Tuesday, 26 June 2012
Testimony of Smith Wigglesworth -had one of the greatest healing ministries in history,IN WHICH 23 DEAD'S WERE RAISED
Smith Wigglesworth had one of the greatest healing ministries in history. But there was a time when this great apostle of faith was reluctant to even preach. Smith Wigglesworth was a plumber from Bradford, England. While he believed in divine healing, he didn’t believe that anyone was getting healed in Bradford. So Wigglesworth took afflicted souls to nearby Leeds every Tuesday. He was confident that a group that practiced divine healing there had an anointing to break the yokes of sickness and disease. He was confident because his wife Polly was healed in Leeds. Little did he know that Bradford would soon be recognized as a place for divine healing, too, and that God would use a plumber as His chosen vessel.
It all started the day Bradford church leaders decided to attend the Keswick Convention, an annual summer reunion held to promote “practical holiness.” Smith Wigglesworth reluctantly agreed to administrate the church meetings during their absence, yet hoped to persuade someone else to preach. But everyone he asked insisted that he must do it himself. Wigglesworth did preach and although he could not remember what he said, the first man he prayed for was healed instantly. That miracle stirred the faith of at least 14 others at the meeting to believe God for healing. He prayed for each one and each one was healed.
A humble Wigglesworth was quick to announce that it was not his great faith at work that day, but God’s great hand helping him in his hour of need. Those miracles led to divine healing meetings in Bradford that continued to produce signs and wonders. Smith Wigglesworth’s healing ministry grew rapidly and moved to a new building that displayed the words “I am the Lord that healeth thee.” But it seems this great man of faith did not yet fully believe God for his own healing. When a brother with a healing ministry visited the church in Bradford, Wigglesworth invited him home for tea and his wife opened up a can of worms.
“What would you think of a man who preaches divine healing, yet he himself uses medical means every day?” Polly asked their visitor.
“I should say that man did not fully trust the Lord,” answered the brother.
After the meal Wigglesworth confessed that he had suffered from hemorrhoids since his childhood and used salts every day for relief. The trio then agreed to pray and trust God for his healing. Wigglesworth’s system functioned naturally without any medication from then on. Wigglesworth and his wife made a vow to God that day declaring: “From henceforth no medicine, no doctors, no drugs of any kind shall come into our house.” Wigglesworth was gripped by a violent pain in his side not long afterwards – a pain so violent that he was brought home to his wife. The couple prayed all night, but he grew worse instead of better. He thought this was his “home call” and reminded Polly of their agreement to send for a doctor to avoid the embarrassment of a coroner’s examination and the condemnation of outsiders if one of them was nearing death.
The doctor diagnosed Smith Wigglesworth with an advanced state of appendicitis. The only hope would be an immediate operation, but his body was too weak. The doctor left, promising to return later. While Wigglesworth lay in the bed suffering an elderly lady and a young man came to pray for him. The young man laid his hands on Wigglesworth and cried, “Come out, devil, in the name of Jesus!” Wigglesworth later testified, “To my surprise the devil came out and I felt as well as I had ever been.” He then went downstairs and told his wife that he was healed.
Later that day Wigglesworth answered an emergency call from a lady who needed a plumber. When the doctor returned to hear that Wigglesworth had gone to work he pronounced, “They will bring him back a corpse!” But upon examining Wigglesworth later, the doctor recanted and agreed that he was indeed healed. In fact, that “corpse” preached the Gospel in many parts of the world for another 40 years.
Wigglesworth was also instrumental in bringing thousands of people to salvation, baptism of the Holy Ghost and divine healing. About 20 people were raised from the dead during his ministry. Many people are fascinated by the life of Smith Wigglesworth and many books have been penned about him.
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Born in 1859, by the age of seven he was working 12 hours a day with his father to supplement the family finances, so he had little education. He was born again at age eight and immediately sought to win others to Christ. His mother was his first convert. As an adult, Wigglesworth was called by God to, “come out.” First from the Methodist church, then the Anglican, Brethren, Salvation Army, and so on. While he ministered in Elim and Assemblies of God churches, he remained independent of any denomination.
This great man of God was far from perfect. He couldn’t read or write, had speech problems, a violent temper and even backslid when his business prospered. But His wife Polly helped him learn to read, prayer and commitment helped him overcome his anger, and when he backslid God restored him into victorious living. In 1907, at age 48, Wigglesworth was baptized in the Holy Spirit and spoke in other tongues. After that he also overcame his speech problem and many were surprised at his fluency.
Wigglesworth read little other than the Bible. Before preaching he would wait for the Holy Spirit to direct him to a particular passage of Scripture. He often gave a short message in tongues, which he immediately interpreted. And he would often quote a chorus from a well-known Gospel song. “Only believe,” was one of his favorites. Another, which was his testimony, was “I know the Lord laid His hand on me. Filled! A flowing, quickening, moving flame of God.” Many examples of God’s healing power were related through the songs. He believed his sermons should make his listeners either glad or mad. He would say, “If you do not progress every day, you are backsliding.” Once, when he preached in Norway, the town hall was full and thousands were outside. He had prayed for something different to happen. God told him, “If you will ask Me, I will give you every soul here.” Even though Wigglesworth knew it was God talking he was slow to accept, but he was still obedient to ask. The Spirit swept over the place. He had never seen anything like it. Many cried for mercy and Smith was convinced that God gave him every soul present.
Although Wigglesworth believed all sickness was from the devil and everyone could be healed, there were still some difficulties. The untimely death, for example, of his wife in 1913 was a real blow. He commanded death to give her up. While Smith was praying Polly said, “Smith, the Lord wants me.” He responded, “If the Lord wants you, I will not hold you.” And he let her go.
His daughter, Alice Salter, frequently traveled with him after Polly’s death. Alice was another trial of Wigglesworth’s faith because she was deaf and never healed. He believed that great trials lead to a deeper experience with God and was often heard saying, “Only melted gold is minted.”
Early in the 1930s X-rays revealed he was suffering from kidney stones. The doctor said an immediate operation was necessary to avoid a painful illness and eventual death. Wigglesworth said, “Doctor, the God who made this body is the one who can cure it. No knife shall ever cut it as long as I live.” He endured six years of pain before he was delivered. Long later Smith suffered from sciatica, which made walking painful. He was often sicker than the people he prayed for were.
Early one morning in 1937 while in South Africa, Wigglesworth marched into the office of David du Plessis, the secretary of the Apostolic Faith mission, and prophesied what we now know today as the Charismatic Revival. The Spirit of God spoke through him, saying that the 31-year-old man would play a major part in the revival if he remained humble and faithful. There was considerable antagonism between the established denominations and Pentecostals at that time, yet there were some refreshing exceptions. Du Plessis was one of those exceptions. Smith told him, “The day I pass away, then you can begin to think about it.”
In 1947 du Plessis went to the World Pentecostal Conference in Zurich. His ministry and influence developed from that point on and he later became known as the Father of Pentecost. Wigglesworth also prophesied a second move of the Spirit that would bring a revival of emphasis on the Word of God. We know this now as the Faith Movement. He added that, when these two moves, “the Word of God and the Spirit of God,” combine the Body shall witness the greatest move the Church of Jesus Christ has ever seen.
Wigglesworth died on March 12, 1947. His ministry is summed up in his own words, “There are four principles we need to maintain:
First, read the Word of God.
Second, consume the Word of God until it consumes you.
Third, believe the Word of God.
Fourth, act on the Word.”
Acts 4:13 is true of Wigglesworth, “When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus” (NIV). Wigglesworth, an apostle of faith, lived so that people would only see Jesus.