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Pentecostal-Charismatic Prophecy

Empirical-Theological Analysis

Samuel W. Muindi

Prophecy is a major theme both in Scripture and in Church doctrine. However, prophecy is seen by many as an ancient biblical phenomenon which is now redundant. There is, conversely, a form of prophecy that is very much alive in the Pentecostal-Charismatic wing of the Church. Although the Pentecostal-Charismatic tradition is billed as the fastest growing movement in Church history, it has received scant attention in Pentecostal Studies in terms of its focus on Charismatic Prophecy. This book is an attempt to explore the notion of charisms of the Holy Spirit. It examines, from an empirical-theological perspective, the nature and significance of the phenomenon of Charismatic Prophecy as reportedly manifested in Pentecostal Charismatic liturgical settings in an African context.

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Chapter 4: Literature Review: Critical Interaction with Theory

Extract

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CHAPTER 4

Literature Review: Critical Interaction with Theory

Introduction

The purpose of literature review for the present study is not only to locate the research study in a larger ongoing dialogue but also to map out the scope of the research problem and to bring the exploratory case study results into critical interaction with theory. The literature review undertaking also clarifies the underlying assumptions and, hence, refines the theory that frames the subject and goal of the study.1 There is thus a need to survey the conceptual, empirical, and biblical-theological perspectives of the broad concept of prophecy in order to establish a broad frame of reference for charismatic prophecy. This broad approach is also informed by the observation that Pentecostal-charismatic spirituality has not only permeated all Christian traditions but that “religious experiences have been accepted as normal by social scientists” such that social-scientific studies provide invaluable insights in the task of empirical-religious enquiry.2 A methodological presupposition in the present review of literature is an axiomatic acceptance of the reality of the phenomenon of intermediation (the rubric under which the phenomenon of prophecy falls) as a concomitant of human religious cultures since antiquity.3 ← 91 | 92 →

Prophecy: Conceptual Description

The English term “prophecy” is an anglicized Greek word, προφήτης, which is derived from two root words, a prefix, προ- (which has several nuances depending on the context in which it is used, but is commonly used to denote “before” or...

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