Due to my post earlier this week, I thought I would revisit some basic thoughts and teaching around the gift of prophecy. I’ve done something like this before, but I thought I would break it up into shorter posts and bring a few additional thoughts in as needed. But I think it safe to conclude that more and more of the church has awakened to the fact that this gift is both available and needed in shaping the body of Christ today.
I remember the early days of our relationship. In the 9 months between meeting and marrying, my wife and I were only in the same city a mere 40 days or so. We were divided most of the time by an ocean, but thankfully had great support in both the US and UK. Therefore, in those many days apart (even when we were both in the UK), we spent much time emailing and texting by phone. I’m talking about emailing and texting a whole lot! It was all-consuming as we looked to stay in touch day after day after day.
As our relationship heightened, we began calling each other, though we also maintained the little love notes via text as well. Our mobile phones were the major place of communication. I remember one month my UK mobile phone bill was around 85 GBP, which was some 50 GBP more than the normal monthly bill. I was shocked, but it was truly worth it in my eyes.
We also moved into the realm of love-letter writing. So, yes, I am a bit of a romantic. After moving back to the US, being even further apart from my beloved, this became an integral part of staying in contact, expressing our heart’s desire for one another. And, of course, both of us saved each and every one of those emotion-stirring, affectionate letters. They were not just words. They were an expression of the love we had for one another. And being so far apart, you can imagine their role in articulating our deep affections. Continue reading
I continue posting short video clips of Dr. Craig Keener on both miracles in biblical times and in the present day.
Below, he shares about a blind leper being healed of his blindness. Continue reading
Craig Keener continues his discussion around the reality of the miraculous today, this being connected to his newest released work, Miracles: The Credibility of the New Testament Accounts. Here, he particularly recounts the story of his own sister-in-law who was raised back to life after being dead for 3 hours. He also discusses other accounts of raisings of the dead.
What’s interesting is the way in which Keener discusses these. Remember, he has had his theological perspective changed because of his own studies and because of God’s work of miracles in his own family, being married to a Congolese-African woman. But Keener does not approach this like a typical ‘super-charismatic’. He is very calm and collective as he recounts what took place and he maintains a strong theological anchor. Continue reading
Many of you will know my ‘other’ blog over at To Be Continued, where my continuationist colleague, Marv, and I post articles about the continuing work of the Holy Spirit today. Below is his most recent article on how we know (yet never 100% perfectly) it is God speaking. I thought it was excellent from a very practical-pastoral level of helping encourage God’s people in the area of God speaking today.
The question is “How do you know?” We contend, based on the Scriptures, that God’s Spirit continues to communicate with believers today, as He has throughout history, and even more so, since Jesus prophesied and commanded his disciples to be led by the Spirit after He returned to the Father (John 14-16).
Okay, so given this instruction, how do we know when the Spirit is speaking? Does “speaking” equal an audible voice? If it is non-audible but internal, how it this communication to be distinguished from our own thoughts?
How do you know? The question comes both from skeptics of “modern-day” revelation–the classic “maybe it’s just last night’s pizza,” as well as a sincere learner, seeking practical understanding of the ways and means of this ministry that our Lord has called us to. It’s a fair question either way, and I want to touch on a few shreds of how it can possibly be answered. Largely, it depends on exactly what is being asked. Continue reading