This Sunday is "Pentecost Sunday" when Christians celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost as recorded in Acts 2. Pentecost reminds us of our absolute dependence on the Holy Spirit if we are to be the Church of Jesus Christ. Our programs, choirs, songs, and sermons are worthless if not empowered by the Holy Spirit. This was highlighted to Sue and me in a most unusual encounter. 

We Meet Adele

It was the strangest introduction. After two weeks in our new home, Sue and I came face to face with our next-door neighbor, who was a tough looking woman in her mid-50s. We shook her hand and told her our names. With a cigarette dangling from her mouth she replied, “My name’s Adele. I’m a backslidden pastor from Brooklyn, New York.”

It was obvious to us that Adele had been through some deep and painful experiences with church. We were mature enough to know that a superficial Christian clichĂ© or a chick tract would do nothing for her, except probably make her angry. We, therefore,  made no attempt to connect except to offer a friendly wave if we saw her in her yard. 

The Holy Spirit Will Do What We Cannot

The Holy Spirit, however, knows how to reach the most difficult cases and He will move through us in ways we could never have planned or imagined. He moved powerfully and unexpectedly for Adele one day as Sue and I were about to back out of our driveway. 

Sue who was driving, suddenly began experiencing a deep compassion flowing out to Adele who was working in her yard. After sitting quietly for a moment, she rolled down her window and called out, “Adele!” Adle came striding over with the perennial cigarette dangling from her mouth. 

When she reached the window, Sue suddenly began speaking to her in tongues. I was sitting in the passenger seat and had the interpretation, which was a prophetic word for Adele. I knew that I should look her in the face and so I leaned across Sue in the driver’s seat, looked Adele in the face, and said, “Adele, God is saying to you, ‘My daughter, you are precious in my sight.'”

Adele burst into tears and then broke out praying in tongues and we had revival there in our driveway. God bonded our hearts together. She later came to our home and shared how she had grown up in an Italian, Catholic mafia family in Brooklyn, NY, and as an adult had herself joined the mafia. One of her uncles and his wife had come to Christ and had invited her to church. She went and had a glorious encounter with the Lord.

She was on fire for the Lord and opened a storefront church in Brooklyn where she was reaching many of the homeless, drug addicts, and what someone described as “the hard cases.” However, opposition from Christians to her pastoring as a woman and an ill-advised marriage to a husband who turned on her, brought her to despair.

She gave up on church, but she did give up on Jesus. That day in our driveway a tremendous work of the Holy Spirit occurred and her faith and hope were renewed. 

About two months after this encounter, Adele and her husband (since deceased) moved to Florida. We stayed in touch and several months later I received an email from Adele saying,

I am putting a check in the mail. I want you and Sue to come to Florida for about three days, and you can stay with us. I will have about forty people over. Most of them are not Christians. Do whatever God tells you to do.

The Holy Spirit Falls on Members of the Mafia

We arrived at Adele’s home in Port St. Lucie, FL and later that evening the people she had invited began to arrive. As starting time neared, the living room and kitchen were filled with people and it seemed that everyone was smoking. Clouds of smoke hung heavy in the atmosphere.

Many of the people were members of the mafia or former members. Some of the people had been members of Adele’s church in Brooklyn, and when she “backslid” they all backslid with her. One woman sitting across the kitchen table from Sue and me had been a part of Adele’s congregation in Brooklyn. As smoke billowed around us, she said to me, “We’re all backslid.” I thought, “Well, at least, they are not trying to convince of how spiritual they are.”

 Starting time arrived and I picked up my guitar intending to lead them in praise and worship. It soon became obvious, however, that I was the only one singing. Everyone seemed to just stare at me as they puffed on their cigarettes.

Realizing this was going nowhere, I put my guitar aside and picked up my Bible. God had given me a message about His unconditional love, and as I shared this message, I sensed a change in the atmosphere. At some point, I noticed that everyone had put out their cigarettes and the smoke had dissipated. As I completed my message, a sense of solemnness and the fear of the Lord seemed to fill the atmosphere.

I then invited anyone who wanted prayer to come forward to receive prayer from Sue and me. The first person to come up was Isabelle who was from Brooklyn and part of a mafia family. She was in deep depression for her husband and two sons had been murdered by a rival mafia family and her daughter was a drug addict, living on the street.

