“So who are the Pentecostals and what do you believe and do?” asked the interested travel companion sitting in the adjacent seat on a recent flight. This question followed a cordial greeting and my response to his previous question in which he wondered who I “worked with.” Often tempted to simply answer this question with “God,” I settled for “A vibrant and culturally diverse group of a quarter of a million Canadians who attend churches coast to coast known as The Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada.”
When we consider what the Lord has accomplished globally as a result of a century which recaptured an emphasis on the Holy Spirit, an engaging and inspiring story emerges. A story worth telling and retelling. My travel companion was intrigued.
If we could distill the essence of being Pentecostal down to one word, I would suggest that freedom could be that word…freedom from and freedom for. “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Corinthians 3:17).
In the cover photo, a Second World War soldier/photographer captured one personal result of freedom on the faces of the Polish (non-Jewish) former residents of Dachau concentration camp. Joy! Dachau, a never-to-be forgotten visit in the mid ’70s, was also a chief location for detainees from the Christian resistance movement, mainly Catholic clergy. Christians were imprisoned for their unwillingness to support the Nazi agenda. Then came liberation on April 29, 1945. The exuberant joy on faces is both remarkable and contagious.
As Pentecostals, we are people enjoying the liberty of God from every spiritual prison, to overcome, to rejoice, to live, to engage in significant relationships with others, to glorify God and enjoy Him forever and to serve Him joyfully.
THIS EDITION OF ENRICH is an invitation to review the story of Pentecost from a fresh perspective.
Matt Tapley explores what freedom in the Spirit looks like in an entire congregation that intentionally seeks the presence of the Lord, and then seeks to freely share His presence in the surrounding community.
It goes without saying that we affirm and anticipate the Spirit being poured out on men and women, enabling sons and daughters to prophesy. Kimberlee Moran provides valuable reflection on contemporary ministry as a woman.
Tim Enloe has shared in numerous PAOC conferences and offers valuable insight into experiencing Pentecost personally. In essence, Pentecost is a movement of modern day individuals who have been filled with the Spirit, as the disciples were in Acts 2.
And of course, authentic spirituality is always rooted in good theology, so Robert P. Menzies discusses the hermeneutical/theological foundations of Pentecost in his article Pentecost: This is Our Story. As well, William Griffin offers a thoughtful response to the recent conference sponsored by John MacArthur entitled “Strange Fire.”
Being set free from the prisons of life, the point of spiritual freedom is to become everything God intended us to become (Christ-like) and accomplish everything He established in our destiny.
Enrich Summer 2014
© 2014 The Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada