History of the Coalition on Revival

In 1984 God led Dr. Jay Grimstead to call together 112 national Christian leaders to form a united, spiritual army willing to help mobilize the Body of Christ around four tasks:

1. To rally around the “mainstream basics” and create 17 Biblical Worldview Documents which would outline the Church’s biblical tasks in various areas of life such as law, government, economics, education, the media, science, the arts, and outline a biblical view of evangelism, discipleship, helping the hurting, pastoral renewal, and so on.

2. To hold up the inerrant Bible as a plumb line by which to measure ourselves and the Church and to hold each other mutually accountable to live in obedience to that Bible in the belief that the Lordship of Christ and Matthew 18:15-17 are non-optional for all Christians.

3. To function as a “united catalyst” and model by which the greater Body of Christ may be encouraged to operate in practical unity globally and in each local area in ways now considered inconceivable by most Christian leaders.

4. To offer the Church-at-large models, pathways, plans, and documents from our consensus wisdom about how to impact every area of life with the Biblical Worldview as stated in these consensus documents. We can thus begin rebuilding our civilization on the principles of the Bible as a united, spiritual “Allied Army” of Christian leaders from every denomination and organization which cares to unite in such an effort.

From 1984 through 1986 the COR Steering Committee, and about 200 volunteers who were leaders in their various fields, created the 17 Worldview Documents during three national conferences and many regional conferences. The worldview documents offer Christian leaders concise and comprehensive biblical principles of how to apply the truth of the Bible to all spheres of life and ministry. 

Our COR members and the volunteers represented a broad spectrum of denominations and theologies (almost every position conceivable within mainstream orthodoxy). Therefore, we realized we needed to create a new, generic, statement of faith to identify the biblical basics on which we all could agree if we were to indeed have a unified basis on which to create the 17 Worldview Documents. Accordingly, in the spring of 1984 our theologians took a “helicopter view” of 2,000 years of the Church’s theology from every historic denomination and boiled it all down into the 42 Articles of the Essential of a Christian Worldview.

The 42 Articles were sent to all our members, critiqued, and edited; and the result is a very comprehensive and concise statement of what mainstream Christianity, in all historic denominations, can believe and support. Every theologian from every denomination who has reviewed it and given us his response has been highly enthusiastic about its ability to state a rather comprehensive and precise theological unity across a very wide spectrum. Many churches, organizations, and colleges have now adopted the 42 Articles as their generic statement of faith. Some theologians have predicted that this document could furnish the theological basis for unity the church has needed for over 200 years. Even Catholic theologians like 41 of the 42 articles.

After the 17 Worldview Documents were created, we wrote the Manifesto for the Christian Church which is a trumpet call to the Church to repent, unify, be holy and rebuild the civilization upon the Bible. It identifies the 20 points on which the Church must stand and the action it must take to fulfill its task in the world. At our final national conference in Washington, D.C., we had a solemn assembly at the Lincoln Memorial on July 4, 1986, and formally signed the Manifesto as a covenant with God and with each other to live and minister in obedience to the Bible and to spend our lives for the cause of advancing the Kingdom of God. 

We believe that no Christian leader who opposes the points set down in the Manifesto really understands the real battle in which we are now engaged or is properly qualified to lead others in Christian ministry. We see this Manifesto and the doctrinal basics set down in the 42 Articles as practical plumb lines by which to measure the Church’s activities and individual Christians at this critical point in history. 

The Manifesto was signed by a large percentage of the major, national, Christian leaders in America. A list of the signers is available from COR upon request.

From 1987 to 1989 COR sponsored a series of discussions and debates between a wide range of theologians concerning the Kingdom of God. Out of these debates, COR developed the Articles of Affirmation and Denial on the Kingdom of God. These 25 articles describe how the Kingdom of God impacts society during this present age. The Kingdom of God is a central teaching of the New Testament and cannot be neglected without loss to the Church and the Church's influence upon society. The 25 articles define the Kingdom as both the universal rule of Christ over all things and His special rule over the redeemed, as well as the penetrating influence of the Word of God and the Holy Spirit in the world in areas such as law, government, economics, and ethics.

During the 1990s, COR continued to promote the COR documents and has worked to mobilize and help coordinate reformation-minded churches and organizations to obey the Bible and become a united army for the Kingdom of God. COR has sponsored a number of conferences and COR's director, Dr. Jay Grimstead, has been a speaker at various churches and conferences.

COR has also sponsored a new consensus effort to deal with serious heresies that challenge the modern church: the  International Church Council. The Church Council is patterned after the Ecumenical Church Councils of the First Millennium. The Church Council is developing a set of consensus documents (theological white papers and affirmations and denials) that set forth biblical orthodoxy in nearly two dozen areas of theology. 

Dr. Jay Grimstead is the founder and director of the Coalition on Revival. He was a personal friend and co-laborer with the late Dr. Francis Schaeffer in the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy and considers Dr. Schaeffer his mentor. Dr. Grimstead, a favorite of the young for his offbeat, rollicking sense of humor and fresh perspectives, worked for 20 years with the international youth organization Young Life. For many years since then, he has been a leading visionary and networker among Christian groups around the world.