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Sam Storms: Convergence

 

Sam Storms, Convergence: Spiritual Journeys Of A Charismatic Calvinist (Kansas City: Enjoying God Ministries, 2005), 244 pages, ISBN 9780977173907.

I realize that one of the words in the title of this book may prove troublesome to some; I am referring to the word “Calvinist.” This word may be problematic in that many, if not most, Pentecostals and Charismatics tend to be more Arminian than Calvinistic in their theology. Nonetheless, if you are Arminian in theology do not let the word “Calvinist” stop you from reading this book.

Sam Storms has an interesting spiritual history. He, like Jack Deere, Rock Bottomly and Robert Heidler, was a student at Dallas Theological Seminary (all of these men now endorse, and have written about the present day charismatic gifting of the Spirit). Storms was on the staff of Mike Bickle’s church during the days of the controversial “Kansas City Prophets.” After leaving Bickle’s church he went on to teach theology at Wheaton College, so Storms is a man who is well acquainted with both the Spirit and the Word.

Convergence is divided into three sections. The first section is called “My Spiritual Journey.” In this section Storms shares some of the supernatural experiences that he and his family have had. These experiences include examples of divine guidance and exposure to the workings of the Holy Spirit though dreams, prophecy and deliverance.

Section two is titled “The Wedding of Word and Spirit.” Storm’s desire is that the church would come together and embrace both Word and Spirit. In this section he explores some of the differences that exist between cessationists and charismatics (whom he calls continuationists).

Sam Storms in 2013.

The final section, section three, is called “He is There and He’s Still Not Silent.” In this section Storms considers the subject of God speaking today. He affirms that God speaks to us today through the Bible, but he also believes that God speaks today, by the Spirit, just as He did in Bible days. Also in this section Storms draws upon the writing of Jonathan Edwards to support the idea that we ought to have an experiential faith, one that affects us at an emotional level.

Convergence does not deal with the subject of Calvinism in any significant way; it is really a book about the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Storms believes in the contemporary exercise of the gifts of the Spirit. The book makes a case for the church to embrace both the Word of God and the supernatural workings of the Holy Spirit. This book can not be lightly dismissed by those who do not believe in the contemporary exercise of the gifts of the Spirit. The author is a very educated man who has a high view of Scripture.

 

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Category: Living the Faith, Winter 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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