ere is a description of an early Salvation Army meeting recorded in General Bramwell Booth’s autobiography Echoes and Memories:
‘At night Corbridge led the hallelujah meeting till 10 o’clock. Then we commenced an All-Night of Prayer. Two hundred and fifty people were present till 1am; two hundred or so after. A tremendous time. From the very first, Jehovah was passing by, searching, softening and subduing every heart. The power of the Holy Ghost fell on Robinson and prostrated him. He nearly fainted twice. The brother of the Blandys entered into full liberty and then he shouted, wept, clapped his hands, danced, amid a scene of the most glorious and heavenly enthusiasm. Others meanwhile were lying prostrate on the floor, some of them groaning for perfect deliverance ….’This happened in 1878 - 22 years before the official start of the Pentecostal movement. Was The Salvation Army Pentecostal, or did it at least begin that way?
‘But we cannot have what Peter obtained on the day of Pentecost’ wrote someone to me recently. However, Peter himself, in that great sermon which he preached that day, declared that we can, for he says: ‘ Ye shall receive the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you’ - Jews, to whom I am talking - ‘and to your children,’ and not to you only, but ‘to all that are afar off’ - nineteen hundred years from now - ‘even as many as the Lord our God shall call,’ or convert (Acts 2:38, 39).’In recent days, some people have challenged The Salvation Army by referring back to its early days and suggesting that it has moved away from its Pentecostal roots. Are they right? Was Brengle really a Salvationist Pentecostal?
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