R.A. Torrey (1856–1928) was an independent Congregationalist educator and evangelist. He was ordained in 1883 as a Congregationalist minister serving as a pastor and missions supervisor (1883–1889). In 1889, D. L. Moody asked Torrey to become the first superintendent of the Moody Bible Institute where he served until 1908. Torrey pursued his interest in mass evangelism and missions with overseas tours, including meetings in Australia, New Zealand, India, China, Japan, Germany, Great Britain, Canada, and elsewhere. In 1912, Torrey took leadership of the newly formed Bible Institute of Los Angeles (Biola). His leadership was foundational for the school which today boasts one the top apologetics programs in the country as well as the well respected Talbot School of Theology. Torrey stayed at Biola until 1924. We need more men like him today.
In our increasingly pagan environment, poorly educated false teachers are infiltrating the body and spreading heresies and denying basic biblical theology. Recently the Lord has led me to address the attacks upon the Holy Spirit by Russ Houck (who claims a doctorate in theology from an unaccredited school) and his popularizer Rob Skiba, both who teach that that He is merely an impersonal force. While its common among the cults, it is a dangerous heresy. Torrey wrote an excellent book The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit stating in the very first chapter that this is not an optional doctrine but rather one that is fundamental to the worship of the true God:
It is of the highest importance from the standpoint of worship that we decide whether the Holy Spirit is a Divine Person, worthy to receive our adoration, our faith, our love, and our entire surrender to Himself, or whether it is simply an influence emanating from God or a power or an illumination that God imparts to us.If the Holy Spirit is a person, and a Divine Person, and we do not know Him as such, then we are robbing a Divine Being of the worship and the faith and the love and the surrender to Himself which are His due.
RA Torrey, The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit, (New York: Fleming HL Revell Company, 1910), 7.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who has questions or perhaps was misled by the heretical teachings of Houck and Skiba. It is available as free download here.