Published on December 13th, 2013 | by Dana Wiles, Jr.
An Interview with Sam Storms
I had the privilege of corresponding with Dr. Sam Storms to ask him some questions about Jesus, writing, ministry, and spiritual gifts. Dr. Storms describes himself as an “Amillennial, Calvinistic, charismatic, credo-baptistic, complementarian, Christian Hedonist.” Dr. Storms holds a Th.M in Historical Theology from Dallas Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in Intellectual History from the University of Texas at Dallas. Dr. Storms has been in ministry for nearly forty years and currently serves as the Lead Pastor for Preaching and Vision at Bridgeway Church in Oklahoma City, OK.
How did you come to know God through faith in Jesus Christ?
I came to saving faith through the influence of my parents. I was raised Southern Baptist and was always in church. Although I can’t remember a time when I didn’t believe, I made a public profession of faith and was baptized when I was nine years old.
You are an accomplished author and have written several books. Of the books that you have written, which one do you think is your most important work or greatest contribution to the church?
I would have to select Pleasures Evermore: The Life-Changing Power of Enjoying God. The biblical truth of Psalm 16:11 has revolutionized my life and I am a passionate advocate of what is known as Christian Hedonism. A close second to this book would be The Singing God, in which I expound at length on Zephaniah 3:17 and the truth of God’s affection for us and delight in us.
Are you currently working on any book projects that we can be looking forward to?
I am writing a book on J. I. Packer’s view of the Christian life for a series that Crossway is publishing, Great Theologians on the Christian Life. I’ve also just finished a book, Kept for Jesus Christ, that focuses on the issue of eternal security and assurance of salvation, and I hope volume two of Tough Topics will be published soon (it is completed).
If you were stuck on an island with the Bible and three other books of your choice, what would they be?
It seems that the Strange Fire conference that Dr. John MacArthur hosted is causing quite a discussion in the blogosphere. What advice would you give to the Christian who is struggling through the cessationist/continuationist debate? Any particular resources that could be helpful?
I would counsel everyone to largely disregard the appeal to abuses and fanaticism in today’s Pentecostal-charismatic world and focus on the teaching of Scripture. If we truly believe in Sola Scriptura then we must let the Word, and not our experience or the lack thereof, govern what we believe about spiritual gifts. I would recommend my own book, The Beginner’s Guide to Spiritual Gifts (Regal) as a good resource to see what Scripture has to say. I’ve also written a number of articles in response to Strange Fire on my blog, http://samstorms.com.
In addition to being an author, you have also been a pastor for several years. What advice would you give to the seasoned pastor based on your experience? What advice would you give to men just entering pastoral ministry?
Make it your aim to preach God’s Word, verse by verse, chapter by chapter. Don’t yield to the pressure of attaining “success” in ministry and give up on the consistent exposition of Scripture. Be faithful to God’s Word, be patient when times are tough, and trust that God is pleased with your labors so long as Christ is at the center and you are not!
How can we be praying for you?
Although I’ve been in ministry for 40 years I still need pastoral wisdom in knowing how to shepherd sheep and lead a church into the fullness of what God has planned.