Logan County, Kentucky Revival
Red River Meeting House
GPS: 36.720890, -86.814763
Original Location Of Red River Meeting-House - Present Structure In Distance
Red River Meeting House
Red River Meeting House
Sign Located on Hwy. 68-80, near S. Union Shaker Village
Sign GPS: 36.884843, -86.660880
Gasper River Meeting House & Cemetery Location
GPS: 36.909511, -86.655823
1803 Recollections of The Logan County Revival
by James McGready
A SHORT NARRATIVE OF THE REVIVAL OF RELIGION IN LOGAN COUNTY
In the State of Kentucky, and the adjacent settlements in the State
of Tennessee, from May 1797, until September 1800.
In January 1797, I took the charge of three congregations, viz. Red river, Muddy river, and Gasper river.
(@ Gasper River) – An universal deadness and stupidity prevailed in these congregations till the May following, when the Lord visited Gasper river congregation with an out-pouring of his Spirit. A very considerable number, both of men and women, were awakened to a deep and solemn sense of their sin and danger.
Summer – 1797
(@ Gasper River) – During the course of the summer, about eight or nine person (humbly hope) were savingly brought to Christ; two of whom were aged persons.
Winter - 1797-1798
(@ Gasper River) – During the winter, a general declension seemed to take place; coldness and deadness overspread the congregation: this struck a general alarm to all praying Christians. The people of God were painfully exercised about the perishing state of sinners, and sorely distressed under the gloomy appearance of the Spirit’s withdrawing, and the work of God ceasing. Particular times were set apart for prayer, and the last Saturday in each month was set apart as a day of fasting and prayer to God for the church of Christ.
(@ Gasper River) – No comfortable appearance of the revival of the Lord’s work took place until the fourth Sabbath in July, 1798, when the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was administered.
(@ Gasper River) – This was indeed a very solemn time throughout; but especially on Monday, the Lord poured out his Spirit in a very remarkable manner, to the awakening of a great number of person; very few families could be found in the congregation, where less or more were deeply and solemnly impressed.
(@ Muddy River) – Again, at Muddy river Sacrament, on the first Sabbath of September, a very general awakening took place. During this time, a goodly number, I hope, were savingly brought to Christ, who still appear to walk agreeably to their profession. This blessed work seemed to overspread the country with the greatest rapidity.
(@ Red River) – In Red river congregation and the Clay-lick, (a neighboring vacancy, where I preach a week-day once in three weeks) great numbers were solemnly awakened; in almost every house, and in every company through these congregations, the whole conversation was about the state of their souls. God’s people began to rejoice at the happy situation of the church—Christ’s cause triumphing, and no enemies to move their tongues against it;—no opposition nor opposers showed their faces. But alas! danger was near—the Devil had his plan deeply laid: Mr. B____, from H____, raised a party, opposed the work, and filled the country with contention and disputation; till, alas! in a few weeks, every appearance of a conviction seemed to be lost, and scarcely a sentence was to be heard about religion, with many who, but a few weeks before seemed all anxiety and attention to the great work of their souls’ salvation.
p.152 Rel. Intelligence
(@ Red River) – In this dismal state of deadness and darkness our congregations lay, until the fourth Sabbath in July, 1799, when the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was administered at Red river.
(@ Red River) – On Monday, the solemnity was very great during the time of preaching: many of the most bold, daring sinners in the country were brought to cover their faces, and weep bitterly. After the congregation was dismissed, a considerable number of people staid lingering at the door, as if unwilling to depart. Solemnity appeared in every countenance, and some of them were bathed in tears. Some of the ministers told me, that we ought to collect the people into the house and pray with them; which was done. It appeared evident that the power of God filled the house—Christians were filled with joy and peace in believing, and sinners were powerfully alarmed under an apprehension of the horrors of an unconverted state. At this time, I hope, there was one soul sweetly delivered from a burden of guilt and distress, by a believing discover of the glory and sufficiency of the merits and mediation of the blessed Jesus. Some had their convictions revived and quickened, and in a few days were filled with joy and peace, under blessed discoveries of the glory and suitableness of Christ. Others, who lived quite careless and thoughtless before, were filled with such distress under a sense of their sin and guilt, that they freely disclosed their cases to ministers and praying Christians. About this time, a remarkable spirit of prayer and supplication was given to Christians, and a sensible, heart-felt burden of the dreadful state of sinners out of Christ; so that it might be said with propriety, that Zion travailed in birth to bring for her spiritual children.