As we laid our hands on Isabelle and prayed, she began to sob and then fell to floor. We had no catchers, but no one was concerned, as their minds were taken up with God. Another person then came up for prayer, and she too fell to the floor.

At this point, the Holy Spirit “fell” on the people just like in the Book of Acts. Suddenly, everyone was on their knees or lying in the floor, weeping and calling out to God at the top of their voices. It was a surreal moment when God came down and did a mighty work beyond anything we could have ever imagined or planned.

What an incredible time! Later, that evening there was a release of joy such as I have never seen. Our hearts were further bonded with Adele, and we have been back several times for meetings with her and those we call our mafia friends.

We Must Have a New Pentecost

Interestingly, before we met Adele she had visited charismatic churches in the area without finding the help she needed. Let us, therefore, remember that all our church programs and activities are worthless if we do not have that empowerment of the Holy Spirit, promised by Jesus, and poured out on the Day of Pentecost. 

Pentecost was not an end; it was a beginning and pattern for the Church of all ages. Let us, therefore, admit our human inadequacy and confess to God how much we need the promised baptism in the Holy Spirit. Let us pray for a new Pentecost at this critical time in America, the Church, and the world. 

Dr. Eddie Hyatt has taught on the Holy Spirit throughout the world, including Oxford University. His book, 2000 Years of Charismatic Christianity, published by Charisma House, is used as textbook in many colleges and seminaries around the world. He has also produced Revival History, a Manual and Study Guide to go with the book, which contains 20 outlined lessons, pictures, reflection questions, and essays. These are available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.



What is happening to America? Another tragic mass shooting occurred this weekend at a shopping mall in Allen, Texas, just a few miles from where Sue and I live in Grapevine. How many more tragedies must be suffered before we wake up to what is really happening? We are in the midst of a spiritual and moral battle for the soul of this nation. We are in a war of good vs. evil. We are in a war of God’s way vs. man’s way. 

The Root of the Problem

We are suffering because as a nation we have turned against the very principles of faith and morality on which this nation was founded. It can be said of America what Alexander Solzhenitsyn said in explaining why 60 million had perished under Marxist rule in his home country of Russia.  He said, “I could not put it more accurately than to repeat, ‘Men have forgotten God,’ that is why all this has happened.”

In the past sixty years, prayer and Bible reading have been outlawed in our schools. Ten commandment displays have been removed. Liberals and secularists decided that children should not be exposed to prayer, Bible verses, and moral laws such as “Thou shalt not kill.” Instead, they are taught that there are no moral laws or objective truths to which they must adhere. They are told that they are free to create their own moral world of right and wrong with no fear of Divine retribution.

This anti-Christian activism is based on what is, perhaps, the most destructive lie ever foisted on the American populace. The lie is that America's Founders secularized the American system and banned expressions of faith from the public square when they implemented the First Amendment. Nothing could be further from the truth!

What the Founders banned was a national, state church, which is what the nations of Europe had known since Constantine. They knew from experience that such coercive faith does not produce real Christians. They had learned that faith, imposed by civil government, can never produce a moral and virtuous people, and such a people, they believed, would be necessary for a free and stable nation.

America’s Founders were also aware of the history of spiritual awakenings in Colonial America, including the big one, the Great Awakening, which had impacted all of them. They had seen the populace morally transformed by that Awakening. They believed such an organic faith of the people to be true to real Christianity and capable of producing the kind of national morality necessary for a peaceful and prosperous society.

The Founders are Clear on the Key for National Stability

In the quotes below, remember that when the Founders use the word "religion," they are referring to Christianity. Christianity was their religion. Without exception, they believed that only a moral and virtuous people could maintain the Republic that had formed. And notice that they consistently couple "morality" with "religion" for they believed that morality could not be had without religion.

This is why, two weeks before signing the Declaration of Independence, John Adams wrote to his cousin, Zabdiel Adams, a minister of the Gospel, and said,

Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for Liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone, which can establish the Principles upon which Freedom can securely stand (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 164).

Twenty-two years later in 1798, Adams gave a speech to the officers of the Massachusetts Militia in which he clearly stated his belief that only a Christian morality could maintain the free Republic he had helped establish. He said,

We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion . . .. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other” (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 164),

We now have a generation that, in the words of Adams, is “unbridled by morality and religion.” The blame must be laid at the feet of far-Left extremists who have done everything in their power to purge America of her Christian roots. Because of this loss of morality, our nation is becoming chaotic and our liberties are rapidly slipping away, as many push for more government control.

