Bookmark and Share print

Way of Life Literature

 

Publisher of Bible Study Materials

Burlington Tent Revival Followup
Updated August 10, 2016 (first published August 4, 2016) (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org;)
For related reports also see:
1.
Burlington Tent Revival Ends
2. Burlington Tent Revival Follow Up (This Report)
3.
Burlington Revival Defenders
4.
Burlington Tent Revival Leaders and Sincere Men of God
5.
Burlington Tent Revival Correction and Update

Y
esterday we published “Burlington Tent Revival Ends.” It can be found at the Way of Life web site.

The report brought a lot of angry comments and personal attacks, but not one person replied to the substance of my warning, which is that the Burlington Revival was shallow and insufficient when measured biblically and that it does not have the power to change the character of those majority of Independent Baptist churches that are heading toward the emerging church because of their weak character and lack of true wisdom.

The Burlington Revival didn’t address the issue of building bridges to the world of contemporary Christian music and jazzed up contemporary Southern Gospel, because its leaders and speakers (including Kenny Baldwin, who spoke at the Burlington youth meeting) are guilty of this sin. (See “
Fundamental Baptists and Big Daddy Weave” at the way of Life web site.) This one thing alone is going to destroy the biblical character of every church that engages in it, and it will happen within one generation.

To my knowledge, the Burlington Revival didn’t address the widespread error of Quick Prayerism or the widespread biblical shallowness in preaching and widespread ignorance of important issues on the part of pastors and the frightful lack of biblical depth in the average Ind. Baptist church or the widespread shallowness and worldliness of youth ministries or the damnable, man-following, tradition-bound pragmatism that is rampant among Independent Baptist preachers. Further, the Burlington Revival wrongly promoted a unity contrary to 1 Corinthians 1:10 unity. The Burlington “in essentials” broad tent unity promotes lowest-common-denominator thinking and compromise of the biblical “all things” stance (Mat. 28:20).

I am not some crackpot “critic.” What I am deeply, passionately concerned about, my sincere heart and motive in this business, is that there will be sound churches in 10-15 years when my grandchildren are grown.

And I am not an armchair theologian. I have been fighting the battle for the next generation in the churches for decades. I have prepared serious biblical materials to help churches fight this battle. I have preached conferences in many parts of the world geared toward winning and keeping the next generation and building the kind of homes and churches that can accomplish this goal. And we have established these kind of churches and homes in our own missionary work.

Instead of dealing with the substance of my warning, the vast majority of the critics pointed out that there was some good fruit (which we gladly acknowledged in the report), then hastened to their real objective, which was to rail on me as a Pharisee, a viper, playing God, a jealous man who is seeking to increase traffic to my web site, a lover of contention, a wolf in sheep’s clothing, self-righteous, a judge, tradition bound, a hater of revival, idiotic, stupid, a busybody, and other choice things, contrary to God’s command in 1 Timothy 5:1, “Rebuke not an elder, but intreat
him as a father...”

If ignoring the substance of Scriptural warnings and mocking and railing on the reprover is the fruit of the Burlington Revival, and I am here to tell you that it is, then I was absolutely right in my report.

Here is a sample:

“You should probably just worry about South Asia and keep out of the things you don’t have a clue about. You were not there as I watched half of my family come to a saving knowledge of Christ and totally change! You were not there to see my cousin surrender to the call to preach and my other cousin be pulled from depression and find God’s love and salvation. ... You can turn your ears from this truth or you can apologize but you sir are wrong for your so-called ‘ministry.’ I think you opened people’s eyes to the fact that there certainly are still Pharisees, vipers, wolves in sheep’s clothing. Thank you for the reminder and the challenge to continue in what God is doing here in America. Thank you for the reality check that there are men who keep their mind set on their own ministry and don’t live their life tearing others down. I have contacted a few pastor friends of mine who have supported you in the past, they will no longer.”

I replied to this man along the following lines:

youth-conference
“I’m glad to hear of the blessings in your family from the revival. In the report I said that I was glad for the prayer that went into the meeting and stated that there was doubtless some good fruit in answer to prayer. But that doesn’t mean we should shut our eyes to error. You will not find support for that principle anywhere in Scripture. I thought you would be interested to see a photo of one of our youth conferences in our ‘so called ministry.’ This is our latest work. We started this ministry in 1979 and had the privilege of starting, with our coworkers, the first Baptist church in this dark land. We are experiencing real spiritual revival. People are getting saved out of darkest heathenism; many have been delivered from demon possession. Our young people are on fire for the Lord, and 90% of them are seeking God’s will and separating from the world according to Romans 12:1-2 and are learning how to be real students of the Bible. And we are careful to teach these precious people that God commands us to prove all things and not to be ‘simple’ as Proverbs 14:15 warns about and to care about the whole counsel of God rather than mere fragments thereof. If I have reported something that isn’t true, please let me know so I can correct it. Otherwise, I suggest that you prayerfully read Proverbs 14:15; Matthew 7:15-23; 2 Corinthians 11:1-4; 1 Thessalonians 5:21; 2 Timothy 4:2; 1 Peter 5:8; 1 John 4:1, which give the authority for measuring the Burlington Tent Revival and everything else by God’s Word. As for your contacting preachers in an attempt to hurt us financially, you are wasting your time. I know by 43 years of wonderful experience that ‘God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply.’” Bro. Cloud

Following are some of the other type of comments I received from preachers:

“Saw your article on Burlington Revival. I agree with you. I was wondering if you were also aware that at the 7-29-16 Burlington Tent meeting where the Billy Graham team was in attendance, BGEA VP TOM PHILLIPS WAS ASKED TO COME TO THE PLATFORM AND GIVE THE OPENING PRAYER. The compromise goes way deeper than just the picture of CT with the BGEA team.”
__________

