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Interview with Charles Carrin about his book Spirit-Empowered Theology The ministry of the Holy Spirit is a major theme in the book. Please tell our readers about your personal experience of the charismatic work of the Spirit. 

Charles Carrin: As a teenager, I had a dramatic salvation experience, call to the ministry, and was ordained in 1949 in a Calvinistic Baptist Church. I believed the Scripture but was told to disregard all verses that did not fit our religious pattern. They were no longer valid. Twenty-eight years later, in 1977 when I was pastor in Atlanta, I went through the ultimate crisis of my life. Depression almost destroyed me. The attack focused on spiritual issues for which I had no answers—but were answered in the scriptures I was told to ignore.

Spirit-Empowered Theology answers 300 questions organized under these 18 categories:
Part 1: Who Is God?
Part 2: Who Are We?
Part 3: What Is the Bible?
Part 4: What Is the Significant of Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?
Part 5: What is the Kingdom of God?
Part 6: What is the Church?
Part 7: What are the Five-Fold Ministry Gifts?
Part 8: What Gifts Does the Holy Spirit Impart to Believers?
Part 9: What about Satan and His Demons?
Part 10: What Are the Foundations of the Faith?
Part 11: What Are Some Doctrinal Variations?
Part 12: What Are Some Doctrinal Heresies?
Part 13: What Are God’s Plans for Israel?
Part 14: What Are Significant Events in Christian History?
Part 15: Who Were Significant People in Church History?
Part 16: What about Scientists and Scripture?
Part 17: What Is the Covenant Basis of Our Faith?
Part 18: What Do These Terms Mean?

During that time, I volunteered to become a counselor at the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary. My primary motive was to get my mind off my own despair. The young man to whom I was assigned had recently been delivered from drug addiction, suicide, was born again, baptized in the Holy Spirit, and operated in spiritual gifts. He was more free than I and radically challenged my theology. In effect, he began counseling me and forced me to see my own spiritual shallowness. Finally, in the Visitors Room of the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary—with mafia inmates watching—he laid hands on me to be filled with the Holy Spirit. And I was! His exact words were those Ananias spoke over Saul of Tarsus: “Brother Charles,” he said, “the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 9:17-18). That was the most phenomenal day of my life.

In ten minutes time I was delivered from a demon of depression, filled with the power of God, and anointed by the Holy Spirit for a new ministry. My ministry radically changed and I soon met Jack Taylor, Past President of the Southern Baptist Convention and R.T. Kendall, pastor at Westminster Chapel, London. Both had experienced the Baptism, knew my background in Reformed Theology and renewal in the Holy Spirit. R.T. invited me to preach at Westminster, the Holy Spirit fell in power, the Chapel was radically changed into a “Holy Spirit Church.” Since then, I have traveled with him and Jack Taylor, conducting more than 75 Word, Spirit, Power Conferences from England to Alaska and points across Canada and the U.S. What steps can Pentecostal/charismatic churches take to teach doctrine more effectively?

Charles Carrin: In many Pentecostal/charismatic churches there is an avoidance of scriptures they think are too strongly Calvinistic. This is understandable but unnecessary. It is the same pattern of failure with which Calvinists view the Holy Spirit’s baptism. Instead of facing the Bible totally, both groups avoid parts that are difficult to understand. The fact is this: “All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable…” Correction for each camp is the same: Both need to listen to the other. Arguments from each side is based on legitimate scriptures.



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Category: Spirit, Spring 2017

About the Author: Charles Carrin, D.D., has served the body of Christ for over 65 years. Educated at University of Georgia and Columbia Theological Seminary, he denied, in belief and practice, the contemporary ministry of the Holy Spirit until a personal crisis opened his eyes to what he had been missing. He is the author of Spirit-Empowered Theology (Chosen, 2017), The Edge Of Glory: Receiving the Power of the Holy Spirit (Creation House, 2002), Sunrise of David Sunset of Saul: A Message to the Church in the End-time (1985, 2014), On Whose Authority?: The Removal of Unwanted Scriptures (Burkhart Books, 2014), a revival novel with Dorothy Easley: Island in the Sun (Xulon, 2010), and a contributor to Word Spirit Power: What Happens When You Seek All God Has to Offer (Chosen, 2012) with R.T. Kendall and Jack Taylor. Today his ministry centers upon the visible demonstration of the Spirit and imparting of His gifts. Read his biography at

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