What are Pentecostals?
The National Holiness Movement arose in America after the U.S. Civil War, primarily of Methodist origin, emphasizing sanctification by grace through salvation. One of the primary outcomes was the Assemblies of God, then the Latter Rain Movement, or Pentecostal Movement, around the turn of the twentieth century. The first Pentecostal church was made up of a group of ministers who had earlier refused affiliation in the General Council of the Assemblies of God in 1914, organizing instead the Pentecostal Assemblies of the U.S.A. in 1919, renamed the Pentecostal Church of God of America, Inc. in 1922. The term Pentecostal (Greek pentekoste, "fiftieth," used by Grecian Jews for the Jewish holiday Shavuot celebrated fifty days after Passover, also called the Feast of Weeks) comes from the account of Pentecost in the New Testament Book of Acts. According to Acts 2:1-4, "When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them." The rest of Acts chapter 2 describes the conversion of 3,000 God-fearing Jews as a result of the experience. Modern Pentecostals hold that the Holy Spirit still provides the same gifts as those recorded in the New Testament, particularly speaking in tongues (glossolalia), often considered an outward sign of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit after baptism and spiritual rebirth. Speaking in tongues includes both the speaking of foreign languages for the edification of those present who understand the language being spoken, as well as speaking in unknown spiritual languages which only the Holy Spirit can interpret. By nature, Pentecostal churches are Protestant, and most range between fundamentalist and evangelical in belief and doctrine. Church services are informal, involving singing with instruments, enthusiastic expression, personal testimonies, faith healings, Communion (in memory of Calvary), full immersion baptism, and sermons with extensive Bible quotations. Some Pentecostal denominations adhere to "Oneness theology," wherein God has revealed himself in three different roles, while most uphold the Trinitarian belief that God exists in three persons sharing one substance.
"When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them."
Assemblies of God
"Currently the Assemblies of God USA and Assemblies of God organizations around the world make up the world's largest Pentecostal denomination with some 51 million members and adherents. But numbers fail to tell the real story, and statistics can never meet human needs. People who need help in coming to know God, have problems in their home, or are troubled by any of a multitude of other things that keep people from being happy and fulfilled, need someone who cares. And that's the message of our Fellowship. Because Jesus cares for people, the Assemblies of God is people who care about each other... You may be wondering where we came from, and you'll be glad to know we've been around a while. The Assemblies of God has its roots in a religious revival that began in the late 1800's and swept into the 20th century with widespread repetition of biblical spiritual experiences. During that time, many Christians in the United States and other parts of the world began to feel a need for more of God's power operating in their lives. Individually and in groups, they began earnestly to pray and to seek to conform their commitments and experiences to what they believed was the New Testament pattern. In response, the Holy Spirit came on large numbers of them, prompting a joyous, spontaneous worship and an intense desire to spread the gospel. As in the Bible in the Book of Acts, this experience, called the "baptism in the Holy Spirit," was universally accompanied by speaking in unknown languages. It was associated with the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Jewish holiday of Pentecost (Acts 2), and participants in the movement were called "Pentecostals." The beginning of the modern Pentecostal revival is generally traced to a prayer meeting at Bethel Bible College in Topeka, Kansas, on January 1, 1901. While many others had spoken in tongues previously during almost every period of spiritual revival, most researchers agree it was here that recipients of the experience, through study of the Scriptures, came to believe speaking in tongues is the biblical evidence for the baptism in the Holy Spirit. The revival spread rapidly to Missouri and Texas, then to California and elsewhere. A three year revival meeting at Azusa Street Mission in Los Angeles attracted believers from across the nation and overseas and served as a springboard to send the Pentecostal message around the world. Reports of what was taking place were carried in scores of periodicals and other publications that sprang up with the movement. Spontaneous revivals also began to break out about that time in other parts of the world and on various mission fields. The Pentecostal aspects of the revival were not generally welcomed by the established churches and participants in the movement soon found themselves outside existing religious bodies. They were forced to seek their own places of worship, and soon there were hundreds of distinctly Pentecostal congregations. By 1914, many ministers and laymen alike had begun to realize the rapid spread of the revival, and the many evangelistic outreaches it spawned had created a number of practical problems. The need arose for formal recognition of ministers as well as approval and support of missionaries, with full accounting of funds. In addition, there was a growing demand for doctrinal unity, gospel literature, and a permanent Bible training school. These concerned leaders realized that to protect and preserve the results of the revival the thousands of newly Spirit-baptized believers should be united in a cooperative fellowship. In 1914 about 300 preachers and laymen gathered from 20 states and several foreign countries for a "general council" in Hot Springs, Arkansas, to discuss and take action on the growing need. The five reasons they listed for calling the meeting were: doctrinal unity, conservation of the work, foreign missions interests, chartering churches under a common name for legal purposes, and the need for a Bible training school. A cooperative fellowship emerged from the meeting and was incorporated under the name "The General Council of the Assemblies of God." Most of the delegates had little desire to form a new denomination or sect, and they structured their organization to unite the assemblies in ministry and legal identity while leaving each congregation self-governing and self-supporting. This structure continues to the present. In 1916 the General Council approved a Statement of Fundamental Truths. A simple statement, it remains virtually unchanged and continues to provide a sound basis for the Fellowship, giving a firm position on vital doctrines. From the beginning, Assemblies of God ministries have focused on evangelism and missions and have resulted in a continuing growth at home and abroad. Our constituency has climbed from the founding convention attendance of 300 to more than 2.6 million in the United States and over 48 million overseas. Today, Assemblies of God people worship in over 12,100 churches in the U.S. and in 236,022 churches and outstations in 191 other nations. The aggressive missions programs of the church are designed to establish self-supporting and self-propagating national church bodies in every country. Ministers and leaders are trained in 1,891 foreign Bible schools -- more than any other U.S. based denomination. The Assemblies of God has 19 endorsed Bible colleges, liberal arts colleges, and a seminary in the U.S."
