The Protestant Missions — March 10, 2011 at 6:47 am

The November, 1886, noteworthy revival in Sendai!

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Manifestations of the Holy Spirit!

Plum blossoms in Joyo

While most of the churches were rejoicing in great prosperity, there were in several places special manifestations of the Holy Spirit’s presence. A letter describing what occurred in the Girls’ School connected with the English Church Mission in Osaka says:

“The blessing of a revival which God graciously granted to many of his servants in Japan, foreign as well as native, extended also to some of the older girls in the school, who gave proof that they had been drawn nearer to God. Emotions of envy and jealousy, deeply rooted, were mutually confessed and wept over, and pardon was sought for them in united prayer, and the girls began to love each other more sincerely and cordially.”

Revival in Sendai!

In November, 1886, a noteworthy revival began in Sendai. The churches of different denominations had united in a series of meetings. Large audiences gathered, and many of the Christians were so impressed that they went into the fields or to the hills for prayer, it always being difficult in a Japanese house to obtain privacy. Others remained in the church until three o’clock in the morning. Some went to the houses of the pastors to confess their sins and seek help, while many made a public acknowledgment of their sins. Persons who had before shown no sympathy with revivals now acknowledged their mistake. The report of these things spread abroad and led to the holding of similar meetings in other cities.

The Shingu Church

In view of the advance being made in the various departments of work and of the calls that were coming from all parts of the field, it is not strange to find one missionary writing: “The avalanche of opportunities that slides down upon us almost stuns us.” Yet there were sections of the country where even fairly intelligent men knew nothing of the great changes that were coming upon their land. One of these persons, who lived among the mountains of Yamato, came on business to the town of Shingu in the province of Kii. In the evening he lodged at the house of a friend whom he had not seen for years. As the two sat talking together, the master of the house inquired:

“Have you ever heard anything about Christianity?” His guest, with a frightened air, lowered his voice, and said: “Be cautious. If you talk of such things, you will surely be beheaded.”

“makes you think so? ”

“Why, are you so ignorant as not to know that Christianity is strictly prohibited?”

“Can it be,” said the host, “that you are unaware of the great changes that have taken place? We are now free to believe in Christianity. In this city there is a church of which I am a member, and it is constantly growing larger and larger.”

“I never dreamed of such a thing. I myself am a Christian. For ten generations the religion has been handed down in our family from father to son. I supposed that the laws against it were still in force, and so I have never told others of my faith. God be praised if I am now at liberty to speak of it ! ”

He was instructed by his friend and a few months later became a member of the Shingu Church.

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