• It Is Finished Article by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2002

    Several years ago, I attended a conference that was held at a charismatic church. The building was the size of a small country and, being an inquisitive fellow, I decided to take a little stroll through the church’s many corridors. Halfway through my journey, I came upon a room from which a host of odd sounds echoed, but out of fear for my own well-being, I did not enter. I later found out that I had heard the sounds of “tongues training.” I learned that it was the church’s practice to instruct its young people on how to properly … View Resource

  • Many Gifts, One Body Article by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2005

    A few years ago I was given a month-long sabbatical to study in Wittenberg, Germany, the birthplace of the Protestant Reformation. While in Wittenberg, I stayed at the Evangelical Preacher’s Seminary, which shared the same courtyard as Martin Luther’s home. From my room on the third floor, I overlooked the dining room and kitchen of Luther’s sixteenth-century house. I recall that on many occasions in the late evening after a traditional German meal, I would open my window to the courtyard and look at the walkway below that led to Luther’s house. I considered the floral surroundings that adorned the … View Resource

  • The Service of Leading Article by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2005

    Good music is hard to find these days. In fact, I would argue, most of what we hear today isn’t music at all, it’s just synthesized noise with a beat. Good music, however, takes time to produce. It takes talented musicians who are able not only to play their instruments well but are able to play in harmony with other instrumentalists. Several years ago I had the opportunity to hear the complete oratorio of George Frederick Handel’s Messiah. The chorus and orchestra were impeccable, and after the final “amen,” the thousands who packed the large hall rose to their … View Resource

  • Spirit of Light Article by Sinclair Ferguson

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2002

    The reformers placed tremendous stress on the gifts of the Spirit to the whole body of Christ. John Calvin himself has rightly been described as “the theologian of the Holy Spirit” (B.B. Warfield). Yet Reformed Christians always have been given a “bad press” for their views on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Our conviction is that God purposefully gave some gifts (specifically the ability to work miracles, the gift of revelatory prophecy, and speaking in tongues) only for a limited period. We have solid Biblical reasons for believing this: 1. A temporary manifestation of these gifts is characteristic … View Resource

  • Thus Saith the Lord? Article by Rod Rosenbladt

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2002

    LAST WEEK, THE LORD TOLD me.…” To someone from a Reformed background, it is sort of jarring to hear a statement like that. But the proposition is not all that unusual—especially in Pentecostal circles. I remember once asking a question to a Sunday school teacher in my very young years in pietistic Lutheranism. She did not know the answer, but she replied, “Ask the Lord about it and I am sure He will reveal the answer to you.” As a very young boy, I took this to mean I should listen very, very quietly after I “asked the … View Resource

  • With Heart and Mind Article by R.C. Sproul Jr.

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2002

    Reformed folk have not earned a reputation for hearts overflowing with love. We tend to be the cerebral ones, very careful to dot our theological I’s and cross our philosophical T’s. Given our peculiar gift, it is no small wonder that we react to the charge of having cold hearts with carefully reasoned arguments. Sometimes we stack syllogism upon syllogism to prove our warmth; other times we stack syllogism upon syllogism to prove that warm hearts are a bad thing to begin with. But all too often, the charges against us are true. Instead of constructing another argument, the proper … View Resource

  • Zeal Without Knowledge Article by R.C. Sproul

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2002

    Many people are surprised, and some are shocked, when they hear of my involvement in the charismatic movement years ago. It began in 1965, shortly after I returned from graduate study in Holland to teach philosophy and theology at my alma mater. Some of my senior students who were preparing for ministry kept talking to me excitedly about their experiences with the Holy Spirit and about receiving the gift of tongues. My first response was profound skepticism, because my only previous experience had been with hardcore Pentecostals whose views of sanctification I deemed aberrant. Soon, however, the sheer number of … View Resource