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Surge Summary: Recommended: “The Jesus Revolution”, a well-crafted, informative film recounting the story of the history-shaping Jesus Movement of the 1960s and 70s.
by Larry Tomczak
Neil Diamond’s classic song, “Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show” had this memorable line, “Pack up the babies and grab the old ladies, everyone go…” That’s my appeal as the outstanding film “The Jesus Revolution” opens nationwide.
“In the 1970s, Greg Laurie, and a sea of young people descended on sunny, southern California to re-define truth through all means of liberation. Inadvertently, Laurie meets a charismatic street preacher, and a pastor who open the door to a church to a stream of wandering youth. What unfolds is a counterculture movement that becomes a great spiritual awakening in American history.” – movie promotion
This is not some “cheesy” low budget film, but rather a first class film produced by Greg, a nationally known evangelist who fills stadiums yearly in California and worked closely with Billy Graham.
The movie stars award winning actor, Kelsey Grammer of “Cheers” fame and Kimberly Williams Paisley, star of Father of the Bride with Steve Martin and wife of singer Brad Paisley.
Revisiting a Move of God
If you are over 50, you probably remember it. If you are under 50, you may not know much about it. Watch what God did and wants to do again.
In the midst of a very turbulent and discouraging time in our nation’s history, God intervened in a supernatural way during a five-year period from 1968 to 1973. A grassroots spiritual movement burst forth on the scene with a soft explosion that revolutionized millions of lives. It was called the “Jesus People Movement.”
Christianity Today magazine’s former “Book of the Year” was “God’s Forever Family: The Jesus People Movement in America” by Larry Eskridge. He said that “the Jesus People Movement was one of the most important American religious movements of the second half of the 20th century” and that “it must be considered one of the formative powers that shaped American youth in the late 1960s and 1970s.”
In the midst of our daily barrage of disturbing and depressing developments we desperately need something like this film to stir up memories of a time when God’s fire fell upon our nation.
Rewind the Tape
The 1960s was an unsettling time of cataclysmic change in America. Kennedy was assassinated; prayer and Bible reading were banned from public schools; the “British Invasion” played a major role in bringing rock ‘n’ roll, unrestrained sexual activity and drugs to America; the Anti-War, Women’s Lib, Black Power and Gay movements exploded on the scene; and when Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. were assassinated, amidst student riots and burning cities, Time magazine declared 1968 as the “knife blade that severed past from future.”
Rebellion and cynicism abounded. A hippie and drug counterculture blossomed as America youth were seduced even as they are today by the “Progressive” Democratic Party and radical LGBTQ, BLM and “Woke” activists. I know firsthand because I was there pounding away on my drums for a Cleveland rock band called “The Lost Souls.” Like scores of naïve youths, I was lost, and in need of God’s saving grace.
As Barry Maguire sang his song, “Eve of Destruction,” something unexpectedly happened. Smack dab in the epicenter of California’s hippie subculture, the Holy Spirit began drawing bummed out youth to a genuine encounter with Jesus!
As scores of gullible guys and gals grabbed their love beads, put flowers in their hair and fell in line behind Pied Piper Scott McKenzie (“If you’re going to San Francisco/you’re gonna meet some gentle people there… All across the nation/there’s a whole generation with a new explanation/ people in motion, people in motion …”), God started intervening.
Multitudes of young people got radically converted and set free from drugs, sexual immorality, homosexuality and deception!
New converts began enthusiastically, pointing their one-way finger heavenward, and hitting the streets to tell others about a living, dynamic relationship with Jesus Christ. They were baptized – many in the ocean! They swayed to new forms of music and found themselves gathering informally in coffee houses where they shared testimonies about the living God.
Like wildfire, this move of God, spread across the country before – imagine – the advent of cell phones, computers, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media!
God imparted a burden among young people to reach their generation. He instilled in them a hunger for His Word, evangelism and genuine community. There was spontaneity and a simplicity that characterized the come-as-you-are gatherings.
New and innovative expressions of art were displayed through Jesus newspapers, posters, bumper stickers, T-shirts, jewelry and buttons. Rock and folk music creatively communicated to curious crowds. God had intervened, and was at work to rescue a generation that Satan was trying to destroy.
Influential ministries like Calvary Chapel, The Vineyard, Willow Creek, Jesus People USA plus outdoor Jesus Festivals drawing tens of thousands were birthed. Contemporary Christian Music was launched.
Musicals like “Jesus Christ Superstar” and “Godspell” were born. Leaders like Steve Strang, Greg Laurie, Mike Bickle, Dr. Michael Brown, Bob Weiner, Rick Joyner, Arthur Blessitt, Phil Keaggy, Andre Crouch, Keith Green and Larry Norman emerged.
I was converted in 1969 and aligned with young people who had been radically saved. Starting with a handful in a home, a ministry was launched that in a few short years grew to over 2000 meeting weekly just 15 minutes from the White House!
Cars lined the streets outside the facility and people arrived early to get a seat. A Senator, a son of a Supreme Court Justice and a young, messianic Jew named Sid Roth sat in the crowd.
At that time a publisher challenged me to write my story, which I did in the book “Clap Your Hands!” When it became a quarter million best seller, I knew I was truly part of something supernatural. Listen to it free as an audiobook at larrytomczak.com.
“Campus Crusade for Christ” held a massive event in Dallas called “Explo 72” and 85,000 Jesus people attended the five-day event. The Saturday all day closing session drew a crowd estimated at 180,000 with Billy Graham and Johnny Cash.
Capturing a Nation
The Jesus movement landed on the cover of Time magazine, which featured an eight-page positive report! In Larry Eskridge’s book he mentioned amazing stories in the Wall Street Journal, Newsweek and Life magazine.
“In many ways, the advent of the Jesus People must have seemed like an oasis in the desert of several years’ worth of distressing news about the younger generation.”
We need this today! It’s time for another Jesus Movement but in a way that will be uniquely God and hopefully a precursor to a Third Great Awakening in America.
Here’s the deal: There’s no question we are reaching a tipping point today. May we pray with desperation like the prophet Habakkuk for a fresh visitation from Almighty God and may He use this movie to stir our hearts. Watch for it in your nearby theater!
“Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O, Lord. Renew them in our day, in our time, make them known; in wrath, remember mercy” (Hab. 3:2).
The views here are those of the author and not necessarily Daily Surge.
Originally posted here.
Image: Screen Shot: “The Jesus Revolution” trailer; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NR33kK18DGA&list=PLPcTOx34g9XTG60sZHEayxsw8aOz9OuW_&index=11
The post Parents, Pastors Everyone: Go See The Jesus Revolution Movie! appeared first on DailySurge.