Benny Hinn Ministries
"We believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God, a revelation from God to mankind, the infallible rule of faith and conduct, and is superior to conscience and reason, but not contrary to reason (2 Timothy 3:15-16; 1 Peter 2:2).
- We believe the one true God has revealed Himself as the eternally self-existent, self-revealed "I AM" and has further revealed Himself as embodying the principles of relationship and association, i.e., Father, Son, and Holy Ghost (Deuteronomy 6:4; Mark 12:29; Isaiah 43:10, 11; Matthew 28:19).
- We believe that man was created good and upright, for God said "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." But man, by voluntary transgression, fell, and his only hope of redemption is in Jesus Christ the Son of God (Genesis 1:26-31: 3:1-7; Romans 5:12-21).
- We believe the grace of God, which brings salvation, has appeared to all men, through the preaching of repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ; man is saved by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost, and, being justified by grace through faith, he becomes an heir of God according to the hope of eternal life (Titus 2:11; Romans 10:13-15; Luke 23:47; Titus 3:5-7). The "inward" evidence to the believer of his salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit (Romans 8:16). The "outward" evidence of his salvation to all men is a life of righteousness and true holiness.
- We believe the ordinance of baptism by a burial with Christ should be observed as commanded in the Scriptures, by all who have repented and in their hearts have truly believed in Christ as Savior and Lord. In so doing, they have the body washed in pure water as an outward symbol of cleansing, while their heart has already been sprinkled with the blood of Christ as an inner cleansing. Thus, they declare to the world that they have died with Jesus and that they have also been raised with Him to walk in newness of life (Matthew 28:19; Acts 10:47-48; Romans 6:4; Acts 20:21; Hebrews 10:22).
- We believe the Lord's Supper, consisting of the elements, bread and the fruit of the vine, is the symbol expressing our sharing the divine nature of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:4), a memorial of His suffering and death (1 Corinthians 11:26). It is enjoined on all believers "until He comes."
- We believe that all believers are entitled to, and should ardently expect, and earnestly seek, the promise of the Father, the baptism in the Holy Ghost and fire, according to the command of our Lord Jesus Christ. This was the normal experience of all in the early Christian church. With it comes the enduement of power for life and service, the bestowment of the gifts and their uses in the work of the ministry (Luke 24:29; Acts 1:4; 1:8; 1 Corinthians 12:1-31). This wonderful experience is distinct from and subsequent to the experience of the new birth (Acts 10:44-46; 11:14-16; 15:7-9).
- We believe in the baptism of believers as a unique work of the Holy Ghost, an evidence of which is the speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of God gives them utterance (Acts 2:4). The manifestation of speaking in other tongues, in this instance, is the same in essence as the gift of tongues (1 Corinthians 12:4-10, 28) but different in purpose and use.
- We believe the Scriptures teach a life of holiness without which no man shall see the Lord. By the power of the Holy Ghost we are able to obey the command, "Be ye holy, for I am holy." Entire sanctification is the will of God for all believers, and should be earnestly pursued by walking in obedience to God's Word (Hebrews 12:14; 1 Peter 1:15-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; 1 John 2:6).
- We believe the church is the body of Christ, the habitation of God through the Spirit with divine appointments for the fulfillment of the great commission. Each believer, born of the Spirit, is an integral part of the church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven (Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:22; Hebrews 12:33).
