It may have looked like the Texas Motor Speedway, but the organizer said it all the earmarks of the birth of “a new Jesus movement.”
With 90,000 young people filling the race track and 13,000 from 89 countries watching by live stream last week, that was how “Together 2018” felt to him and others present, according to Nick Hall. He called it the beginning of “a new Jesus movement.”
“Together 2018” was the work of Hall, founder of a group called PULSE, which partnered with more than 1,000 churches nationwide to make it happen – featuring major musical artists like Jesus Culture, Bethel Music and Lecrae and speakers including Francis Chan and Ravi Zacharias.
It was hardly the only hint of another Jesus Revolution under way – in America and around the world.
Earlier this month, Franklin Graham held a revival meeting in Monterrey, Mexico, where 16,000 packed an auditorium to hear the gospel.
“I told the full house at Arena Monterrey that there was nothing more valuable than a soul. Your soul lives inside your body and when your body dies, your soul will live forever in one of two places — heaven or hell,” he said. “Your soul’s destination depends on whether you accept or reject Jesus Christ during this life. It’s the most important decision you will ever make. The Bible tells us, ‘For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? (Mark 8:36).’ I’m thankful for the power of the Gospel and that many souls were saved this evening.”
Also, this month, at Liberty College in Louisiana 100 students were moved to turn their lives over the Jesus in a response the president of the college said he had never seen before.
“In my near 32 years in Christian higher education, I have never seen such a response to the Gospel,” said President Rick Brewer. “Despite peer pressure and their concerns about lunchtime, 100 of our students decided to get serious with God.”
Then there was Dare2Share that took place Oct. 13 – a nationwide effort involving 97 cities from Fairbanks and including Puerto Rico.
“We just believe it’s time for revival,” Dare2Share founder Greg Stier told CBN News from his home in Colorado. “We believe there’s a generation of teenagers that want to be about a cause. And the ultimate cause is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
Last month there was “Tent American 2018,” a week in which tens of thousands of Christians prayed at state capitals across the United States – for healing the nation and to celebrate the works God is doing.
Is something happening here like what happened in 1971?
Greg Laurie was a confused and troubled teen who heard the gospel preached one day. Two years later, he was preaching in churches. He sees many similarities between what was happening in the mid-1960s and what swept through the nation within five years.
“I was a 17-year-old kid. I was using drugs every single day. I was going in the wrong direction in my life,” until one day he fell upon a Bible study outside of his high school and decided to listen in. “I sat down close enough to eavesdrop on what was being said.”
Laurie remembered hearing someone make a statement of truth that changed the course of his life right there. One of the Bible study attendees said, “Jesus said, ‘You’re for me, or against me.’”
“I did not want to be against Jesus,” he said.
Laurie asked himself if his lifestyle was against Jesus and came to the realization that it was. Laurie gave his life to Christ that day.
Laurie remembers the violence and the upheaval of Vietnam, the assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy, the sexual revolution, the drug culture mantra of “tune in, turn on, drop out.”
“There was such chaos taking place in the culture, so Time magazine does this cover story, ‘Is God Dead?’” Laurie recalls. “Fast forward a few years later and Time’s got a new cover in psychedelic colors that says ‘The Jesus Revolution.’”
Laurie, who founded Harvest Fellowship and crusades around the world, was there early in that Jesus Revolution and would love to see another great harvest of souls to rival it.
He’s optimistic it can happen – and, in fact, is around the world in different places all the time. A prolific author of the more than 30 books has a new one out now titled, aptly, “Jesus Revolution.”
So is Michael Brown, an author and a national talk-radio host. He, like so many others, was smitten with Jesus in 1971.
“When I came to faith in Jesus in 1971 as a heroin-shooting, LSD-using, 16-year-old, Jewish, hippie rock drummer, I had no idea I was part of a worldwide spiritual happening known as the Jesus People Movement or Jesus Revolution. It even merited a cover story on Time Magazine, June 21, 1971,” he wrote last year.
“Interestingly, Jewish young people made up a conspicuously high number of these newly born-again hippies and rebels and radicals in the late 1960s and early 1970s.”
He also notes the return of “turbulent times again, with America deeply divided and radical student movements on the rise. And while it is true that many millennials are dropping out of organized religion, they are still on a spiritual search.”
Laurie says that search must be grounded.
“Let’s not sacrifice the Gospel for coolness … what this generation needs is not more cool stuff, they need Jesus Christ,” he said. “They need to know what the Bible says and they need it in a way that they can understand it.”
Laurie continued, “Our country was born in revival and we need another spiritual revival in America,” he said. “God can do it again, and we pray that He will.”