You don't have to head overseas to find a war. In the church, the rhetorical cross-fire between evangelical and "spirit-filled" Christians over the past hundred years has been withering. "No scriptural foundations," is the charge evangelicals have leveled at the charismatics. "No spiritual power," the latter have countered. The boundaries are clear. The positions are taken -- and guarded. Either you're a Word person or a Power person. Today, though, such black-and-white, either-or thinking is giving way to the liberty and promise of a Word and Power church. Pastor Doug Banister shows why we cannot afford to settle for less. It's time to bury our differences -- which are largely artificial -- and discover the incredible potential that arises when evangelicals combine their strengths with Pentecostals and charismatics. Taking a long, careful, and honest look at the Scriptures, at church history, and at the state of the church and the world today, Pastor Banister reveals why Pentecostalism and evangelicalism need each other. Each tradition possesses strengths that are essential to a balanced, life-changing faith. The Word and Power Church shows how these "two mighty rivers" add to, rather than subtract from, each other. At the cusp of a new millennium, they are in fact merging into one river. Word and Power churches may experiences turbulence where the waters meet, but they teem with life, hope, faith, and power to reach a desperate world with the Gospel. Filled with personal anecdotes, this fascinating, thought-provoking, and candid book supplies the why-tos and how-tos of a Word-and-Power approach. What you won't find is preferential treatment of one view over another. What you will find are thoughtful biblical insights that will challenge you and inspire you. And you'll discover practical guidance for charting your own course -- whether as an individual or as a church -- toward a faith that embraces the truth of the Word and the power of the Spirit. As a solidly evangelical seminary graduate and pastor, Banister admits to having disdained charismatics. That is, until meticulous study of Gods Word convinced him that miraculous gifts of tongues, healing, and prophecy are indeed valid for today. As he details his journey beyond categories, Banister explores the reasons for the age-old rift between the two camps and the ways in which healing is taking place in new Word and Power churches all over America. When evangelicals and charismatics bring together the best from each tradition, he has discovered that the result is a strong, unified body. Word and Power churches affirm the authority of Scripture and encourage the prophetic embrace of those who pray in a spiritual language, pursue obedience to Christ, edify the believer and evangelize the seeker, heal the sick and comfort the suffering. The Word and Power Church will speak to Christians everywhere who want to walk in both the integrity of Scripture and the power of the Holy Spirit.
Dr. Doug Banister is pastor and mentor to businessmen in Knoxville, TN. He has a Doctorate of Ministry from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary and is working on a Ph.D. in Medieval History at the University of Tennessee. In addition, he is the author of Sacred Quest and The Word and Power Church. He and his wife, Sandi, have four children.