Book Review – Receiving the Holy Spirit and His Gifts (Terry Virgo & Phil Rogers)

This short book aims to provide an introduction to the subject of Baptism in the Holy Spirit, and to encourage the readers to seek this experience if they have not already received it. Theologically the authors’ stance is that baptism in the Holy Spirit is distinct from conversion and is normally evidenced by speaking in tongues or prophesying. A brief rebuttal of alternative viewpoints is offered, though this is by no means thorough.

Though there are two authors, who seem to write separate chapters, there is no indication of who is writing at any one time, which can make the anecdotes somewhat confusing (has the author two wives?). Apart from this, the style is not too heavy and should be accessible to most readers.

It functions as a study guide, often asking the reader to look up particular passages before commenting on them. After dealing with baptism in the Spirit, there is a discussion of spiritual gifts and the need for ongoing filling with the Spirit. Overall this is a good book to introduce the baptism in the Holy Spirit to those in charismatic or Pentecostal churches. Those who want all their theological questions answering may need to do some additional reading, but those simply hungry to experience God in a new and dynamic way could find that this contains all they need to know.

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