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Three Awesome Books on Wealth, Miracles and Community of Goods

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I got three amazing books in my hand that I can’t wait to read! Let me introduce them to you:

Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger: Moving from Affluence to Generosity by Ron Sider

Being one of the most popular books during the Jesus Movement in the 70’s, and according to Christianity Today, it’s the seventh most influential book that have shaped evangelicals. Sider goes against the commonly held view that it’s absolutely fine for Christians to be rich while thousands of people are starving to death, using Bible study, statistics on economic inequality and examples of radical Christian groups that have taken the economic teachings of Jesus seriously. Sider’s ideas are very similar to those I express in my series God vs Wealth, but to this point I have actually never read him – I got my ideas directly from the Bible.

A reader called Kelly writes on GoodReads:

“I was really floored by this book. The author first presents some startling and informative statistics on world hunger and poverty, where we have been and what is projected. Then he talks about God’s intense love for the poor, and that if we want to “be imitators of God” we must as Christians learn to share in that love. I left this book really wanting to do more to make a difference… even with specific ideas how! The best thing about this book was also the worst thing – sooo much information. Never before have a seen a pastor… talk so intelligently about ALL facets of poverty. Politics, economics, environment, sociology, religion – these topics were all included in great detail and from a Christian perspective. I have not seen anything more complete out there. That said, it was also very overwhelming (as it probably should be).”

Miracles And Manifestations Of The Holy Spirit In The History Of The Church by Jeff Doles

There are many books about the miraculous gifts in church history out there, Eddie Hyatt’s 2000 Years of Charismatic Christianity being another notable example, but what I really like with Doles’ work is its exhaustiveness and details when it comes to the movements that you didn’t know were very charismatic. We got the early church, the monastic movement and the medieval saints of course, but how many knew that early Calvinists or Methodists were walking in the power of the Holy Spirit? In fact, when Doles reaches the twentieth century, with the birth of the Pentecostal and charismatic revivals, he just admits that there’s too much to write about and gives a brief summary, encouraging the reader to look further in other books. Thus, his work is a great testimony about how the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit has been active throughout church history, long before Azusa Street. J. Lewis writes in a review on Amazon:

“As a Spirit-filled pastor of a Southern Baptist Church, I often encounter people who have been misled by erroneous doctrines and misconceptions about the Holy Spirit and His present day ministry in and through Christians. While this book does not present an argument against Cessationism; it does present a concise record of healings, miracles, and manifestations of spiritual gifts throughout the centuries since the ascension of Christ. There is abundant testimony given to demonstrate that the Holy Spirit has operated through both ordinary believers and ministers of the gospel when they dared to believe the promises of Christ in the Word of God… This is an excellent resource for any minister who hungers for the power of God to be demonstrated in his life and ministry. Without doubt, this book will stir your heart, enlarge your vision for the work of Christ, and encourage you to trust God for miracles and healings today.”

The Intentional Christian Community Handbook: For Idealists, Hypocrites, and Wannabe Disciples of Jesus by David Janzen

When I visited the Jesus Army not too long ago, a church that practices community of goods, I noticed that they were encouraging people to read this book. Janzen has both been a part of New Creation Fellowship the Reba Place Fellowship, both being Christian communities that strives for simplicity, justice and radical discipleship. Janzen has regularly visited other Christian communities and noticed that many have a need for a handbook that collects wisdom, biblical advice and stories to encourage believers who want to have everything in common. Janzen says in an interview on Patheos:

We long for a life focused on giving and receiving love in the manner of Jesus, and we find in our culture and our human nature a resistance to this same love because it means that our life is no longer our own. This is what conversion is all about. In less theological terms, deep
Christian community is the most satisfying way to live through all of life’s stages; it is the way to do justice and seek peace on a human scale of committed relationships in a local neighborhood, and yet linked with others doing the same around the world.  In this way of life we discover what we were created to be. According to Jesus, it takes everything we have and it gives us “brothers, sisters, mothers, and lands a hundred fold in this life, along with persecutions, and in the age to come, eternal life.”  (Matt. 19:29)

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1 Comment

  1. […] As I mentioned last week I’m reading Jeff Doles’ Miracles and Manifestations of the Holy Spirit in the History of the Church, and it’s amazing to see what God has been doing continously in His church throughout world history. The book is basically only made up by quotes from older works, and it gives clear proof that cessationism – the idea that miraculous spiritual gifts ceased with the apostles – hardly existed before Luther and Calvin. For example, take a look at what Irenaeus of Lyon, the second century bishop who was a disciple to Polycarp – who in turn was a disciple of John the evangelist – says concering miraculous gifts when he refuted the Gnostics in his famous work Against Heresies: […]

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The author

Micael Grenholm - a Swedish charismactivist residing with the Jesus Army in the UK.

Micael Grenholm - a Swedish charismactivist residing with the Jesus Army in the UK.

Check out my YouTube channel!

A Living Alternative

God vs Inequality

Goodreads

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