Academic journal article Baptist History and Heritage

Baptists and Their Revivals

Academic journal article Baptist History and Heritage

Baptists and Their Revivals

Article excerpt

If you grew up Baptist in the South, revivals were a part of life. Powerful memories are etched in stone. I still could sing "Just As I Am" (we don't) even though our youth group growing up would count the number of verses we'd sing it in one service (over twenty sometimes). "Lord I'm Coming Home," "Softly and Tenderly," "Nothing but the Blood," "Amazing Grace," became second nature and were "how" we often "did" church. Of course I remember the revivalist who once criticized long hair and my brother (we were "PK's") challenged him--in the service. And I remember the two week revivals and especially the one where the preacher said we better think about our eternal destiny carefully before we left church that night because we never know if that "Mack" truck would get us in an accident before the service the next night.

I am sure many of you have similar powerful memories, both good and bad, positive and painful. This issue of the BHHS journal is for you--an examination of the role of revivalism in the Baptist past--and future. But if you aren't familiar with the stories, read this issue as well. To understand Baptists, you need to read about Baptists and conversion, the pull of personal heart-felt experience of God, the indispensable interplay between church and the individual, the risks and rewards (depending on perspective) of emotional (or at least warm) faith and so on. …

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