Pentecost Has Come
The Apostolic Faith Magazine
Los Angeles Being Visited by a Revival of Bible Salvation and Pentecost as Recorded in the Book of Acts
World Pentecostalism cannot be understood without a “visit” to Azusa Street, scene of the widespread beginning of the Pentecostal Movement. Thankfully, a return to Azusa Street is made possible because of the foresight of early Pentecostals who published and preserved for history The Apostolic Faith magazine. The following report is the lead article from the very first issue of the Azusa Street paper, dated September, 1906. It is taken from Like as of fire: A Reprint of the Old Azusa Street Papers, privately compiled by Fred Corum in 1981 (160 Salem Street, Wilmington, MA 01887).
The power of God now has this city agitated as never before. Pentecost has surely come and with it the Bible evidences are following, many being converted and sanctified and filled with the Holy Ghost, speaking in tongues as they did on the day of Pentecost. The scenes that are daily enacted in the building on Azusa Street and at missions and churches in other parts of the city are beyond description, and the real revival is only started, as God has been working with his children mostly, getting them through to Pentecost and laying the foundation for a mighty wave of salvation among the unconverted.
The meetings are held in an old Methodist church that had been converted in part into a tenement house, leaving a large, unplastered barn-like room on the ground floor. Here about a dozen congregated each day, holding meetings on Bonnie Brae in the evening. The writer attended a few of these meetings and being so different from anything he had seen and, not hearing any speaking in tongues, he branded the teaching as third-blessing heresy and thought that settled it. It is needless to say that writer was compelled to do a great deal of apologizing and humbling of himself to get right with God.
In a short time God began to manifest His power and soon the building could not contain the people. Now the meetings continue all day and far into the night and the fire is kindling all over the city and surrounding towns.
Proud, well-dressed preachers came in to “investigate.” Soon their high looks are replaced with wonder, then conviction comes, and very often you will find them in a short time wallowing on the dirty floor, asking God to forgive them and make them as little children.
It would be impossible to state how many have been converted, sanctified and filled with the Holy Ghost. They have been and are daily going out to all points of the compass to spread this wonderful gospel.
The Old Time Pentecost
This work began about five years ago last January, when a company of people under the leadership of Charles Parham who were studying God’s word, tarried for Pentecost in Topeka, Kansas. After searching through the country everywhere, they had been unable to find any Christians that had the true Pentecostal power. So they laid aside all commentaries and notes and waited on the Lord, studying His word, and what they did not understand they got down before the bench and asked God to have wrought out in their hearts by the Holy Ghost. They had a prayer tower from which prayers were ascending night and day to God. After three months, a sister who had been teaching sanctification for the baptism with the Holy Ghost, one who had a sweet, loving experience and all the carnality taken out of her heart, felt the Lord lead her to have hands laid on her to receive the Pentecost. So when they prayed, the Holy Ghost came in great power and she commenced speaking in an unknown tongue. This made all the Bible school hungry, and three nights afterward, twelve students received the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, and cloven tongues could be seen upon their heads. They then had an experience that measured up with the second chapter of Acts and could understand the first chapter of Ephesians.
Now after five years something like 13,000 people have received this gospel. It is spreading everywhere, until churches who do not believe backslide and lose the experience they have. Those who are older in this movement are stronger, and greater signs and wonders are following them.
The meetings in Los Angeles started in a cottage meeting, and the Pentecost fell there three nights. The people had nothing to do but wait on the Lord and praise Him, and they commenced speaking in tongues, as they did at Pentecost, and the Spirit sang songs through them.
The meeting was then transferred to Azusa Street, and since then multitudes have been coming. The meetings begin about ten o’clock in the morning and can hardly stop before ten or twelve at night, and sometimes two or three in the morning, because so many are seeking, and some are slain under the power of God. People are seeking three times a day at the altar and row after row of seats have to be emptied and filled with seekers. We cannot tell how many people have been saved, and sanctified, and baptized with the Holy Ghost, and healed of all manner of sicknesses. Many are speaking in new tongues, and some are on their way to the foreign fields, with the gift of the language. We are going on to get more of the power of God.
Apostolic Faith was published from the Azusa Street Mission by William J. Seymour and Florence Louise Crawford. Five thousand copies of the first issue were distributed. Only thirteen issues were published from Los Angeles before Crawford moved to Portland, Oregon, to establish with the Apostolic Faith movement in the Northwest. The last issue was dated May, 1908.
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