In 1952, an unheralded evangelist named, Tommy Hicks, was summoned to Argentina by a hopeful group of missionaries praying for revival. As his plane soared high above the clouds to Buenos Aires, the name, “Peron” kept coming to his mind. When he asked the flight attendant if she knew anyone by that name, she told him, “He is the president of Argentina!”
At that moment, Hicks knew divine destiny was amazingly leading him to meet “Peron,” i.e., the president of Argentina. The Spirit further impressed upon him it would be the restrictive President Peron who would assist him in helping to hold evangelistic campaigns in the nation’s largest stadiums.
”Preposterous and unfeasible,” were the thoughts of the missionary committee, who had invited this unknown evangelist in the first place. They believed a conference hall, holding no more than 2, 500 people, would more than exceed their expectations. Besides, Argentinian governmental policies especially, under Peron, strictly prohibited large gatherings for so called, evangelicos.
But Evangelist Hicks wouldn’t hear of it. He told the committee the Lord showed him a stadium of at least 25,000 people and a man called “Peron” was going to help him get the job done.
The next day the anointed evangelist tenaciously went to the Casa Rosado, (The Pink House), the equivalent to our, White House. But he was halted abruptly by a guard from the guard house pointing a loaded tommy-gun directly at his chest. The evangelist unflinchingly explained to the guard he came to solicit President Peron’s help, in holding salvation/healing crusades in the local coliseums. The guard queried Hicks if he actually believed Jesus could still heal as he did in Bible days. When the evangelist exclaimed, “He can and he will,” the guard proceeded to describe his ills from being plagued with hepatitis. Hicks authoritatively prayed the prayer of faith over him and he instantly felt all the pain leave his body. The astonished guard announced to Hicks and his translator, if they return at the same time tomorrow, he would arrange an interview with President Peron.
Unknown by many, the President himself was inflicted with eczema, an incurable skin disorder, so disfiguring, he refused to be photographed. Curious over the reported healing of his guard, Peron asked Hicks if believed Jesus still healed as he did when he was on earth. The evangelist said, “Give me your hand.” In a matter of moments, the power of God came so strong upon the presidente he staggered back under the impact. As the evangelist was praying, the diseased flesh on his face transformed before all their eyes into fresh new baby skin. The amazed Argentine president exclaimed with gratitude, “Caramba, Dios mio, estoy curado” (Good heavens, my God, I’m cured). This is the same president Peron, who years earlier, and before her untimely death to leukemia, married the infamous, Evita. (The same Evita was portrayed on Broadway and later played by Madonna singing, “Please Don’t Cry for Me Argentina”)
One article entitled, Revival Fires, reported:
The eczema disappeared! Permission to hold the campaign was assured. Huge traffic jams blocked all roads leading to the gigantic Huracan stadium in Buenos Aires during the most electrifying gospel crusade Argentina has ever seen. Many thousands travelled by means available from as far as Brazil, Chili, and Bolivia.
The blind saw, the deaf heard, cripples were walking. Ambulances full of sick passengers were driven to the meetings went away empty!
A boy of three had been unable to walk without heavy steel braces on his legs. When the crowd prayed, the boy’s mother took off his brace in faith. The child began to walk unaided! Delighted, he ran up and down. The ecstatic crowd shouted, cheered and wept for joy… A doctor who knew the child’s case was so overcome when he saw the miracle he fell down, grabbing Pastor hicks by the knees, saying, “I want this Christ; I want to be saved.”
I read of this revival many years ago when I was a very young 23 year old associate pastor. But what drew me to this story presently was something I hadn’t picked up on before. It was birthed by the heart cry of missionary Edward Miller who used “Where is the Lord God of Elijah?” as his rallying call.
I was stunned because I had already designed the front cover of this article before learning this.
Let me explain. For some years now I’ve been burdened beyond measure to see God do again what he did in my generation.
I grew up in the early seventies. Reflecting on that time I used to say, “I spent the summer of 73 with LSD.”
But then Jesus dramatically intervened on my life. I well relate to the great preacher Charles Spurgeon who wrote, “I did not light the torch but rather the torch lit me.” After reading the entire New Testament I went back to my high school and preached Jesus and they were amazed to hear me constantly talking about Jesus rather than my latest acid trip.
I thought I was all alone and this was only happening to me- some hippie kid in northwest Indiana. But then in the school library I picked up a copy of Life Magazine and saw 1000’s of hippies being baptized in the Pacific Ocean on the west coast. I discovered I wasn’t the only one after all; but this was happening all over and I had been caught in the aftermath.
Some years ago I was pastoring a church near Louisville and I stumbled on a YOU TUBE clip about the Emmy nominated documentary. “FRISBEE: The Life and death of a Hippie Preacher.” I bought a copy of the DVD on line and wept as I saw film footage of Lonnie Frisbee, a converted hippie, baptizing 1000’s of hippies at Pirate’s Cove, in Corona del Mar, California.
I determined one day my feet would touch the same beach and there I would pray that God would do it again. Last month that aspiration came to fruition, when I flew to California, from Indianapolis, and was able to pray on that sanctified sand where so many lives had been changed. I squatted down and bowed my head in back of the cove to pray around 7:30 in the morning. The insides of me began to stir and then I heard the Spirit whisper, “This isn’t about Me repeating it…it’s about Me completing it.”
After returning to Indianapolis I was over laying my photos on my PC of the baptism site with earlier images when Lonnie was there. As I looked over the images of the 100’s of hippies lining up and awaiting to be baptized, a cry came from my spirit, “Where is the Lord God of Elijah?” And now I’m confronted with the realization the same cry came from the heart of missionary Edward Miller before the great Argentinian revival in the 50’s.
