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Finney coined the following thoughts about revival from his lectures and book called "Revivals of Religion" (1835):


“A revival always includes the conviction of sin on the part of the church…In a true revival, Christians are always brought under such convictions, they see their sins in such light , that often they find it impossible to maintain a hope of their acceptance with God…Backslidden Christians will be brought to repentance. A revival is nothing else than a new beginning of obedience to God. Just as in the case of a converted sinner, the first step is a deep repentance, a breaking down into the dust before God, with deep humility, and forsaking of sin…Christians will have their faith renewed…A revival breaks the power of the world and of sin over Christians. It brings them to such vantage ground that they get a fresh impulse towards heaven. They have a new foretaste of heaven, and new desire after union with God; and the charm of the world is broken, and the power of sin overcome…When the churches are thus awakened and reformed, the reformation and salvation of sinners will follow, going through the same stages of conviction, repentance, and reformation. Their hearts will be broken down and changed” (pages 15-17).