This Week in AG History — February 12, 1927
By Glenn W. Gohr
Originally published on AG-News, 6 January 2022
Divine healing is one of the four cardinal doctrines of the Assemblies of God. The pages of the Pentecostal Evangel contain many testimonies of healing from various ailments. As people of faith, the Assemblies of God also believes in the miraculous. In 1927, missionary W.W. Simpson reported several miracles, including a dead person being brought back to life, in Taochow, Old City, China. These miracles confirmed the truth of the gospel that was being preached, causing many to place their faith in Christ.
Simpson was an early missionary to Tibet and China. He was already on the mission field prior to the formation of the AG, serving with the Christian and Missionary Alliance. He was baptized in the Holy Spirit in Taochow, China, in 1912. He transferred his ordination to the AG in 1915 and served two years as principal of Bethel Bible Training School in New Jersey before returning to China in 1918 to continue his missionary work. His first wife, Otilia (Ekvall) Simpson, passed away with cancer in 1917 at Old Orchard Beach, Maine. He had three children, William, Louise, and Margaret who accompanied him on his return to China. In 1925 he married Martha Merrill in China, and they had seven more children.
While ministering in Minchow, Simpson gave an account of a mighty revival which was able to send out 27 additional gospel workers in China. He reported, “This revival came in a series of conventions beginning in Taochow, New City, and ending in Minchow.” He also reported meetings in Gospel Garden, Choni, and “a mighty miracle at Taochow, Old City.”
Simpson said the theme of these conventions was “Overcoming in Preparation for the Lord’s Coming.” One aspect of overcoming, included “fighting actual battles in conquering disease, death and the devil.”
He told of a 16-year-old girl who was brought into the hall at Gospel Garden and was laid down on the floor beside the platform while the meeting was going on. Her eyes were closed, her face pale, and her form was limp. It was reported that she had been demon-possessed for over a year. One young man, a cook, who was newly saved, began praying for her to be delivered. A Tibetan woman began following him and imitated his actions as if she also was under the anointing. Finally, it was revealed to the man that the Tibetan woman was actually demon-possessed and that the girl would not be delivered until the woman was also prayed over. He brought the girl to the altar, and he began rebuking the woman and commanded the evil spirit to come out of her. When he did, the demon left the girl, but it was some time before the Tibetan woman was delivered from satanic power. The next day both the young girl and the Tibetan woman became baptized believers.
In another incident, a man from Taochow, Old City, asked if Mr. Chow, who was in charge of the work there, would come and pray at his niece’s bedside. She had been sick for about three months and was dying, but she wanted to be saved before she passed away. After she was prayed over, she confessed her sins, and the Lord saved her. Mr. Chow and the woman’s uncle then asked for the Lord to heal her, and they had the assurance that He would. By the next morning she was near death, and according to Chinese custom was already dressed in her burial clothes. Her limbs had lost all feeling and were growing cold and stiff. Her father was a doctor, and all the family knew she was dying. The two men continued in faith, praying and believing for her healing, but she sank into unconsciousness. Finally, she quit breathing, and her tongue dropped back into her throat. She was gone. Still the two men continued to pray for victory over death.
After a few minutes they heard one word from the dead throat, “Faith!” With reassurance, the men began praising God, and “soon the mighty Spirit of Life from Christ Jesus filled the lifeless clay and all heard clearly the dead lips speaking in a tongue as He gave utterance! And the same Spirit who gives utterance in tongues raised the dead woman to life.”
When the woman became alert, she told her father, “Except you believe in Jesus, your daughter cannot live,” and he dropped to his knees and accepted the Lord he had rejected for 30 years. She also told her husband that he too must accept Jesus as his Lord. When he said, “Yes, I believe,” she said, “It must be with all your heart.” Then he confessed his sins and accepted the Lord. Then the woman said there were three who were making fun of the services. Her uncle looked outside and found three mockers and brought them into the room. She challenged them to prove their religion, and the Spirit of God declared through her: “To show you that Jesus is true and your religion false, I will cause this woman to stand on her feet today, sit up tomorrow, and walk the third day.”
It was reported that immediately, with no assistance, and to everyone’s surprise, the woman who was believed to have been dead a few moments before, stood right up in their midst and preached the gospel for two and a half hours! The next day she sat up, and the third day she walked in the presence of many. As a result of this mighty miracle, her entire family and a host of others became saved. Afterwards, her father came 60 miles to the Minchow Convention, being conducted by W.W. Simpson, to tell everyone about this miracle and to be baptized.
Read W.W. Simpson’s article, “Raised from the Dead,” which was published on page 6 of the Feb. 12, 1927, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.
Also featured in this issue:
• “Love and Spiritual Gifts,” by Donald Gee
• “Amidst Poland’s Poverty,” by Mrs. Gustave Schmidt
• “Report of Assiout Orphanage,” by Lillian Trasher
And many more!
Click here to read this issue now.
Photo caption: W. W. Simpson, family portrait, with 2nd wife, Martha and 5 children, ca. 1936: Alberta, b. 1926 (back, center); Lorena, b. 1927 (front, left); Wallace, b. 1930 (front, right); Richard, b. 1933 (in W. W.’s lap); Paul, b. 1934 (in Martha’s lap).
Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.
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