Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Awaiting the Greatest Move the Church Has Ever Seen

(Sanctuary in our church building.)

I see my church family as an airplane with two wings: one wing is academic; the other wing is experiential. One wing is deep study of the Word; the other wing is deep encounter of the Word. Whenever Tim, Josh, or I preach, both wings are operative. This approach was again recently confirmed to me.

Some of us were blessed to have Craig Keener join by phone to discuss his book Spirit Hermeneutics: Reading Scripture in Light of Pentecost. One of our participants expressed how moved he was when he read the last paragraph of the book (of the main text). This paragraph expressed his hope, Craig's hope, and mine too. It reads:

"An early Pentecostal voice invites us to bring Word and Spirit together—a collaboration that I would envision as the best of evangelical exegesis of the text combined with the best of charismatic power to embrace and carry out its message. Smith Wigglesworth, one of the most prominent early Pentecostal healing evangelists, felt disappointed toward the end of his life that the Pentecostal revival had not directly ushered in the end of the age, as the earliest Pentecostals had hoped. He did not, however, relinquish hope for the future. He believed that in addition to the Pentecostal outpouring of the Spirit that brought a restoration of the gifts, there would someday come another revival emphasizing God’s Word. “When these two moves of the Spirit combine,” he prophesied, “we shall see the greatest move the Church of Jesus Christ has ever seen.” May it be so, Lord." (289)

A revival leading to deep study of God's Word.

A revival bringing deep experiencing of the One to Whom the Word points.

I want both!