Announcing June’s Book of the Month: Counterfeit Miracles by BB Warfield
This is why I selected this book.
There is certainly a dearth of books defending Biblical cessationism and keeping track of all the charismatic absurdities out there. John MacArthur’s Strange Fire is the premier book of our age on this topic. Following up in the #2 spot for influential books on the topic of charismaticism is also John MacArthur, with his 1992 book, Charismatic Chaos. However, for the budding polemicist, it’s best to start your study at the beginning. And as far as the beginning goes in terms of modern book publishing in regards to charismaticism is the first (and probably most influential) book on the topic in the 20th Century, Counterfeit Miracles by B.B. Warfield.
As I began my studies into the “excesses of the charismatic movement” (which I quickly discovered was the entire charismatic movement) I realized that I couldn’t progress without stopping to read Counterfeit Miracles. This is because every book I picked up on the subject quoted Warfield so repeatedly. I wasn’t disappointed by reading the book. While some may find the printing to be old-fashioned and the writing archaic (it was published in 1918 and found a second wind when Banner of Truth published it again in 1972), if you work through it you will find it a substantial blessing for the serious-minded student.
As their review on the Trinity Foundation website says…
This book is based on a series of lectures on counterfeit miracles that Warfield delivered at Union Seminary in South Carolina in 1918. Warfield, one of the most accomplished theologians of the twentieth century, professor at Princeton Seminary, and prolific systematic theologian, expresses once again the skepticism com-manded by Christ. There are demonic miracles in the modern world; there are unscrupulous impostors; there are weak-minded and gullible churchgoers; there is the power of suggestion; but there are no divine miracles. Divine miracles had a specific purpose, and when that purpose was accomplished, divine miracles ceased. The present fascination with miracles, no longer restricted to the superstitions of the Roman Catholic Church-State, but now spread throughout the world by the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements, is not a sign of resurgent Christianity, as many have said, but a sign of resurgent paganism. The sort of religion that pervaded ancient Rome and medieval Rome has returned, just as, and because, Christianity is fading from the modern mind.
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