Again the Spirit spoke to me: “The next wave of My Spirit will not only attain but will also contain.” While driving, my mind centered upon Jesus’ first visit to Peter in Luke 5. There he told Peter to launch out into the deep. Peter told the Lord they had toiled all night but had caught nothing…”Nevertheless at your word we will cast our nets.” The haul of fish was so plentiful they had to beckon to their fishing partners to help haul them all in. But verse 6 says, “…and their nets began to break.”
Immediately my mind fast forwarded to another fishing story involving Jesus and Peter after the resurrection. In John 21 we see the disciple Peter still nursing his inner wounds from denying Christ, returning to his earlier career in fishing. There, on the sea shore, stands an unrecognizable Christ telling the exhausted fishermen to cast their net on the other side of the boat. Their net is instantly filled to capacity. John says to Peter, “It is the Lord.” The haul of great fish was very large – 153 altogether. Then verse 11 says, “…and although there were so many, the net was not broken.”
Then, out of nowhere, I heard, “In the next move, the Lonnie Frisbees aren’t going to be lost in their relapses.” And then very clearly, and in capital letters, the words appeared to my mind, “IN THE NEXT MOVE, THE SPIRITUAL FATHERS ARE NOT GOING TO REJECT THEIR SONS.” This next move of the Spirit is going to be one of restoration, not excommunication. (Luke 1:17).
This move will be more restorative than authoritative. The cry from the heart is “ABBA Father” not “Father, ABBA.” Intimacy must always proceed before authority. (Romans 8:15)
You see, Jesus, the good shepherd, wouldn’t allow, Peter, his lost sheep, to remain lost. He came to him after his failure, just as he did before his failure. The commission remained the same and the catch of fish was just as great. But this time the nets weren’t going to break. He was going to contain what he attained and none of the haul was going to be lost. Peter became a great spiritual father to those who had failed.
The Lord is calling back the prodigals of the previous generation to be spiritual fathers of restoration to the prodigals of this generation.
The message of the gospel depicted by Peter is simply this: “I treat you as though you never did it. I will always treat you as though it never happened. People may treat you differently now, but I, your Lord, will always be “the same, yesterday, today, and forever.”
In the next wave, more people will be falling forward on their faces than backwards on the floor. Because this move will prioritize prophecy over tongues, the results will mark the (5) signs of true revival as found in I Corinthians 14:23-24, “Therefore if the whole church assembles together and all speak in tongues…will they not say you are mad? But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an ungifted man enters, (1) he is convicted by all, (2) he is convinced by all, (3) the secrets of his heart are revealed; (4) and so he will fall on his face, worship God, (5) and report that God is certainly among you.” Now that is true revival!
In the next wave, the word “GO,” is going to be elevated as an equally important prerequisite for revival as prayer and fasting. People like Tommy Hicks and Lonnie Frisbee were always on the “go.” They didn’t just sit around to pray and wait for things to happen – they made things happen. This move is going to be all about Jesus’ commission In Matthew 28:19, Go therefore and make disciples…for lo, I am with you always…” I frequently reiterate to my younger Christian brothers, “No go, no lo.” Jesus said, “Go…for lo, I am with you always.” If we want the “lo” then we got to “go.” There’s another way to have beautiful feet than an expensive pedicure. “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news.”(Romans 10:15). The last verse in the gospel of Mark climaxes with: “And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them, and confirmed the word with signs following.” Lonnie Frisbee “went out” witnessing by hitch hiking up and down the west coast, inevitably connecting him to Calvary Chapel, and the rest is history.
I conclude with the yearning question, “Where is the Lord God of Elijah? In the next wave, the younger disciples are not going to subtly drift away from their spiritual mentors. (II Kings 2). The God of Elijah is now with the Elisha(s). In order for the mantle of Elijah to be received there had to be a stick-to- it-ness in the life of Elisha.
But a man is only to be served as an Elijah mentor when he has the ability to take you to the other side of Jordon. The mantle is never transferred in the desert of defeat where Moses received the law at Sinai. A Moses will never take you to the promised land of victory. He looked in but never entered in. Elijah’s mantle carried with it the power to cross over the river Jordon-to a land that flowed with milk and honey. The mantle resides on those who are able to deliver people from the desert to the Promised Land –from living under Law to living under grace. (John 1:17; Romans 6:15)
The next move is not going to fade in glory, but exceed in glory, because it’s not going to mix legalism and religion in with it. It’s going to remain a ministry of the New Covenant and refuse to put the new wine in old wine skins. (Mark 2:22; II Corinthians 3).
The next wave is going to begin small, like a cloud the size of a man’s hand, then emerge as one of the largest outpourings this world has ever seen.
The exercise of all spiritual gifts, are going to be restored back to the church. (I Corinthians 12)
It’s going to come out of nobodies, not from somebodies. (I Corinthians 1)
Mega-churches will soon discover man-made strategies for church growth will pale in comparison to what the power of the Holy Spirit can do in a small struggling church in one single day! It’s going to arrive, in weakness, and not with enticing words of man’s wisdom but in the “demonstration of the Spirit and of power.”(I Corinthians 2) Drug addicts, of all types will be delivered in just one day, without any withdraw symptoms, and not by a program, but by a person, and that person is: the Lord Jesus Christ. By His grace ALONE, Bro. Paul Siddall firstname.lastname@example.org