Uncontrollable and Controllable, Temporal Sense of Revivalism


Han, Chae Dong

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The article is to understand temporal aspects of modern revivalism. The significance of the study lies in that the impression concerning revivalism generally is dominated by spatial images, such as harsh backwoods environments, sensible emotional outbursts, bizarre bodily exercises, noise mass gathering and so on. This space-oriented propensity, the author assumes, is one of the reasons that modern revivalism is often caricatured by shallow flamboyance and mass manipulation. Space usually is more connected to observable objects and their senses. By contrast, time has more to do with inner consciousness. Focus on the temporal dimension of revivalism is meant to concern the matter of revival participants’ inner experiences in their own terms. The article pays attention to the tensional sense of time of the Great Revival between the uncontrollable and the controllable. More exactly speaking, the uncontrollable surpasses the controllable. The task that modern revivalism undertook was how to retain the uncontrolled dimension of the divine time within the controlled human orderly time, without encroaching on the former’s sacredness. The uncontrollable time of revivalism was mainly revealed through the unpredictable sudden occurrence of conversion, whose source was ascribed to divine sovereignty. The controllable time of revivalism was especially expressed by revivalism’s efforts to establish orderly sequence by forming a pattern of revival service. The author views this sensitivity to the paradox of the uncontrolled and the controlled as an antithesis to the modern sense of time, which is characterized by a tightly scheduled control of time. The temporal sense of modern revivalism is an anti-modernistic restructure of time in the midst of modernistic inflow. Modern revivalism was not a mere mirror of modernism.


I. Introduction
 II. Divine Ordination and Human Consecration
 III. Uncontrollable Sense of Time
  1. Anticipated But Not Pointed Out
  2. Open to Eschatological Condensedness
 IV. Controllable Sense of Time
 V. Conclusion


  • Han, Chae Dong Professor of Korea Nazarene University


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