“I watched a few services live, have preached for one of the local pastors that was promoting this, and have preached in about 10 churches in that area. To say everything that needs to be said would require a book. Extra-Scriptural revelation, HAVING AN ASSEMBLIES OF GOD PASTOR OPEN IN PRAYER ONE NIGHT, Charismatic phraseology (claiming a special anointing, authority, and liberty that comes with a tent). So much is unScriptural there. One of the big events was the profession of faith by Harrison, who promptly announced a call to preach and is now, as a novice, preaching meetings as a self-proclaimed evangelist. Another fact is that you can look at services of New Hope on the Internet and observe [mostly] empty seats. I wonder if there’s been any growth because of the ‘Revival’? The sinners who ‘went forward’ to be saved, the ones I watched, were counseled for a minute or two and declared saved. We know that is a problem. So much could be said.”
___________

The miracle of Youtube allowed me to see the live services for myself. My observations were the following:

1. Too much singing (often very emotional, and often an hour)
2. Too long of an invitation (sometimes up to 30-60 min)
3. Not enough preaching (usually the shortest part of the service; they even had one service with no preaching!)
4. Not enough real preaching: Mr. Townsend takes a text and launches from it. He is not an expositional preacher, but what I call a pointless ranter
5. Pride: I saw pride come forth from this meeting in several ways:

a. I messaged them on Facebook to inquire as to how they were introducing converts to local churches, and of their vetting process of altar workers, and never received an answer.
b. I commented that Bible-believers ought not to be associating with the ecumenical crowd, or promoting such things, which caused me to be banned from the Facebook page.
c. I commented the same on CT Townsend’s Twitter account, which caused me to be banned from his personal Twitter page.
d. The picture of him with the Billy Graham Association is taken down, but no apology has been made for it.
e. CT Townsend named his website after himself (this is a personal preference that I do not care for)

6. Very poor discernment: Unfortunately, many prominent figures in the IFB movement have apparently fallen in love with CT Townsend. I know that many have been sucked in. We, sadly, do not have thinking congregations/pastors in our day that compare what they see/hear with Scripture, but instead accept almost anything that looks/hears/feels good!
__________

“I know you are already being railed at for speaking against the meeting, BUT, what you wrote is correct and only touches the surface. My church is not far from the event, an event which has caused harm to true Christianity in this area!!! I watched 5-6 nights and warned my people not to attend. ... Again, rest assured that your article just touches the surface of the fiasco! Thanks for the article!”
__________

“Good article on the circus called revival in Burlington. Expect some major blowback from it. It goes to the heart of problems in IFB churches. They’ll defend it with their lives. They are too emotionally invested in this kind of nonsense. Thanks for standing for truth!”
__________

“I imagine you’ve probably received some negative mail today especially with your new article about the Burlington Revival. ... You are absolutely right. As soon as someone walked an aisle they were pretty much declared saved. This revival really hits close to home with me as I live about 45 minutes away and work about 25 minutes away from the tent location. ... Another thing I’ve seen that is concerning is that at New Hope Baptist have a drum set and for one service someone sang ‘In Christ Alone.’ The people supporting this revival don’t care about the ecumenism, the music, the man-centeredness. They just care about getting people down an aisle to make a profession. In one service they had over an hour of music, 20 minutes of preaching, and an hour long altar call. I have two photos which I screen captured from Sunday night at New Hope Baptist right after the revival ended. [The auditorium had just a scattering of attendees.] You can’t even tell that a revival just happened there. Keep up the good work, brother. I did not know you were going to comment on the Burlington Revival but I am glad you did and it gave me encouragement and boldness to speak against these things no matter how many people are against you. God Bless.”

For related reports also see:
1.
Burlington Tent Revival Ends
2. Burlington Tent Revival Follow Up (This Report)
3.
Burlington Revival Defenders
4.
Burlington Tent Revival Leaders and Sincere Men of God
5.
Burlington Tent Revival Correction and Update


copyright 2013, Way of Life Literature

- Receive these reports by email
- "About" David Cloud
- www.wayoflife.org

______________________

Sharing Policy: Much of our material is available for free, such as the hundreds of articles at the Way of Life web site. Other items we sell to help fund our expensive literature and foreign church planting ministries. Way of Life's content falls into two categories: sharable and non-sharable. Things that we encourage you to share include the audio sermons, O Timothy magazine, FBIS articles, and the free eVideos and free eBooks. You are welcome to make copies of these at your own expense and share them with friends and family, but they cannot be posted to web sites. You are also welcome to use excerpts from the articles in your writings, in sermons, in church bulletins, etc. All we ask is that you give proper credit. Things we do not want copied and distributed freely are items like the Fundamental Baptist Digital Library, print editions of our books, electronic editions of the books that we sell, the videos that we sell, etc. The items have taken years to produce at enormous expense in time and money, and we use the income from sales to help fund the ministry. We trust that your Christian honesty will preserve the integrity of this policy. "For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward" (1 Timothy 5:18).

Goal:Distributed by Way of Life Literature Inc., the Fundamental Baptist Information Service is an e-mail posting for Bible-believing Christians. Established in 1974, Way of Life Literature is a fundamental Baptist preaching and publishing ministry based in Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. Brother Cloud lives in South Asia where he has been a church planting missionary since 1979. Our primary goal with the FBIS is to provide material to assist preachers in the edification and protection of the churches.

Offering: We take up a quarterly offering to fund this ministry, and those who use the materials are expected to participate (Galatians 6:6) if they can. We do not solicit funds from those who do not agree with our preaching and who are not helped by these publications. We seek offerings only from those who are helped. OFFERINGS can be mailed or made online with with Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or Paypal. For information see: www.wayoflife.org/about/makeanoffering.html.