Timothy George is a non-charismatic steeped in Reformed theology. He is an astute scholar and a winsome teacher who taught me long ago the importance of “catholicizing my heresies” as he phrased it. In a new essay posted at First Things, Dr. George has put his finger on at least part of what’s wrong with John McArthur’s new anti-charismatic polemic, Strange Fire:
Within the worldwide charismatic movement, there are no doubt instances of weird, inappropriate, and outrageous phenomena, perhaps including some of the things MacArthur saw on TBN. Many Pentecostal leaders themselves acknowledge as much. But to discredit the entire charismatic movement as demon-inspired because of the frenzied excess into which some of its members have fallen is both myopic and irresponsible. It would be like condemning the entire Catholic Church because some of its priests are proven pedophiles, or like smearing all Baptist Christians because of the antics of the Westboro Baptist Church.