The early Pentecostals’ experience of divine guidance in mission in the light of Luke-Acts

Samuel, Thomas (2015) The early Pentecostals’ experience of divine guidance in mission in the light of Luke-Acts. Other thesis, Middlesex University / London School of Theology.

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Abstract

The present study investigates the early Pentecostals’ experience of divine guidance in mission in the light of Luke-Acts. On the heels of Pentecostal revivals in North America and England at the beginning of the twentieth century, experience of divine guidance that led them to ‘home and foreign mission’ was a significant element that distinguished the movement along with their emphasis on baptism in the Spirit. While the previous studies focused on the baptism in the Spirit, a comprehensive analysis of their experience of divine guidance is not sufficiently explored. The early Pentecostal literature: newsletters, magazines and journals, abound with testimonies of direct experience of the Spirit and the risen Lord guiding them to diverse geographical destinations and people groups through speaking in tongues, visions, voices, prophecies, signs and wonders. They constantly corroborated these experiences with the Lukan narrative, believing that the Pentecostal revival and its prolific growth were guided by God as the early apostles were guided. They believed that the apostles’ religious experiences during the establishment of the early Church that Luke narrated in his twin volumes are restored in the twentieth century Pentecostal revival.
The study aims to critically evaluate the early Pentecostals’ use of the Lukan guidance passages as normative model for their experience of divine guidance. While the previous Lukan scholarship acknowledged Luke’s emphasis on divine intervention and guidance at strategic points of the narrative its continuation to the present as a normative model for the present mission have not arrived at a consensus. Besides the early Pentecostals’ emphasis on the baptism of the Spirit as empowerment for mission they believed that the Spirit guided them through speech, prophecy and visions. Moreover, they ascribed the leadership of the movement to the risen Lord which led to them to undermine ecclesiastical structures, and organizing in the early decades.
While the early Pentecostals juxtaposed similar roles to the Spirit and the risen Lord in guiding their mission based on the Lukan narrative, they rarely strived to articulate the relationship between the Spirit and the risen Lord in the post-Pentecost era of the Church. Despite the early Pentecostals’ allegiance to the Lukan narrative, the centrality of God in the Lukan narrative is relatively absent in their use of Luke-Acts. Thus the study will critically evaluate their reading of the Lukan narrative and its application into their mission praxis. The study will contributes to the growing discussion on Pentecostal theology and hermeneutics.

Item Type: Thesis (Other)
Research Areas: B. > Theses
C. Collaborative Partners > London School of Theology
Item ID: 18747
Depositing User: Users 3197 not found.
Date Deposited: 14 Jan 2016 17:14
Last Modified: 06 Dec 2016 14:28
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/18747

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