- We believe a divinely called and scripturally ordained ministry has been provided by our Lord for a twofold purpose: The evangelization of the world, and the edifying of the Body of Christ (Mark 16:15-20; Ephesians 4:11-13).
- We believe deliverance from sickness is provided for in the atonement and is the privilege of all believers (Isaiah 53:4-5; Matthew 8:16-17).
- We believe the resurrection of those who have fallen asleep in Christ and their translation, together with those who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord, is the imminent and blessed hope of the church (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; Titus 2:12; 1 Corinthians 15:51-52; Romans 8:23).
- We believe the revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ from heaven, the salvation of national Israel, and the Millennial reign of Christ on earth is the Scriptural promise and the world's hope (2 Thessalonians 1:17; Revelation 19:11-14; Romans 11:26-27; Revelation 20:1-7).
- We believe the devil and his angels, the beast and the false prophet, and whosoever is not found written in the Book of Life, shall be consigned to everlasting punishment in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death (Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:10-15).
- We believe "according to His promise, look for new heavens, and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness" (2 Peter 3:13; Revelation 21:21)."
Church of God
"It was 1886, in a crude meeting house on the Tennessee-North Carolina border, where the Church of God traces its roots. There, a group of eight sincere Christians had a deep desire for a closer relationship and life with Christ. Realizing the futility of reforming their own churches, they established a new church whose objective would be to restore sound scriptural doctrines of the Bible, encourage deeper consecration and promote evangelism and Christian service. Twenty-one years after the formation of the Christian Union that evening at the Barney Creek Meeting House, the growing movement would establish themselves permanently as the Church of God. From this seemingly insignificant origin has grown one of the most influential worldwide Pentecostal denominations. For nearly 120 years the Church of God has been a distinctive movement focused upon communicating the gospel in the power of the Holy Spirit. Presently, the Church of God has a world-wide membership of over 6 million with a presence in nearly 150 countries. Leaders of the Church of God are recognized as some of the most respected Pentecostal leaders of today. The call of the Church of God today beckons back to those early days at Barney Creek. Church of God congregations around the globe are experiencing the fire of the Holy Spirit today more than ever. Reports of revivals where hundreds are saved and filled with the Holy Spirit are frequent and on-going. The call of the Church of God is for world evangelization. It is a call to discipleship and prayer. It is a call of commitment. It is a call for the Church of God to be a channel for Pentecostal revival well into the new millennium."
Church of God in Christ, Inc.
"THE CHURCH OF GOD IN CHRIST is a Church of the Lord Jesus Christ in which the word of God is preached, ordinances are administered and the doctrine of sanctification or holiness is emphasized, as being essential to the salvation of mankind. Our Church is commonly known as being Holiness or Pentecostal in nature because of the importance ascribed to the events which occurred on the Day of Pentecost, the 50th day after the Passover, or Easter as being necessary for all believers in Christ Jesus to experience. On the Day of Pentecost, the first day of the week, the Lord's Day, Supernatural Manifestations descended in marvelous copiousness and power. The gift of the spirit in the fulfillment of the promise of Jesus to clothe those who would wait in Jerusalem with power from on high, was accompanied by three supernatural extraordinary manifestations. The sudden appearance of the Holy Ghost appealed first to the ear. The disciples heard a "sound" from heaven which rushed with a mighty force into the house and filled it--even as a storm rushes--but there was no wind. It was the sound that filled the house and not a wind, an invisible cause producing audible effects. Next, the eye was arrested by the appearance of tongues of fire which rested on each of the gathered COMPANY. Finally, there was the impartation of a new strange power to speak in languages they had never learned "as the Spirit gave them Utterance." Our Church is also considered to be a member of the great Protestant body though it did not directly evolve from the European or English Reformation but had its origin within the General Association to the Baptist Church. Elder Charles Harrison Mason, who later became the founder and organizer of the Church of God in Christ, was born September 8,1866, on the Prior Farm near Memphis, Tennessee. His father and mother, Jerry and Eliza Mason, were members of a Missionary Baptist Church, having been converted during the dark crises of American Slavery."
Fire Baptized Holiness Church of God of the Americas
- Jesus Christ shed His blood for the remission of sins that are past (Romans 3:25; 1John 1:7), for the regeneration of penitent sinners, and for salvation from sin and from sinning (Ephesians 2:1-10; 1John 3:5-10).
- We teach and firmly maintain the scriptual doctrine of justification by faith alone through the blood (Romans 3:24-25; Romans 5:6-9; Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 1:14).
- that Jesus Christ shed His blood for the complete cleansing of the justified believer from all in dwelling sin and from its pollution subsequent to regeneration (John 17:17; Acts 26:18; Romans 6:6; 1Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 13:12; 1John 1:7-9).
