Edinburgh 1905

Soon after the beginning of the Welsh Revival in 1904, a man called Joseph Kemp from Edinburgh went to Wales, where he spent a couple of weeks observing and experiencing the work and power of the Holy Spirit there. On his return he attended a large meeting in Charlotte Chapel. As he recounted his experiences there was an eager response to his story. A man asked for prayer and was the first of hundreds who became Christians during the subsequent revival in Charlotte Chapel. For a whole year prayer meetings were held, increasing in number and intensity, and characterised by passionate praying.

Joseph Kemp commented: “The people poured out their hearts in importunate prayer. I have yet to witness a movement that has produced more permanent results in the lives of men, women and children. There were irregularities, no doubt; some commotion, yes… After the first year of this work we had personally dealt with no fewer than one thousand souls, who had been brought to God during the prayer meetings.”

An account of one meeting reports that ‘the fire of God fell’. A sudden overwhelming sense of the reality and awfulness of His presence and of eternal things was experienced. Prayer and weeping began, and gained in intensity every moment. As on the day of the laying of the foundation of the second Temple, the people could not discern the noise of the shout of joy from the noise of the weeping of the people. (Ezra 3:13)…Friends who were gathered sang on their knees. Each seemed to sing, and each seemed to pray, oblivious of one another. Then the prayer broke out again, waves and waves of prayer, and the midnight hour was reached. The hours had passed like minutes. It is useless being a spectator looking on, or praying for it, in order to catch its spirit and breath. It is necessary to be in it, praying in it, part of it, caught by the same power, swept by the same wind.

One who was present says: “I cannot tell you what Christ was to me last night. My heart was full to overflowing. If ever my Lord was near to me, it was last night.”