Benjamin Rush, a Philadelphia physician, member of the Continental Congress, and signer of the Declaration of Independence, warned of this, saying,

The only foundation for a republic is to be laid in Religion. Without this there can be no liberty, and liberty is the object and life of all republican governments (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 163).

George Washington gave the same warning in his 1796 Farewell address after serving two terms as the nation’s first president. He urged the new nation to maintain "religion" and "morality," which he called "indispensable" supports for national prosperity. Interestingly, he did not say that religion should be "tolerated," but that it is "indispensable" for the life of the nation.

He also warned against the false supposition, entertained by so many today, that morality can maintained apart from religion [Christianity]. He called religion and morality “the great pillars of human happiness” and then said,

And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion [Christianity]. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle (Hyatt, 1726:The Year that Defined America, 165).

Thomas Jefferson was so impressed with Washington’s speech that he made it required reading at the University of Virginia, which he had founded. This should not be surprising for despite his questioning of certain aspects of Christian doctrine, Jefferson was convinced that only by embracing the moral teachings of Jesus and the New Testament could a nation enjoy both stability and freedom.

This is why John Dickinson, chairman of the committee that produced the Articles of Confederation, warned that “when states lose their liberty, this calamity is generally owing to a decay of virtue.” And commenting on this fact, Michael Novak is correct in declaring,

Far from having a hostility toward religion, the Founders counted on religion [Christianity] for the underlying philosophy of the republic, its supporting ethic, and its reliable source of rejuvenation (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 171).

The Way Forward from Here

Fast forward to 2023 and we find ourselves with a government that is openly hostile to the Christian faith. We have an administration that plants its agents in Christian churches to spy on them and their activities. We have people in government who believe more government is the solution to every problem and believe the church should be under the power of the state. This is totally antithetical to the vision of the Founders. It is a very serious time.

Thomas Jefferson said, “The only thing necessary for evil to prevail is for people of good conscience to remain silent.” It is time to reject this destructive lie of the Left that has been used to silence Christian voices in the public arena, and is leading to societal chaos. Let your voice be heard and join me and thousands of others in praying for another Great Awakening to sweep across this land.

Dr. Eddie L. Hyatt is the author of 1726: The Year that Defined America from which the above article was derived. His books are available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com



It was April 29, 1607. Around 100 weary Englishmen disembarked at Cape Henry, Virginia after a 4-month voyage across the Atlantic. Their first act was to gather around a 7-foot oak cross they had brought from England to pray and dedicate the land of their new home to God. During the dedicatory prayer, their chaplain, Rev. Robert Hunt, suddenly declared, “From these very shores the gospel will go forth, not only to this New World, but to all the world.” (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 37).

Thirteen years later in 1620, the Pilgrims arrived in New England also with a missionary vision. The common belief that they were fleeing persecution is only one side of the coin. There was also a proactive vision that was pulling them forward. In the Mayflower Compact they clearly stated that they had come to the New World for two reasons: (1) the glory of God and (2) the advancement of the Christian faith.

Twenty-three years later, in 1643, with thousands of new immigrants having settled in New England and new towns having sprung up, the United Colonies of New England was formed. They too had a missionary vision. In the opening of their constitution, they clearly stated why they had all come to this land. They said,

Whereas we all came into these parts of America with one and the same end and aim, namely, to advance the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ and enjoy the Liberties of the Gospel in purity and peace (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 31).

This missionary vision deepened as a result of the Great Awakening (1726-70) and became a part of the American psyche, profoundly impacting America’s founding generation. America’s founders, even the most nonreligious, were impacted and envisioned a land of religious liberty from which the gospel would go forth to the ends of the earth, just as Hunt had declared.  

In 1756, for example, Benjamin Franklin wrote a letter to George Whitefield, the most famous preacher of the Great Awakening, proposing that they partner together in founding a new colony on the American frontier in the area of present day Ohio. Franklin included a missionary reason for founding the new colony, saying,

Might it not greatly facilitate the introduction of pure religion among the heathen, if we could, by such a colony, show them a better sample of Christians than they commonly see (Hyatt, 1726:The Year that Defined America, 137).

