Are there apostles today?

John-MacArthur

I am nearing the end of my series on Strange Fire.  It may feel interminable for some, but believe me when I get the bit between my teeth, sometimes I keep at it a lot longer than I will have done on this!Today I turn to an argument that MacArthur uses against the charismatic movement. He takes some of the odd things some people say and do about the idea of apostles today and rightly rejects that. But again he fails to interact with more responsible groups who do believe in apostles today. … [Read more...]

Healing Today

John-MacArthur

MacArthur's argument against the gift of healing seen in his book Strange Fire is an interesting one to me. He seems to distinguish between the idea that God can and still does heal today in response to our prayers, and the concept of the gift of healing. (See James  5:14-15).He does this in several ways. Firstly, he believes that the "Gift" of healing was given exclusively to accredit the Apostles, something which as I said in a previous post, I just don't see as the case allowing for the … [Read more...]

John MacArthur tries to retreat from some of his most challenging language

Over at Tim Challies, MacArthur has been interviewed about the criticism that has surfaced of him following the Strange Fire conference.  This is interesting for two reasons. Firstly because of his brief summary of his case, and secondly for an attempt to rein in some of what to many of us seem like clear statements rejecting charismatics wholesale.Regarding the arguments he choses I thought I would briefly address them here:What are the gifts? MacArthur believes that the gifts of the Holy S … [Read more...]

See you in Texas? Come and join the global marketplace for Faith

The vision of Patheos.com who are kind enough to host this blog is to "host the conversation on faith." I outlined in my first ever post on the site why I was thrilled to join in. We really do live in a global village, and so it is vital that we learn how to really listen to each other, and show true respect.  Sometimes that mutual respect and understanding is absent in conversations even with those in our own faith (resisting the temptation to give an example...but regular readers will know … [Read more...]

How a generation of Evangelicals failed to colonise TV

TV-shutterstock_23301313

The Reformers commandeered  the printing press to great effect in the battle of ideas. In the past 20 years, Evangelicals have also invaded the Internet, publishing a multitude of gospel-centered blogs, sermons, and magazine sites. Unfortunately the generation that came before ours signally failed to colonise TV.I have now finished reading Strange Fire. I want to address the topic of what is on Christian TV before I get back to my series of posts aiming to counter each biblical argument (see … [Read more...]

Strange Fire: Can’t we just get along?

This morning we go into the second week of what has been a continuous run of blogging for me about the Strange Fire conference and book. I thought I would pause for a moment and outline again why I think this is so important, and why I have not finished yet!Firstly, there is the biblical question. I do passionately believe that cessationism is incorrect and rests on very flimsy Scriptural foundations. Today's extreme form of cessationism risks squandering the rich heritage of experiential … [Read more...]

Strange Fire: Every biblical argument refuted – Part Three

John-MacArthur

The things I do for you, my reader.After finishing part two of this series in response to Strange Fire, I sat down to continue to hunt for more biblical arguments to refute. For page after page, instead I read salacious details about a string of scandals affecting mostly TV preachers. Most of these people I have never even listened to, and am only vaguely aware of. They really don't seem to be part of my corner of the charismatic movement. They don't speak at conferences I go to. Their books … [Read more...]

Strange Fire: Mark Driscoll open letter to John MacArthur

There has been an interesting twist to the Strange Fire controversy and the side-show which is Mark Driscoll vs John MacArthur. In an open letter, Driscoll has challenged MacArthur to a duel I mean genial discussion with himself or Wayne Grudem at his Resurgence Conference.The Strange Fire conference felt like one group in the Church erecting a large wall, and then yelling over the top of at it at another group.If they really want to help the Global Church, Grace To You must look for ways to … [Read more...]

Strange Fire: Every biblical argument refuted – Part Two

I must begin today with a shockingly offensieve quote from the book Strange Fire. My response to the Strange Fire Conference  is given yet more weight by this quote. Although there are a few places in the book where MacArthur does seek to nuance his assualt, places like this seem to make it clear that it really is the whole charismatic movement on which he elsewhere says he has declared war. "It is a sad twist of irony that those who claim to be most focused on the Holy Spirit are in actuality … [Read more...]

Strange Fire: Radio MP3 and Questions for cessationists

The MP3 of the radio chat I had yesterday is available. It is in two segments Michael Brown speaks first to Phil Johnson and then to myself and Sam Storms. I think that it should make interesting reading.During the chat I posed four questions for cessationists that I think help to determine whether you are a moderate cessationist, or one who doesn't accept any experiences of God as valid. I explain in my book that a vibrant sense of a relationship with God was once very broadly accepted. … [Read more...]


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