Recent Comments


Reports indicate that Asbury University experienced a revival during the spring semester of this year. On Feb. 8, 2023 their regular chapel services didn’t end, but continued for over two weeks until the university stopped the meeting on Feb. 23. This school was no stranger to revival, as it has experienced it numerous times throughout its history, but most notably in 1970.

This raised the question: what is revival? Some questioned whether religious fervor alone constituted revival or if salvation decisions and repentance were prerequisites.

Merriam/Webster defines revival as:

an act or instance of reviving : the state of being revived: such as
a: renewed attention to or interest in something
b: a new presentation or publication of something old
c(1): a period of renewed religious interest
(2): an often highly emotional evangelistic meeting or series of meetings

Revival can be seen in both the renewed attention and religious interest experienced by Asbury University during their chapel services. The word “reviving” itself means to “return to consciousness or life: become active or flourishing again,” and its Latin root, “revivere,” means “to live again” (revivify is a cognate).

The weekend after the revival began at Asbury, Cedarville University (the school where I teach) experienced revival on a smaller scale. Our chapel on Monday, Feb. 13 including a song during the sermon when people began to come and pray. This continued past the chapel dismissal time and on into the afternoon and evening. Two students received Christ in that morning service. There was special prayer as part of chapel on Tuesday, and an extended time of worship on that evening, and one student accepted Christ as part of that service. The next night, students were encouraged to share the gospel at other universities.

According to the dictionary definition, there was a revival at Cedarville University. Whether it was a short-term event or the beginning of a movement of God is yet to be seen.

Revival is possible at any time, as long as we focus our attention on God and allow Him to be Lord over our lives. Whenever we die to ourselves and allow His Spirit to work in us, we are being revivified through His Spirit. We can and should be living in a spirit of revival. Isaiah 57:15 says:

For thus says the High and Lofty One
Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:
“I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,
To revive the spirit of the humble,
And to revive the heart of the contrite ones.”

3 comments to Revival

  • Brayden Groff

    I think that talking about revival and what we mean by the word is very important, especially in the context of what our campus has experienced this semester. I think that we have to be careful to make sure that when we call something a revival, we are not doing so simply because we like the title of that. A revival can only happen when God is working graciously among his people. Our effort means nothing if we aren’t seeking and exalting the Lord alone. We must check our hearts are make sure that we don’t want revival for heightened emotions, self-righteous gain, or any other selfish motive but rather to Glorify God and give hime honor for a work that can only be explained by him.

  • Ben Rowell

    This topic is definately a timely topic with all the events happening at schools across the country. As a Cedarville student, I was able to be involved in a lot of the experiences that were mentioned in this article. One unfortunate part that I saw come with the revivals were doubts about its true sincerity. Many people at Cedarville that I know had a concern that the so called revivals were people chasing after an emotional experience which is centered on self rather than God. This is often a concern that follows Bible and missions conferences at Cedarville each year which traditionally include repeated altar calls asking people to come forward to the stage. While I understand the speculation over the sincerity of these events, I feel that what happened at Cedarville this spring was truly out of sincerity of heart. As was mentioned in Isaiah 57:15, revival comes to the spirit of the humble and those of contrite heart. I believe that many in the student body were in places of brokenness and felt a need for God to move in a special way. Personally, the moments of revival provided opportunities for me to worship and come before God in ways that I had not done before. I found myself kneeling, singing, and crying over my open Bible all at the same time in the middle of the chapel service. This was not a response to what everyone else was doing or the general emotions of the room, but God had been convicting me of my sinfulness and his true love and redemption of me. While these moments of revival for me and the student body as a whole did not mean that the Spirit was not present in every other chapel of the year, but I truly believe that God worked in a special way among thousands of people with broken and contrite hearts to turn our hearts to him in worship, prayer, and sharing the Gospel with others.


    Revival is touchy yet clearly explained in the Bible. I’m happy I got to experience one in my lifetime because I got to witness the Holy Spirit moving rapidly in peoples lives that I know and love. I think it is important to recognize the revival but not but the experience as the top interest. The most important thing about a revival is that it brings more people to bow before Christ.