George Washington also had a missionary vision. This is made clear in a prayer journal he kept in his twenties. One entry reads, “Bless, O Lord, the whole race of mankind, and let the world be filled with the knowledge of Thee and Thy Son, Jesus Christ” (Hyatt, 1726:The Year that Defined America, 132).

His missionary vision was also obvious in a 1779 meeting with chiefs from the Delaware American Indian tribe. The chiefs were seeking greater cooperation with the new American government and had brought some of their youth to be trained in American schools. Washington cordially greeted them, calling them “Brothers,” and then said,You do well to wish to learn our arts and our ways of life and above all, the religion of Jesus Christ.” (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 172).

Thomas Jefferson closed all official documents with the caption, “In the Year of Our Lord, Christ.” As president, he negotiated a federal treaty with the Kaskaskia Native American tribe, which made federal funds available to pay for a Christian missionary to work with the tribe and for the building of a Christian church in which the they would worship. Jefferson also said,

Of all the systems of morality that have come under my observation, none appear so pure to me as that of Jesus (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 150).

John Hancock served as president of the Continental Congress and his signature on the Declaration of Independence is the largest and most prominent. He too had a passion for missions. While serving as governor of Massachusetts, he proclaimed a Day of Prayer in which he exhorted the people to pray for,

The spreading of the true religion of our LORD JESUS CHRIST, in its purity and power, among all the people of the earth (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 173).

In the 19th century, the passion for evangelism and missions mushroomed and America became the greatest missionary-sending nation in the history of Christendom. Many missionary societies were formed for the sole purpose of sending out both home and foreign missionaries. In his Autobiography, the famous evangelist, Charles G. Finney, tells how he was initially sent forth to labor for souls by a “Female Missionary Society.”

The French sociologist, Alexis de Tocqueville, visited America in 1831 and was astounded by the passion for missions he saw everywhere. He wrote.

I have known of societies formed by the Americans to send out ministers of the Gospel in the new Western states, to found schools and churches there, lest religion should be suffered to die away in those remote settlements, and the rising states be less fitted to enjoy free institutions than the people from whom they came (Hyatt, 1726: The Year thatDefined America, 167).

The 19th century became known as “The Great Century of Protestant Missions” as many thousands of missionaries went forth into all the world. This passion for missions was so prevalent that it caught the attention of the nation’s highest court.

In the 1892 ruling, Church of the Holy Trinity vs The United States, the nation’s highest court declared America to be a “Christian nation.” Among the reasons listed for their conclusion, was the missionary vision that permeated the nation’s churches and the nation itself. They wrote,

The gigantic missionary associations, with general support, and aiming to establish Christian missions in every quarter of the globe. These, and many other matters which might be noticed, add a volume of unofficial declarations to the mass of organic utterances that this is a Christian nation (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 170).

It seems clear that God raised up America to be a place from which His word would flow forth to the ends of the earth. I wonder, however, if we have lost our rai·son d'ĂȘtre. Has a me-centered gospel diverted us from our calling to take the gospel to all creation? Has the Great Commission become the Great Omission of the American Church?

Yes, 416 years ago, on the windswept shores of Cape Henry, a small group of immigrants birthed a great missionary vision for a new nation. My prayer is that God will send another Great Awakening across this land that will revive the sleeping churches and reawaken the missionary vision that has been such a vital part of this nation’s history. 

Dr. Eddie Hyatt is a church historian, revivalist, and Bible teacher. This article was derived from his book 1726: The Year that Defined America, available from Amazon and his website at http://eddiehyatt.com. He is the founder of the "1726 Project" whose purpose is to educate the American populace about America's birth out of a great, spiritual awakening.




The Resurrection of Jesus has present ongoing ramifications for every person who puts their faith in Him. Jesus made this clear in his interaction with Mary and Martha at the tomb of their brother, Lazarus.

When they chided Jesus for not coming four days earlier and healing their brother, Jesus replied, You brother will rise again (John 11:23). Martha replied, I know he will rise again in the last day at the resurrection. Jesus then said, I Am the resurrection and the lifeHe who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live (John 11:25).

With these words, Jesus made clear that the resurrection is more than a past or future event. Resurrection life and power has been personified in Him. He is the resurrection and the life. 

