Robert Godfrey

Charles Finney, ‘revivals’ and the anxious bench

R. Scott Clark writes: Much of modern evangelical theology, piety and practice is not driven by Scripture as much as it is driven by history. Many evangelicals assume, as I once did, that the altar call is a biblical practice. They do not know, as I did not, that the altar call is a nineteenth-century practice not found in the Bible, nor was it found in the Reformation. Indeed, the very practice of holding revivals was neither biblical nor Reformation practice. The idea of “holding a revival” is the product of a powerful nineteenth-century movement that continues to influence us today in ways that we might not fully appreciate. Bob Godfrey first helped me to understand what happened in the nineteenth century and how it continues to influence us today. He is President Emeritus and Professor Emeritus of Church History at Westminster Seminary California, and he is chairman of the board of Ligonier Ministries. Godfrey joined us on Office Hours to talk about the continuing significance of the anxious bench and the Second Great Awakening. Listen to the episode here.