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Are Miraculous Gifts for Today?: Four Views


3.94  ·  Rating details ·  325 ratings  ·  32 reviews
Did miraculous gifts cease after the first century? Are modern-day experiences of tongues, prophecy, and gifts of healing really from God? In an attempt to clarify the current debate for readers, leading representatives of the four major views present arguments for their beliefs and have a chance to respond to the others.

The four views are: Cessationist (Gaffin), Open but

Paperback, 368 pages
Published September 28th 1996 by Zondervan
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Simon Wartanian
Jan 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I thought that this was a great book as an introduction to the discussion of the cessation or continuation of the revelatory/miraculous gifts specifically tongues, interpretation of tongues and prophecy.

Each author took about 50 pages to make a case for his particular position. I thought that the gentlemen were truly considered each other as brothers and the interaction was respectful.

There are good arguments on both sides obviously. Once I read Dr. Gaffin's chapter, I thought: "yep, I'm
John Brackbill
I have never really enjoyed reading the "views" books. Why? Primarily because it seems the authors can easily talk past one another with not enough opportunity to challenge the cross examinations. I would generally rather read book long treatments on each position for various views. However, this is the best "views" book I have read (to be transparent, I have not read multitudes of them so the strengths listed here may be the norm that I have to this point not experienced). In this book an ...more
Mar 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
A fascinating read on a doctrinal subject that has interested me for a long time. The format of the book worked very well: each author presents a 40-50 page essay arguing for their view; then after each essay, space is given for the other three authors to critique it; then a section comprised of each author's closing remarks; and finally a concluding section by the editor (Wayne Grudem) summing up the areas of agreement and disagreement among the authors. This allowed for plenty of ...more
Orville Jenkins
May 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A volume in the Counterpoints Series. Four biblical interpreters and theologians present four differing views on the role of miraculous gifts described in New Testament documents, and their validity for today.

The essays are presented in a talk-back format, characteristic of the Counterpoint series. One writer develops his viewpoint, then each of the others critiques or responds to that viewpoint to counter, clarify, query or disagree.

This format works well here, and each writer
Jan 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
A good introduction on the subject of the continuation of the miraculous gifts in the postapostolic era. For me, Gaffin brilliantly unveils the scope of the history of redemption to reveal the main roles of the miraculous gifts. However, Storms asks good questions that aren't always answered by Gaffin or Saucy. So, on the one hand, this book brought me very good answers, on the other hand, interrogations have been updated. I recommend, because, the position taken by the reader, will be either ...more
Nov 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian
Not an easy read, and I would have got far more out of it if I had sat with my Bible open an a pen and paper. Having said that, it gave me a very good overview of four views on the miraculous spiritual gifts, and a better understanding of the issues at stake. I've not yet come to my own conclusion though.....
Sean McGowan
Feb 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: theology
Great discussion. I enjoyed reading all of these views, even the ones I strongly disagreed with.
Aug 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Dry and "head-y" but informative and thought provoking. Not what I would call a quick read but well worth the time.
Matthew Bandy
Nov 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
A fantastic book showing four different points of view on the spiritual gifts topic. This is one issue that I have wanted to study for sometime and I am very glad to have found this book along with the DA Carson book on 1 Cor 12-14. After reading this book I cannot accept the extreme views of either those who believe the gifts have ceased or the charismatic point of view. So I am more in line with John piper and Wayne Gruden's view on some of these topics along with some other reformed open but ...more
Dec 11, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christian, nonfiction
I am a member of a Presbyterian Church, and I recently had a conversation with a friend regarding the miraculous gifts. I realized that I had never actually heard a sermon or lesson on these gifts, other than to say that "we" didn't believe in them. Given the fact that they are discussed in many places in Scripture, I thought it might be helpful to understand why "we" believed that. I did some research trying to find an impartial book that would help me understand the different viewpoints. I ...more
Matt Chapman
Apr 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2016
Second time reading and just as helpful as the first. Good to be reminded that God's word and God's Spirit work together for the building up of the church and the spread of the gospel.
Leaves me with a renewed desire to earnestly desire the active presence of the Spirit and his gifts in the life of our church.
Also appreciated the tone of each of the four writers presenting their views on miraculous gifts - each man seeking to be both biblically faithful and to listen charitably to one another.
Drew Van Gorder
Nov 29, 2012 rated it liked it
This book was a good insight into four different views of the more miraculous giftings seen in Scripture. All four views are not only presented, but also refuted by each of the other authors' opinions. All of the positions presented were given fairly with no bias imposed on any of the author's opinions (except of course, from the other authors with differing views). When looking for a book that carefully handles the miraculous gifts evenly, I thought this book was very good. Be prepared for some ...more
G Walker
Jun 03, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know what to say... overall, some interesting exegesis and pastoral application... When I read it initially, I was more a fan of Gaffin and his cessationist view... actually read it because Gaffin contributed... I found Storms view to be interesting, but ultimately unconvincing... I guess though, really, this book didn't pull or push me in any real direction, one way or another. Saucey seems to me to have the best "heart" in the matter... and for at least a model of Christian character ...more
Sep 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Like every other book in the Counterpoint series that I've read so far, this book excels at giving the reader the beliefs straight from the source. It is so good to hear beliefs and views from people that actually believe them and hold to them for well-meaning reasons!