Paul understood this and in Ephesians 1:15-23 he makes clear that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead is now welling in the one who believes in Him. In Philippians 3:10 Paul says that his consming desire in life is to, Know Him and the power of His resurrection

The Greek word translated "know" in this passage is ginosko and it implies a knolwdge based on a relationship between the knower and the object known. This is in contrast to oida, which is a knowledge that is mere cognitive infromation. By using ginisko, Paul makes clear that wants to live and walk in the resurretion power of Jesus Christ.

I Learn this Truth in Dramatic Fashion

Sue and I will be married forty-seven years in May of this year, and about two years into our life and ministry together, we lost everything. We lost our place to live. We lost the place where we were having meetings for the congregation we were planting in eastern Canada. Everything was gone. The God-given vision and mandate died.

In the midst of this devastation, we sat on a park bench with two friends lifting our hearts to God in prayer. I remember their 5-year-old daughter, Cara, sitting with us and praying in tongues.

Suddenly, out of my innermost being, those rivers of living water that Jesus spoke about in John 7:37-39 began to flow, and I began praying in tongues. I realize that we charismatics have learned to pray in tongues on cue—at the drop of a hat. Such prayers, however, are usually from the neck up and powerless.

This was prayer that I could feel flowing out of my spirit. And all the time I was praying, I could hear the words, “Don’t be afraid of death because I Am the Resurrection.” I immediately recognized these as the words that Jesus spoke to Martha just before he raised her brother from the dead (John 11:25).

I knew that the Lord was telling me not to fear the death of the vision and mandate He had given. I knew He was telling me that it would be brought back to life, not by my scheming and planning, but by His resurrection life and power.

A resurrection did occur in our lives and ministry. A yielding to God, a determination not to quit, a step of obedience, and resurrection power flowed forth. The ministry that came forth was not the same as before; for it came forth in His resurrection power and in ways we could never have planned or strategized.

There are many kinds of death that we may experience: the death of a relationship, the death of a career, the death of a vision or dream. If you have experienced death in any area of life, I encourage you to put your life in the hands of Him who declared, “I Am the resurrection!” Victory will come forth out of defeat. Life will emerge out of death. Success will arise out of failure. His words still ring true, “Don’t be afraid of death for I Am the Resurrection.”

Will America Have a Resurrection?

Many believe that America’s best days are over and that no national revival is in her future, but only continued moral, spiritual, and political decline. That was my belief until twelve years ago when I experienced a once-in-a-lifetime encounter with the Lord that upended my thinking in this regard.

It occurred one hot, July Saturday afternoon as I began a two-hour drive from Tulsa to Kingfisher, Oklahoma to speak for friends in the church they pastored in that town. As I pulled onto the highway, and without any expectation of any such thing happening, I suddenly was enveloped in God’s presence.

At the same time, my heart and mind began to be flooded with thoughts of hope and faith that America “could” experience another Great Awakening that would revive and renew the churches of America, impact our culture, and stem the tide of secularism, immorality, and false religion that is flooding our land.

I had studied revivals in history including American revivals such as the First and Second Great Awakenings. I had, however, given up hope of America ever seeing another such Awakening. But now, my heart was being filled with fresh faith and hope for another Great Awakening. This experience continued for at least seven hours in my vehicle and then in my hotel room.

Out of that Divine encounter, I also saw for the first time that the Great Awakening had a direct bearing on the founding of this nation. Without the First Great Awakening (1726-1770), there would have been no United States of America as we have known it.

Over the next few months, as I prayerfully wrote and did further reading and research, I began to see something I had not seen before. Not only was this nation birthed out of Spiritual Awakening, but God had preserved her through national spiritual awakenings coming at crucial times in our history.

As a result of this Divine encounter, I continue today praying in hope and faith for God’s resurrection life and power to be manifest once again across this land in another Great Awakening. I hope you will catch the vision and join me and thousands of others who are praying this same prayer.

 Out of the Divine encounter described above, have come books by Dr. Eddie Hyatt such as America’s Revival Heritage1726: The Year that Defined America, and Abolitionist Founding Fathers. These are available from Amazon and his website at http://eddiehyatt.com.



Praying the Lord's Prayer in the Power of the Holy Spirit

The horrific murders at Christian Covenant School in Nashville are another stark reminder of the presence of evil in our world. It is a reminder that we must be diligent to pray the prayer Jesus taught us to pray in the Lord's Prayer, “Deliver us from evil.”

In 50 years of following the Lord and seeking to understand His ways, I have found that the Holy Spirit will apply this prayer of Jesus through us with dramatic results. Sue and I discovered this in the first year of our marriage.


