John MacArthur Responds To His Strange Fire Critics (Part 2)

John MacArthur’s Strange Fire conference is now several weeks behind us; the Strange Fire book releases tomorrow. Both have ignited a great deal of discussion about the place, the purpose and the continued existence of the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit. Last week I began an interview with John MacArthur (read it here) in which I asked him questions about it all. Today the interview continues and concludes with another series of questions and answers. I ask him why he is …

John MacArthur Answers His Critics

John MacArthur’s Strange Fire conference has come and gone and the book will be shipping next week. Whatever you felt about the conference, there is little doubt that a lot of work and a lot of discussion remain as we, the church, consider the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit. In the aftermath of the event, and with the book on its way, I think we all have questions we’d like to ask Dr. MacArthur. A week ago I asked …

Lessons Learned at Strange Fire

When I began blogging through last week’s Strange Fire conference, I had no idea how big an impact the event would have. Even while attempting to transcribe John MacArthur’s opening address, I was not convinced I wanted to dedicate three days and eight or ten articles to it. But once I began to see and hear the reaction, I determined there would be benefit to listening in, writing it down, and in opening it up for conversation. I attempted to …

Strange Fire Conference: MacArthur’s Appeal to His Continuationist Friends

The Strange Fire conference closed with a final address from John MacArthur. In this address he responds to seven accusations brought against the conference, follows with eight appeals to his continuationist friends, and concludes by walking through 1 and 2 Timothy, highlighting the need to stand firm in guarding divine revelation against false doctrine. Before addressing the accusations against the conference, MacArthur charged attendees to carefully read their copy of Strange Fire and to measure it against the Word of …

Strange Fire Conference: Preachers or Witch Doctors?

The first session of the final day at the Strange Fire conference brought Conrad Mbewe back to the pulpit. Phil Johnson introduced him by sharing how others have called him the Spurgeon of Africa. Today he brought message entitled, “Are We Preachers or Witch Doctors?” Though an odd question, it is pertinent to him because there has been a clear shift in how “evangelicals” relate to pastoral ministry. Mbewe’s aim is to give a broad sweeping picture of the landscape …

Strange Fire Conference: Scripture Alone

The final session on day two of the Strange Fire conference was led by Steven Lawson who spoke on “The Puritan Commitment to Sola Scriptura.” This was another historical message meant to demonstrate how our forebears were committed to the doctrine of Scripture alone. Tonight the focus of our study will be another historical theology overview of a critical issue that ties in wonderfully with this entire conference. It’s the subject of the Puritan commitment to Sola Scriptura. Sola Scriptura …

Strange Fire Conference: A Case for Cessationism

Today Tom Pennington spoke at the Strange Fire conference and provided a case for cessationism. He offered seven biblical arguments for the cessation of the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit. Here is a summary of his session. The label “Cessationism” is negative, but the real problem is that it has been easily caricatured as believing that the Spirit has ceased his work. But the fact is that we who are cessationists believe the Holy Spirit has continued his work. …

Strange Fire Conference: John MacArthur Tests the Spirits

The second day of the Strange Fire conference began with John MacArthur preaching a message titled “Testing the Spirits.” It was based on 1 John 4: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God…” There are many places in the New Testament where we are told to test all things and this is critical because Satan and his demons exist and because they operate a kingdom of lies that dominates the …

Strange Fire Conference: First Day Reflections

The first day of the Strange Fire conference has come and gone and the second is just about to begin. To this point it has certainly lived up to its billing as an event that will deal frankly with concerns related to the charismatic movement. I want to offer just a couple of brief reflections. The format has been very deliberate and rather interesting. John MacArthur began with a series of direct statements about charismatic theology and was followed by …

Strange Fire Conference: Conrad Mbewe

Conrab Mbewe is a man who wears many hats and who fulfills many different responsibilities, but above all else he is a preacher of God’s Word. MacArthur introduced him by explaining that he wished to have Mbewe at the event because the charismatic movement has done devastating damage in Africa and he wanted an insider’s perspective. Mbewe titled his message “The African Import of Charismatic Chaos.” Here are some brief notes. Conrad Mbewe Mbewe decided to provide a brief overview …