This is the sixth and final post in my blog series, titled: The Price of Liberty. If you’re just now starting the series, you can begin with the first post here.
During the middle of the nineteenth century, spiritual conditions in the United States deteriorated considerably. Conditions were quite different then because the nation had moved away from its early days of godliness. Moreover, people became obsessed with making money, and as they prospered they turned their backs on God.
Then a man named Jeremiah Lanphier began a prayer meeting in the upper room of the Dutch Reformed Church in the Manhattan section of New York City. After advertising the prayer meeting in the city papers, only six people showed up—out of a population of nearly one million. The following week, 14 people came. The next week 23 people made their way to the prayer meeting. These diligent, earnest people decided to meet daily. Soon they filled the Dutch Reformed Church, the John Street Methodist Church, and numerous buildings in downtown New York. Before long, a landslide of prayer began.
People were converted at the rate of 10,000 a week in New York City, and the movement spread rapidly throughout New England. Church bells would bring people together to pray at 8:00 in the morning, at 12 noon, and at 6:00 in the evening. The revival raced up the Hudson River and down the Mohawk River. Within a year, more than one million people were converted.
The prayer revival even crossed the Atlantic. It broke out in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and England. It even traveled to the southern part of India and other parts of the world. The effect of this prayer revival was felt for 40 years! The revival began in a movement of prayer and was sustained by a movement of prayer. It lasted for a generation, but at the turn of the century the nation again needed an awakening.
Special prayer meetings began at the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago; at the Keswick Convention in England; in the Nilgiri Hills of India; in Melbourne, Australia; and at Wonsan, Korea. All around the world people were united in prayer for God to send a new awakening. In 1905, God answered these prayers, just as He had earlier. Some interesting statistics that resulted from the meetings are:
· Twenty-five percent of the students at Yale University were enrolled in prayer meetings and Bible studies