Sue and I Delivered Through Prayer in the Spirit

During the first year of our marriage, we were at a home prayer meeting and as everyone was kneeling around the room in prayer, one woman began to pray fervently in the Spirit, i.e., in other tongues. For reasons I did not understand, her prayer had a powerful impact on me, and I began to weep as I knelt at my chair in prayer.


Before we departed that evening, I said to this woman, “I felt that you were praying for me tonight.” She replied, “Yes, I felt I was praying for you and Sue.”


We learned why a short while later. On our way home, while crossing a 4-lane thoroughfare in our little Volkswagen Bug, I suddenly heard Sue scream, “Look out! Look out!” I turned and saw the nose of an 18-wheeler, going at a high rate of speed, filling the window of our little Bug and then I heard the crashing sound of crunching metal.


Thankfully, we were hit toward the rear of the car, spinning us around into another vehicle that was pointing in the opposite direction. We came within inches of death for it is hard to see how we could have survived if we had been hit broadside. I have no doubt that prayer in the Spirit saved us from the devil’s evil intentions that night.


Missionary Delivered Through Prayer in the Spirit

In the early 20th century, William Burton, a missionary to Africa, was stricken down with a tropical fever while travelling through the Congo. His friends decided he would not live and sadly left him semi-conscious at a village and continued on their journey.


Two hours later they were shocked when he caught up with them completely well. “What happened?” they asked. “I don’t know,” he replied, “But after you left, I felt something warm flowing through my body. I suddenly discovered I was well and decided to catch up with you.”


Around two years later, Burton was the guest speaker at a missionary convention in his home country of England and learned “the rest of the story.” After a meeting in which he told this story of his healing in the heart of Africa, a little woman came to him and said, “Brother Burton, do you keep a journal?” He replied, “Yes.”


She went on to tell how one day in prayer she was moved by the Holy Spirit to pray in other tongues and as she prayed she saw him stricken down. She said, “I continued to cry out to the Lord in other tongues until I saw you rise up and go on your way.” They compared their notes and the same time she was praying in England; he was healed in Africa.

The Conclusion of the Matter

Yes, we should pray every day the prayer Jesus taught us; that our family, friends, communities, and nation would be delivered from evil. I have no doubt that much tragedy can be avoided if we pray this prayer, guided and empowered by the Holy Spirit.


Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come, your will be done,

On earth, as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread,

And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation,


(Matthew 6:9-13)

Dr. Eddie Hyatt is an author, revivalist, and Bible teacher. His books are avaialble from Amazon and his website at http://eddiehaytt.com. His book, 1726: The Year that Defined America, shows the important role of prayer in America's founding generation.



I recently found myself awake in the middle of the night praying for a “Mount Carmel” sort of revival in our day. As I revisited the story of the fire of God falling from heaven on Elijah’s sacrifice on Mount Carmel, two characteristics stood out as vital for the church in America today: (1) Consecration and (1) Confrontation. 

Eliah Confronts King Ahab and the False Prophets of Baal

In I Kings 18 we have the story of Elijah confronting Ahab and challenging his prophets of Baal to a duel on Mount Carmel. Ahab accepted the challenge and assembled the 450 prophets of Baal and the people of Israel to Mount Carmel.

Elijah began by confronting the people with their duplicity and compromise. He asked, “How long will you falter between two opinions?” He then challenged, “If the LORD is God, serve Him, but if Baal, follow him.”

Elijah then laid down the mechanics of the duel. He and the prophets of Baal would each offer a sacrifice to their god and the god that answered by fire would be the God that Israel would serve. The people agreed.

Fire is often used in Scripture to symbolize the awe-inspiring presence of God. God appeared to Moses in a fiery burning bush. He led the children of Israel with a cloud by day and A pillar of fire by night. Tongues of fire sat upon the heads of the 120 who were filled with the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. Hebrews 12:29 says, Our God is a consuming fire. This is how “fire” is being used in this passage.

The prophets of Baal went first and one thing we learn about Baal worship is that it was very emotional and demonstrative. The prophets of Baal prayed, danced around their altar, shouted, and prophesied all day, but nothing happened. No fire fell on their sacrifice. Religious hype is a poor substitute for the real awe-inspiring presence and power of God.

