Christianity With Power: Your Worldview and Your Experience of the Supernatural by Charles H. Kraft
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Why do we read of Jesus healings and other works of power yet see so little of this in the church that acts with his name? This is the question that increasingly nagged at Charles Kraft, first during missions work in Africa where other healers claimed spiritual power, and then later as he sat in on John Wimber’s signs and wonders course at Fuller Seminary.
Kraft argues that there is no good case for the cessation of these works following the era of scripture, any more than there is a case for the cessation of preaching that announces the kingdom. These two go hand in hand. Rather he argues that our “powerless” Christianity is a consequence of our embrace of a Western worldview that partitions God and the supernatural from involvement in the physical world, contrary to the testimony of scripture and the experience of Christians in the two-thirds world.
Kraft narrates his own change of perspective and his beginning attempts to minister to people in the power of Christ. He compelling speaks of his realization that this is not a power trip (a pitfall in these kinds of ministries) but power wrapped in love and attentive to God. He speaks of learning this ministry and encourages people to engage in prayer ministry for healing 50 times unsuccessfully before giving up! He speaks with wisdom about not promising a healing but rather going together to the Lord to see what he wants to do. He gives practical instruction for a seven step process in this ministry. He also cautions against emotionalism while paying attention to the emotions that manifest during prayer.
This seems a biblically sound and pastorally sensitive approach. Reading this challenges me to be more open to what God might do when I’m asked to pray for the sick or for those facing other emotional or spiritual challenges.