If my series on the gifts of the Holy Spirit, which is now finished, has left you wanting to know more, then I encourage you to listen to three talks from my friend, Joel Virgo. Joel leads the Brighton Newfrontiers church, CCK. His first talk speaks about something I have blogged about previously, apostles today. The second goes through some of the gifts, and in the third he speaks about how the gifts can operate in meetings.
Joel argues for a different approach, depending on the size of the congregation, saying “the bigger the number of people in the room, the more important the leadership gift becomes in that meeting.” He believes that the ideal size of meeting for the gifts to freely operate is around 100, although that does not mean they can’t be used at all in larger or smaller meetings.
Also, there is one talk that I recommend more than any other if you are now eager to receive more of the Holy Spirit. Terry Virgo spoke at a Newfrontiers USA event on “How to Receive the Holy Spirit.” You can download the audio, or read a testimony of how that talk led to a breakthrough for a man who had been seeking the Spirit for many years. Terry also has many other useful talks online
If you want to read more about this, I also recommend the following books. You will find you don’t agree with everything you read, not least because they don’t agree with each other! But, each of these books has something very useful to contribute to our understanding of this vital subject.
The section in Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology is probably the best place to start (as is the case with so many biblical subjects!) He has also written probably the standard work explaining the view of prophecy I hold to entitled The Gift of Prophecy in the New Testament and Today. Grudem edited a four views book to which Sam Storms contributed called Who’s Afraid of the Holy Spirit. Read how two professors’ theological training had left them ill-prepared to deal with traumatic events, and their resulting journey away from what they called a spiritually sterile tradition to an experience of God’s Holy Spirit. Can cessationists experience the Holy Spirit without becoming out and out charismatics?
Don Carson’s book, He Who Gives Life is a very helpful and comprehensive theology of the Holy Spirit.
Gordon Fee’s God’s Empowering Presence examines every mention in Paul’s letters of the role of the Holy Spirit.
Last, but by no means least, my friend Greg Haslam has recently written a fantastic book on the practicalities of pursuing the gift of prophecy today, called Moving in the Prophetic.
And there, for now, I will leave this subject of the gifts and this blog will move on to other things.