(@ Gasper River) – Here I would just remark, that some time before this, I resigned the charge of Gasper river, on account of the distance and difficulties of the road; and in the place of it, I took the Clay-lick, in union with Red river and Muddy river. Mr. Rankin, a faithful and successful minister, took the charge of Gasper river. I assisted him at the administration of the Sacrament at Gasper, on the fourth Sabbath of August. The almighty power of God at this time was displayed in the most striking manner.
(@ Gasper River) – On Monday, a general solemnity seized the greater part of the multitude; many persons were so struck with deep, heart-piercing convictions, that their bodily strength was quite overcome, so that they fell to the ground, and could not refrain from bitter groans and outcries for mercy. The work was general with old and young, white and black. Pass through the multitude where we would, instances of this kind were to be seen. In one place, I heard an old sinner, unable to support under his burden, speaking to his wife and children in the following manner: “Alas! we have been blind all our days—we never saw our dismal state till now—we are all going to Hell together—Oh! we must seek religion, we must get an interest in Christ, or to Hell we must go.” In another place, a poor awakened sinner addressing her minister in such language as this: “I have made a profession—I have sat again and again at the communion-table; but alas! I was a poor deceived hypocrite—I see plainly I have no religion—Alas! I am going to Hell.” In other places, many poor, giddy young persons, who, on the first days of the solemnity, could not behave with common decency, nor lying prostrate on the ground, weeping, praying and crying for mercy. But time would fail to relate every particular. In a word, it was a day of general awakening; several persons on that day, we hope were savingly brought to Christ; and in the space of three weeks after, above twenty of those then awakened gave the most clear, satisfying accounts of their views of the glory and fullness of the Mediator, and the sweet application of his blood and merits to their souls.
(@ Clay-Lick) – On the Sabbath following, at Clay-lick, the power of God was evidently displayed in the awakening and convincing of many souls.
(@ Muddy River) – On the 5th Sabbath of September, the Sacrament of the Supper was administered at Muddy river. This has generally been considered the greatest, the most solemn and powerful time of any that had been heretofore. Every day of the occasion was marked with visible tokens of God’s presence. At this time many persons were solemnly awakened, and many distressed souls were relieved, by sweet, soul-satisfying views of Jesus. It was a time of unspeakable comfort, joy and peace among God’s people; many of them feasted on the hidden manna, and felt the very dawnings of Heaven in their souls; they had sweet nearness and access to God, and found it easy to hold up the state of the church, the case of distressed awakened souls, and the pitiable conditions of poor, unconverted sinners, before God.
(@ The Ridge) – On the last Sabbath in October, Messrs. Rankin, McGee and myself administered the Sacrament of the Supper at the Ridge, (a vacant congregation in the Cumberland settlements in the State of Tennessee): a very general revival, from that time, took place in that congregation, and still continues. And a very considerable number of all ages and descriptions of people have, we hope, experienced the reality of religion in their own souls.
Through the winter, there was nothing very extraordinary noticeable in our congregations, unless some hopeful appearances that the Lord had not forsaken us. Persons awakened in the summer, still retained their convictions, although they did not appear so quick and lively as before. God’s people still retained their lively exercise in some degree, and now and then we could hear the happy tidings of some poor sinners hopefully brought to Christ. But for the most part, it was a time of weeping and mourning with the children of God.
But the present summer (viz. 1800) has been the most glorious time that our guilty eyes have ever beheld. All the blessed displays of Almighty power and grace, all the sweet gales of the divine Spirit, and souls-reviving shower of the blessings of Heaven which we enjoyed before, and which we considered wonderful beyond conception; were but like a few scattering drops before a mighty rain, when compared with the overflowing floods of salvation, which the eternal, gracious Jehovah has poured out like a mighty river, upon this our guilty, unworthy country. The Lord has indeed shewed himself a prayer-hearing God; he has given his people a praying spirit and a lively faith, and then he has answered their prayers far beyond their highest expectations. The wilderness and solitary place as been made glad; this dreary desart(sic) now rejoices, and blossoms like the rose; yea, it blossoms abundantly, and rejoices even with joy and singing.
