The MacDonald Family of Scotland
Margaret and her
James and George
Around 1830, miraculous healings were reported through James
Campbell, first of his sister Margaret MacDonald and then of Mary
Campbell (through James's letter to
Mary). Shortly thereafter James and George MacDonald manifested
the speaking and interpretations of tongues, and soon others
followed suit in prayer meetings. These charismatic experiences
garnered major national attention. Many came to see and
investigate these events. Some, such as Edward Irving and Henry Drummond, regarded these events as genuine displays from the Holy
Spirit. Others, including John Nelson Darby and Benjamin Wills
Newton, whom the Brethren sent on their behalf to investigate,
came to the conclusion that these displays were demonic.
1830 – James MacDonald
Edward Irving, Presbyterian
As early as 1830, Scottish
Presbyterian minister Edward Irving and a group of English
evangelicals had predicted the restoration of tongues (as well as
the other gifts of the Spirit) as signs of the end of the age.
On April 20, 1830, in the first recorded
instance in modern times, James MacDonald spoke in tongues, and
his twin, George, interpreted:
He cometh—Jesus cometh— a weeping Jesus."
In fact, almost all the subsequent interpretations in England
on the theme "the
Lord is coming soon; get ready to meet him."
Margaret MacDonald was the younger sister, who in 1830, at 15
years old, is said to have had a vision of what later became known
as the “Secret Rapture”.
Her older brothers, James and George, were the ones involved in
the first modern “tongues”.
Margaret MacDonald’s Vision of 1830
(which you may credit to
either the Holy Spirit or to devils according to your preference!)
was first the awful state of the land
that was pressed upon me. I saw the blindness and
infatuation of the people to be very great. I felt the cry of Liberty just
to be the hiss of the serpent, to drown them in perdition. It was just 'no
God.' I repeated the words, Now there is distress of nations, with
perplexity, the seas and the waves roaring, men's hearts failing them for
fear. Now look out for the sign of the Son of Man. Here I was made to stop
and cry out, O it is not known what the sign of the Son of Man is; the
people of God think they are waiting, but they know not what it is.”
It is by being filled with the Spirit that we shall be
kept. I frequently said, Oh be filled with the Spirit - have the light
of God in you, that you may detect Satan - be full of eyes within -be
clay in the hands of the potter -submit to be filled, filled with God.
This will build the temple.
that comes not through the blood of Christ is
not of God.
When I say, they are looking from the cross, I feel that there is much
in it - they turn from the blood of the Lamb, by which we overcome, and
in which our robes are washed and made white. There are low views of
God's holiness, and a ceasing to condemn sin in the flesh, and a looking
from him who humbled himself, and made himself of no reputation.
Oh! it is needed, much needed at present, a
leading back to the cross. I saw that night, and often since, that
there will be an outpouring of the Spirit on the body, such as has
not been, a baptism of fire, that all the dross may be put away. Oh
there must and will be such an indwelling of the living God as has
not been - the servants of God sealed in their foreheads - great
conformity to Jesus - his holy holy image seen in his people - just
the bride made comely by his comeliness put upon her. This is what
we are at present made to pray much for, that speedily we may all be
made ready to meet our Lord in the air - and it will be. Jesus wants
his bride. His desire is toward us. He that shall come, will come,
and will not tarry. Amen and Amen Even so come Lord Jesus."
John Nelson Darby,
who developed the dispensational eschatology emphasizing
was Irving's friend, and his ideas were ardently supported by many Holiness
leaders. "Every fully-developed Pentecostal experience includes this
Pentecostal expecting of the coming of the King," said one.
Brother Ralph (Adventist)
According to records still kept
by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists in their
historical archives, in a periodical titled
Vol. I Issue 5
– An early Adventist named
Hiram Edson relates how he attended a prayer meeting at a conference in
Centreville, New York in
The subject of this prayer meeting was a
proposed visit to a former Millerite Adventist evangelist named
Rhodes who was despondent and living in the wilderness.
Brother Ralph had secretly
prayed for the Holy Ghost to show them
at this prayer-meeting. This sign was given as
spoke in a “new
no one at the prayer meeting understood, then Ralph himself
outburst in tongues
to mean – “Yes,
go invite Elder Rhodes to return to us.”