There is something you should know about me: I really like Karl Barth. Barth (btw, silent “h” at the end, pronounce it just like the only son of Homer and Marge Simpson) was probably the most prolific theologian of the twentieth century. Want proof? Here’s the Barth shelf from my little library (right above the Thomas Aquinas shelf, my other hero).
All of those are by Barth. The black ones are all volumes of his Church Dogmatics (of which I still lack two volumes). I also have another half shelf of smaller works and German editions. Makes for some nice, light bedtime reading, let me tell you.
Barth gets overlooked sometimes because a lot of what he wrote is a pretty tough read, often made tougher still by less than helpful translations from the German. But even if you have never read his works (or even heard of him before now), you have likely read others who were heavily influenced by Barth. He stood up to the Nazis when few in the German church did and he helped push theology beyond the futile problems of modernity. He also has some smaller books that are easier to get into, like Evangelical Theology, Deliverance to the Captives, Dogmatics in Outline, and a little one called “The Holy Spirit and the Christian Life.”
I was using that book as a text in a theology course I was teaching at Lee University a few years back, when it suddenly fell out of print for about a year. Undaunted, I got a copy of the original German off of eBay (back when I still used eBay) and produced my own translation. Since I had used the book in a previous semester, I knew some of the questions that it brought up. To save myself some time and effort I addressed those questions as footnotes to the text.
Now I’m giving to you for free if you want it: Karl Barth’s The Holy Spirit and the Christian Life. Thanks to the help of my friend James Marler, you can download this in three ways: as a PDF (below), as an epub file (this link), or as a mobi file for Kindle (this link).
I hope you enjoy it; I would love to hear your thoughts on it.