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Forgotten God: Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  43,195 ratings  ·  1,438 reviews
In the name of the Father, the Son, and ... the Holy Spirit. We pray in the name of all three, but how often do we live with an awareness of only the first two? As Jesus ascended into heaven, He promised to send the Holy Spirit—the Helper—so that we could be true and living witnesses for Christ. Unfortunately, today's church has admired the gift but neglected to open it.

Paperback, 167 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by David C Cook (first published 2009)
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Jun 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those books that changes you forever. One of my favorite parts is where the author is explaining how he is giving sacrificially to the ministry he is so passionate about, which is human trafficking. He gives to the point that he draws criticism from others who say, "you've given enough, shouldn't you be thinking about yourself now? Shouldn't you be concerned about your future? Don't you think you should have save up for an emergency?" I love his answer: What part about children be ...more
Dec 21, 2011 rated it it was ok
In this book, pastor Francis Chan attempts to "reverse our tragic neglect of the Holy Spirit", the third of the trinity he has named "the forgotten God." Unfortunately, he spends more of his time apologizing for his beliefs about the Holy Spirit and asking the reader if she has the courage to change her beliefs about the Holy Spirit. Several chapters can be summed up this way: 1. "Would you change what you believe if I showed you the Bible said something that contradicts your current beliefs?", ...more
¸¸.•*¨*•♫ Mrs. Buttercup •*¨*•♫♪
“I want to live so that I am truly submitted to the Spirit's leading on a daily basis. Christ said its better for us that the Spirit came and I want to live like that is true. I don't want to keep crawling when I have the ability to fly.”

Francis Chan is one of my favourite teachers; I listen to his sermons on YouTube (even though he recently moved to Asia with his family to serve people in need and is not preaching anymore) and I appreciate his ability to talk about subjects that can be challen
Sep 29, 2010 rated it liked it
My junior year in High School I picked up the habit of listening to the preaching of Charles Stanley. Most afternoons on the way home from school the dial on my family’s ’79 Corolla was set to 830AM and I listened to his baritone southern cadence. It’s not surprising then, that one of the first Christian books I purchased on my own was Stanley’s freshly printed The Wonderful Spirit Filled Life. 15 years later, Chan’s Forgotten God took me right back to that book.

Now, it’s unlikely those who pick
Mike Conroy
Apr 22, 2013 rated it liked it
I was more impressed by this book than I thought I would have been and more disappointed by it than I thought I would be. What I mean by this is:

For me, pages 32-35 were worth the price of the book. Seriously. If you burned this book after I read page 35, I would not have wasted a penny. There was one analogy he gave that was so good!

Here is my paraphrase (because my copy is loaned out): What if I told you that I had an encounter with God where He actually came into my body and gave me a superna
Donovan Martin
Dec 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I read this using the kindle app and now face the dilemma of wanting a bound copy. Back in my early education days I took a class on the Holy Spirit and have always been convinced that we often neglect this aspect of God. I worship in a denomination that seems to have many of its roots grounded in reactionism. The Holy Spirit has been abused and taught poorly so we (maybe just me) have stayed clear of that topic and by doing so missed out on important aspects of faith.
There are two statements t
J.E. Jr.
This title fits nicely into a category I would call “Vernacular Theology” because, while it isn’t up to the level of academic or even advanced lay-level theological writing, it isn’t exactly mere “Christian Living” either.

I appreciated Francis Chan’s effort to challenge Christians toward more thorough and faithful consideration and reliance upon the Holy Spirit. In that way, it was a very strong work on a needed topic. The Holy Spirit— and our theological reflection on His presence and work in o
Robert Durough, Jr.
Mar 20, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommended to Robert by: Went through the book as a study series.
In Forgotten God Chan invites his reader to take a deeper look into one's understanding of the Holy Spirit, the seemingly "forgotten" part of the Trinity. It appears a more apt description may be "ignored" or "quenched", since it is acknowledged that the reader is aware of the Him (the pronoun preferred by Chan over the commonly used "it"), but tends to "quench" (1 Thess. 5:19) Him more than "forget" Him (this is not a book intended for nonbelievers, nor is it one on "how to become a Christian," ...more
Havebooks Willread
I thought this book was pretty easy and enjoyable to read. It wasn't an especially deep discussion or study of the Holy Spirit, but I am still glad to have read it.

