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David Ravenhill: Surviving the Anointing


David Ravenhill, Surviving the Anointing: Learning to Effectively Experience and Walk In God’s Power (Shippensburg, PA: Destiny Image, 2007), 198 pages, ISBN 0768424437.

David Ravenhill, son of the late Leonard Ravenhill, served in pastoral ministry for a number of years, in more recent times he has embarked on an itinerant preaching ministry. Surviving the Anointing is his attempt to address, and hopefully help curtail, some of the significant ministerial fallout that has been taking place in recent years. One figure that he gives in the book states that an average of 1500 ministers are leaving the ministry each month.

David Ravenhill

Sportscasters sometimes say that sporting events are won or lost based on the athlete’s ability to execute the fundamentals of the game. The fundamentals, though basic, are vital to success. This same principle holds true in the kingdom of God. In this book David Ravenhill does not set forth any secret formulas, on the contrary he reminds us of things that we should already know the fundamental elements of a healthy walk with God. The book contains fourteen chapters. He devotes a chapter to each of the following subjects: dependency, intimacy, authority, persistency, purity, empathy/compassion, humility, worship, diversity/variety, family, adversity, integrity, unity and eternity.

The book is easy to read, but it gives the reader a lot to think and pray about. Ravenhill’s words call us to reflect and take personal inventory as to where we stand with reference to the qualities that he addresses in each of the chapters. He does not sugarcoat issues. He sets forth the challenges that leaders face as well as the solutions to these challenges. Each chapter contains a significant amount of bible teaching and a number of contemporary stories are used as illustrations throughout the book. This is a “hard” book in that it calls us to apply ourselves to matters of purity, persistence and discipline. However, it is not an “angry” book; it does not beat up but seeks to build up. It seeks to call out the best in us. It is in some measure a call for us to watch our life and doctrine closely (1 Timothy 4:16). It is a book of “grace” in that it demonstrates that our only hope to survive in the midst of the battle with the world, the flesh and the devil is to stay close to the Lord and to follow His principles.

2013 edition.

Surviving the Anointing is an important book in this time when many ministers are falling or failing. It will also be an important book in the years to come as human nature and the challenges of ministry remain largely the same. However, this book is not just for ministers, the counsel it supplies is vital to all Christians. Some of the difficulties that those in ministry experience are demonic to be sure, but not all are. Some of the difficulties are due to a person’s own failures some have made unwise choices some have let down their guard, and some have become proud. This could happen to anyone of us if we are not careful. This book is an appeal for us to excel in the basics, for by doing so we can stand and “survive the anointing.”

Reviewed by John Lathrop


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Category: Ministry, Spring 2008

About the Author: John P. Lathrop is a graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and is an ordained minister with the International Fellowship of Christian Assemblies. He has written for a number of publications and is the author of four books Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, and Teachers Then and Now (Xulon Press, 2008), The Power and Practice of the Church: God, Discipleship, and Ministry (J. Timothy King, 2010), Answer the Prayer of Jesus: A Call for Biblical Unity (Wipf & Stock, 2011) and Dreams & Visions: Divine Interventions in Human Experience (J. Timothy King, 2012). He also served as co-editor of the book Creative Ways to Build Christian Community (Wipf & Stock, 2013). Amazon Author page. Facebook

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