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Paperback Forgotten God : Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit Book

ISBN: 1434767957

ISBN13: 9781434767950

Forgotten God : Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit

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Book Overview

In the name of the Father, the Son, and ... the Holy Spirit. We pray in the name of all three, but how often do we live with an awareness of only the first two? As Jesus ascended into heaven, He promised to send the Holy Spirit--the Helper--so that we could be true and living witnesses for Christ. Unfortunately, today's church has admired the gift but neglected to open it. Breakthrough author Francis Chan rips away paper and bows to get at the true...

Customer Reviews

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Such a powerful, convicting and edifying book!

Such a powerful, convicting and edifying book! Francis Chan continue to seek the Lord and remain a vessel for His glory! It blessed me so much.

Live a Life That Truly Matters!

Francis Chan gets after it again in now his second book, The Forgotten God. Chan, typical of the style of Crazy Love, challenges readers from page one. In this book, Chan focuses his challenging words in the area of the Holy Spirit. After giving a brief intro on exegetical living and some basics of the Holy Spirit, he then dives into the meat of this book - to challenge readers to really, truly, authentically live by the leadings of the Spirit. He asks people to risk, to lay down their fears, to truly consider your motivations for receiving the Spirit, and to overcome the obstacles (comfort and volume) to truly living this way. As Chan writes, God wants us to commit to living by the Spirit's leading TODAY -- right now. Forget about God's plan for your life - ask what the Spirit wants from you now. Instead of trying to fit Jesus in your life, essentially leading the Spirit, our call is to be led by the Spirit. Chan takes his swings at Christians as well. Our lives, he notes, should look and feel much differently than non-Christians. If they don't, we have to truly ask ourselves if we are living by the Spirit. Furthermore, we've often turned "taking up the cross" into simply enduring the daily, circumstantial troubles of life. Last, he asks when people leave worship at your church, do they go away praising God or praising you? Personally, this book inspired me to "get after it." Instead of talking about the Spirit, I want to live by the Spirit. I want to live a life that is desperately in need of the Spirit. I don't want to live a noisy and comfortable life. I don't want my life to be pardoned off as a "call" to a comfortable, easy existence. I want to truly carry my cross, to truly give my life to something great, something desperately in need of the Spirit's help. I strongly encourage everyone to read this book and be challenged!

Let It Shake You Up

Calling the Holy Spirit "Forgotten God" may be a bit of an overstatement. Or perhaps it is an understatement. Some Christians seem to show little evidence that they have any theology of the Spirit while others seem to emphasize the Spirit at the expense of other biblical doctrine. What seems clear is that few Christians have it quite right. In this new book Francis Chan says, "From my perspective, the Holy Spirit is tragically neglected and, for all practical purposes, forgotten. While no evangelical would deny His existence, I'm willing to bet there are millions of churchgoers across America who cannot confidently say they have experienced His presence or action in their lives over the past year. And many of them do not believe they can." With the entertainment (or perhaps "edutainment") model of church so prevalent today, churches have become filled with self-focused consumers instead of Spirit-filled believers. Chan asks this provocative question: "What if you grew up on a desert island with nothing but the Bible to read?" If you had nothing but Scripture to guide you, would your understanding of the Holy Spirit be far different from what it is today? It is probably worth thinking about. Says Chan, "If I were Satan and my ultimate goal was to thwart God's kingdom and purposes, one of my main strategies would be to get churchgoers to ignore the Holy Spirit." It is easy to fake the presence of the Spirit, isn't it? "Let's be honest: If you combine a charismatic speaker, a talented worship band, and some hip, creative events, people will attend your church. Yet this does not mean that the Holy Spirit of God is actively working and moving in the lives of the people who are coming." It is possible for a church to be fun and vibrant and exciting even while utterly ignoring the Holy Spirit--even while outright grieving the Holy Spirit. Such churches may say much about Jesus but little about the Spirit. Yet how then do we reconcile Jesus' words that it is better for us if we have the Spirit than if we have the Son? Chan says, "I think most of us would...choose a physical Jesus over an invisible Spirit. But what do we do with the fact that Jesus says it is better for His followers to have the Holy Spirit?" Do we believe Him? If so, do our lives reflect that belief?" Alternating teaching with stories and testimonies, Chan seeks to reverse this neglect of the Spirit. Essentially he provides a brief and basic theology of the Spirit (even titling one chapter "Theology of the Holy Spirit 101") and shows how the Spirit can and should operate in the life of the believer. It is an eminently quotable book, offering scores of statements that are worth highlighting and worth pondering in the days and weeks to come. Some reading this review will want to know his position on the continuation of the miraculous spiritual gifts. I would say his is "guarded, hesitant continuationism," though this comes from reading between the lines more than any bold statements to t

