Renovare

Evangelical, Sacramental, and Pentecostal

Why the Church Should Be all Three

by Gordon T. Smith

Evan­gel­i­cal. Sacra­men­tal. Pen­te­costal. Chris­t­ian com­mu­ni­ties tend to iden­ti­fy with one of these labels over the oth­er two. Evan­gel­i­cal church­es empha­size the impor­tance of Scrip­ture and preach­ing. Sacra­men­tal church­es empha­size the impor­tance of the eucharis­tic table. And pen­te­costal church­es empha­size the imme­di­ate pres­ence and pow­er of the Holy Spir­it. But must we choose between them? Could the church be all three? Draw­ing on his read­ing of the New Tes­ta­ment, the wit­ness of Chris­t­ian his­to­ry, and years of expe­ri­ence in Chris­t­ian min­istry and lead­er­ship, Gor­don T. Smith argues that the church not only can be all three, but in fact must be all three in order to tru­ly be the church. As the church nav­i­gates the unique glob­al chal­lenges of plu­ral­ism, sec­u­lar­ism, and fun­da­men­tal­ism, the need for an inte­grat­ed vision of the com­mu­ni­ty as evan­gel­i­cal, sacra­men­tal, and pen­te­costal becomes ever more press­ing. If Jesus and the apos­tles saw no ten­sion between these char­ac­ter­is­tics, why should we?

2017

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