- that sanctification is the second definite instananeous work of grace, obtainable by faith on the part of the fully justified believer (Exodus 31:13; Leviticus 11:44-45; Leviticus 20:7-8; St. Luke 24:50-51; Hebrews 10:9-14).
- that the pentecostal baptism of the Holy Ghost and Fire is obtainable by a definte act of appropriating faith on the part of the wholly sanctified believer, and that the initial evidence of the reception of this experience is speaking with other tongues as the spirit gives utterance (Acts 1:5; Acts 2:1-4; Acts 8:14-17; Acts 10:44-46; Acts 19:6).
- in devine healing as in the atonement (Exodus 15:26; Psalm 103:3; Isaith 53:4-5; Matthew 8:16-17; Mark 16:14-15; Acts 8:7; James 5:14-15).
- in the imminent personal pre-millenial second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (1Thessalonians 4:15-18; Titus 2:13; 2Peter 3:1-14; Matthew 24:20-24), and we love and await for His appearing (2Timothy 4:8).
- The Fire Baptized Holiness Church of God of the Americas is utterly opposed to the teachings of Christian Scientists, Mohammedism, Spiritualists, Unitarians, Universalists, and Mormons. We deny as false the teachings of the Seventh Day Adventists (Galatians 3:11; Colossians 2:16-17), Annihilation of the Wicked, Conditional Immortality and Anti-nomianism, Absolute Perfection, teaching against an organized church, the Resurrecton Life, the Redemption of Glorification of the body in this life, and the doctrine of restitution of all things as set forth in Millenial Dawnism, Jehovah Witness and the false teaching that we are not born of God until we are sanctified wholly (Mark 9:43-45; Revelation 20:10-14), Roman Catholicism (Matt. 17:5), the belief systems and practices of the Occult, Sorcery (Exodus 20:3; Exodus 22:18; Leviticus 19:31; Leviticus 20:6, 27; Deuteronomy 18:10-13; Acts 8:9-24; Acts 16:16-19; Galatians 5:20), Witchcraft (1Samuel 28:8-19; Micah 5:12), Psychics, Psychic telephone lines, Numerology, so-called New Age practices and the teaching of Jesus only (Matthew 28:19-20; 2John 7-11)."
International Church of the Foursquare Gospel
"We believe the Bible is God-inspired (2 Timothy 3:16,17).
We believe God is Triune: Father, Son and Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 13:14).
We believe that man was created in the image of God, but that by voluntary disobedience he fell from perfection (Romans 5:12).
We believe that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us, signing the pardon of all who believe on Him (John 3:16; Romans 5:8).
We believe that we have no righteousness and must come to God pleading the righteousness of Christ (Ephesians 2:8).
We believe that upon sincere repentance, and a whole-hearted acceptance of Christ, we are justified before God (I John 1:9).
We believe that the change which takes place in the heart and life at conversion is a very real one (2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 2:20).
We believe that it is the will of God that we be sanctified daily, growing constantly in the faith (Hebrews 6:1).
We believe that baptism by immersion is an outward sign of an inward work (Matt. 28:19). We believe in the commemoration of the Lord's Supper by the symbolic use of the bread and juice of the vine (I Corinthians 11:24, 25).
We believe that the Baptism with the Holy Spirit is to endue the believer with power; and that His incoming is after the same manner as in Bible days (Acts 2:4).
We believe that it is the will of God that we walk in the Spirit daily (Ephesians 4:30-32).
We believe that the Holy Spirit has gifts to bestow upon the Christian; and that we should show spiritual fruit as evidence of a Spirit-filled life (I Corinthians 12:1-11; Galatians 5:22).
We believe that the experience and daily walk of the believer should never lead him into extremes of fanaticism (Philippians 4:5).
We believe that divine healing is the power of Christ to heal the physically sick in answer to the prayer of faith (James 5:14-16).
We believe that the second coming of Christ is personal and imminent (I Thessalonians 4:16, 17).
We believe it is our sacred duty to identify ourselves with the visible Body of Christ (Acts 16:5; Hebrews 10:25).
We believe that rulers should be upheld at all times except in things opposed to the will of God (Romans 13:1-5).
We believe that all shall stand some day before the judgement seat of God, and there receive eternal life or death (2 Corinthians 5:10).
We believe that Heaven is the glorious eternal home of born-again believers (John 14:1-3; Revelation 7:15-17).
We believe that hell is the place of eternal torment for all who reject Christ as the Savior (Revelation 20:10,15).
We believe that soul winning is the most important responsibility of the Church (James 5:20).
We believe that the method ordained of God for the support and spread of His cause is by giving of tithes and free-will offerings (Malachi 3:10; 2 Corinthians 9:7)."