(@ Red River) – The first extraordinary manifestation of divine power was at Red river, where the Sacrament of the Supper was administered on the third Sabbath of June. This was indeed a blessed day of the Son of Man—The Lord afforded more than common light, life and zeal to his ministers, and more that common life to the exercise of his praying people. Upon every day of the occasion, there were visible tokens of the love and goodness of God. Christians were filled with joy and peace in believing; and poor distressed, condemned sinners were brought to see the glory and fullness of a crucified Jesus, and to feel the power and efficacy of his merits and atonement.
(@ Red River) – But Monday was indeed the great day of the feast: Mr. Hodge preached a powerful, moving sermon, on Job, xxii. (22) 21. During the sermon, a woman, who had been many months under deep convictions, I trust, was brought to Christ, and could not refrain from breaking out into an amazing rapture of joy and adoration, for a few minutes. At the close of the sermon, a dreadful, striking solemnity overspread the whole assembly—the multitude were all in tears—awakened sinners were struck with such keen, piercing convictions, that many of them fell to the ground, and roared out in extreme anguish, “What shall I do to be saved?” Some of God’s children were filled with a sense of the love and goodness of God in Christ to their souls, like bottles filled with new wine, till their bodily strength was almost gone. It was truly affecting to see little boys and girls, of nine, ten, and twelve years of age, and some younger, lying prostrate on the ground, weeping, praying and crying for mercy, like condemned criminals at the place of execution; and that in the presence of the multitude. We have reason to believe that the number truly and savingly brought to Christ, on this occasion, and till the Tuesday night following, were about ten persons.
(@ Gasper River) – The next remarkable season of the out-pouring of the Spirit of God, was at Gasper river on the fourth Sabbath of July. Here a surprising multitude of people collected, many from a very great distance: even from the distance of 30, 60, and 100 miles. There were 13 wagons brought to the meeting-house, in order to transport people and their provisions. On Friday and Saturday there was a very solemn attention. On Saturday evening, after the congregation was dismissed, a few serious exercised Christians were sitting conversing together, and appeared to be more than commonly engaged, the flame started from them and overspread the whole house, until every person appeared less or more engaged. The great part of the ministers, and several hundred of the people remained at the meeting-house all night. Though every part of the multitude there could be found some awakened souls, struggling in the pangs of the new birth, ready to faint and die for Christ, almost on the brink of desperation. Others again, just lifted from the horrible pit, and beginning to lisp the first notes of the new-song, and to tell the sweet wonders which they saw in Christ. Ministers and experienced Christians were everywhere engaged praying, exhorting, conversing and trying to lead enquiring souls to the Lord Jesus. In this exercise the night was spent till near the break of day.
(@ Gasper River) – The Sabbath was a blessed day in every sense of the word.—The groans of awakened sinners could be heard all over the house, during the morning sermon; but by no means so as to disturb the assembly. It was a comfortable time with many at the table. Mr. McGee preached in the evening, upon the circumstance of Peter’s sinking in the waves. In the application of his sermon, the power of God seemed to shake the whole assembly. Towards the close of the sermon, the cries of the distressed arose almost as loud as the voice.—After the congregation was dismissed the solemnity increased, till the greater part of the multitude seemed engaged in the most solemn manner. No person seemed to wish to go home—hunger and sleep seemed to affect nobody—eternal things were the vast concern. Here awakening and converting work was to be found in every part of the multitude; and even some things strangely and wonderfully new to me. Sober professors, who had been communicants for many years, now lying prostrate on the ground, crying out in such language as this: “I have been sober professor; I have been a communicant; O! I have been deceived, I have no religion—Oh! I see that religion is a sensible thing.—O! my friends, if ever you get it, you will know something how you obtained it. Believe what the ministers tell you—religion is a sensible thing. O! I once despised this work—I feel the pains of hell in my soul and body! O! how I would have despised any person a few days ago, who would have acted as I am doing now!—But O! I cannot help it!” And so continued till deliverance came.
