Oswald J. Smith is a former pastor from Canada and he carried a very powerful anointing for writing. One of his prophetic words was The Revival We need. It might be as old as my mother and it is still just as real today.
After all, if the foreward is written by Jonathan Goforth, the man that took the gospel to China; I am going to listen. Jonathan Goforth is one those with the “Spirit of Elijah” in history!
Here is the complete foreward,
MR. SMITH’S book, “The Revival We Need,” for its size is the most powerful plea for revival I have ever read. He has truly been led by the Spirit of God in preparing it. To his emphasis for the need of a Holy Spirit revival I can give the heartiest amen. What I saw of revival in Korea and in China is in fullest accord with the revival called for in this book.
It is most timely that Mr. Smith has called attention to man effort and man method in modern revival. If we all had faith to wait upon God in intense believing prayer there would be genuine Holy Ghost revival, and the living God would get all the glory. In Manchuria and China, when we did nothing else than give the address and let the people pray, and kept out of sight as far as possible, we saw the mightiest manifestations of Divine power.
Had I the wealth of a millionaire I would put “The Revival We Need” in every Christian home on this continent and confidently look for a revival which would sweep round the world.
This is a very strong endorsement for a book by a pastor on revival. Pastors went to very weak on the subject. It tends to be prophets and evangelists that live for revival.
Pastor tend to see revival from a need from dealing with people that the vision of God looking down. Most people do not need a pastor to waste time “helping them.” They need the Holy Spirit convict them of their sin and burn it completely out of their life. You know, that whole Baptism of Fire thing.
Oswald J. Smith takes it even deeper
In his book, he talks about the problem in the pulpit in the North American church. Remind yourself, this book was written before many of us were born. The problem is really that old.
It is reported that there were 7,000 churches that did not win a single soul for Jesus Christ in an entire year. That means that 7,000 ministers preached the Gospel for a whole year without reaching even one lost soul. Supposing that they preached, putting it at a low average, on 40 Sundays, not including extra meetings, that would mean that these 7,000 ministers preached 560,000 sermons in a single year. Think of the work, the labor, the money expended in salaries, etc., to make this possible. And yet 560,000 sermons preached by 7,000 ministers in 7,000 churches to tens of thousands of hearers during a period of twelve months, failed to bring a single soul to Christ.
This is the problem we face then and we face now. Churches do not care if people go to hell. All they care is offerings are up and the have a successful television show. Some even call that
For the life of me, I do not understand how you can preach the word of God and not realize that God wish that none would perish and that all would have everlasting life. Jesus came to seek and to save that which is lost!
Oswald J. Smith understood this. Steve Hill understood this. I understand this.
Smith goes on in his book to discuss it more,
In reading over the Twelve Rules of the Early Methodist church I was struck with the fact that they aimed at and looked upon soul-winning as their supreme task. Let me quote from one of them: “You have nothing to do but to save souls. Therefore spend and be spent in this work. It is not your business to preach so many times; but to save as many souls as you can; to bring as many sinners as you possibly can to repentance, and with all your power to build them up in that holiness, without which they cannot see the Lord.“–From “The Twelve Rules.”–John Wesley.
Wesley is considered one of the most powerful preachers in American history. He left behind one of the largest movement in history as well. I would listen to John and what he believed made the Methodist Church successful!
As ministers, we have nothing to do but win souls. If your television show is not winning the lost, quit it. If your revival meetings is not winning the lost, kill it. If your “community” is not reaching sinners, why do it?