Kenneth Copeland Ministries
"We believe in one God-Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Creator of all things.
- We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, was crucified, died, was buried, was resurrected, ascended into heaven, and is now seated at the right hand of God the Father and is true God and true man.
- We believe the Bible in its entirety to be the inspired Word of God and the infallible rule of faith and conduct.
- We believe in the resurrection of the dead, the eternal happiness of the saved, and the eternal punishment of the lost.
- We believe in personal salvation of believers through the shed blood of Jesus Christ.
- We believe in sanctification through the Word of God and by the Holy Spirit, and we believe in personal holiness, purity of heart and life.
- We believe in divine healing, through faith in the Name of Jesus Christ, and that healing is included in the Redemption.
- We believe in water baptism, in the Baptism in the Holy Spirit as distinct from the New Birth, in speaking with tongues as the Spirit of God gives utterance (Acts 2:4), in the gifts of the Spirit, and the evidence of the fruit of the Spirit. We believe that all of these are available to believers.
- We believe in the Christian's hope-the soon-coming, personal return of the Lord Jesus Christ."
Open Bible Churches
"Open Bible Churches is an association of evangelical Pentecostal/Charismatic churches called to be a vital organ in the Body of Christ. Jesus is blowing a fresh breeze of repentance, prayer, fasting, and evangelistic fervor into our movement. Our mandate includes the development of healthy, loving relationships that produce support and accountability among our ministers and churches. God is giving us ever clearer vision, vibrant leadership, and comprehensive strategic planning that He might cause Open Bible to fulfill His purposes in this generation...and generations to come. Open Bible Churches is a charter member of the National Association of Evangelicals, the Pentecostal/Charismatic Churches of North America, and the Pentecostal World Conference. Open Bible is also active in the Mission America movement. Open Bible Churches originated from two revival movements: Bible Standard Conference, founded in Eugene, Oregon, in 1919, and Open Bible Evangelistic Association, founded in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1932. Similar in doctrine and structure, the two groups amalgamated in 1935 as "Open Bible Standard Churches" with the national office located in Des Moines. In 1996 the movement began to officially do busines as "Open Bible Churches," though the legal name retains the word "Standard"...which the Bible is. Roots of the parent groups reach back to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in 1906 at Azusa Street Mission in Los Angeles, and to the full gospel movement in the Midwest. Both were organized under the impetus of Pentecostal revival. Simple faith, emphasis on prayer, evangelism, international missions, and free fellowship with other groups were characteristics of the growing organization."
Pentecostal/Charismatic Churches of North America
"It was a day never to be forgotten in the annals of American Pentecostalism, October 18, 1994, when the Spirit moved in Memphis to end decades of racial separation and open doors to a new era of cooperation and fellowship between African-American and white Pentecostals. At the time, it was called the "Memphis Miracle" by those gathered in Memphis as well as in the national press which hailed the historic importance of the event. It was called a miracle because it ended decades of formal separation between the predominantly black and white Pentecostal churches in America. In its beginnings, the Pentecostal movement inherited the interracial ethos of the Holiness Movement at the turn of the century. One of the miracles of the Azusa Street revival was the testimony that "the color line was washed away in the Blood." Here in the worldwide cradle of the movement a black man, William J. Seymour, served as pastor of a small black church in Los Angeles, where from 1906 to 1909, thousands of people of all races gathered to received the baptism in the Holy Spirit with the accompanying evidence of speaking in tongues. Often black hands were laid upon white heads to pray down the power of Pentecost. From Azusa Street the movement spread to the nations and continents of the world. In the beginning, practically all the Pentecostal movements and churches in America were inter-racial with many having thriving black leaders and churches. But from 1908 to 1924, one by one, most churches bowed to the American system of segregation by separating into racially-segregated fellowships. In "Jim Crow" America, segregation in all areas of life ruled the day. Gradually Seymour's Azusa Street dream of openness and equality faded into historical memory... The separation of black and white Pentecostals was formalized in 1948 with the creation of the all-white Pentecostal Fellowship of North America (PFNA) in Des Moines, Iowa. As incredible as it seems today, no black churches were invited. The races continued to drift further and further apart. But by the 1990s the climate had changed drastically in the United States. The civil rights movements and legislation of the 1950s and 60s swept away the last vestiges of legal "Jim Crow" segregation in American life. Schools were integrated. Many doors were opened for all to enter into American public life. Most churches, however, remained segregated and out of touch with these currents. The year 1948 also saw the beginnings of the salvation-healing crusades of Oral Roberts and other Pentecostal evangelists. Both blacks and whites flocked together to the big tent services. Along with Billy Graham, Oral Roberts and other Pentecostal evangelists refused to seat the races in separate areas. Although the churches remained separate, there was more interracial worship among blacks and whites who flocked together to the big tent services. The advent of the charismatic movement in 1960 and the creation of the Society for Pentecostal Studies (SPS) in 1970 brought more contacts between black and white Pentecostals. The congresses sponsored by the North American Renewal Service Committee (NARSC) in the 1980s and 1990s also brought many black and white Pentecostal leaders together for the first time while serving on the Steering Committee to plan the massive charismatic rallies in New Orleans, Indianapolis and Orlando... The subsequent meetings of the PCCNA in Memphis in 1996 and Washington, D.C., in 1997 have shown that the road to racial reconciliation in America will not be short or easy. Everyone agrees that there is much more to be done and much to overcome. The incredible "Memphis Miracle" has now become the "Memphis Mandate". All Spirit-filled believers must join in a crusade of love and good will to show the world that when the Spirit moves, those who have been baptized in the Holy Spirit will move forward to bring the lost to Christ, and to full ministry and fellowship, in churches that have no racial, ethnic or gender barriers."
