Pastors & Church Leaders

E.M. Bounds, as well as many other writers, from Charles G. Finney and on down to contemporary writers on revival, have clearly articulated that pastors and church leaders are the ones who hold the keys to a successful revival. Jim Cymbala, in his book Fresh Wind Fresh Fire, stated that”

“Pastors and church leaders must humble themselves, and confess that they have a lot of the blame for the coldness.”

With the struggles pastors have in opening the door for revival, it is understandable why God turns to the young, non-pastoral servants of God to launch a revival, as Frank Bartleman explained:

“A revival almost always begins among the laity. The ecclesiastical leaders seldom welcome reformation. History repeats itself. The present leaders are too comfortably situated as a rule to desire innovation that might require sacrifice on their part. And God’s fire only falls on sacrifice. An empty altar receives no fire!”

Most who Lead Revivals are Young

In the Moravian revival, August 1727, the congregation was young. Zinzendorf, the leader of the group, was 27. This also happened to be about the average age of those within the group.

The first thing we notice about the call of Jeremiah is his youthfulness. When God called him he cried in his great distress: “Ah, Lord God I behold I cannot speak: for I am a child.” (Jer. 1:6)

Why are God’s special instruments young? Probably the answer is to be found in the fact that young men are more malleable than the old. Most people are converted when young, and the Lord loves to get His man before backsliding or prejudice can spoil him.

Robert McCheyne died at 29 years old, after leading a revival in Dundee Scotland for 6 years.

There is No Limit on Age

Just because it is most common for God to call the young to initiate revivals, it doesn’t mean the more mature pastors among us are passed over merely because of their age.

We do not wish to criticize pastors, knowing that most of them carry a tremendous load, and to have someone say they are the ones who are holding back a revival isn’t something we wish to say. However, from the statements of many revival authors and historians, we must note that they have claimed that there is a significant responsibility placed upon the shoulders of pastors to open the door for revival.

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