A Compelling Invitation from Francis Chan

Picking up a book that's subtitle is "Reversing our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit" made me feel that I was heading for a tongue lashing. Instead I found Francis Chan's new book, "Forgotten God," to be a very calm and thoughtful response to the Christian community. There have been many books written over the years about what to believe about the Holy Spirit. Battle lines have been drawn between churches and denominations about when the Holy Spirit shows up, how He does it, and what is supposed to happen next. Chan has no axe to grind with theological debates and steers away from these often bloodstained battlegrounds. Instead he writes how Christians in western culture, regardless of what they say they believe about the third member of the Trinity, live as though the Holy Spirit had long since retired. In seven easy to read chapters Chan covers the following topics: * The role of the Holy Spirit as Jesus' promised gift. * Fears and concerns about the Holy Spirit * How theology about the Holy Spirit has more to do with how a person lives than what they say they believe. * Motivations around the Holy Spirit and his power. * What a relationship with the Holy Spirit can really be like. * Letting go of manipulation and control by trusting the Holy Spirit. * Living in true community with the Holy Spirit and with others. For a book to be as hard hitting on these themes as it is, this tone Chan takes hardly comes across as a harsh reprimand. There is a gentleness and humility that flow through these chapters, possibly because the author often uses his shortcomings as examples. It is balanced with his unbridled passion for something better. It is a contagious proposition. At the end of each chapter Chan presents a short biography about someone who is modeling that aspect of life with the Holy Spirit. These narratives help put the chapters, and the suggested lifestyle, into context. For readers who have already embraced the message from Chan's first book, "Crazy Love," you will find another winner here. For those who are reading him for the first time, you have found a new, encouraging friend.

Forgotten God

"Another book on the Holy Spirit? You have got to be kidding me!" Those were the initial thoughts that crept into my mind when I first saw the subtitle of Francis Chan's new book Forgotten God. It is subtitled "Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit." But then again, after reading Francis' other book, Crazy Love, blogging about it and then offering a small group study of it, I was not about to write this new book off as just a dusty old rehash of "Holy Spirit talk." Man, am I glad I didn't! I will have to confess something right up front: I was stoked because of the author...so much so that I had trouble putting this book down. I took it everywhere with me just in case I had little snippets of time to read and highlight it. Oftentimes authors writing about the Holy Spirit take one of two approaches: they sensationalize everything and make it overly emotional, almost confrontational. You know...if you don't have this or do this then there must be something wrong with your spirituality. The other approach is one that brings yawns to people like me who just want something practical, something that translates into preaching and teaching and the everyday life of people I pastor. Unequivocally, Francis did not disappoint! He laid down the gauntlet on the very first page of his introduction: "the benchmark of success in church services has become more about attendance than the movement of the Holy Spirit. The `entertainment' model of church was largely adopted in the 1980s and '90s, and while it alleviated some of our boredom for a couple of hours a week, it filled our churches with self-focused consumers rather than self-sacrificing servants attuned to the Holy Spirit." (p.15-16) From there on it is sometimes hard-hitting, sometimes convicting, sometimes wooing, but always Francis-biblical and easy to understand. He takes one chapter he calls Theology of the Holy Spirit 101 to give a brief description of the Holy Spirit but it is informative not dry. In my opinion he reached his zenith in the last chapter: The Supernatural Church. WOW! I believe if you only read this chapter it alone would "fire you up." (It would also encourage you to read the rest of it as well). :) One more thing: after each chapter he included a two or three page biography of someone he knew living out what he had just taught. That was good to read. So...if you read Crazy Love you will want to read this book because you are familiar with Francis' writing. If you read this book, you will want to go back and read Crazy Love. If you are looking for a deep theological book about the Holy Spirit or a book that tells you how to get this or that gift, then look elsewhere. However, if you are looking for a practical, easy-to-read and understand book that will challenge you to the core, then read Forgotten God. You will be glad you did.
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