Sunday, October 1, 2017

Book Review: Let’s Quit Fighting About the Holy Spirit (1974) by Peter E. Gillquist

Let’s Quit Fighting About the Holy Spirit (1974) by Peter E. Gillquist

When I first saw this book – thin, old and brown – I thought I would just glance it thru and leave it in the bookshelf of our office’s library. But when I read first chapter I was hooked. Then half way I checked again when this book was published… 1974… really? Wow, I thought the content is so relevant and so true and so ‘today’ that it felt like it was written in the year 2017! Ecclesiastes 3:15: “What is happening now has happened before, and what will happen in the future has happened before.”

Fighting about the work of the Holy Spirit and spiritual gifts, are so very today. Evangelicals against Charismatics, Catholics against Protestants. I’m not talking about fighting over core doctrinal believes or major Biblical theology such as who is the Holy Spirit is, that’s important and worth the fight. First truth, then unity. No real unity without truth. Truth matter. But I’m taking about – and the author of this book – the quarrel over the work of the Holy Spirit. “It is tragic,” writes Peter Gillquist, “that Satan has used to divide us the very means God gave to unite us.” Writing against the background of the author’s personal struggle and experiences and his deep knowledge in the Scriptures, this book explained clearly and gently why misunderstandings about the gifts of the Holy Spirit exist and how they can be cleared away by love and truth. Based on 1 Corinthians 12-13 he shows his deep love for Christians on both sides of the issues. 

He also shows what exciting things God is doing with His people, and how those happenings relate to the concepts of love and oneness among all believers. I like how Peter explains this: “I cannot help but believe the last great job Jesus Christ wants to accomplish with His people is to bring them together as a functioning unit. In fact, Paul predicts something like this in Ephesians 5:27. He says Jesus will ‘present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless.’ Jesus Christ will not be coming back to claim an ugly bickering bride! He wants something holy, spotless. His prayer for the church was ‘that they may all be one’ (John 17:21). This He has a job on His hands, and He is in the process right now of getting on with it. We are living in the age when the coming together of the body of Christ is the major theme. And the work has begun. And to bring about awakening and unity in the body of Christ, God pours His Spirit upon men. He has done it before. He is doing it now.” Amen!

This book is divided into 11 chapters:
  1. The Nature of Unity
  2. The Nature of Division
  3. Living by the Spirit
  4. Life, Not Lingo
  5. The Gifts: Knowing, Trusting, Healing
  6. The Gifts: Prophesy and Discernment
  7. The Gifts: Tongues and Interpretation
  8. Being Baptized in the Holy Spirit
  9. A Place for Us
  10. People Who Need People
  11. I’m Encouraged


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