I was helped so much by Saucy's biblical cautions and Oss' clearly delineated Pentecostal beliefs. If you've not wrapped your mind around the cessationist/continuationist debate, this may well be the best place to get all the
Danny Bennett
Sep 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: theology-bible
I usually read counterpoint books because I am uncertain or confused about a theological issue. However, for this book I came in knowing basically where I stood (open, but cautious; although not exactly the same brand as Saucy's), but I wanted to hear why others believed the way they did. It was helpful to understand where the other perspectives came from. For example, I was able to disregard my confusion towards cessationists by understanding their fear of the closed canon being threatened. I ...more
Aaron Rice
Dec 06, 2013 rated it did not like it
Contributing authors: "Look we all respect each other and we must overemphasize that because really there is a deep seeded suspicion that we really don't. We all disagree with one another."

Wayne Grudem, Editor: "Guys look even though we disagree and want to tear each other apart, we are all somehow united in faith. It makes sense, right?"

Four views. That's what it is exactly. -_- Subjectivism at its finest.
Becca Rudy
Jan 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
This took super long to get through, each person is technical in a different style so it is hard to adjust. One needs a compare and contrast chart to keep track of each topic drill down. Overall, a very worthwhile book and approach- I landed in an unexpected place but will go back and review.
Aug 11, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loaded with info (seriously!), and a good example of how to disagree agreeably. An excellent and thorough textbook and resource for anyone looking for succint info with which to make an informed decision regarding their views on spiritual gifts and God's power available in the present age.
Craig Despain
Oct 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Storms and Saucy are the main guys in this book. Their interaction is helpful and thought provoking.
Jay D
Aug 09, 2011 rated it did not like it
Not very interesting. All Protestant.
Ben Connelly
Aug 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very helpful in defining various views. I greatly appreciated the respectful but challenging interaction between the various authors
Feb 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very helpful. Love that these men came together to discuss in harmony and clearly present their views for us to decide.
Mar 25, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
An interesting but often redundant exploration of the question of miraculous gifts (tongues, prophecy, healing, etc.) in the present-day church.
Jeff Boettcher
Mar 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Great introduction to the four basic views of the Holy Spirit.
Josh Shelton
Aug 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
Sam Storms broke my cessationism. I ultimately still have a few quabbles with his view, but agree for the most part.
Nov 17, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone hungry for truth
Shelves: biblical-truth
This is a slow read because it's very deep but you certainly get a thorough look into the topic.
Luke Evans
Aug 28, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, theology

Very helpful. Especially the open but cautious view.
Mar 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
After reading Gaffin's section i bought his book Perspectives on Pentecost. I am now a convinced cessationist.
I wish there was a movie version; a good debate is a hard thing to capture in print.
This is a helpful resource for hearing several different views in their own voice.
Nov 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
this is a very exiting book. i would recommend for my friends.
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  • Five Views on Sanctification (Counterpoints: Bible and Theology)
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“Too often Acts is read as a more or less random collection of episodes from the primeval glory days of the church, as a rather loose anthology of vignettes from “the good old days when Christians were really Christians.” 0 likes
“We may fairly say, then, that whatever about me is taken over in the service of Christ and his church—and that even includes aptitudes and capacities I had before I became a believer—is a spiritual gift.” 0 likes
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