Another scene of wonder that attended this work was this: I stood by some dear young creatures, little boys and girls, and heard their groans and cries in the pangs of the new birth, like shrieks and cries of condemned criminals at the place of execution—their bodily strength exhausted, so that they could not stand upon their feet, and to all appearance just upon the brink of dark despair. I have likewise stood present, when the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus broke into their souls; and to the astonishment of all around them, these little creatures have started to their feet, and told all present their sweet views of the lovely, precious Lord Jesus—what a fullness, sufficiency, suitableness and willingness they saw in him—to hear them describe the sweet plan of salvation, and pointing out the nature of believing or coming to Christ—to hear them describe the gracious willingness of Christ to save the very worst of sinners—to hear them tell the tender, bleeding concern they felt for poor careless sinners: I say to hear them speak upon these subject, the good language, the good sense, the clear ideas, and the rational, scriptural light in which they spoke, truly amazed me. I felt mortified and mean before them.—They spoke upon these subjects beyond what I could have done. An evident demonstration that, out of the mouths of babes and sucklings the Lord can perfect praise.
If I were to mention every circumstance of this kind, it would swell a letter to a volume. I shall just mention one instance, viz. a little girl that I saw lying upon her mother’s lap, groaning and crying for mercy, just ready to sink into despair. I stood by her, and talking to her, when, I hope, Christ revealed himself to her soul. She started to her feet and cried out, “O, I know, I know he is willing, he is willing—He is come! he is come! O! what a glorious Christ, what a sweet Christ, what a lovely Christ, what a precious Christ he is! O! what a beauty I see in him! What a glory I see in him! O! what a fullness, what an infinite fullness I see in Christ! O! there is a fullness in him for all the world, if they could but see it, if they would but come.” She then, turning to Christless sinners, addressed them in language which God alone must have put in her mouth, which was sufficient to move the hardest heart.—But time would fail to dwell upon particulars.
The greater part of the multitude continued at the meeting-house all night, and no person appeared uneasy for food or sleep.
(@ Gasper River) – On Monday a vast concourse of people came together. This was another day of the Son of Man. With propriety we could adopt the language of the Patriarch, and say, the Lord is here: how dreadful is this place! It is none else than the house of the Lord, the gate of Heaven. Two powerful sermons were preached by Messrs. McGee and Hodge: the almighty power of God attended the word to the hearts of many, and an universal solemnity overspread the whole assembly. When the congregation was dismissed, no person seemed to wish to leave the place. The solemnity increased, and conditions seemed to spread from heart to heart. Little children, young men and women, and old grey-headed people, persons of every description white and black, were to be found in every part of the multitude, pricked to the heart, with clear, rational, scriptural convictions, crying out for mercy in the most extreme distress: whilst every now and then we could find one and another delivered from their burden of sin and guilt, by sweet believing views of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. In such exercise the multitude continued at the meeting-house till Tuesday morning, after sunrise, when they broke up after they were dismissed by prayer: and indeed the circumstances of their parting added to the solemnity of the occasion. The number that, we hope, were savingly brought to Christ on this occasion, were forty-five persons, seventeen of whom belonged to my congregations.
(@ Red River) – On the next Sabbath I preached at Red river, to a very attentive, solemn audience. In the evening there was a very solemn appearance. Some of the Negroes appeared to be powerfully seized with convictions. The solemnity increased after the congregation was dismissed, and before the people were dismissed, three little girls gave satisfying evidences that they had received the Lord Jesus Christ. A number of young people from Shiloh congregation, in the state of Tennessee, about fifty miles from this place, attended at the Sacrament at Gasper river, and, it is supposed, got real religion there; when they went home, they attacked their young companions, warning them of their danger, and persuaded them to flee from the wrath to come: they told them what they had experienced and known of the love of Christ. This struck a number of the young people in that congregation with solemn convictions; they plead with their parents to meet in society, as they had no minister: accordingly they met in society, from house to house, day after day; and in three days about twenty persons, it is hoped, experienced real religion, and the work still goes on powerfully among them.
