Note From Henry Reyenga, President of Christian Leaders Institute (CLI):
The spirit of revival was in the air in 2006. That is the year CLI began offering free online Biblical training. The Azusa Street Revival included peoples from many nations. CLI is raising leaders for an international revival back to God. Thanks Dr. James J. Zoblisien for his submission of this wonderful eye witness account of the Azusa Street Revival.
Azusa Street Revival
by Dr. James J. Zobisien
Many out there that I have encountered has asked if the Holy Spirit is still effective as it was in the upper room during the Pentecost outpouring. We tend to see the devastation that is around us and lose focus about the power and the authority that we have through the Holy Spirit and question about God’s sovereignty. Unless you experience the Holy Spirit it would seem impossible to understand His magnificent presence and glory. The characteristic of the Holy Spirit doesn’t alter through out time, only that born of flesh is able to change.
Now, it has been some time since that day I attended the Azusa Street Revival in 2006 located in Las Angeles California, but the memories of that week is still refreshed in my heart and mind like it was yesterday. I can relate to those who were in that upper room with the disciples when the Holy Spirit descended upon the one hundred and twenty that was gathered in one accord. There sat upon them was a life changing experience…and so was for me. The Holy Spirit is at work for all of us today as He was the day of Pentecost.
We need to allow the presence and the anointing of the Holy Spirit to work in each of our lives that we can enjoy all what God has in store for us upon this earth. There are those who live out their lives traveling throughout the world hoping to experience something miraculous, where I had the opportunity in one week. Allow me to share with you that time I encountered the world.
Azusa Street Revival
1 When the day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it
filled the whole house where they were sitting.
3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.
4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as
the Spirit gave them utterance. (Acts 2:1-4 NKJV)
It has been many years since the last Pentecostal movement I attended back in 2006 in Los Angeles California during the Azusa Street Revival. I became a witness of one in thousand individuals who partaken this incredible mass movement.
This is the event that I had experienced and observed with my own eyes the week of the Azusa Street Revival Centennial in Los Angeles, a life-changing experience that has dramatically altered and transformed me into a different person in Christ. It was a week when the whole world united under one house (they were all with one accord in one place-verse 1), for one purpose.
This event brought thousands of people from different parts of the world gathering together in harmony, each searching what others crave with their lives. It was a time when the world put aside their differences in which your color, denomination, clothing, style, language, or origin did not matter. I was amazed to witness south meets north, east meets west, in agreement with people they never came into contact with before in their entire lives. All people from different continents came under one agenda, to seek out the same Pentecostal movement, that spiritual awakening, which first started in the upper-room in Jerusalem that later took place with one man named William Seymour.
Since the last out-pouring of the Holy Spirit that started one hundred years ago on the streets of Azusa in the year of 1906, many individuals have searched frantically for revival to come into existence, starting with their church, reaching through their cities eventually throughout the world. As I have read and seen many books that offer ways that lead into this great outpouring I have noticed that people waiting for revival will keep searching and waiting for maybe another one-hundred years. God said, “And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh” (Joel 2:28). I feel that Christians today are looking to far and to hard for revival promises and the Spirit to be poured out and just claim what the Word of God declares. The same Pentecostal movement does not have to be put off or wait another century which the world can experience the here and now. William Seymour stated, “The Lord Jesus is ready to fill the hungry, thirsty soul. Receive Him and He will fill you.” Could it be that simple and all we need is a hungry and thirsty soul to be filled by the out-pouring of the Holy Spirit and be willing to receive?
It was that first meeting of a Tuesday morning that we all congregated at the Los Angeles Convention Center to start our journey not only back in time but also for a renewal. Thousands assembled with their Christian family and joined in unity simultaneously as if all were closely knitted together. Hands from Russia joined with those from Africa, Asia with Canada and the United States linked with those from Iran. Rage of hate and anger was being replaced with embraces of love and encouragement. It’s as if heaven came down and rested right on earth and there was final peace between all of mankind. All hands extended towards heaven, praising and worshipping the true and living God, to the Almighty, the Ancient of Days. Voices rang out in harmony as if hymns of angels were being proclaimed saying, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty. Who was and is and is to come!” (Rev 4:8). Reverence to the Father was rising from the children of God as if where a sweet fragrance that engulfed all of heaven from the “Altar of Praise”. I felt like God was observing from heaven, looking down upon His children and gleamed with delight as if He Himself was waiting for this time in eagerness.
Tears that rolled down the faces of many burdened people where not of anguish due to opposition but of peace, hope, and the pure and holy love of God. Afflictions were being lifted, souls surrendering, nations being restored because of the lives being totally transformed in an instant from the old self to the new, due to the Power of the Holy Spirit.
The first sermon delivered on that blissful California morning, pertained to the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit Himself anointed and took rest upon the guest speaker as he delivered this powerful homily that created raves of cheer that echoed throughout the Convention center. Many relished as the air thickened with the presence of the Most Holy One (and it filled the whole house where they were sitting), weaving in and out of each person that was willing and hungry to receive. Nations burst into tongues that were unfamiliar to their primitive language (Then there appeared to them divided tongues) that only the Spirit could decipher. Different cultures were hearing their own language spoken by those from another continent, distant from their own country or nation. It was language that was created and ordained only by God that would fill His ears with splendor.
People from the world came to repentance as they wept under the weight of their sins as the Holy Spirit brought upon strong convictions. They were of young and old age, strong men of statue to fragile children who felt their hearts being beckoned back to the “Old Rugged Cross.” Besides the miracle of salvation, in one day there were three hundred people that received Baptism in that Pentecostal Holy Spirit. Others who have witnessed this miraculous event realized how it felt on that day in the upper room as well with William Seymour in that old house that now resides only the memories of past historical events.
That whole week of the Azusa Street Revival was filled with life changing, spirit filled sermons, inspirational worship that took all to different heights, and lectures from inspirational people who took you out of your seats to a newer pinnacle. Thousands hit the streets to be a witness of our Lord Jesus Christ daily to win the souls who where once in a lost and dying city. Los Angeles had no idea that it would be changed, transformed from the hand and grace of the Almighty God. The fog that once hovered over Los Angeles was replaced by the awesome and powerful presence of the Holy Spirit.
The world would soon be submerged in the Pentecostal revival as each countryman/woman takes what they have encountered back to their nation thanks to one mans desire for a Pentecostal movement in a small house who dwelt people with a hungry heart.
On a personal note, I myself will never be the same as I traveled the world in one week meeting the people that I will soon spend eternity with. I touched all seven continents of the world in this short week as we all were engulfed in the continual presence of the Supreme God. The nations had one interest, one desire to either bring earth closer to heaven or heaven closer to earth. I feel as though both were successful. If this is just a touch of heaven that I have encountered then I can’t wait for the real thing. My only prayer is that I hope that revival doesn’t stop where it ended but starts where it began.
It was an event that will remain in my mind as well in my heart for the rest of my life.
You can contact Dr. James Zoblisien for any details concerning this article.
Dr. James J. Zoblisien
Emmanuel Ministries International