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Are Miraculous Gifts for Today? Paperback – September 28, 1996


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Product Details

  • Series: Counterpoints: Bible and Theology
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (September 28, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310201551
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310201557
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #52,139 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Author

Wayne Grudem is professor of biblical and systematic theology at Trinitiy Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. He holds degrees from Harvard (B.A.), Westminster Seminary (M.Div.), and Cambridge (Ph.D.). He is the co-editor of Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood

From the Back Cover

Are the gifts of tongues, prophecy, and healing for today? No, say cessationists. Yes, say Pentecostal and Third Wave Christians. Maybe, say a large sector of open-but-cautious evangelicals. What’s the answer? Is there an answer?

Are Miraculous Gifts for Today? takes you to the heart of the charismatic controversy. It provides an impartial format for comparing the four main lines of thinking: cessationist, open but cautious, third wave, and Pentecostal/charismatic. The authors present their positions in an interactive setting that allows for critique, clarification, and defense.

This thought-provoking book will help Christians on every side of the miraculous gifts debate to better understand their own position and the positions of others.

Wayne Grudem has brought online the four major views on miraculous gifts today. Downloading them into your own understanding takes effort, but the worldwide network that you join is the fellowship of the Spirit!


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Customer Reviews

I highly recommend this to anyone looking for more depth on the topic.
Jim Besso
One thing I liked is that except in one case, there is a general openness to the occurrence of miracles and charismatic gifts in today's world.
Orville B. Jenkins
I found the book to be well organized for it's debate and discussion approach.
Daniel J. Kitinoja

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By C. Stephans VINE VOICE on May 25, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this book to be a helpful explanation of the four views on Spiritual gifts. The topic is not just miracles but all of the spiritual gifts such as speaking in tongues and prophecy. I think the four views contain the substantial arguments for each view; however, each author also responds to the other authors' essays. I think this lends to a disjointed format. The introduction provides the method for the writing of this book. There were discussions and a meeting between the authors and the editor to share viewpoints with each other in person. I have provided summaries of each view below.

Cessationist View

Gaffin argues for the cessationist view; however, he does claim not to argue merely negatively against the gifts of the Holy Spirit. He claims that he is for the truth of Jn 3.8. Gaffin describes this truth, "in his activity the Spirit is like the blowing wind, sovereign and ultimately incalculable." (25) He asserts that in any analysis of the Holy Spirit's work there will be the element of unaccounted for mystery.

His main thrust is to define Pentecost and its related experiences as a single event in salvation history that is not normative or repeatable in Christians' lives today. In this sense, it is akin to Jesus' resurrection, ascension and reception of the Spirit. These are one-time events. Pentecost serves as the completing activity for Christ's work of salvation. He further claims that Acts intends to document not a normative pattern of the Holy Spirit's or the church's work but a unique, completed epoch in the history of redemption characterized by the work and presence of the original apostles. (37-38) Therefore, the implication is that the spiritual gifts we see in Acts are not transferable to later eras of Christianity.
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49 of 53 people found the following review helpful By David L Rattigan on February 14, 2001
Format: Paperback
I did not find this book overbalanced on the charismatic side, as one Amazon reviewer suggested. On the contrary, I feel that Richard B. Gaffin was a very wise choice for a representative of the cessationist viewpoint. His arguments move away from flimsy prooftexting and he engages well with the biblical evidence. He avoids the virile tone towards continuationists that many others on his side of the debate have exhibited, and relies on good argumentation and scholarship rather than just anti-charismatic rhetoric.
Similarly, those propounding a continuationist view of spiritual gifts raise some interesting points, Sam Storms giving the most compelling arguments in its favour.
This book will provide an excellent introduction to the current debate, and will be far more helpful to cessationists and continuationists alike than the many other books in the genre which exhibit a much more partisan, even hostile approach.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By LauraGrace on October 19, 2005
Format: Paperback
This book, required for a Systematic Theology class I'm taking, surprised me with its depth and breadth; but above all I was delighted to read four positions stated eloquently, earnestly, firmly, and courteously. Each author went out of his way to emphasize the common ground held by all four men, and each scrupulously avoided personal attacks or the use of inflammatory language, something that cannot be said for one of the reviewers of this book!

Most importantly, I believe, this book has greatly assisted in the formation of my own understanding of Scripture regarding this subject, which is often characterized by poor exegesis, over- or under-reliance on intellect, and childish attacks. In the end, I found that Storms' position dealt comprehensively and convincingly with the testimony of Scripture, but all of the views were addressed fairly and competently.
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 9, 1997
Format: Paperback
Had Evangelical scholarship kept up to date, this work could have been written 40 years ago, saving a lot of grief and controversy over a highly volatile issue. Cessationism, the doctrine that spiritual gifts ceased with the apostles, is now the focus of a disciplined, scholarly debate between scholars representing four views, ranging from "Gifts Ceased" (R. Gaffin), "Less Frequent" (R. Saucy), "Continued--3rd Wave" (C. Storms) and "Continued--Pentecostal/charismatic" (D. Oss).
17 hours of face-to-face debate forced the positions to confront each others' arguments more squarely. No one changed his mind, but the dialog broke new ground, providing a rich array of insights for those with the tenacity to work through this sophisticated work.
(See full review in forthcoming Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society by Jon Ruthven, author of "On the Cessation of the Charismata: The Protestant Polemic on Post-Biblical Miracles." Sheffield, 1993).
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By James Spurneaugh on November 14, 2004
Format: Paperback
I'm going to apply this commentary for the entire Counterpoint Series published by Zondervan Publishing Company. My compliments to that company for creating this series. I initially purchased "Four Views on the Book of Revelation" but soon realized it was only one in a series. I got so much out of that volume, that I decided to purchase the entire set to study and keep for reference. My spiritual growth has been remarkable as a result. Seminary students and professionals would probably enjoy this series, which seems geared for them. But this series is also excellent for those college-educated laypeople who feel inclined to enhance their understanding of Christian theology. That is, with one caveat: Buy a decent theological dictionary to refer to at first. It probably won't get used much after about the third book you choose to read, but initially you will be need it to be confident of some of the terms used among advanced theologians. Then, the Counterpoint series will give you a full understanding of many different concepts and concerns of the Christian faith which have been applicable from early on until the present. I've learned a lot, and the only way I think I could do better is if I were enrolled in Seminary. A list of all the titles I am aware of from this series is:

Are Miraculous Gifts for Today?

Five Views on Law and Gospel

Five Views on Sanctification

Four Views on Hell

Four Views on Salvation in a Pluralistic World

Four Views on the Book of Revelation

Three Views on Creation and Evolution

Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond

Three Views on the Rapture

Two Views on Women in Ministry
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