Early one morning, Smith Wigglesworth was awakened in his Yorkshire, England, home by a rustling sound in his bedroom. He rolled over and saw someone sitting in the chair at the foot of his bed. He squinted his near-sighted eyes and then recognized who it was.
“Oh, it’s just you, Satan,” said Wigglesworth as he rolled over and went back to sleep.
Wigglesworth told this story at one of his meetings, but what do you think?
(An excerpt from Storming the Kingdom by Larry Nevenhoven, 2014, an Amazon eBook.)
It’s easy for us modern skeptics to look at Wigglesworth (1859 – 1947) and consider him, his ministry, and his visions to be nothing more than ridiculous Pentecostal fantasies from the past. But the nation of Sweden and its king, Gustaf V, did not think of Wiggleworth as a tongue-talking charlatan. They took him seriously.
In 1921, Smith Wigglesworth held healing meetings throughout Scandinavia. Thousands were healed and saved. His success prompted Swedish doctors to convince authorities that Wigglesworth practiced medicine without a license when he laid hands on the sick. Thus, the authorities notified Wigglesworth that he was not allowed to lay his hands on the sick when he visited Stockholm. If he refused to obey the law, he would be arrested and sent to jail.
King Gustaf heard about the new law and wrote Wiggleswoth a note asking him to find a way around the city ordinance so that the evangelist could minister healing to the Swedish people.
What did Smith Wigglesworth do?
Wigglesworth arrived on schedule and preached a faith message from the Bible. When he finished preaching, he asked the sick people to lay their own hands on themselves. He prayed a short healing prayer for everyone. As soon as he finished, miracles happened throughout the auditorium. The people who were healed jumped up and shouted with joy, which stirred up the faith of others to believe for their own healing.
The Sweden healing crusade turned out to be one of Wigglesworth most successful ones.
There’s no doubt that Smith Wigglesworth was a unique man, but he never considered his ministry unique. He believed that every Christian could do the same things he did, such as healing the sick, raising the dead, and casting out demons.
Okay, how could Wigglesworth think this way? And what was his secret?
(Continued in Part 9…if you’re interested, the full series to date can be seen here.)