecies”. Sorry to disappoint you. But listen carefully.

Don’t let the eventual termination of the events at Asbury and at other college campuses lead you to conclude that it wasn’t of God. Let me say it again: every revival in the history of the church has come to an end. It is the one feature they all share in common.

Instead, pray for all those involved in this awakening. Pray that they will stay focused on the supremacy and centrality of Jesus and the life-giving power of the gospel. Pray that they will walk and talk in the aftermath like people who have truly encountered the Holy Spirit in life-changing ways. Pray that the fruit of this event will exert its influence throughout the earth. If at all possible, travel to Asbury and experience the power of God’s manifest presence for yourself. If you can’t, watch it online and read the encouraging stories of lives that are being transformed for the glory of Christ.

And pray that God will be pleased to visit his people again, perhaps even in your church or college.

Sam Storms
Enjoying God Ministries


When entire communities are changed, when every church in town is full, when the gospel is fearlessly preached, when hearts are broken and lives are completely transformed, THEN you can tell me this has been a revival. Otherwise, it's just warm squishies.
Dear Brother Sam,

I just read a report that Asbury will terminate the meetings in the chapel over the next week or two. Prescient on your part. :)

I did want to write and suggest something about how one might view the different perspectives that might be taken about the "events" that are happening.

First, I watched much online live and then heard various testimonies. Let me preface the next comment by saying I am a very grateful believer in strong visits of the Lord on a weekly basis at meetings. It has occurred regularly in my home weekly and at church meetings. I think it should be a normal report when His people gather as in Acts and Corinthians. My first comment is this, I think what I saw and heard was a grace filled visit from God resulting in great worship, sustained prayer and some repentance. The people I viewed seemed genuine all though even at the height of His presence, the crowd was mixed with people seemingly lost in him and quite a few viewing the show and chatting, taking video, etc. One would expect such a mix in a large public gathering.

Second, the duration of this time of Spirit filling and filled worship is not normal and is great to see and I am looking forward to the day when regular life doesn't interrupt.

Third, I also had a negative reaction to the social media and regular media swirl and hype that took place, even among the prophetic crowd. Like I said. I fully support the prophetic. In this case however, it almost become a manufactured revival based on sincere hopes that as Peter once said.....'This is that". This was not a second pentecost for the church at this point. Yet many said to other's potential harm that this was the fire to be launched across the US and especially for the Gen Z next generation of a Christian wave. I don't consider myself caustic for saying that, just cautious. The choice between being wholeheartedly on board with the fire or caustic I think is not a fair choice. Prayerfully enthusiastic but not undiscerning is what I am but I've asked the Lord to check my heart.

For me and I think it should be so for others, I'm glad that the presence of the Lord stirred hearts to hunger and seek for more. If that is all this was planned to be, that will be more than sufficient for me. However, there is a crowd that has sought a third great awakening to take us out of the world we find ourselves in that instantly called and declared this to more than it might turn out to be. It's not putting a wet blanket on a move of God to help others tone down the "wild fire" talk in order to let God work without human hearts, hands or expectations tring to take over. Let the Lord move as He will without it turning into a show or social phenomenon. Gamaliel was right in principle. If it's of the Lord, it cannot be stopped. It it's of man or university leadership, it will fade.

I've been in too many prophetic meetings where man's enthusiasm carried messages way beyond their application. It always disappoints and discourages in the end.

A move of God in Asbury as it is or was, is a miracle of grace and love. Of that mercy, we can be most thankful.

Amen brother!
I remember being in services where the Holy Spirit “took over” and the prayers changed to heavy intercession and worship, the atmosphere changed. Unless you’ve experienced it, it’s hard to explain. Then when it was over and time to go home, everything else seemed so mundane. Work? Food? Oh yeah.
I am so thankful that this is happening at universities. May they become on fire for Jesus, unafraid and willing to go to the streets with their new found love and courage in their Savior. May this reach into the streets and lives humbled with repentance and clarity of mind: gangs, prostitutes, drug addicts, traffickers, get them all Holy Spirit!
Thank you brother for your voice of thought and spirit. I have been watching closely this visitation of God in Asbury and I'm truly stirred in my spirit for more of God.

About 25 years ago i was impacted by the presence and power of God through just prayer and praise, then after about a year I was promoted to truly get to know Him. thru knowledge and contemplation of his WORD. Praise be to God that what He starts He will truly bring it to completion.
Well spoken and observed. I have had to bite my tongue several times and quickly turn back to the worship and the positive, when reading or hearing naysaying know-it-alls who use the outpouring to distract from genuine Jesus and attract unto themselves (and it is no one from Asbury; they have done a most excellent work in protecting the purity of devotion to Christ in these meetings, yet again, all glory to Father, Son, and Spirit!)

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