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Paul King: Is It Of God?

What do you think is sound, balanced doctrine? This is influenced by your theological starting point.

Because of the scope of this book, readers may find themselves being drawn to or ministered to by particular sections of the text. That is to say, everyone will have favorite portions of the book. This may be due to one’s historical interests, theological background, or church experiences. I found chapter 3 “Basic Biblical Principles of Discernment” to be very helpful. Another section that I found especially interesting was in chapter 8, where the author discussed balanced discernment. He notes that a person’s theological starting point will determine what he or she considers to be a middle, or balanced, position regarding a teaching, practice, or manifestation. He shows that a cessationist and a continuationist are going to consider different things to be balanced because of their theological starting points (he demonstrates this truth in the book using charts). I also particularly enjoyed Chapter 12 in which he supports the continuationist viewpoint of spiritual gifts. He marshals scriptural support for this position and includes texts beyond those that are usually cited to support this position.

In these last days the church needs discernment.

This book has a lot to offer, written by a man who is both well-read and very experienced in the practical matters of discernment. This current volume may be especially helpful to Pentecostal and Charismatic church leaders and Christians who are having to deal with manifestations that are taking place in their church meetings. Is It Of God? gives us much to think about. It is a timely book because in these last days the church needs discernment. The Bible tells us that there will be “all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie” (2 Thess. 2:9 NIV). However, we know that there are genuine ones as well, and we need to be able to distinguish one from the other. I believe that this book will be helpful in this regard, I highly recommend it. Hopefully theological schools, especially those that are Pentecostal or Charismatic, will consider using it as a text in one of their course offerings. I look forward to the release of the second volume of this book.

Reviewed by John Lathrop


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Category: Spirit, Summer 2019

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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