Brownsville Revival : 24 years later
Father’s Day 1995 is a day that marks history for the Pentecostal movement in many ways. There was before the fire fell and after. It was our Azusa Street, Cane Ridge, or Herrnhut. For this generation, it changes everything we knew about doing church. The Brownsville Revival marked us forever with revival fire.
Like so many revivals before them, the condition of the church was dead. The pastor was tired, the people were tired and they were started to wonder if revival would ever break out? They wanted the fire to fall but they were very dry wood so to speak. John Kilpatrick had not even preached in over a month on Sundays.
He had heard some good reports about meetings with Steve Hill around the country that had walked through his own season of grief. His spiritual father, Leonard Ravenhill passed away in late November 1994. However, he had been radically touched in a church in England and again in Tennessee. So John Kilpatrick wanted him to come preach.
This set up was appeared to a normal Father’s Day service with a missionary speaking. It was to honor the father and Steve Hill telling stories from the mission field and what happened to him in the United Kingdom…. until the altar call.
Steve Hill started laying hands on people and they were drunk in the Spirit at once. A few minutes into it, the Holy Spirit knocked John Kilpatick out on the platform for several hours and everyone that was prayed for received a mighty baptism of the Holy Spirit. This was the beginning of what became known as the Brownsville Revival.
Night after night, Steve Hill would preach the uncompromising gospel of repentance to the nation. Millions of people would come to Pensacola to hear the gospel preached but that is not the real story of the Brownsville Revival.
Pastors would come to the revival and they would get on fire again like they were in bible college. They would go home with fresh zeal for harvest, souls, and the power of the Holy Spirit in their Assembly and in their community. What would happen was hundreds of smaller revivals were breaking out all over the country as a result of people being touched by the Brownsville Revival.
Two of them that become well known was Steve Gray in Smithton, Missouri that later become known as the Smithton Outpouring. The other one was in Weaverville, California with Pastor Bill Johnson that would later lead Bethel Redding. Both of them were radically touched on the floor at the Brownsville Revival.
However, the truth is they are just two of hundreds of pastors who got touched by revival fire in the revival. The fire of revival was spreading so quickly that it was caused the Assemblies of God to formally address it at the 2000 General Council of the Assemblies of God. This has only happened once before. (1949 concerning the Latter Rain revival)
I had seemed that the Assemblies of God had turned back to its heyday of the 1930’s of revivalism!
My Brownsville Revival Story
I got saved under the preaching of Steve Hill at the Brownsville Revival. It was July 15, 1996. I still remember Steve preaching with the huge gravel yelling “Judging is falling.” I got saved by hellfire and brimstone preaching and I completely believe that hellfire and brimstone preaching is legit ministry!
I would make several trips to the revival over the next two years. I loved going to revival meetings and everyone of them was impacting to me in a different way. Steve Hill had a way of keeping messages fresh no matter how many times I hear the same message. It was amazing.
In 1999, I spend a few months at the Brownsville Revival School of Ministry before moving back home to help with the launch of the International House of Prayer. I loved the short time I had at BRSM. I received so much from the teachers there.