“Incredible”: autobiography of John Nelson Parr — Contents
Chapter Seven: An Incredible Accomplishment
AN INCREDIBLE CAMPAIGN
The Levenshulme Town Hall was booked for the campaign and dismal prophets said “Levenshulme was the worst district in Manchester” for a campaign; but nothing daunted we distributed thousands of handbills to houses, outside cinemas and at football matches, notwithstanding the arctic weather we were having at that time, December 1927. The campaign commenced Boxing Day, December 26th, 1927. The first ten days were hopeless. The Town Hall seated about six hundred and there would only be about fifty people in this large hall, however, God broke through after two weeks. One or two most amazing miracles took place and then the crowds started coming. It was wonderful and thrilling to see the Lord honouring the Ministry of Pastor Stephen Jeffreys and also honouring our faith. The last week of the campaign in the Levenshulme Town Hall was a tremendous week of real Holy Ghost revival. The meetings were crowded and miracles were taking place every night and many people were accepting the Lord Jesus as their Saviour. Towards the end of the last week we could not get the crowds into the hall.
Pastor Stephen Jeffreys very rarely preached on Divine Healing, signs and wonders but he would in some meetings get someone who had been supernaturally healed to give their testimony. Dynamic power was upon his preaching and he preached the Gospel with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven and people were under terrifying conviction of sin. When they came into the enquiry rooms they knew they were turning their backs on sin, Hell, the world, the flesh and the devil. There is no doubt in my mind that Pastor Stephen Jeffreys poured out his life, strength, vitality and all he had in turning thousands from the grip of sin, unbelief and the devil unto the Saviour of the world.
I remember saying to Pastor Stephen Jeffreys: “Who shall we get to carry on this work after the Campaign?” He looked at me and said, “You are the man”, and then he asked me to preach one night during that week and God wonderfully blessed the message.
That was the time when I made a terrific decision and decided to quit business and devote everything I had to the salvation of lost souls, including my business ability, talents, strength, time and devotion.
What a wonderful wife the Lord had given me. She never faltered for one moment and never shunned facing the future life of faith in God. She never raised one single objection against my action in renouncing a wonderful business position to become a full time Pastor-Evangelist. After making this terrific decision I met a gentleman who was a director of a very large firm and after learning I had just resigned my position, offered me a post which had just become vacant. The stipend and other emoluments offered me were fantastic! However, the Lord gave me grace to resist the temptation to be diverted from the path of sacrifice and Soul winning.
We continued in the Levenshulme Town Hall for about nine months in 1928, holding meetings all day Sunday and twice during the week, and the cost was about £15 per week. During that period my stipend was very small, however, the Lord was very gracious to us and met all our needs in a wonderful manner. The meetings continued the same in character as when Pastor Stephen Jeffreys was there. God blessed this plan and His blessing was on all the meetings. Every meeting was a Revival Meeting and the sick were prayed for nightly; Souls were continually being saved and mighty miracles were being witnessed. All our advertising and publicity bore the headline “The Stephen Jeffreys Campaign continues in the Levenshulme Town Hall. Preacher Pastor J. Nelson Parr”. We had no ante-rooms at the Town Hall and did not have any waiting meetings for the Baptism in the Spirit. At times when preaching I would use the phrase “The Baptism in the Spirit” or “The Spirit Filled Life”. Several people asked me, “What is this ‘Baptism in the Spirit’ you have mentioned?” At last I said, “If you will find a room in the district, we will have special meetings for all who are interested in the Baptism in the Spirit.” They soon found a suitable room and a meeting was arranged.
On the night in question the place was crowded to its utmost capacity. I gave them a short talk on the Baptism in the Spirit, reading to them all the passages in the Acts of the Apostles where this subject is mentioned; then I threw the meeting open for questions. There was only one question and a lady said, “Do you mean to say that all who are Baptised in the Spirit will speak in tongues?” I said, “Tonight I have read the accounts in the Acts of the Apostles of all who were Baptised in the Spirit and in all except one instance it says they spake with tongues and it is quite evident that in Acts Chapter Eight, they immediately saw something extraordinary happen, so much so, Simon wanted to buy the power of being able to impart the Holy Spirit to people; and we can only come to the conclusion that these people spake in tongues as they did in Jerusalem, Caesarea and Ephesus”. She replied, “Well, I don’t believe that”. I said, “Perhaps we had better not discuss that point but we will get before the Lord in prayer. The room was crowded and soon I heard a lady speaking in tongues. I knew I was the only person there who did speak in tongues so stood up and looked round; to my great astonishment it was the lady who didn’t believe that all who were Baptised in the Spirit would speak in tongues. That was the beginning of a mighty outpouring of the Spirit. From that time hundreds and maybe thousands have been Baptised in the Spirit in Manchester. The Lord be Magnified. I could not tell you how many were Baptised in the Spirit at that first waiting meeting. The Spirit of God just fell upon the people, and from that time the meetings were absolutely indescribable.
Chapter 9: Incredible Bethshan
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