The Spirit and the Church

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Look Inside Price £5.00

Weight 0.21 kg
Dimensions 18.1 × 12.1 × 1.5 cm
page-count

208

format

Book

Original Pub Date

1692

Banner Pub Date

Jul 30, 2002

topic

The Church, The Holy Spirit

binding

Paperback

series

Puritan Paperbacks

isbn

9780851518220

Book Description

How do Christians come to the certainty that the Bible is the Word of God, and gain an understanding of His mind and will from it? How do they acquire the ability to pray, and lead others in prayer? how are they comforted and supported in all the difficulties they meet? And how can the church be led, taught and guided aright, when Christ is not here on earth?

According to the great Puritan leader John Owen, the answer to all these questions is the same: by the gracious and powerful work of the Holy Spirit.

He it is who convinces, assures, teaches, comforts and equips the church and all its members for all the work they are called to do. In an age when many think Christianity is nothing more than human effort, based on fallible human conclusions, Owen calls the church back to divine certainty and divine resources.

The style in which the Puritans wrote can present difficulties for modern readers, but this updated abridgement by Dr. R.J.K. Law will allow Owen to speak to Christians today on a theme which remains as vitally important for the well-being of the church in the twenty-first century as it was when Owen first wrote.

Table of Contents Expand ↓

Publisher’s Preface v
1. PART ONE: How We Believe Scripture to Be the Word of God
Illumination Based on Revelation 1
The Faith by Which We Believe Scripture to Be God’s Word 7
External Arguments for Divine Revelation 10
Moral Certainty, the Result of External Arguments, Insufficient 14
Divine Revelation Itself the Only Foundation and Reason for Faith 26
The Self-Evidencing Power of Scripture 33
The Kind of Assurance Scripture Brings 42
 2. PART TWO: Understanding the Mind of God
How We Learn the Mind of God from Scripture 49
Knowing the Mind of God: Some Teaching from Scripture Itself 52
How Are Believers Guided into ‘All Truth’? 58
How Does the Holy Spirit Enlighten Our Minds? 64
Hindrances to the Understanding of the Mind of God in Scripture 68
The Nature of Scripture, and the Right Approach to It 72
Means to be Used to Understand the Mind of God in Scripture 77
Tools from Various Disciplines to Aid in Our Understanding of Scripture 79
Help from the Church to Understand Scripture
Final Points on the Work of the Spirit in Relation to Scripture 84
 3. PART THREE: The Holy Spirit and Prayer
The Help of the Spirit in Prayer 89
The Spirit of Grace and Supplication: Zechariah 12:10 Expounded 91
The Spirit of Adoption: Galatians 4:6 Expounded 97
The Nature of Prayer: Romans 8:26 Vindicated 100
The Spirit Teaches Us What to Pray For 102
The Spirit Teaches Us How to Pray 108
The Duty of Praying in the Spirit: Ephesians 6:18 Expounded 113
The Spirit Enables Us to Pray Aloud 117
Our Response to the Gift of the Spirit of Prayer 123
Contemplative Prayer Considered 130
Set Forms of Prayer Examined 137
 4. PART FOUR: The Holy Spirit as a Comforter
How the Spirit Comforts the Church 143
The Characteristics of the Spirit’s Work as Comforter 148
The Holy Spirit Comforts Only Believers 153
The Indwelling of the Holy Spirit 155
The Holy Spirit as an Anointing 160
The Holy Spirit Seals Believers 164
The Holy Spirit as an Earnest or Guarantee 168
 5. PART FIVE: The Gifts of the Holy Spirit
The Purpose of Spiritual Gifts 171
Spiritual Gifts and Saving Grace 173
The Extraordinary Offices of the Church 178
Extraordinary Spiritual Gifts in the Church 180
How Spiritual Gifts Promote Christ’s Kingdom 184
The Continuance of the Ministry 187
Spiritual Gifts Granted to the Ministry 189
The Gifts of the Spirit for Doctrine, Worship and Discipline 192

 

1 testimonial for The Spirit and the Church

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  1. Matt C.

    The Spirit and the Church is an absolutely excellent addition to the “Puritan Paperback” series by Banner of Truth. This book is written by the Prince of Puritans, John Owen. This book is abridged and made easy to ready by R.J.K. Law. Though I have read much by Owen that is not abridged and made easy to read (and even prefer it), I still greatly appreciate the work that Law has done to help make Owen’s works more accessible to the church.

    The Spirit and the Church, like all of Owen’s works, is simply wonderful reading. It is sure to stir up your affections for the Triune God and lead you into a greater love and appreciation for the work of Holy Spirit in the lives of His people.

    This book is broken up into five parts: (1) How We Believe Scripture to be the Word of God; (2) Understanding the Mind of God; (3) The Holy Spirit and Prayer; (4) The Holy Spirit as a Comforter; and (5) The Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

    This book is taken from volume four of the 16 volume works of John Owen that is likewise published by Banner of Truth (I can’t recommend this compete set enough!). Owen is a master of teaching rich, majestic biblical truth, and this book is no exception. It is truly made easy to read by Law, so there cannot be any excuses to not attempt to dive into Owen’s work. One will be deeply blessed by the riches that they find in this short book on the Holy Spirit’s work in God’s people, the Church. Part One of this book, which deals with Scripture as self-authenticating, is alone worth the price of the book. Listen to Owen’s answer to the question of how we can believe Scripture to be divine revelation: “We believe it solely on the evidence that the Spirit of God, in and by Scripture itself, gives to us that it was indeed given by the immediate inspiration of God; or, the basis of our believing the Scripture to be the Word of God is the evidence we find there of the authority and truth of God making themselves known to the minds and consciences of men. So we believe the Scripture to be the Word of God on no other grounds than its own evidence that it is indeed so.” Owen goes on to provide much argumentation for this point, and it is beautifully and masterfully done.

    I recommend this book to all Christians, believing firmly that they will all be amazed at the Holy Spirit and His gracious working in the lives of God’s people. Read as much Owen as you possibly can!

    Disclaimer: My thanks to The Banner of Truth Trust for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review. The opinions expressed are my own.

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