The Holy Spirit

Yesterday, I started a new adult Sunday school class on the doctrine of the Holy Spirit.

I began with a review of the Trinity, with a emphasis on the personhood and godhood of the Holy Spirit. This Sunday, we will be looking at the work of the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament. The following Sunday, we will consider the significance of Pentecost. The bulk of the course will focus on work of the Holy Spirit today, covering topics such as baptism, filling, fruit, wisdom, leading, and gifts. I hope you will make plans to attend.

At the end of class I recommended several books on the Holy Spirit. I have included the list below for your convenience.

  • Sinclair B. Ferguson, The Holy Spirit. This is my first recommendation for book on the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. It is 255 pages and written at a college level.
  • John Owen, The Holy Spirit: His Gifts and Power. The 2004 edition published by Christian Focus Publications is much more readable than previous editions. It is, however, still Owen, so it is still a hard read. But, if you are willing to put in the work, it is highly profitable.
  • Michael Horton, Rediscovering the Holy Spirit. This book was just released this year. I have read about half of it. I never find Horton’s books easy to read, but I usually find them beneficial. I would read Ferguson before this book, but, if you’ve read Ferguson before, this book might be a good refresher from a slightly different angle.
  • Richard B. Gaffin, Perspectives on Pentecost. This book is written by a seminary professor and it shows. Nevertheless, it is one of the best treatments of Pentecost from a redemptive-historical perspective.
  • Christopher J. H. Wright, Knowing the Holy Spirit Through the Old Testament. This is a short book that is fairly easy to read. It does just what the title says.
  • John R. W. Stott, Baptism and Fullness, and J. I. Packer, Keep in Step with the Spirit. These two books, written by stalwarts of evangelical scholarship, are both excellent presentations of the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of believers today.
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Sola Scriptura: Which Books?

In honor of Reformation Day, I began a series of classes on the five “solas” of the Reformation this past Sunday. The five solas are 1/Sola Scriptura (Scripture Alone), 2/Solus Christus (Christ Alone), 3/Sola Gratia (Grace Alone), 4/Sola Fide (Faith Alone), and 5/Soli Deo Gloria (God’s Glory Alone). Our focus this past Sunday was on Sola Scriptura.

Sola Scriptura asserts that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the only rule in questions of faith and practice. Continue reading