This year marks the 250th anniversary of the “Hourly Intercession” of the Moravian Brethren. On August 27, 1727, twenty-four men and twenty-four women agreed to spend one in every twenty-four hours in prayer, asking God’s blessing on their congregation and its witness. “Encouraged by Zinzendorf,” writes his biographer, A. J. Lewis, “this covenant spread wider, and for over a hundred years the members of the Moravian Church all shared in the ‘Hourly Intercession.’ At home and abroad, on land and sea, this prayer watch ascended unceasingly to the Lord” (Zinzendorf, the Ecumenical Pioneer, 1962, p. 60).
Did anything happen as a consequence of this century-long prayer effort? Is it possible to conclude that some definite happenings were related to the unceasing prayers of the Moravians?
We do know that John Wesley was directly influenced by the Moravians. His biographers recount his Aldersgate experience in London at a Moravian meeting on May 24, 1738. This is what Wesley wrote in his journal:
“In the evening I went very unwillingly to a society in Aldersgate Street where one was reading Luther’s preface to the Epistle to the Romans. About a quarter before nine, while he was describing the change which God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone for my salvation; and an assurance was given me that he had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death.”
The life and ministry of John Wesley were changed from the moment his heart was “strangely warmed” at Aldersgate. He became a flaming evangel who saw multitudes to whom he preached come into ...1
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