Christian Spirituality, Deeper Experiences of Famous Christians – A Book Critique

INTRODUCTION

The intention of the author is to describe what is considered as the deepest spiritual experiences of the most famous Christians of all ages. He reveals the impact and influence of the lives of characters in both Old Testament and New Testaments and in the history of the Church. One has a feel of the message of these characters when the author quotes them extensively. Generally, they believe in the spiritual fullness after salvation and that God is only waiting for Christians to be receptive in order for Him to shower His countless blessings on us. Among other things, the text assists the reader (through the lives of the characters treated) to discover how to be filled with the Spirit, obtain victory over sin, grow closer to God than ever before, acquire boldness to witness for Christ and find perfect peace and rest.

STRENGTHS

The author, like the editors of Devotional Classics, was able to realize that no single church or denomination has all the answers and impressively identified those whose consecrated lives and deep spiritual experiences made them a blessing to the body of Christ.

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WEAKNESSES

The text sets out to accomplish (see first sentence in the introduction) a very difficult task of describing experiences of the most famous Christians of all ages. One doubts the parameters that any author would use to arrive at classification and whether personal bias (for instance denominational affiliation) or experience would not influence his selection. The separate chapters could have been been devoted to some names like Thomas a Kempis and David Brainerd instead of the general treatment received under the section '' Other famous Christians ''. Injustice is also done to many fine female Christian missionaries who are not even mentioned.
The back cover of the text informs us that one will discover how to have every need met. This is one dangerous prosperity teaching in Nigeria, Sierra Leone and the universal church. If all our needs can be met, the issue is what is the place of suffering, the wilderness journey, the dark night of the soul etc. in the life of the Christian?

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QUOTABLE QUOTES

"About a quarter before nine, while he was describing the change God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed" (133).

"The Spirit then cleared the subject up so much in my mind that it was impossible for me to doubt that the Spirit of God has taken possession of my soul" (173).

RECOMMENDATIONS

No pastor, lay reader of church member should fail to read this invaluable book which is a clarion call to every Christian to have a deeper relationship with God. It is useful in ministry because it clearly shows how Christians from several backgrounds long to know about the spirit-filled and deeper life in Christ.

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Source by Oliver Harding