GREAT HEALING REVIVALISTS - HOW GOD'S POWER CAME: JAMES RICHARD DUNN
by Andrew Strom
James Dunn was another mightily anointed evangelist from the middle of last century. It has been reported that he had an anointing of similar power to the famous William Branham, incredible though this may seem. Dunn had been desperately seeking more of God and his giftings for some time, when the Holy Spirit told him to pray to be FILLED WITH JESUS and he would also receive the gifts. Jesus spoke to him: 'Don't pray for the gifts. Pray to be more like Me.'
"I pastored the Pentecostal Holiness church there for two years before this ministry came to me. I had been fasting, and praying, and I had been reminding God. I believe God wants us to remind Him about the promises He has made to us, to call his attention to them. So I was reminding God that when I was employed in a responsible position for the government, we gave our men the best tools on earth possible to work with, so that they could do their job right. I told God that if we as mere human beings could give good tools to our laborers, how much better tools could He give us to work for the Kingdom of Christ. I continued praying in that way, and begging God for the gifts. Just imagine! I would cry: the tears rolling down my face. I would fast until the preachers in Princeton remarked that my clothes hung on me like a sack, because I had lost so much weight. They thought that the clothes had belonged to someone else. I don't know how many pounds I did lose. I was way down in weight.
"One day I was just in a big way of praying; tears streaming down my face as I was alone before God. I was asking Him again to give me the gifts of the Spirit. A voice spoke to me and said, 'Just a minute.' And I stopped, and a voice spoke again, and said, 'DON'T BEG FOR THE GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT, PRAY TO BE MORE LIKE ME.' I said, Why Jesus, I had never thought of it in that manner, what do you mean, pray to be more like you? And the voice said to me, 'THE GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT WILL OPERATE IN YOUR LIFE, IF YOU ARE FULL OF JESUS.' So I began to pray that I would be just exactly like Jesus.
"It wasn't long after that my wife saw a golden ball floating down the hall, and it floated into the door, and just as she woke me up, it disappeared. Shortly after that, one night I was in a state of prayer, my wife was asleep, it was about 11:00 o'clock. I said, 'God, I am ready to die if it takes that, to have a better ministry of Jesus Christ! I am not able to do the job properly!'" (W. V. Grant Sr, 'Gifts of the Spirit in the Home', Pg. 24-25: 'Experience of Rev. James Dunn of Princeton, West Virginia').
"Then one night while I was lying in bed and my wife was asleep, something happened. I was meditating on the glories and graciousness of God, and upon the things I needed from Him, and all at once, the Great Presence of God began to flood into the room. He came in such a supernatural way that the room was filled with His Glory. A great feeling of ecstasy and glory swept over me, and saturated my very body, mind, and soul. I began to get afraid, because when you get that close to God, something happens to you. I began to draw back from this Wonderful Force, and when I did it left. Then I realized I had made a mistake in drawing back. The next few days, I began to pray as I had never prayed. In about 3 or 4 nights I was lying in the bed again and I was meditating and praising the Lord, and asking Him for help and power in my life. All at once, this great feeling began to come into the room again.
"The very room and atmosphere lighted up. There didn't seem to be any room for me there any longer, because God so completely filled the place. As I lay there, I lost all movement of my body other than my eyes. The Great Force of God moved down across my bed, and overshadowed me, and I felt the strangest, and most wonderful feeling. From my very fingertips, it began to move into my hands, and up my arms. I felt as if I were holding 220 volts in each hand, and it began to surge back and forth through my body. Then and there in that room, while this was taking place the old me was leaving, and the new me was coming in.
"From that night on my life was different. Many remarked how completely my ministry had changed. I had a positive message - a message, that had fire in it. God talked to me, and told me that if I would preach the message of deliverance, He would heal the sick. He would give me the Power to cast out devils. As I listened to this COMMISSION from the Lord, His power surged through me, and my arm happened to touch my wife's body, and it almost caused her to jump completely out of the bed. That night God began doing things. He revealed to me the people's conditions and diseases through the mighty Spirit of discernment. I found I was a different individual. God showed me things that I thought were impossible for a person to see or understand. He would show me the individual that was suffering, what they had, and He would direct me to them. After I had prayed for them, they would be healed of every disease.
"Now this particular period is the three different times that angels appeared unto me to do the Lord's bidding. When I was in a revival, after I had gone on the evangelistic field, after my call into this particular type of ministry... I was taken up by the Lord into a high place, and I looked out across a deep blue, beautiful sea of water. I saw two great eagles flying toward me in the distance, and as they approached closer, I marveled at their size. Finally they got close to me and they were flying so fast, I said, My, I didn't think anything could fly that fast. Why those aren't eagles, those are angels of God. They got close to me, and began to dive like two great airplanes, one after the other. They just folded their wings, and dived down, down, down toward that blue sea. Oh, it was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. They dived into this sea to catch fish there. A voice spoke to me, and said these were the angels that would go with me into the world, into all portions of the world, to gather the fish (or to gather men), that he would make me a fisher of men, and angels would help me; they would protect me, and keep the evil one from me; they would help me win the souls of men for Jesus Christ's Kingdom. Many times in our meetings across the nation people have seen these angels beside me." ('James Dunn, Sign Gift Ministry' by W.V. Grant Sr).
James Dunn was one of those men of God (a little different from Smith Wigglesworth) who believed in the absolute necessity of regular FASTING for the continued effectiveness of his ministry: "Fasting keeps the spirit strong and tends to keep the spirit, and give it control over the body. When a person fasts, and brings their body into travail before God, their spirit becomes stronger, and in harmony with God. So I find that in fasting, it gives me greater power to pray with people, or for people's diseases. It gives me greater power with God to preach the word, and the revivals are a greater success. I feel that if a man should ever quit fasting, he is losing out in his ministry, and in his life for God. 'When you are weak then you are strong.' This is a separated life. God showed me at the very beginning of this ministry, that it was a separated life, that I must spend many hours fasting, praying, meditating, and staying before the Lord." ('James Dunn, Sign Gift Ministry' by W.V. Grant Sr).