Pentecostal Church of God
"The PCG fellowship exists as 1200 churches in the United States as the Pentecostal Church of God. Our international headquarters, located in Joplin, Missouri, is at the hub of international ministries. We believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God, and is man's only safe and sure rule of conduct and faith. We believe every Christian has a responsibility to present the Bible to the world through a Christ-centered life, and our teaching ministries are founded on this principle. Our worship is evangelistic, Bible-centered and distinctly Pentecostal. We present Jesus Christ as God's answer to the problem of sin. We know God's power is available to meet every need of mankind, and we preach and teach the entire Gospel with conviction and sincerity. You will find a rich variety in our services, for we consciously seek to follow Bible patterns in our worship. Jesus Christ is always presented as Lord and Master. The Holy Spirit is given freedom to order worship as He sees fit. We believe you will feel "at home" in our services. The Pentecostal Church of God reaches around the world. Every department and ministry relates in some way to global evangelization. Leaders and personnel at the general headquarters regularly pray, "Lord of the Harvest, send forth laborers into Your harvest!" The sun never sets on the Pentecostal Church of God. Outside the United States over 5,200 churches and ministry outstations have been established, with more than 500,000 constituents in 52 different countries. 36 Bible schools provide training for national pastors/evangelists, and 53 day schools provide education for approximately 3,000 children. Presently, the Department of World Missions has 36 full-time missionaries on foreign soil. Area supervisors work with the director to ensure results in regions such as Mexico, Europe/Russia, Asia, Africa and the Caribbean... The Pentecostal Church of God is in full fellowship with the National Association of Evangelicals, the Pentecostal World Conference and the Pentecostal/ Charismatic Fellowship of North America. It supports the ministries of the American Bible Society and other interdenominational and parachurch ministries."
Pentecostal World Fellowship
"The Pentecostal World Fellowship has adopted the following document which crosses denominational lines to form a guiding principle for membership. Members of the PWF should subscribe to the following Statement of Faith: We Believe:
the Bible to be inspired, the only infallible, authoritative Word of God;
- that there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit;
- in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His vicarious atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father and in His personal return in power and glory;
- that for the salvation of lost and sinful man regeneration by the Holy Spirit through faith in Jesus Christ is absolutely essential;
- in the baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues as the Spirit gives the utterance according to Acts 2:4, and in the operation of the spiritual gifts and ministries.
- in the ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life;
- in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; they that are saved to eternal life and they that are lost unto the resurrection of damnation;
- in the church of Jesus Christ and in the unity of believers;
- in the practical application of the Christian faith in everyday experience and the need to minister to people in every area of life, which includes not only the spiritual, but also the social, political and physical."