Week after Gasper River – end of July/first of August
(@ Muddy Creek) – Another remarkable circumstance happened in Muddy creek, the week after the Gasper river Sacrament, in a very wicked, thoughtless settlement. About eighteen or twenty persons happened to meet at a certain house; when they came together, they could not tell for what purpose they came there, no one knew any errand he had: they began to converse about the concern of their souls, at length they concluded to join together in social prayer. The power of God appeared to come among them, and before they parted, several person are supposed to have obtained real religion; they met in society in that settlement, day after day, and in less than a week sixteen persons got real religion as we hope.
(@Muddy River) – The most remarkable season of the out-pouring of the Spirit of God was at Muddy river, at the administration of the Sacrament on the fifth Sabbath in August. Here an immense multitude assembled from far and near. There were twenty-two wagons loaded with people and their provisions; with many other provided for encamping at the meeting-house. The congregation could not have accommodated the one half of the strangers if they had not come so provided. On Friday there was a solemn attention during the whole time of public worship. On Friday night, Mr. Rankin stayed at the meeting-house with the people there encamped; they spent the greater part of the night in social prayer, and in exhortation, and the power of God evidently attended these exercises; deep, solemn impressions were made upon the minds of many.
(@Muddy River) – On Saturday, Mr. Rankin preached an affecting sermon on Acts i.(1) 16, which was visibly attended with the power of God: Christians were filled with joy unspeakable and full of glory, and poor sinners sensibly felt the arrows of the Almighty sticking fast in their hearts. After the congregation was dismissed, the solemnity increased more and more; the greater part of the multitude, and all the ministers, except one who was sick, tarried at the meeting-house all night. The ministers were all employed, the greater part of the night, in praying, exhorting, and conversing with distressed persons.
The Sabbath was a very solemn day both in the time of preaching and serving the tables. In the evening after the public exercises were over, an universal solemnity continued among the people, and a large majority continued with the ministers, at the meeting house, during the night. This was one of the most solemn nights I ever saw in the world.
Monday was a very solemn day, Messrs. Rankin and McGee both preached with great liberty and power. After the congregation was dismissed, the solemnity still continued, and nearly the whole congregation continued at the meeting-house till Tuesday morning. The number that we humbly hope were brought to Christ at this sacramental occasion, we believe must be upwards of fifty persons. Many affecting circumstances with respect to the conversion of individuals, I might mention, but time and my feeble state of heart will not permit.
No date given – around this time
(@ The Ridge) – The next blessed season of the out-pouring of the Spirit, was at the Ridge, in the state of Tennessee. This is considered the greatest time of all. The solemnity was great every day, and the body of the people continued ever night solemnly engaged at the meeting-house, till Tuesday morning. The number that were hopefully brought to Christ at this occasion, we believe to be between fifty and sixty. One affecting sight was the little children, whom we placed together at the last table, perhaps fifty in number, from eight to twelve years old, who had given us a satisfactory account of their experimental acquaintance with Christ. Another comfortable circumstance was this:—The Rev. Mr. Craighead, and the greater part of his family came there; and two of his children, we hope, obtained a saving change, and he himself appeared to be amazingly quickened: he rejoiced to see the work of God go on, and expressed the most anxious desire to see such exercises among his own people.
Dear Sir,—I know not how to cease; but I am sick and very weak.—One thing more I must mention:—The Red Banks of the Ohio, about a hundred miles from this place, which was Satan’s seat, a second Hell—I went down among them twice, and Mr. Rankin visited them again; a blessed revival has been, and is still going on there: a great number of people, and some professed Deists have, we hope, got real religion, and are now warm and lively Christians. An orderly, good congregation might be formed there, if there was a faithful minister to take the charge of them. The Lord has done great things for us in this country—I have had sore trials since I came here, but God has raised me above them all. At every favorable opportunity I will give you a continuation of the history of the blessed work, so long as the Lord continues it among us.
