Archive for ‘Glen Clary’

May 17, 2015

Gaffin Clarifies Pentecost for Glen Clary

WMLS BannerOn Friday and Saturday, May 29-30, 2015, a number of us from Mid-Cities Presbyterian Church are attending the 2015 B.B. Warfield Memorial Lecture Series: Pentecost and the Work of the Spirit Today with Dr. Richard Gaffin, at St. Edward’s Chapel in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The promotional material for the conference introduces the topic as follows:

What happened on Pentecost? What are the implications of what took place on Pentecost for the church today? What expectations ought Christians to have for the work of the Holy Spirit in their own lives and the lives of others? Christians today continue to be divided, sometimes deeply, over the answers to these questions. During the 2015 B.B. Warfield Memorial Lecture Series we will examine the Bible for the sound and reliable answers it alone provides.

Perspectives on Pentecost CoverLooking forward to our trip to attend this conference, the May Spotlight selection is Dr. Gaffin’s book Perspectives on Pentecost: New Testament Teaching on the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. One of our two copies is still available for members to check out in the church library. Solid Reformed answers to this controversial theological question are available for those who may be dealing with the issue in their personal lives.

An example of the effectiveness of this book in clarifying the truths related to the Day of Pentecost, the gift of the Holy Spirit and the cessation of the revelatory spiritual gifts comes from the testimony of Rev. Glen Clary, pastor of Providence OPC in Pflugerville, Texas. Pastor Clary writes:

I read Perspectives on Pentecost many years ago when I was pastoring a Pentecostal church. The book completely revolutionized my theology.

I had not realized how much of my beliefs about the Holy Spirit had been derived from my own personal experience rather than from scripture. Of course, I had always appealed to scripture to support my beliefs, but I was interpreting scripture through the lens of my own experience.

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Rev. Glen Clary, Pastor of Providence Presbyterian Church (OPC) in Pflugerville, Texas.

As a Christian with a high view of scripture, I knew that my beliefs needed to be based on scripture, and I endeavored to do that. However, my doctrine of the Holy Spirit was so shaped by my experience that I was misinterpreting scripture.

Gaffin’s book gave me a whole new paradigm for interpreting the Bible. Understanding the gift of the Spirit on the day of Pentecost as an event that belongs to the historia salutis (the history of redemption) rather than the ordo salutis (“the order of salvation,” or the Holy Spirit’s applying to a person the benefits of redemption wrought by Christ’s life, death and resurrection) completely transformed my interpretation of Acts 2.

Further, Gaffin’s teaching that tongues and prophecy are modes of revelation presented a serious challenge to me because I already held that special revelation had ceased, yet I didn’t want to give up speaking in tongues.

Perspectives on Pentecost enabled me to grasp the true teaching of scripture on the person and work of the Holy Spirit. It forced me to reexamine my beliefs and practices in light of the Word of God, the only infallible rule for faith and life (subscribe to Glen Clary’s sermon podcast at SermonAudio.com)..

How has Perspectives on Pentecost affected your understanding of the work of the Holy Spirit in your life, and in the exercise of your spiritual gifts? Share your story in the comments below. We would love to interact with MCOPC Library patrons on the teaching of the Word of God on the subjects of the Spirit and the gifts, and if you have the opportunity to go, you are certainly welcome to join us in Oklahoma City to listen to the author himself lecture on similar themes. If you are able to attend, write to info@mcopc.org for more information.

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