The Varieties of Christian Experience

I really need to get and read Streams of Living Water by Richard Foster. My uncle told me about it about four years ago, and I’ve been thinking about it a lot since then. Most recently when I was reading The Twilight of Atheism.

Each instance of the local church has its own take on how we experience the presence of God. Each different experience has its strengths and weaknesses.

The Lutheran church I grew up in tends to experience God’s presence through the Word of God (living and active &c.) be that through the readings, the sermon, the liturgy, the hymns. The church I’m attending now is more charismatic and eschews liturgy and readings, and the music is much less Wordy, but they speak in tongues and prophesy (though not often on Sunday morning, for whatever that’s worth.)

The strength of being Word based is the knowledge of God is constantly being reenforced. There is less danger of other spirits wreaking havoc if you are a dispensationalist (I don’t know if that is the official Lutheran (LCMS) position, but in practice that’s pretty accurate) but there is still danger, and you would be missing out on a large part of life in the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 14:1 Pursue love, yet desire earnestly spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.)

I have more thoughts on this, but I’m going to wait until I can read Streams of Living Water

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