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J.D. King: Regeneration: A Complete History of Healing in the Christian Church (Vol 2)

J.D. King, Regeneration: A Complete History of Healing in the Christian Church, Volume 2 (Christos Publishing, 2017), 488 pages, ISBN 9780999282618.

J.D. King has a wide-range of roles-and experience-in the local and larger Body of Christ. He has been a key part of the well-known revival that launched from what is now known as World Revival Church. Interesting, not only has he been a part, he has remained as a lead trainer and mentor of those who have been touched by the move of God and desire to carry it to other communities—and around the world. In fact, he is now pastor of the church located in Kansas City, Missouri. He has experienced revival, been used by God as a part of a team to sustain and spread revival, and currently pastors, many years later, the church from which the revival was launched. Beyond the revival and local church experience, he has wide readership in both print media, including Charisma Media, and a large social media following due to a popular blog covering a wide range of subjects. Related to the book I am reviewing, Regeneration: A Complete History of Healing in the Christian Church, Volume 2, he has researched the subject independently for nearly two decades. His experience with revival, healing in the local church, and years of independent research provides him a very broad lenses to view and share on the ministry of healing—both today and in the larger context of Church history.

The stated purpose of the book, to present healing as a central part of Church history and Christian heritage, is a challenging one, to say the least. Has healing truly been in practice, beyond small pockets, for these thousands of years? Is it possible that healing is really part of the Gospel-and practice-of the Church instead of just being a side issue that is at best tolerated? There are many years-and “streams”-to cover—not to mention personalities to profile and highlight. This is exactly what J.D. King set out to see and to reveal. The result is this massive three volume set of books. It has received positive reviews from scholars and ministry leaders such as Dr. Randy Clark, Dr. Michael Brown, and Dr. Craig Keener.

Though I have, and had heavily “skimmed,” all three volumes, I chose to review the second volume. This volume covers the years 1947 to the present (and the various movements that came throughout those years). This covers Salvation-Healing through what has been dubbed the Third Wave. I have to admit that I, too, love healing ministry and equipping others to see healings, but there is also so much to learn by looking back and seeing the figures God used and the movements they were a part of. There is so much to be gleaned from the personalities, theologies, and experiences of these men and women. Past areas of study, for me, included salvation-healing, Word of Faith, and Third Wave, but, from my reading of this volume, I really picked out a lot of good “nuggets” about men, women and movements that I thought I knew much about already. One example is the life and ministry of John Wimber (And by extension, Bill Johnson, who was influenced by and reflects Wimber’s legacy today.). I had wondered how the author would cover so much history in three volumes, but King does a great job packing a lot of useful information into a very readable flow of words that keeps your attention. The pages have the information that make it useful (along with many, many footnotes that point to additional resources for the true researcher) for the scholar; but also a flow that makes it accessible to the hungry heart, too. The book may challenge the reader at times. I felt my “Feathers being ruffled” while reading the section on Word of Faith, but by the end of the section, I had to admit it was a fair reflection. It did not degrade the movement as many have, but it does show you the good, the bad, and the ugly. It documents the shifts within the movement itself. For me, the small section of “Missing the Spirit?” is a great commentary on the movement, but causes us to check our own hearts as well. We need the Word and the Spirit, but, most of all, we need the “prayer and fellowship with the Father.” It is clear that a man who is both an ardent researcher and pastor has composed these volumes.

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Category: Church History, Winter 2019

About the Author: Ryan M. Miller is a pastor, John Maxwell certified Coach, Speaker, and Trainer, and works for a non-profit pioneering strategies for reducing multi-generational poverty, especially in rural communities. He has nearly two decades of both human service and faith community leadership. Ryan and his wife, Christy Miller, reside in the beautiful mountains of Western MD with sons Ryan and Jared.

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