If you haven’t been paying attention the last few months, you may have missed a conference Grace to You put on last October called Strange Fire. Maybe you heard about it?
Of course I’m messing with you. Nearly everyone who participates on social media and runs in my circles heard about it and are well aware of the big stink it stirred up with charismatics and Pentecostals.
Anyhow, I would imagine the most vocal, popular-level critic of the Strange Fire conference was Michael Brown. As early as June of last year, four months before Strange Fire was to take place, Dr. Brown was rebuking John MacArthur for even thinking about holding a conference to address charismatic issues. He wrote two articles that we responded to, and then offered a rejoinder. Folks went back and forth with each other leading up to the conference until the night before the conference began, when Dr. Brown wrote one final article pleading for us to stop everything, send everyone home, and cancel the sessions.
Of course, that never happened. But just a month and a half after the conference ended, Dr. Brown managed to write and publish a 418-page book entitled, Authentic Fire: A Response to John MacArthur’s Strange Fire.
To date, it is probably the most substantive response available. I say “the most substantive” because there really aren’t any others. Sure, Frank Viola thinks he published a slam dunk of his own against John, but as Lyndon pointed out in his review of that book, it only takes a few pages of reading for his entire rebuttal to come unraveled. So that leaves us with Michael Brown.
Seeing that Authentic Fire will be the one book most individuals encounter Lyndon and I are going to offer an extended review. He will take all the odd numbered chapters and I will take the even numbered chapters. There are also four appendices written by other men that we’ll address.