Religious Movements - Pentecostalism
"Experience, rather than doctrine has often been noted as the principal determinant of Pentecostalism. There is no absolute consensus among all Pentecostals on doctrine or any other matter except for Spirit baptism and the practice of charismata (gifts of the Holy Spirit). However, among most American Pentecostal denominations, it is believed that the "initial evidence" of Spirit baptism is the manifestation of glossolalia or what is commonly referred to as speaking in tongues but there are also those that believe that any number of charismata may evidence the baptism. It is almost universally agreed upon by Pentecostals that "speaking in tongues" is a miraculous act in which a believer, with the aid of the Holy Spirit, speaks in a language without having knowledge of it. However, it is the doctrine of "speaking in tongues" that separates Pentecostals from the Holiness [and even Methodist] groups it splintered off from, as well as from other mainline Christian denominations. After 1875, a branch of the Holiness movement (that would soon become Pentecostal) began to stress aspects of the "second blessing" which focused on an endowment of powerful anointing for those who tarried at the altars. Eventually they simply added to this established Holiness doctrine of the "second blessing", the baptism in the Holy Spirit, with glossolalia as initial evidence of a "third blessing." Many conventional Holiness churches named this new baptism "The Fire" and labeled it as fanaticism and heresy (Melton, 1993). Similar to the other mainline, evangelical Christain denominations, Pentecostalism tends to adhere to most all of the other fundamental doctrines of the Christian faith. However, their inconsistency with Fundamentalists groups (such as Baptists and the Reformed) is in their understanding of the Holy Spirit baptism and gifts (tongues, miracles, etc.). Fundamentalists believe that the Holy Spirit baptism occurs at the onset of salvation, and that the gifts were given only to the Apostles and gradually ceased as the New Testament Scriptures were completed. Another distinguishing mark of Pentecostalism is the worship of its believers which is often characterized by speaking/praying in tongues aloud, prophesying, healings, the "casting out of devils" (exorcism), hand-clapping, shouting and being "slain in the Spirit," which are all observed with great zeal and fervency. Since its beginnings, these practices have been subjected to rules that have dictated when such worship was appropriate (Eliade, 1987), but still persist as the typical worship style. These differences in worship style also divide Pentecostals from other mainline Christian denominations."
ReligiousTolerance.org - Christianity: The Pentacostal Group of Denominations
"The Pentecostal family of denominations form one branch within conservative Christianity. A major defining feature of Pentecostalism is their belief in Glossolalia, or the ability to speak "in tongues". Another is the unusual freedom and spontaneity exhibited during their religious services. Otherwise, their beliefs, practices and social policies differ little from other conservative Christians. Pentecostalism is a highly fragmented family within Christianity; one source lists 177 separate denominations... During the last two decades of the 19th century, there were reports of xenoglossia breaking out at revival meetings, particularly in North and South Carolina. Xenoglossia is the speaking of a foreign language by a person who has no familiarity with it. For example, an American with no ability to speak any language other than English suddenly became capable of speaking fluent German. There may have been some instances of glossolalia (ecstatic speech). The year 1899 saw a great rise in religious fervor as people speculated about the second coming of Jesus and the end of history as they knew it during the year 1900. Many books were written about the power of the Holy Spirit. Charles F. Parham, a Holiness preacher and head of the Bethel Bible College in Topeka, Kansas conducted a revival meeting in that city. Agnes Ozman, a Methodist, shocked the meeting by speaking fluently in a number of foreign languages that she had never learned. This happened on 1900-JAN-1. This event is often regarded as the founding of the Pentecostal movement. Some days later, many spoke in tongues. Then Parham did as well... Until 1914, the movement worked primarily within the Holiness churches. But increasing friction motivated the Pentecostals to form their first denomination, the Assemblies of God. Although the movement was racially integrated in its early years, it split into duplicate denominations for whites and blacks by the early 20's. Eventually, there evolved three main Pentecostal divisions, and a number of similar splinter groups: Some Pentecostals, particularly those with a Holiness background, believe in the "Pentecostal experience" as the third of three experiences: justification (faith and trust by the believer in Jesus as Lord and Savior); sanctification (the "second blessing" - imparting of a new life to the believer by the Holy Spirit); baptism of the Holy Spirit (as evidenced by speaking in tongues)."
"Whether you're talking about Kenneth Hagin Ministries (a worldwide ministry) or RHEMA Bible Church (a thriving congregation of more than 8,000)...it's all RHEMA. Whether you're talking about RHEMA Bible Training Center (a ministerial training center with more than 23,000 graduates and 14 schools worldwide) or Faith Library Publications (a leader in the charismatic book market with more than 147 books in print)...it's all RHEMA. Whether you're talking about television and radio broadcasts (RHEMA Praise, and "Faith Seminar of the Air") or The Word of Faith (a free magazine mailed to nearly 250,000 homes each month)...it's all RHEMA. And RHEMA is all about one thing. Our purpose is to help usher in the last great move of God's Spirit and the Second Coming of Christ."