(@ Shiloh) – On the fourth Sabbath of September 1800, the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was administered at Shiloh, where Mr. Hodge is now settled. A great multitude attended during the occasion: on the Sabbath, it was supposed, there were about five thousand. On every day, and through every night, the power of God appeared awfully visible. On one of the nights, fifteen persons were counted lying all near to each other, prostrate on the ground, weeping, groaning, and crying for mercy. Throughout the whole occasion, I beheld one scene of wonder after another; some falling before the arrows of King Jesus, others weeping, groaning, and panting for deliverance; and others sweetly delivered by glorious discoveries of the divine excellency and loveliness of the blessed Immanuel. The number which we hope were savingly brought to Christ on this occasion, was about seventy persons.
(@Clay Lick) – On the second Sabbath of October, the sacrament was administered at Clay-Lick, a small congregation under my care. The weather was very wet and uncomfortable; the house was but a small cabin, unfit to contain one-sixth of the people: but, although the clouds poured out heavy showers, Christ poured out rich blessings upon the people.—During the occasions, we hope, about eighty souls were brought to Jesus. The Sacrament was administered the same day at Mr. Craighead’s meeting-house. The work there was very powerful. During the occasion, it is hoped, about forty persons experienced true religion.
(@ Montgomery’s Meeting-house, Tenn.) – On the Sabbath following the sacrament was administered at Montgomery’s meeting-house, in the state of Tennessee, one of Mr. McGee’s congregations; this was likewise a glorious time of the out-pouring of the spirit of God. We trust about forty souls were savingly brought to Christ.
Week of 11.02.1800
(@ Little Muddy Creek) – On the first Sabbath of November, the sacrament was administered at Little Muddy-creek, one of Mr. Rankin’s congregations. This was also a comfortable season, especially on Sabbath and Monday. We believe about twelve persons were savingly converted. Two families from Drake’s creek, (a settlement of careless profane people, where no professors lived, except these families) attended at Muddy-creek Sacrament. During the occasion, several of their young people gave evidence of their having obtained religion. When they went home on Tuesday evening, they spent the night in social prayer. In the meantime, a number of their thoughtless neighbors collected at the house, probably to hear news about the strange work at the Sacrament; but the mighty power of God was evidently displayed among them: the greater part of the time was spent in social prayer, until Thursday night, the careless people around them attended with them. During this time, it is hoped, about ten of them experienced real religion. Since that, Mr. Rankin has preached to them at different times, with great success. At present, it is thought about thirty in that settlement have obtained religion.
(@ Hopewell, Tenn.) – On the last Sabbath of November, the sacrament was administered at Hopewell, in the state of Tennessee, one of Mr. Hodge’s congregations. This was the last public occasion in the year 1800; and this was likewise one of the days of the Son of Man. The Lord graciously poured out his Spirit to the awakening and conversion of many. About twenty, we hope, were savingly brought to Christ. What is truly matter of praise, wonder and gratitude to every follower of Christ, is, that every sacramental occasion in all our congregations, during the whole summer and fall, was attended with the tokens of the sweet presence and power of the Almighty Jesus. At more private occasions, at societies and common times of preaching, many souls, we trust, were brought to Christ; the circumstances of which I cannot now relate.
Some concluding remarks from James McGready – third installment – pages 234-236
I shall conclude at present with a brief narrative of some remarkable circumstances attending the work.
At first—the life, zeal, and visible evidences of the power of God, operating through young converts, is worthy of observation. At the Sacrament at Muddy river, a little boy of about twelve years old, just after he obtained deliverance, addressed a Deist, who was a man of sense and education, and recommended Christ to him in the most forcible and affecting manner; telling him of the heavenly sweetness that was to be found in Christ and religion. The Deist began to dispute with him; but the Lord opened the child’s mouth to speak so affectingly and convincingly to his conscience, as to silence every argument.
At the same Sacrament, I stood beside a little girl about ten years old, when she received comfort: after speaking in the most affecting manner about the excellency and fullness of Christ, she turned to her sister, who was a married woman, and holding up her little hands, her eyes flowed with tears, she prayed for her in such language as this: “O Lord God, Almighty, pity my poor unconverted sister, who has no religion—O Lord; she will be eternally damned if she does not get Christ.” This seemed to strike her sister in the most deep, affecting manner. She then turned to her little brother, and laying her hands upon him; cried out—O Christ—O! if you die without religion, you will sink to the everlasting flames of Hell! She had no sooner uttered these words, than the boy fell to the ground, and wept and groaned in an agony.
