“Incredible”: autobiography of John Nelson Parr — Contents
Chapter Ten: Incredible Uproars
INCREDIBLE BETHSHAN REVIVAL SCENES
The Lord continued to fan the flame of revival into a mighty blaze. Sinners were coming to the Saviour in nearly every meeting, many were being Baptised in the Spirit and mighty signs, wonders and healings continued to follow the preaching of the Gospel. The sick were prayed for and sinners were invited to come to the Saviour in every meeting. By 1964 our offerings had reached the fantastic total of £11,966 per annum.
It would take a long time to give an account of all the miracles wrought by the Lord during those days. A young lady with one leg nearly eleven inches shorter than the other, and wearing a boot with a large cork sole and heel, was healed. After prayer her leg commenced to extend and after a few weeks it was as long as the other. “This was surely done by the mighty power of our risen Lord”. A young lady dying of Tubercular Meningitis was miraculously healed. A man who had an accident and injured his spine, sending him blind in one eye and losing the sight of the other eye coupled with continual pain in his spine, was instantly healed and his sight, after test, was pronounced perfect. A woman, paralysed from the neck downwards and had not walked for eighteen years was carried into the Tabernacle by four men, after she was prayed for in the name of our Risen Lord. in a few minutes, she was walking round the church. Seeing she had not walked for eighteen years this was a stupendous miracle.
Many people were healed including Bleeding Cancer, Blindness, Chronic Bronchial Asthma, Gall Stones, Arthritis, Skin Diseases, Duodenal Ulcer, T.B. and other diseases.
The Annual Members Tea and Old Fashioned Love Feast with a two or three-tier love cake, with hundreds sitting down to tea, was a very memorable event.
By 1938 the Tabernacle including the extension and the annex were packed to suffocation and plans were being prepared for a new Tabernacle to seat about 1,500 people but unfortunately World War Two started and this put an end to our plans. Many young men and young women joined the Forces, Civil Defence, First Aid, and many were working on farms and also working overtime and weekends. The attendances were seriously affected but notwithstanding air raids, blitzes and other inconveniences, we did not cancel one meeting. We claimed the promise in Psalm 91 continually and publicly. The Tabernacle was marvellously preserved and not one of our members was injured in any of the air raids. In 1934 our first missionary, Mr. Raymond Colley, sailed for Tibet; then in 1946 we had the joy of sending Miss Joan Rhodes (a fully qualified nurse) to Congo. It was my firm conviction that a Pentecostal church should be a Missionary church and ultimately our Missionary offerings reached £3,000 per annum and we were supporting nine Missionaries sent from Bethshan and also twenty-nine native Evangelists. Ultimately we were receiving about £5,000 per annum for the support of our own Missionaries, native Evangelists and Radio Evangelism in the Far East. David said: “I esteem thy precepts concerning all things to be right”. Ps. 119:128. And I have found in giving loyal, spirit filled workers to the uttermost parts of the earth and in giving of our money for the propagation of the Gospel to those have not heard. God in His abounding liberality has given to us.
In 1934 the Pastor was invited to visit White Russia and Volhynia to give Bible lectures on the Acts of the Apostles to Russian, Polish and German Missionaries labouring for Christ in that part of Europe. Shortly after my arrival in White Russia I became very sick and instead of lecturing to the Missionaries I lay prostrate in bed. I am not a visionary, but one morning about 11 a.m. I saw the Lord. He came and laid His hand on me and immediately I was perfectly healed. The same afternoon I commenced my lectures on the Acts of the Apostles. The Lord be magnified.
The meetings in White Russia and Poland were throbbing with Revival Power and it was thrilling to lecture to about one hundred Russian, Polish and German Missionaries. One day we had a Baptismal Service in a river and we marched to the river led by a Russian Christian brass band. At the close of one meeting Brother A. Bergholz said to me: “Tonight we have caught a whale”. I discovered the “whale” was the headmistress of the local Day School who had accepted the Lord Jesus as her personal Saviour.
On my return journey I travelled through Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland to Sweden and Norway. It was my desire to visit the great work at Philadelphia Tabernacle, Stockholm, Sweden; the largest Pentecostal church in Europe; and learn what methods had been adopted by Pastor Lewi Pethrus, to build up this great work and some of these methods were put into operation at Bethshan Tabernacle. “Blessed be the Lord my strength, which teacheth my hands to war and my fingers to fight”. Ps. 144:1. Many times have I brought this verse before the Lord and asked Him to show me how to fight the devil, principalities and evil spirits, ungodliness, unbelief and all the diabolical things and powers which are rushing young and old to hell. Over and over again have I asked the Lord to teach me and make me like David an invincible warrior and conqueror. The Lord has taken me at my word and many times shown me plans for conquest, which in the eyes of others were mad and ridiculous. Many of these people have forgotten that the plans given to Gideon for conquering the Midianites were ridiculous to the humanly trained warriors, but it worked and the Midianites were confounded and defeated.
Chapter 12: Incredible Innovations
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