United Pentecostal Church International
"The United Pentecostal Church International (UPCI) has been among the fastest growing denominations in North America since it was formed in 1945 by the merger of the Pentecostal Church, Incorporated, and the Pentecostal Assemblies of Jesus Christ. From 617 churches listed in 1946, the UPCI in North America (United States and Canada) today lists 4,142 churches, 8,801 ministers, and reports a Sunday School attendance of 498,903. Moreover, it is also located in 170 other nations with 22,881 licensed ministers, 28,351 churches and meeting places, 571 missionaries, and a foreign constituency of over 3 million, making a total worldwide constituency of more than 4,036,945. The UPCI emerged out of the Pentecostal movement that began in Topeka, Kansas in 1901. It traces its organizational roots to October 1916, when a large group of ministers withdrew from the Assemblies of God over the doctrinal issues of the oneness of God and water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ. The basic governmental structure of the UPCI is congregational with local churches being autonomous: the congregation elects its pastor and its leaders, owns its property, decides its budget, establishes its membership, and conducts all necessary business. The central organization embraces a modified presbyterian system in that ministers meet in sectional, district, and general conferences to elect officials and to conduct business of the organization... The doctrinal views of the UPCI reflect most of the beliefs of the Holiness-Pentecostal movement, with the exception of the "second work of grace," the historic doctrine of the Trinity, and the traditional Trinitarian formula in water baptism. It embraces the Pentecostal view that speaking in tongues is the initial sign of receiving the Holy Spirit. The UPCI holds a fundamental view of the Bible: "The Bible is the only God-given authority which man possesses; therefore all doctrine, faith, hope, and all instructions for the church must be based upon and harmonize with the Bible" (Manual of the United Pentecostal Church, 19). The Bible is the Word of God, and therefore inerrant and infallible. The UPCI rejects all extrabiblical revelations and writings, and views church creeds and articles of faith only as the thinking of men. The UPCI holds that salvation is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, not by works. Faith in Jesus is the means by which a person is justified. At the same time, a sinner must believe the gospel; he is commanded to repent of his sinful life, to be baptized in water in the name of Jesus Christ, and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38; 4:12; 8:12-17; 10:43-48; 19:1-6). Thus the various aspects of faith and obedience work together in God's grace to reconcile us to God. In distinction to the doctrine of the Trinity, the UPCI holds to a oneness view of God. It views the Trinitarian concept of God, that of God eternally existing as three distinctive persons, as inadequate and a departure from the consistent and emphatic biblical revelation of God being one. The UPCI teaches that the one God who revealed Himself in the Old Testament as Jehovah revealed himself in His Son, Jesus Christ. Thus Jesus Christ was and is God. In other words, Jesus is the one true God manifested in flesh, for in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily (John 1:1-14; I Timothy 3:16; Colossians 2:9). While fully God, Jesus was also fully man, possessing a full and true humanity. He was both God and man. Moreover, the Holy Spirit is God with us and in us. Thus God is manifested as Father in creation and as the Father of the Son, in the Son for our redemption, and as the Holy Spirit in our regeneration."
Wikipedia - Pentecostalism
"Modern Pentecostalism began around 1901. The commonly accepted origin dates from when Agnes Ozman received the gift of tongues (glossolalia) at Charles Fox Parham's Bethal Bible College in Topeka [Kansas] in 1901. Parham, a minister of Methodist background, formulated the doctrine that tongues was the "Bible evidence" of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. Parham left Topeka and begin a revival ministry which led to a link to the Asuza street revival through William J. Seymour whom he taught in Houston. The expansion of the movement started with the Azusa Street Revival, beginning April 9, 1906 at the Los Angeles home of a Mr. and Mrs. Edward Lee when Mr. Lee experienced what he felt to be an infilling of the Holy Spirit during a prayer session. The attending pastor, William J. Seymour, also claimed that he was overcome with the Holy Spirit on April 12, 1906. On April 18, 1906, the Los Angeles Times ran a front page story on the movement. By the third week in April, 1906, the small but growing congregation had rented an abandoned African Methodist Episcopal church at 312 Azusa Street and organized as the Apostolic Faith Mission. The first decade of Pentecostalism was marked by interracial assemblies,"...Whites and blacks mix in a religious frenzy,..." according to a local newspaper account. This lasted until 1924, when the church split along racial lines. When the Pentecostal Fellowship of North America was formed in 1948, it was made up entirely of Anglo-American Pentecostal denominations. In 1994, Pentecostals returned to their roots of racial reconciliation and proposed formal unification of the major white and black branches of the Pentecostal Church, in a meeting subsequently known as the Memphis Miracle. This unification occurred in 1998, again in Memphis, Tennessee. The unification of white and black movements led to the restructing of the Pentecostal Fellowship of North America to become the Pentecostal/Charismatic Churches of North America. About the latter third of the 20th century there was a movement of Pentecostalism, sometimes called the Charismatic Movement into the mainline Protestant denominations and the Roman Catholic church. Unlike earlier Pentecostals, they did not leave their churches for strictly Pentecostal churches, or found new denominations. Their motto became, "Bloom where God planted you." "
Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: "Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. These men are not drunk, as you suppose. It's only nine in the morning! No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:" 'In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood
before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.' [Joel 2:28-32] "
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