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Charles F. Parham | The Topeka Outpouring of 1901 – Pentecostal Origin Story

650 Million Christians are part of the Pentecostal-Charismatic-Holy Spirit Empowered Movement around the world. But where did Pentecostalism get started? Today we visit The Topeka Outpouring of 1901 that was led by Charles F. Parham.

On January 1, 1901 a thirty-year-old Bible school student named Agnes Ozman began to speak in tongues for the first time. Her experience was the beginning of the Pentecostal Outpouring at Bethel Bible School led by Holiness preacher Charles Fox Parham.





Pentecostal Gold features sermons from R.W. Schambach, Aimee Semple McPherson, David Wilkerson, T.L. Osborn, Jimmy Swaggart, George O. Wood, and many others. It contains over 2000 sermons, 200 preachers, 40 topics, and 8 decades of Pentecostal ministry.


Check out The Evangelism Podcast with Evangelism Coach Daniel King


Evangelism Coach Daniel King (00:00):
650 million Christians are part of the Pentecostal charismatic, Holy spirit empowered movement around the world. But where did Pentecostalism get started? Today we visit the Topeka outpouring of 1901 that was led by Charles F. Parham.

Evangelism Podcast Host (00:18):
Jesus said, go into all the world and preach the gospel. Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be welcome to the evangelism podcast with Dr. Daniel King, where Daniel interviews, full-time evangelists, pastors, missionaries, and normal everyday Christians to discover how they share their faith, their powerful testimonies and amazing stories that will inspire you to reach people with the good news. And now here’s your host, missionary and evangelist Daniel King.

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (00:57):
Welcome to the evangelism podcast. I’m Daniel King, and I’m excited about telling people about Jesus and I also happen to be a Pentecostal preacher. And so I’m all I’m excited about introducing people to the Holy spirit and the origins of Pentecostalism go all the way back to 1901 that Topeka outpouring on January 1st, 1901, a 30 year old Bible student named Agnes Osman began to speak in tongues for the first time. Her experience was the beginning of the Pentecostal outpouring at Bethel Bible school led by holiness, preacher, Charles F. Parham. And today I have a Pentecostal historian with me, Larry Martin, Dr. Larry Martin. Thank you so much for being on the evangelism podcast.

Larry Martin (01:49):
Yeah. Thank you, Daniel. It’s great to be with you today. Tell us

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (01:53):
A little bit about what happened and how the Holy spirit was poured out on that day. Back in 1901.

Larry Martin (02:02):
Okay. Daniel how much of the story do you want me to share the background?

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (02:07):
Start at the beginning and just go for it. Share as much as you can.

Larry Martin (02:11):
It started with a hunger for God, Charles Parham had a real hunger for the things of the Lord so much so that he had gone on a trip all the way across the United States, visiting hotspots of revival. It had been to Zion, Illinois. He was in Chicago where D.L. Moody school was a visit. A.B. Simpson in New York had been up in Maine to Frank Sanford school. He was just hungry for the Lord and he came back to Topeka to start a ministry there. He had had a healing home and as things kind of fell apart at the healing home and he, he leased an old building on the outskirts of, of a Topeka that had been at one time, a mansion by a man named arrest to stone. And he called together a group of students to study the word of God. When we talk about it as a Bible school, most people have visions like a school like ORU or our Southwestern similar God university, where students are coming 18 and 20 years old, but Charles F. Parham’s students were mostly mature Christians.

Larry Martin (03:20):
They were people that had been in the ministry, some of them and others that were adults with families, and they really just came together to seek God. They spent 24 hours a day praying some people want, how do you pray? 24 hours a day? Well, they prayed in shifts. They had a prayer tower and the, and the top of the old mansion. And they would go up there two or three at a time. And those two or three would probably for a few hours and they would be relieved if someone else would go up there and pry in and continually, they were praying and seeking King. The Lord there are only textbook was the Bible. If you go to Bible college today, you’re going to study English, math history and sociologists psychology. They didn’t study anything, but the scripture, they didn’t even study theology.