At the same Sacrament, on the Sabbath night, a little girl, about eleven or twelve years old, the daughter of a wealthy gentlemen in the country, who had been awakened at Red river Sacrament, we hope obtained religion. Just after her deliverance, she came to me, and told me the happy news.—O! says she, I have met with Christ—I have found that precious Jesus. She spoke of the Redeemer’s glory and excellency, his fullness and sufficiency, in the most astonishing language. O! says she, if I had ten thousand worlds, I would give them all that my dear father could but see and feel in Christ what I do! She then ran to her father, and clasping her arms around his neck, she wept over him, and told him that he had no religion—she told him what she saw in Christ, and what she felt of his love. O my father, says she, Christ is willing to save you—O try to seek him, and you will find him—O! if you but saw that in Christ which I see—O! If you but saw his fullness and willingness, you would come to him. This seemed to pierce the old man like a dart, and made him weep like a child. She then ran to her little brother, and seized him in her arms, pleaded with him to seek religion, and recommended Christ to him; this struck him with keen convictions, which afterwards, I trust, ended in a real conversion.
The conduct of your converts, and especially of such as were but children, fastened more convictions at these times, than all the preaching.
Another remarkable circumstance attending this work, was the strange accidental way that many were brought to receive religion; a few instances of which I shall mention.
At the Ridge Sacrament, on Monday evening, a strange gentleman from Georgia, was riding past at some distance, and hearing the cries of the distressed, he turned off the road and came to the place, to see what it could mean. He had not been there many minutes till he was pierced with arrows of conviction and fell to the ground; where he lay in an agony of distress, groaning like a dying man, and crying for mercy until some time in the night, when he found peace to his soul. He came from Georgia to sell some lands which he had in Cumberland; but he now changed his design, and set off for Georgia to sell his possessions there, and move to Cumberland, where the power of religion was.
At Shiloh Sacrament on Monday, a stranger from a distance started to go home, just as the last sermon was beginning. A pious man went to him, as he was putting his foot in the stirrup, and said, “Are you going away without the blessing?” The stranger replied, “I live at a great distance; I must go.” The other said, “How can you go without Christ?” The stranger then sunk to the ground under the most pungent conviction. The man came to me, and told me of his situation; I went to him, and after conversing with him a while, left him powerless, and groaning in the utmost distress. I told some men to carry him to the edge of the assembly; they brought him, and there he lay until some time in the night, when he obtained deliverance.
The last circumstance which I shall mention is, the conversion of some malicious opposers. At the Ridge Sacrament on Monday morning, a man who lived in the congregation, came to the meeting-house, bitterly exasperated against his wife, who had remained at the meeting-house all night. He ordered her home, but she refused to go; he then gave her very abusive language, and went home very angry. After he went home he was struck with deep conviction, and lay powerless on his own floor, and never rose, until, we have reason to believe, he obtained religion.
Another who attended the whole time of the same Sacrament, despising and condemning all that he saw as delusion and madness, and went away a violent opposer; the next day after he returned home, he went out to his field to work, and there the Spirit of God reached his heart with the keen arrows of conviction: he fell down in the field, and lay upon the ground, until some time in the night his family found him, and carried him to the house, where he remained in the utmost distress, until some time before day, when he found peace to his soul; and now appears to be a warm and lively Christian.
Source: Transcribed by Scott Harp, TheRestorationMovement.com 01.18.2017. The above information appeared in three issues of The New York Missionary Magazine, And Repository of Religious Intelligence For The Year 1803. Vol. 4, New York: Printed by William Vermilye, for Cornelius Davis. 1803. Shared with Scott Harp by Logan County Library archivist, Evelyn Richardson, 10.2016
Photos Taken 10.2016
Webpage produced 01.2017
Courtesy Of Scott Harp
Special Recognition: Many thanks to Logan County local historian Evelyn Richardson, who graciously spent one afternoon with me in the fall of 2016, and took me around the county to show the three locations of the meeting-houses where the early revival of Logan County, Kentucky took place. Later, some of the photos were taken by Tom L. Childers and Charlie Wayne Kilpatrick on another visit to the area.