Elijah Repairs the Altar of the Lord

When Elijah’s time came to pray, his first act was that he repaired the altar of the LORD that was broken down (I Kings 18:30). It was broken down because the Israelites had compromised their faith. They had mixed the worship of Yahweh with the worship of Baal. They had become religious pluralists—multiculturalists.

An altar is a place of consecration—a place of sacrifice where one is given completely over to God. Consecration was absent in Israel. They had broken the First Commandment wherein God had said, You shall have no other gods before me . . . you shall not bow down before them or serve them (Exodus 20:2-5).

In a similar way, the altar in American Christianity is broken down and in desperate need of repair. Like ancient Israel, many Christians in America have compromised their faith. They may not have bowed before a pagan shrine, but they have bowed to the gods and goddesses of cultural approval, social trends, and personal expediency.

In Elijah’s situation, the fire, did not fall until after the altar of the LORD was repaired. The fire of God is not going to fall on the American church until we repair the altar of the LORD that is broken down. And “repairing the altar of the Lord” must begin with God’s people, as II Chronicles 7:14 so clearly lays out.

 If My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

As we consecrate our lives anew to Him, we position ourselves to see the awe-inspiring presence of God manifest in our churches once again. When the fire of God fell on Mount Carmel, the people fell on their faces, crying out, “The LORD, He is God!” It can happen again!

A Personal Testimony of the Power of Consecration

My dad was a good Christian man who daily prayed, read his Bible, took his family to church several times per week, and tithed. However, he was lacking in consecration and only a prayer of consecration would bring the fire of God from heaven and the healing miracle that he would need.

Dad was working as a farm hand in west Texas when my older brother, Pete, who was seven years old was run over by a farm tractor. It was 1947 and I was three weeks old. Dad rushed Pete to the nearest hospital as blood and water bubbled out of his nose, mouth, eyes, and ears.

Three doctors examined him and said, “He probably won’t live more than ten minutes.” They explained that even apart from x-rays, they knew that Pete had a broken rib that had punctured a lung, which was the cause of the fluids coming out all his passages.

They wheeled Pete away and Dad was left alone in the small waiting room of the small-town hospital. There all alone he was confronted about his disobedience. His mind was suddenly consumed with the fact that for five years he had ignored the growing sense of God’s call to fulltime ministry. Having only a fourth-grade education and being a poor farm hand, it seemed impossible, and he had told no one.

He intuitively knew what he had to do. Stepping into a nearby restroom, he raised his right hand to heaven, and said, “Lord, I’m ready.” That was it; a three-word prayer!  It was, however, a prayer of consecration and the fire of God fell. Suddenly, the gift of faith dropped into his heart, and as he put it, “I knew that I knew that Pete was OK.”

Although he had to wait for an hour before any news was brought to him about Pete, his heart and mind were at perfect rest and peace. Eventually, one of the doctors emerged and said, “Mr. Hyatt, there has been a higher power here tonight.” He went on, “We know your son had a broken rib and punctured lung, but we have completed the x-rays, the bleeding has stopped, and he doesn’t have a broken bone in his body.”

A nurse who attended the same church as my parents was Pete’s attending nurse. She gave a testimony at church that she had never felt the tangible power and presence of God as she felt in Pete’s room. 

My dad went on to be a successful pastor in the Assemblies of God and presided over some very powerful revivals, including the one in which I was saved and filled with the Holy Spirit, some twenty-five years later. The fire of God fell when he repaired the altar of the Lord in his life.

Concluding Prayer

Yes, we need a Mount Carmel sort of revival in this generation. We need a revival of consecration that will bring the fire of God from heaven once again. The prayer and song, “Send the Fire,” by William Booth, cofounder of the Salvation Army, expresses the heart of every person longing for such heaven-sent revival.

God of Elijah hear our cry, send the fire. 

And make us fit to live or die, send the fire today.

To burn up every trace of sin, to bring the light and glory in. 

The revolution now begin, send the fire today.

To make our weak hearts strong and brave, send the fire. 

To live a dying world to save, send the fire today. 

Oh see us on Your altar lay, we give our lives to You today. 
So crown the offering now we pray, send the fire today.

Dr. Eddie Hyatt is the founder of the "1726 Project" and author of 1726: The Year that Defined America, which documents America's birth out of a great, spiritual awakening. His books are available from Amazon and his website at http://eddiehhyatt.com