Larry Martin (04:05):
They studied the Bible. And so 24 hours a day, all day long, they’re seeking God and looking for more of God and Charles Parham left his students for a season to go to Kansas city and preach. And he told him while he was gone, that they should study the book of acts and see if they could find in the book of acts, if there was some physical evidence to the baptism, the Holy Spirit. Well, I think probably parliament already drawn some conclusions about that. And it probably maybe while he was in Maine. Yeah, yeah. He come back and the students had studied the scripture. And from the scripture, they had concluded that in the book of acts, when people were baptized the Holy spirit, they spoke in tongues. And so they began to pray that God would baptize them in the Holy spirit, the way baptize people in the book of acts.

Larry Martin (04:54):
And this is really important, Daniel. And I think the listeners need to know this. The Pentecostal movement started as a group of people hungry to see a fulfillment of scripture. They were people looking for evidence from scripture today. We have people that seek manifestations and then after they receive a manifestation, they go to the scripture and try to find some place that, that manifestation might be evidence in scripture. The Pentecostal movement didn’t start that way. It started with people looking for the scripture and looking the manifestation and praying that they would receive that. And as you mentioned in the beginning of the podcast to own the, they had a new year’s Eve watch night service, everyone was seeking God and praying. And just after midnight, Agnes Osman asked Charles prom to pray for her, that she might receive the baptism of the Holy spirit. And she began to speak in tongues and she spoken other languages for four days. She couldn’t speak English for four days, four days and four nights. She spoke in tongues and that birth, the revival there in Topeka that eventually grew into the entire Pentecostal movement. I think that was a long explanation, but I hope it covered some of the things you wanted to hear.

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (06:08):
And initially they thought that speaking in other tongues meant that you would speak in a known language and be able to become a missionary to, to China or to Africa. Is that true?

Larry Martin (06:25):
That’s absolutely true. That was Charles F. Parham’s vision that they could be filled with the Spirit and that it could be missionaries to go out. Wouldn’t have to learn the language. And as you know, Daniel, there are instances where that has happened. There are instances where people were in a situation where they didn’t communicate the language and they were able to preach one, one man, a disease. The street was thrown in jail for preaching the gospel. And there are a lot of Hispanics in the jail, Mexicans in the jail. He preached to him in Spanish, even though I didn’t know a word of Spanish, but by and large, we’ve come to realize that speaking in tongues is not a cheapest scape from learning a language to preach overseas. But they did believe that at the time,

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (07:10):
But it’s a, it’s a spiritual language that God can understand

Larry Martin (07:15):
Exactly what we speak to God.

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (07:17):
So then after that initial infilling of the Holy spirit on January 1st, 1901, what happened after that? To what, where did PRM go next? What, what happened? What did people say about this experience?

Larry Martin (07:35):
Yeah, that’s a, that’s a real interesting part of the story that a lot of people don’t know immediately there was national coverage to this revival. Reporters came from Cincinnati and Chicago and St. Louis covering the revival. It was a, it was a big, big blast, but that didn’t last par on thought, boy, this is it. The world’s going to turn to this new movement. He called it the apostolic faith, but it almost died out. Charles Parham had a child that was sick and he didn’t believe in doctors and I believed in healing and his child was sick and his child died. And that was a terrible blow to him. I mean, anyone that loses a child, it’s a terrible thing, but to lose a child when you’re trusting God for healing, it was, it was a terrible blow. And they lost the least on the mansion where they had the Bible school as you know, within a year, the old mansion burned down.

Larry Martin (08:34):
So Charles F. Parham was a man that lost his place of ministry. He really went into a time of deep introspection. He wrote a book during that period called a voice crying in the wilderness. And I, I think that’s exactly what he felt like a voice crying in the wilderness. And even Agnes Osman began doubt if it, maybe the experience was real. I mean, she had, she had had such a dynamic experience, but you know, the enemy will do anything. He can distill away the seed that God has planted. Later Agnes seismic became ordained. December’s a God minister. So she kept the faith, but she didn’t have a season of doubts. And as I said, it looked like maybe the movement was going to die. It became weaker and weaker. Charles F. Parham continued to preach. It ended up in Eldorado Springs, Missouri.

