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Pentecostal activity has a history as old as Christianity. Groups claiming the same supernatural activity as described in the Bible exist from the early Church through the development of Protestantism.


Methodist, Pietist, and Holiness influences were chiefly responsible for giving Pentecostalism its distinct emphasis on the Holy Spirit as an agent for spiritual regeneration.


Pentecostalism's founders, specifically William J. Seymour and Charles F. Parham, contributed theological innovations to the movement. Parham taught "initial evidence doctrine," and Seymour began a radical experiment with racial and gender egalitarianism.

Sacred Texts

Pentecostals elevate the Book of Acts and parts of Paul's first Letter to the Corinthians; they interpret the Old Testament as part of a continuum of supernatural activity that occurs today.

Pentecostal Historical Perspectives

Pentecostal history has until recently suffered from reliance on the accepted providential narrative of its history. With mainstream acceptance, current scholarship has matured to be more critical and analytical.