The heart of Orthodox identity has to do with a sense of continuity with the past through the apostolic church, the Scriptures, ecumenical councils, the Fathers (and Mothers), the saints, the sacraments, and the tradition of liturgical life, all manifested in the role assigned to the bishops. Its identity is equally about the experience of Pentecost in the present: through the love, joy, peace, and freedom in the Holy Spirit, revealed in the unrepeatable uniqueness of each saint. Despite the Orthodox Church’s complicated history, painful internal debates, cultural differences, geographic separation, state oppression and persecution, there remains a powerful unity around these two dimensions of Orthodox identity. This article examines these dimensions, with particular focus on the order of service for consecrating a new bishop.
The book of Judges vividly depicts the spiritual decline, violence, and lawlessness that directly results from Israel’s failure to hear Yhwh. Israel’s refusal to hear Yhwh’s voice leads to each generation becoming more perverted, more depraved, and more corrupted than the prior generation, resulting in complete disorder at the end of the book. The downward spiral into anarchy and the steady social and spiritual deterioration seen in the book of Judges closely correspond to the security, interests, and welfare of the women in the narrative. The spiritual disintegration caused by Israel’s progressive deafness to Yhwh’s voice is linked to the oppression, violence, and silencing of women’s voices in Israel. This article examines the stories of the Israelite female characters in Judges and argues that the stories of women are organized in such a way that they expose the downward spiral of Israel as a whole.
This article explores the historic divide between two prominent voices in Latin American Christianity: Pentecostalism and Liberation theology. Given the theological differences between the two camps, especially regarding socioeconomic status and theological praxis, prior attempts at dialogue have ultimately resulted in little constructive progress. However, little theological attention has been given to mutual discussion of the subject of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, this article will attempt to place understandings of pneumatology in Pentecostalism in conversation with Liberation theology, specifically the work of José Comblin. Though both groups have differing understandings of the Spirit’s role in society, it is thus argued that pneumatology and the concept of empowerment can serve as a previously neglected avenue for dialogue between Pentecostalism and Liberation theology.
This article constructs political theology for Pentecostals in a multi-ethnic and multi-religious country like Indonesia that can become a basis for their spirituality engaging in public affairs. The study is conducted on Isa. 42.1–9 according to Vernon K. Robbins’ socio-rhetoric criticism method. The results of the study show that the servant, who was anointed by the Spirit of God, became an agent to carry out the mission of liberation for all humankind from social injustice and of striving for social transformation as well. His work was ultimately regarded as God’s superiority over idols, therefore bringing praise to God. The Spirit encourages people of the Spirit to always work on missions, liberating from social injustice and transforming social structure. Any work produced could be considered as a participation in the Spirit’s inspirational work, and doxology is a way of discerning the Spirit’s work.
Most Pentecostals accept and proclaim that God answers petitionary prayers of believers for prayer, whether for themselves or someone else, based on the clear evidence found in biblical texts. Their worship services regularly contain testimonies of believers or about believers whose prayers were miraculously answered. However, to what extent is it true that their prayers are answered, and how probable it is that it can be proven as the outcome of prayer if their desire is granted? Is their belief in answered petitionary prayer justified? Or should they rather stay agnostic about answered prayers? The article uses grammatical-historical exegesis to consider biblical evidence and published empirical research reports related to healing in response to prayer before Pentecostal hermeneutics is used to reconsider and formulate a classical Pentecostal viewpoint.
Although Pentecostals have given much attention to the Breaking of Bread, they have not generally considered it from the perspective of eucharistic sacrifice. Yet, from the earliest days of the history of the church, and with remarkable consistency across the ancient divisions of the church, the Eucharist has been recognised as a sacrifice. This article draws on the significant British Pentecostal concept of pleading the blood, along with the proto-Pentecostal Catholic Apostolic Church, and D.P. Williams’ understanding of the heavenly priesthood of Christ, in conversation with the wider church, to work towards a Pentecostal theology of eucharistic sacrifice, which would also have wider ecumenical potential for Protestant understandings of the Lord’s Supper.
This survey of the Spirit’s activity examines all thirty-nine occurrences of the word רוח (‘spirit’) in the book of Psalms. The study of these texts suggests that although the Psalter presents neither an organized pneumatology nor a complete one, the Spirit is described as the agent of God’s life-giving power and as the administrator of God’s moral authority. As the agent of God’s life-giving power, the Holy Spirit creates all life and sustains all life. As administrator of God’s moral authority, the Holy Spirit saves, guides, sanctifies, and enacts judgment.
This article is a constructive work in ecclesiology from a Pentecostal perspective. It is proposed that the unique nature of Pentecostal spirituality and theology combine to form several bases for the doctrine of the church. Written for a Pentecostal-Orthodox dialogue, it will be clear that there are several crossovers in this proposal for a pneumatic ecclesiology that resonates well with the Eastern Churches. Three areas receive attention in this proposal: first, an encounter with the Spirit as a basis for a Pentecostal ecclesiology; second, the ministry of the Spirit and gifts as a basis for the church’s mission; and third, leadership through the Spirit as a basis for discipleship.