‘What If?’ – The Staggering Story of the Moravian Missions Movement

2 September 2022

3.3 MINS

Editor’s Note: This article was written and released on 22 August 1997 by Ps David McGrouther, a Baptist Pastor who was helping lead the unity and missions movement for AD2000 here in the Illawarra where I (Warwick Marsh) live.

David McGrouther helped sow seeds of inspiration about the Moravians and their 100-year prayer meeting that changed history and ultimately the world. That ‘Hidden Seed’ continues to multiply today, 25 years after the writing of this article.

Our prayer remains the same, encapsulated in the famous saying of the Moravians, “May the Lamb that was slain receive a reward for His suffering.” For more information about Moravian Miracle, click here.


The outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Moravians took place on Wednesday morning, 13 August 1727. It was one of the most important moments in the history of the Church since Pentecost. These Christians had been meeting in prayer for some time.

They met at that time with godly grief, aware of shortcomings, division and failure. They had arrived as Christians who were judging, argumentative and critical of each other. However, they left with hearts ablaze for God and ‘turned the world upside down” as we shall see.

Born out of the experience of persecution, Hus’ followers finally found refuge later at Count Zinzendorf’s estate. Zinzendorf was a Christian truly consecrated and surrendered to God. His motto, “I have one passion; it is Jesus, Jesus, only” was the stamp of his life. Through him, God put into the hearts of these Moravians a desire to pray.

Moravians — Revival, Wesley & Australia is the video interview that sparked the writing of the newly released book on 20 June 2022 called Moravian Miracle. See the book launch video here. Check it out here if you want to order in Australia. For Kindle orders, click here. For international orders, go to this website.

Major Impact

What happened there at Herrnhut, in Germany (some fifty years before William Carey, “the father of modern missions”) was ultimately to influence the whole world. The awakening; the revivalists, John and Charles Wesley; Methodism itself; the Salvation Army and so many others were influenced, and their Christian origins can be traced in various ways to God’s work through the Moravians. Understandings of prayer, theology and world mission were all impacted through what happened through this small community which started in Herrnhut.

The Moravian Peter Boehler helped to lead a repentant and weeping John Wesley to a personal faith in Christ alone, and the great evangelist was born. Similarly, Charles Wesley, who went on to compose at least 6000 hymns that gave heart-expression for millions, the meaning of the new birth and the life of faith.

In the next two decades, the small Moravian church’s heart-passion for world mission commenced more missions than the whole Evangelical Church for nearly 200 years. Into nearly every country of Europe, far into an Africa that did not know the name of Jesus Christ; out to the West Indies and icy Greenland; down to South America and through Asia. The Moravians sent forth missionaries to reach thousands. The blessing they experienced was not just for themselves, the Gospel was for the whole world.

Zinzendorf declared that following that original outpouring when the Lord met them in prayer, the Holy Spirit was their leader and was to direct everything and everyone. They had surrendered ‘controlling’ pride. The unity and love that characterised these people from then on were notable enough in themselves. But this unity and blessing will always have a flow-on effect (John 17:20-21, 23).

Your Calling Today

The above video was the first promo for a recent book on Zinzendorf and the Moravians called Moravian Miracle, which was released on 20 June 2022.

How much do we need the Lord to transform and renew us as Christians in our day, in our nation? Will it be said of our nation that we were a selfish land and missed out on the blessing of bringing the Gospel and the glory of God to the people groups (Matthew 24:14) when we had the responsibility and opportunity? What if we also became like the Moravians?

What if churches modelled the Life by giving it all away? What if we sowed and reaped as our Lord has instructed? What if God stirred up many Zinzendorfs in every region of this land? What if it were you?

How few have taken hold of the Lord in prayer and lived in the light of serious dependence on God alone? How few have received the Great Commission for the world and acted upon it regardless of the cost?

Now, as never before, we stand in a moment of opportunity. In Australia there are openings for unity, prayer and mission as we have not seen for decades… if at all. Across our land is evidence of change during these last years of this millennium of a deeper and more desperate church; a humbled church may be emerging.

Let our hearts cry, “Lord, come among us as You have done before. Lord, pour out Your blessing — not for our own emotional enjoyment, but for the sake of the lost while time remains.”

“Lord! Here am I, send me!”


Photo by Eduardo Dutra.

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