One Thing God Finds Irresistible.

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I have often pondered the question: What does God find irresistible? In other words, what attitudes and dispositions in man is he the most drawn to? Yes, I recognize that man is basically sinful and alienated from God. Still, the fact remains that God had to start somewhere as he began his plan of redeeming mankind. What characterized the key people he chose? One cannot consider such a question without taking note of two people who evidently captured God’s attention, one man and one woman. … [Read more...]

Pascal and Pentecostalism.

Touching God

The first time I walked into a Pentecostal church as a sixteen-year-old, I didn’t know quite what to expect. Entering First Assembly of God (AG) in Columbia, South Carolina that Sunday morning in 1975, was different than anything I had ever experienced; I could feel a sense of excitement, freedom, and spontaneity. Then, I heard something I had never heard before in a church service … voices projected other than the pastor’s; audible gifts of the Spirit operating amidst seasons of worship, prophecies, prayers for healing and, yes, speaking in tongues. And, on that day it honestly was the speak … [Read more...]

The Circles Jesus Drew

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As churches endeavor to find more effective and fulfilling ways to engage people in ministry, the team approach is one that also fits the renewed clamoring for community within churches today. Such an approach seems more conducive to experiencing church as an organism as opposed to an organization. Gilbert Bilzekian describes it this way: "In our day, there is a clamor for the church to rediscover its identity as community. Many Christian leaders bemoan the fact that the church has lost its basic biblical definition as (a) divinely designed community. Lay people and clergy alike express … [Read more...]

The Most Misquoted Bible Passage at Weddings

The 3-fold Cord

The Biblical value of teams over individual efforts is described in resonant and simple terms in Ecclesiastes. It is especially interesting that, although someone who held a supreme hierarchical position, namely King Solomon, wrote this passage, he nonetheless saw the wisdom and value of teams even in his day. Even from his lofty throne he thought to include these insights and the model of the triple-braided cord in his volume of wisdom. Two people can accomplish more than twice as much as one; they get a better return for their labor. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. … [Read more...]

John Piper on the Baptism of the Holy Spirit

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John Piper (who is not a Pentecostal but a Reformed Noncessationist) says..."Now the positive thing I want to say about the moderate Pentecostal teaching (represented by the Bennets, i.e., Dennis & Rita) is that it is right to stress the experiential reality of receiving the Spirit. When you read the New Testament honestly, you can't help but get the impression of a big difference from a lot of contemporary Christian experience. For them the Holy Spirit was a fact of experience... I think that being baptized with the Holy Spirit (the way Luke means it) is not the same as being born … [Read more...]

Pentecostal Ecumenism? – Dispatches from Converge21/SPS (Part One)

Converge

Who said “revivals” all have to lead to the creation of new “movements” or even denominations? It just may be that the best revivals are those that bring people back, back home, back to their roots, back to their senses (cf. Lk. 15:17), and in some cases even back to the churches of their youth or even to breaking bread with the same.I recently attended Converge21 (C21), an event that brought together a selected group of leaders, pastors, educators and next-geners to collaborate on “the future direction of the Spirit-empowered (a.k.a. – Pentecostal or Charismatic) movement in the United Sta … [Read more...]

A Pentecostal Growth Explosion – Over A-Fourth of Christendom

The Pentecostal movement itself continues to grow at a rapid rate. It is arguably the fastest-growing component of Christendom today. Johnson, Director of the Center for the Study of Global Christianity (located at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) gave a new report on the status of Spirit-Empowered churches. The Center has recently adopted the term “Renewalists” to represent the three key sectors of this movement, including Classical Pentecostals, Main-line Denominational Charismatics and Independent Charismatics. At present, it is estimated that these groups combined make up 584 million wo … [Read more...]


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