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Spring 2015: Other Significant Articles

Roger E. Olson, “Embarrassed by the Supernatural?” Patheos (April 29, 2015).


Andrew Gabriel, “Pentecost: More than Acts 1:8” (April 21, 2015).


Craig S. Keener, “When Jesus Wanted All My Money: And everything else. How I learned he’s an all-or-nothing LordChristianity Today (May 2015), pages 46-50.


Richard J. Mouw, “Pentecostalism, liberation theology and biblical leadership” Faith and Leadership (April 7, 2015).


Matthew Schmitz, “Our Partial PacifismFirst Things (December 11, 2014).

Another article on pacifism, with this comment from William De Arteaga: “First Things is a Catholic journal, but even if you are specious of some Catholic doctrines (as I am) you should access some of its very fine articles, some of which are based on solid biblical thinking. This one is particularly good.”

Roger Olson, “Pentecostal Pacifism: A Lost (and Denied) Tradition” Patheos (May 6, 2015).

Monte Lee Rice selected this quote from the article: “Now, I am not a pacifist, so I am not personally opposed to that change in Pentecostal belief and practice. What I worry about is the tendency of Pentecostal leaders to deny that part of their heritage and be embarrassed by it. … For the most part, anyway, it crept up and in as part of a gradual process of cultural accommodation. Today pacifists among Pentecostals are often looked down on if not persecuted. And that’s not because of some well-thought-out and theologically reflective change; it’s because of Pentecostal Americanization—a gradual process of cultural accommodation that happened almost unconsciously and is still not fully recognized or admitted.”

Christopher A. Stephenson, “Pentecostal Theology According to the Theologians: An Introduction to the Theological Methods of Pentecostal Systematic Theologians.”

The 2009 Doctor of Philosophy dissertation by Christopher Stephenson at Marquette University.

Abstract: This dissertation is a twofold argument that 1) existing pentecostal systematic theology can be interpreted according to four analytical categories and that 2) future pentecostal theological method should incorporate a form of lex orandi, lex credendi for the benefit of pentecostal theology and spirituality.

I analyze the theological methods of major past and present pentecostal systematic theologians and demonstrate that they have followed four basic patterns. First, Myer Pearlman, E. S. Williams, and French L. Arrington take the material for their theologies almost exclusively from the Bible. Second, Steven J. Land and Simon K. H. Chan center their theologies on the relationship between theology and spirituality. Third, Frank D. Macchia sets the whole of his theology against the background of the kingdom of God and pneumatology. Fourth, Amos Yong focuses his theology on philosophical and fundamental theology from a pneumatological perspective.

After analyzing and assessing the methodologies of these pentecostal theologians, I argue that future pentecostal theological method should incorporate a form of lex orandi, lex credendi that I call regula spiritualitatis, regula doctrinae , or, “the rule of spirituality and the rule of doctrine.” This methodological principle utilizes the strengths from the above pentecostal theologians and asks pentecostals to give detailed consideration to the reciprocal relationship between Christian spirituality and doctrine in the process of theologizing. I recommend this methodological principle because it 1) exhibits the traditional pentecostal emphasis on both pneumatology and eschatology, 2) establishes a strong relationship between theology and spirituality, especially in the process of formulating doctrine, 3) is attentive to the hermeneutical matrix constituted by the worshipping communities in which pentecostal theologians are situated, and 4) gives a prominent place to biblical interpretation in systematic theology. I illustrate the contours of regula spiritualitatis, regula doctrinae with a case study of the Lord’s supper that draws on three particular facets of pentecostal spirituality in order to construct a doctrine of the Lord’s supper that critiques other facets of pentecostal spirituality.

Thanks to Ekaputra T. for pointing out the link.

George Weigel, “The Catholic Church’s German CrisisFirst Things (May 20, 2015).

William De Arteaga writes: “A very interesting article from the premiere Catholic journal, First Things, on the status of the German Catholic Church – it is dying, as it is in the rest of Western Europe. I read between the lines that this the natural result of a Church that attempted to counter modernity by accentuating theology/philosophy and marginalizing the gifts of the Spirit which could have given it the true life of the Gospel.”

Wes Granberg-Michaelson, “Think Christianity is dying? No, Christianity is shifting dramaticallyWashington Post (May 20, 2015).

The global explosion of Pentecostalism has been fueled, in part, by migration. Ekaputra T. pointed out this quote: “one out of 12 people alive today has a Pentecostal form of Christian faith.”

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Category: Spring 2015

About the Author: The editors are Raul Mock, Mike Dies, Joe Joslin, and Jim Dettmann with significant input from other writers including John Lathrop, Amos Yong, Tony Richie, and Kevin Williams.

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