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Charismatic Theology

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Submitted By curliea22
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The charismatic movement1 began within the historic churches in the 1950s. On the American scene it started to attract broad attention in 1960, with the national publicity given to the ministry of the Reverend Dennis Bennett, an Episcopalian in Van Nuys, California. Since then there has been a continuing growth of the movement within many of the mainline churches: first, such Protestant churches as Episcopal, Lutheran, and Presbyterian; second, the Roman Catholic (beginning in 1967); and third, the Greek Orthodox (beginning about 1971).2 by now the charismatic movement has become worldwide and has participants in many countries
As one involved in the movement since 1965, I should like to set forth a brief profile of it.3 A profile of the charismatic movement within the historic churches would include at least the following elements: (1) the recovery of a liveliness and freshness in Christian faith; (2) a striking renewal of the community of believers as a fellowship of the Holy Spirit; (3) the manifestation of a wide range of "spiritual gifts," with parallels drawn from 1 Corinthians 12-14; (4) the experience of "baptism in the Holy Spirit," often accompanied by "tongues," as a radical spiritual renewal; (5) the reemergence of a spiritual unity that essentially transcends denominational barriers; (6) the rediscovery of a dynamic for bearing comprehensive witness to the Good News of Jesus Christ; and (7) the revitalization of the eschatological perspective. In one sense, Charismatics have finally achieved a certain level of respectability within the Evangelical movement. Today, we have academic societies and publications [ii] dedicated to the study of Charismatic and Pentecostal issues in which even non-Charismatics participate. Our books can now be published outside of denominationally-based publishing houses.[iii] One could reasonably argue that the movement has...

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