A few years ago the Holy Spirit was sometimes referred to as ‘the forgotten person of the Godhead’ – such was the neglect of his person and work. In more recent times this has changed through preaching and publications, not all of which reflect a consistently biblical content.
However, this book merits attention because the author succeeds in carefully and clearly explaining what it means for a normal Christian to experience the Holy Spirit. The ten chapters begin with the new birth and conclude with future glory, with rich fillings in between. These include adoption, understanding, behaviour, empowering, gifting, and grieving the Spirit.
In the chapter entitled ‘Getting more of the Spirit’ the author refers to the baptism of the Spirit, and struggles to bring together ‘having’ the Spirit and ‘having more’ of the Spirit. In doing so he avoids extremes – which is typical of his pastoral and balanced approach as he sets out to define the normal Christian life.
This informative and engaging book is written with warmth and clarity, and provides a valuable introduction to its main subject. It should not be compared with other volumes dealing in greater depth with the person and work of the Spirit, but it is an enriching read.
If the questions suggested for study at the end of each chapter are used, the value of the book will be increased. I only wish that the list of books recommended for further reading included reference to the expositions of Martyn Lloyd-Jones, whose views on the baptism and sealing of the Spirit surely deserve comparative consideration. Even with this omission, I have no hesitation in commending a book that appealingly honours the Holy Spirit.
Timothy G. Alford