Ada Oklahoma Revival

Ada’s Revival History

Living as a charismatic in 2024 presents interesting challenges, especially as a pastor. Due to the negligence of publishers and media distributors such as Elijah List, Destiny Image, and Charisma News, new and novel teachings and practices are running amok in the movement. Using certain types of oils and crystals to heal certain illnesses, using Gnostic spirit travel methods to get your prayers answered, and strategic spiritual warfare are a few examples of extrabiblical practices that seem to be growing in popularity.

One trend, which is certainly not as harmful as the above-mentioned ones, is that of “prophetic history.” It has become increasingly popular within the charismatic movement to tell the story of the church’s “lineage” or their mystical “purpose” as a way to gain the attention and support of those visiting the church. “Why join our church, you may ask? Well, because we are part of this grand prophetic word about the billion-soul harvest,” some will say. Others may appeal to “so and so, the famous evangelist used to pastor here; by joining into this discipleship lineage, you too will receive the mantle that is being passed down by his or her spiritual sons and daughters.”

In fact, we could even build a legend like this right here in Ada. According to legend, a 17-year-old Oral Roberts was healed in a church right here in Ada, Oklahoma. In fact, if you do a little digging, you can find that this legend actually has some legs to it. Apparently, Oral Roberts had written a letter that he sent to Abbas House Worship Center, where he writes, “This was the site where, 70 years ago, the Lord healed me of tuberculosis. Here, at 6200 North Townsend, in a big tent, Reverend George Munsey had erected it during the first healing revival that my hometown, Ada, Oklahoma, had ever known. He had come from the Church of God to aid at the time, and I was in the last stages of tuberculosis at the age of 17. My sister, Jewell, had told me that God was going to heal me, and that was my first indication in my spirit that there was a possibility that I could live and not die.”

One could take this story, or others like it, and weave a grand prophetic narrative on how “God wants to awaken the wells of healing here in Ada. The anointing of Oral Roberts, the Healing evangelist, will once again be poured out over the churches in Ada, and usher in a great healing revival”. Having grown up in a church that was planted by a famous evangelist myself, and having recently watched the recent unfolding scandal of the International House Of Prayer, I question if these cultures are helpful to the Gospel at all.

Don’t get me wrong; my pastor was a great man, and God did use him mightily, but why couldn’t obedience to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission be enough? What about being connected to the “spiritual heritage” of a man or woman should we long for? You don’t need the “spirit of Elijah”; you have the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead. You don’t need some prophetic word about the Kansas City Chiefs winning the Super Bowl to find meaning in your church membership; Jesus bought you with His precious blood!

Praise be to God if he would do it again, and no shame on anyone who is praying for another great move of God here in Ada. As I stated earlier, I am charismatic. I do believe in the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit working through believers today by way of supernatural gifts. This means God very well may have shared a word with someone about something great happening in the future, and God very well may have used a prophet, evangelist, or pastor supernaturally in a given location. Nonetheless, this does not mean we should build our entire missional narratives around these prophetic words or people. The mission of the church was established by Jesus in the Great Commission and the Great Commandment. If God has shared with you a plan and purpose of His, store that up in your heart like Mary, so that when it comes to pass, you will know that His word has accomplished it. By sharing the word around, you will never know if God accomplished His word, or if you were just really good at marketing what you thought God said.

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