Asuza Revival

LATERAL LINKS OF GREATNESS

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The impact of five individuals in American History

And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ

(Ephesians 4:11-12).

 

The title of this synopsis is Lateral Links of Greatness: the impact of five individuals in American History A BLACK HISTORY PRESENTATION

 

God has poured out his Spirit in the lives of great men and women during the history of our great nation.  During the last three centuries even pre-dating America as a nation, African Americans led the charge in the preparation of Christ’s return.  The Church played an instrumental part in representing the plight of African-Americans.  Whether an Apostle, a Prophet, a Pastor, a Teacher, or an Evangelist, in conditions of severe inequality, having experienced the chains of slavery, unrelenting racism or just life: The Joy of the Lord, lifted five individuals while facing great adversity:

1 Richard Allen
Richard Allen AME Church Founder

And He gave some Apostles: Richard Allen born 1760 wanted to worship unburdened from white preferential treatment.

Sarah Allen 1764 1849
Sarah Allen 1764 1849

Therefore, he founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church in 1794, the first independent black denomination in the United States. Sara Allen his wife, a great support to him also worked taking care of runaway slaves; including feeding and clothing them and helping organize men and women.  The Allen’s’ took on social welfare issues for church members and the community and now the AME church exists on five continents in 39 countries

7 Lee Jarena

And He gave some Evangelist: Jarena Lee (Born 1783) was a woman filled with the spirit of God who spoke at times while in attendance in Allen’s congregation.   She traveled to Philadelphia from her New Jersey home in Cape May, to worship.  She was given to evangelism; Allen recognized her ministry and approved her to preach. She became an itinerant preacher and was the first black woman to publish an autobiography in America in 1836. (quote)“ I had preached 138 sermons, and traveled between 27 and 28 hundred miles.  Returned from Brooklyn, and attended a quarterly meeting at Flushing. . . . Saturday evening I gave an exhortation, and preached Sunday afternoon at 3 o’clock, the Lord accompanied the word … I arrive safe at home, found my son and friends all well, and then heard the truth of his conversion, for which I yet give glory to God.

 

Early Pentecostals Lucy Farrow and William Seymour (African Americans) Pictured.
Early Pentecostals Lucy Farrow and William Seymour (African Americans) Pictured.

And He gave some Pastors: Lucy Farrow was the Pastor of a Holiness church in Houston she was also the niece of Frederick Douglas and worked as a governess to Reverend Charles Parham an early proponent of speaking in tongues and who coined the phrase glossalia: (speaking in other tongues) she left William J. Seymour, at the helm of her congregation when her job transferred her to Topeka, Kansas where Rev. Parham taught training classes on conviction, repentance, sanctification, healing and the work of the Holy Spirit.

32 B William J Seymour w wife Jenny Moore
William Seymour and wife Jenny (Moore) Seymour

And He gave some teachers:

William J. Seymour gleaned foundational teaching on the Holy Spirit.  Due to racism he was not even permitted to pray with the others while seeking the baptism of the Holy Spirit under Rev. Parham.  Nonetheless, Seymour hungered for more of God and was determined to learn.  Parham later noted that Seymour could recite word-for-word the teaching he learned while sitting at the door while Parham taught white ministers.  He later became Pastor of the famed Azusa Street Mission which gave rise to the Pentecostal Movement upon the Earth.

 From 1909 to 1914, roughly equal numbers of African Americans and whites came to him for ordination (in 1910 alone, Bishop Mason ordained 300 white Pentecostal preachers.
From 1909 to 1914, roughly equal numbers of African Americans and whites came to him for ordination (in 1910 alone, Bishop Mason ordained 300 white Pentecostal preachers.

And He gave some prophets: Charles Harrison Mason: founder of the Churches of God in Christ received the baptism of the Holy Spirit in 1906 at the Azusa Conference conducted by William Seymour.  In 1897, while in Little Rock, AR, Mason believed that God had given him the name the Church of God in Christ (COGIC).  He believed God promised him, “If you take the name that I give you, they would never build a building that would hold all those who would come.” In 1907 COGIC was incorporated. Mason Temple was constructed during WWII while construction materials were in high demand.  This was a miracle!  This task was completed for less than $400,000 making it the largest, black-owned convention hall in America.  Mason dedicated the nearly 5000 seat auditorium in 1945 visualizing the culmination of his dream.  From this efficis Dr. King, gave his final sermon on April 3, 1968.

From 1760 to 1960 FIVE magnanimous individuals are linked to progressively reveal the mandate of Christ until His return AMEN

FROM A GIN HOUSE The Early Years of COGIC

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Charles Harrison Mason 1866–1961
Founder of the Church of God in Christ (COGIC), the largest African-American Pentecostal denomination of the twentieth century.

These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also” (Acts 17:6b) must have been the headline in Jackson, Mississippi in June 1896.  The common interest and associative traits of Charles Harrison Mason, J.A. Jeter and W. S. Pleasant, led these men to diverge into Jackson to conduct a holiness revival at Mt. Helm Baptist Church where Charles Price Jones was the host.  The doctrine of Sanctification was the main theme.  They preached with fervency and dedication.  Baptist Churches responded by disallowing them to preach from their pulpits and expelled Pastor Jones and the others from the Jackson Baptist Association.  Nevertheless, a firm resolve held them to preach holiness which became the impetus that led to the birth of the Church of God in Christ.    The 1896 Jackson Revival was a part of an awakening in the atmosphere that led people to want to hear more of the Gospel of Grace through Sanctification.  The following year in Jackson with as many naysayers as supporters, Mason preached at the south-side entrance of the Jackson Courthouse.  The next day, a local resident John Lee, provided the living room of his home as a meeting place.  Soon, so many were flocking to hear holiness preached at the Lee House, the owner of an abandoned cotton gin, sixty three miles north of Jackson in Lexington, MS,  who gave Mason consent to hold meetings there.  This became the St. Paul Church in Lexington, MS, established by C.H. Mason, the first and oldest COGIC congregation in the world.

C.P. Jones changed the name of his church to the Church of Christ.  Many other holiness groups were forming and using similar names; Mason sought a name that would be ‘set apart’ from others.  In 1897, while in Little Rock, AR, Mason believed that God had given him the name the Church of God in Christ (COGIC).  Mason believed it was divinely revealed and biblically inspired taken from I Thessalonians 2:14, He believed God promised him, “If you take the name that I give you, they would never build a building that would hold all those who would come.” The movement adopted the name, and COGIC began to grow throughout the south and Mason and the other leaders were given oversight of specific regions.

This group became intensely narrower when C.H. Mason, D.J. Young and J.A. Jeter returned from the famed Azusa Revival in 1906.  There Mason received the baptism of the Holy Ghost.  Later Jeter and Jones disagreed with Mason’s report, saying ‘speaking in other tongues, as the Spirit gave utterance’ was the indication that one had received the baptism of the Holy Ghost.  They removed Mason from their fellowship the same year.  Mason contended to keep the name COGIC, he would not relent, knowing that the abundant perpetuity of COGIC somehow rested upon him retaining the name Church of God in Christ.  After years over the use of the name by Jones and Mason; Mason was awarded the original charter, making COGIC the first legally chartered Pentecostal body incorporated in the United States.

         

 SOURCES:

THE FOUNDER AND CHURCH HISTORY, COGIC.ORG

THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ARKANSAS HISTORY & CULTURE/CHARLES HARRISON MASON