Larry Martin (09:24):
And there’s a, there’s a hot water spring. There, a lack, a lot of places in the U S back in the a hundred years ago, people thought these Springs had some kind of healing effect and they would build a hospitals. There are convalescent homes and people would come to those Springs. And a lady was coming to that spring every year, hoping to be healed. She had multiple things wrong with her. She was blind in one eye and half blind in the other. And she had all kinds of internal plumbing issues. She just, her husband thought she was going to die. He made her come back to the Springs, even though she didn’t want to. Her name was Mary Arthur and Mary Arthur heard Charles F. Parham preach. She went to his house. He prayed for I, I don’t understand that what he did, but somehow he put some kind of a compress on our eyes and prayed for her eyes that she could heal to be healed.

Larry Martin (10:16):
And she left that house and she’s had a child, whether I think a grandchild that was leading her home and the child run off in the house, kiddo flipped her off and she was lost there on the street. And she couldn’t see in her eyes were covered up. And she removed that compress from her eyes and she had perfect healing. She was totally healed. And she realized not only was her eyes healed, but her whole body was healed. Everything that was wrong with her was healed. And she went back to her home in Galena, Kansas invited trust prom to preach. And that’s where the Pentecostal revival really exploded people in that little four state area around there and the Oklahoma and Missouri and Kansas and Arkansas that began to come by the droves and hundreds of people came. Hundreds of people were stayed. Hundreds were baptized in the spring river out there. And from there, the movement went down into Texas and into Houston from Houston, went to Los Angeles from Los Angeles to the whole world.

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (11:15):
One time you, you told me a little saying, you, you said that the Pentecostalism was born in Topeka. Tell me that saying, what, what did you say

Larry Martin (11:29):
Pentecostal movement was born into Topeka, crawled around in Kansas and Oklahoma and Missouri, and stood up on its feet in Texas and started walking when it got to Los Angeles, it ran around the world

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (11:42):
And now Pentecostalism is dynamic. There there’s millions of believers all over the world that speak in other tongues that believe in the empowering of the Holy spirit. And really Pentecostalism is, is one of the most dynamic fastest growing parts of Christianity today. And it all started there at the Topeka outpouring with Charles Parham. And so

Larry Martin (12:12):
One person, one person Daniel on January 1st, 1900, 120 years later, there’s estimated to be over 650 million. And it cost her charismatics around the world. The largest church in the world is a Pentecostal charismatic church. The largest church in Africa is a Pentecostal charismatic church, the largest church in Europe, the largest church in Asia, largest church in South America, largest church in Australia, largest church in the United States is a Pentecostal charismatic church. It is the greatest revival in the history of the Christian Church.

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (12:47):
Amen. Well, I am privileged to be a part of it and just so thankful for the Holy spirit in his daily guidance and, and daily leading talk to me a little bit more about parliament in, in his theology, in his, his teaching, the, the early understandings of param that contributed to the Pentecostalism that we know today.

Larry Martin (13:11):
Well Charles Palm was a man that God used. He used him madly, but he was also a very flawed man. He, he was flawed in, in much of his theology people that look back on some of the poems theology think that maybe the open and cultural movement should be cursed, but it’s a great thing that within five years of the beginning of the movement, we had rided the course in some of that theology, but for example Parlin believed in British Israeli ism. He believed that that Anglo-Saxons were a special race. He, he believed in there was no eternal Hale, had some very strange ideas that had developed because, well, his father-in-law was a Quakers where he got the idea about hail, but he, he, he was a man hungry for God. And he was a man that God could use in spite of some of his falls. That would have been an encouragement, I think, to all of us, because there’s no perfect person among us. And if God could use a man like him to spark a revival that changes the world, maybe God could even use me.

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (14:22):
Amen. Well, God has used you Dr. Larry Martin, you’ve written books about param and about the Azusa street revival. You can find all of the information about Dr. Larry Martin at Dr. Larry martin.org. Thank you so much for being on the evangelism podcast today and telling us about the Topeka outpouring of 1901, the Pentecostal origin story.

Larry Martin (14:50):
Thank Daniel.

Evangelism Coach Daniel King (14:52):
God bless you. Thanks so much for listening to this interview with Dr. Larry Martin. If you’ve enjoyed the evangelism podcast, could you do me a favor, go find the evangelism podcast on Apple iTunes and leave us a review that review will help other people find the podcast and make sure that you subscribe because we’ve got some exciting interviews coming up

Evangelism Podcast Host (15:17):
Information about how to share your faith or to financially support our worldwide evangelistic outreaches. Visit King ministries.com. Again, that’s King ministries.com.


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