I think Chan had two main points that I take away from this book:
1) If we are truly living by the Holy Spirit and not in our own will and self-control, our lives will look different than that of the neighbor at the store. I liked his illustration that if a basketball player claimed to have an indwelling supernatural ability to play ba
Neil R. Coulter
Oct 18, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
This is about the third Francis Chan book I’ve read, and it’s pretty typical of the others: very quick, very friendly, a little scattered, not quite approaching the topic in the way I’d like. There’s nothing wrong with what Chan writes about the Holy Spirit in this book, but it overall doesn’t seem to match the grand subtitle: Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit. For one thing, I don’t feel that I’m neglecting the Holy Spirit. Praying through the daily hours, I say “Glory to the Fath ...more
A lot of talk, and not much substance.

I was going to give this one three stars. But after putting it down and looking at it, I realized that it left me with nothing. There was no takeaway for me. It didn't leave me with a rousing sense of spirituality. It didn't leave me with any emotion, really. If anything, I was just left wanting.

I guess the book has been helpful and motivational for some. But I wanted actual theology and deep insight, and while this book has some good ideas, it felt disappoi
Jun 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Of the nonfiction books written in this century (so far), this is the most helpful, edifying one I've ever read.

Through simple, vulnerable introspection, Chan steers the reader away from doctrinal speculation about what the Holy Spirit may or may not be, and instead focuses on what the Bible clearly states about the Holy Spirit. This book is a wall-shattering plea for us to allow what we know about God's spirit to affect our daily thoughts, plans, and prayers. A significant portion of this (smal
4.5 stars; not quite five for me, simply because it's more of a summary. It wasn't anything that completely blew my mind; I know I should live it more often, and it was a good reminder.

One quote that stuck out at me, after knowing many family and friends who are struggling to find churches that are truly welcoming and God-honoring: " 'You see, in the gangs we weren't just nice to each other once a week—we were family.' ... It saddened me to think that a gang could paint a better picture of comm
May 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Forgotten God: Reversing our tragic neglect of the Holy Spirit, along with Chan's Crazy Love, are nearly part of my Bible! He teaches truth, and he teaches it well. He takes Biblical evidence and applies it to 21st Century living. He motivates the reader to change their life, by the power of Christ, Father, Holy Spirit. This is not some "happy clappy" rendition of Acts, or a stark, boring exegesis on how unattainable the power of the Spirit is. It challenges the Western Church's apathy, it liber ...more
Aug 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book is exactly what you'd expect from Chan -- a loving, and yet strong, reminder to live radically for Jesus. I ended it in tears, wanting to listen to the Spirit as He leads me to real selflessness. However, this book is not a theologically deep work on the doctrine of the Holy Spirit (and Chan explicitly says it wasn't supposed to be), so keep your expectations in check as you pick it up. ...more
Rating: 4 stars

Good points with some depth. I wanted more focus on the Holy Spirit at times. Brought some enlightening moments. Insightful and direct as always from Pastor Chan.
Feb 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What's this?)
Francis Chan is on a mission to change Western Christianity.

Not a mission to make us better informed, or more culturally relevant, or even more doctrinally correct.

He is on a mission for us to walk with the "Forgotten God," the Holy Spirit. He calls the Holy Spirit such because he affirms that although we say we know and walk with Him, our lives testify otherwise:

"The light of the American church is flickering and nearly extinguished
Sep 29, 2009 rated it liked it
I feel that there are many flaws to this book. Certainly, there are a few gems of wisdom in there. But the thing I found the most infuriating and almost caused me to stop reading was that Chan seems to spend the entire first half of the book questioning the reader's motivation for wanting to read a book about the Holy Spirit. He seems to make assumptions that the reader is probably suspicious of charismatic churches, and that perhaps the reader's motivation for reading the book is that we want t ...more
Jan 12, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: nf-spiritual
Well worth my time, but I had mixed feelings about some of the content. While Chan addressed the problem of forgetting about Grace, his themes seemed to emphasize OUR part in a transactional relationship which, if taken too far, minimizes the importance of Grace and the undeserved love of God in our lives. I agreed with his conviction that our churches need to turn more to the Bible to model the early church and its energetic and viral Spirit at work.

My personal take-aways from this book (not al
Nov 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
Though this book is considered “Inspirational,” I feel that Chan’s narrative voice is very distinct—he is not preaching at his readers, but rather working through what he is writing for himself and sharing it with those who decide to pick up his book and take this journey with him. This book is not merely another instructional guide for living a better life according to so-and-so’s personal opinion. Instead, this book delves into the Word of God, and Chan lets the Scripture do most of the talkin ...more
Alexis Neal
Aug 16, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: religion, 100-books
A decently written and unobjectionable book, but I'm still not really sure I get the point. It's a book about the Holy Spirit, sure, and Chan is clearly disturbed by the degree to which the Holy Spirit is ignored or misunderstood, but I felt like he never really got anywhere. The opening chapter convinced me that churches tend toward one extreme or the other and that both approaches are wrong (though this was something I had already been struck by), but I wasn't really sure about the purpose of ...more
Aug 08, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: in-my-office
I love Francis Chan and his insatiable desire to "get" the Spirit. The book (with an intriguing title) doesn't focus on the depth of pneumatology that some might expect, rather, it serves as a challenge to daily submit to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Chapter 6 is a personal favorite, but I skimmed major chunks of other chapters. There are some great quotes, some convicting thoughts, and a few good ideas to help the reader understand more of the Holy Spirit's activity beyond Acts 2.

I was hopi
Sep 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. There were times when I felt like Chan had written what was in my own head and heart - almost as if I had written it myself - and there were times when I was instructed and convicted. It is a book that pulls no punches in talking about the Church's "tragic neglect of the Holy Spirit," but it does so with much grace. A reader may find himself challenged and greatly convicted, but there is nothing here to make one feel condemned, which is as it should be.

Chan presents a very bal
Barnabas Piper
Sep 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
The first 1/2 of the book is fantastic. Chan has a way of digging into truth and unpacking it without amazing turns of speech or pointed vocabulary. He is relentless. He presents great challenges. And this book is well worth a read.
Lizzy Bueckert
Mar 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
We don't take the Holy Spirit serious enough. He's a full being who lives in us! Not beside or around but in! Think about that. ...more
Oct 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spiritual, favorites
The Holy Spirit was a person that I personally had neglected in my life even if I watch in retrospective of my past I can affirm without doubt that He was in me from an early age and now I know He was always dwelling in me from the day I was conceived. The problem was that I never acknowledged Him for who He was or how He protected me, or how He carried me, or how He guided me. I always prayed Father and Jesus but never the Holy spirit because true be told I was ignorant and fearful and maybe af ...more
Phil Whittall
Dec 04, 2014 rated it liked it
Forgotten God:Reversing the tragic neglect of the Holy Spirit is Francis Chan's second book after Crazy Love (review here). As in his first book each chapter is followed by a short inspiring biography of Christians that have influenced Chan.

Having read both his books now and begun watching the Crazy Love DVD with my life group, it's clear I'm becoming a Chan fan. There's one overriding concern that he has, western Christians are not living Christ-centred lives. We're too comfortable and too busy
Jan 25, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: ministry
This is the first Francis Chan book I've read (I have copies of Crazy Love and Multiply on my shelf waiting) but I am a real fan of his speaking. His speaking is passionate, compelling and convicting. His writing is the same.

I wanted to read his book on the Holy Spirit because I felt like I needed a fresh perspective after years of teaching our ministry's standard material. It's been a while since I read some classics on the topic Keep in Step with the Spirit: Finding Fullness in Our Walk with G
Jul 28, 2011 added it
Francis Chan desperately desires for those who claim to be Christians to use the Bible as the guide for their lifestyle choices and everyday decisions. He is a great communicator who conveys biblical truths without being hard to understand, impractical, or watered down. In this book, he discusses the unbelievably precious gift of the Holy Spirit and the wonder of literally having God live inside of you, always with you, to guide you and give you strength to live a godly life. If this is true in ...more
Aug 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Francis Chan's book Forgotten God was well written and worth the read. I've come from a background that for fear of being too charismatic has down-played the importance of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. As Chan works through Scripture texts, he forcefully points out the work of the Holy Spirit in redemption, sanctification, and preservation--all key components of the gospel power at work in our lives. I was struck with the simple and straight forward way his book reminds just how i ...more
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Francis Chan is an American pastor and teacher, who lives in California with his wife, Lisa, and their four children. He is the former pastor of Cornerstone Community Church in Simi Valley, CA, which he and his wife started in 1994.

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