Assemblies of God Pentecostals

 

The Assemblies of God has its roots in the Pentecostal revival of the early twentieth century. This revival is generally traced to a prayer meeting held under the leadership of Charles Parham, at Bethel Bible College in Topeka, Kansas, on January 1, 1901. The “awakening” or “revival” spread rapidly to Missouri, Texas, California and elsewhere. In 1906, a three year revival meeting under the leadership of William Seymour began at Azusa Street Mission in Los Angeles that attracted believers from around the world. Reports of the revival were carried far and wide by periodicals and other publications that sprang up along with the movement. Independent revivals also began to break out during this time in other parts of the world. The Pentecostal aspects of the revival were not generally welcomed by established churches, and participants in the movement soon found themselves forced outside existing religious bodies. These people sought out their own places of worship, and founded hundreds of distinctly Pentecostal congregations.  Many of these congregations sought to partner with existing religious movements, such as the Christian and Missionary Alliance, but many Pentecostals left following controversy over the doctrine of “The Initial Physical Evidence of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit“. These early leaders where licensed as ministers by Charles Harrison Mason, founder of the Church of God in Christ, a predominately African-American denomination. It is possible that the Church of God in Christ provided initial credentials to the mostly white Pentecostals who would later form the Assemblies of God. [7]. Jim Crow laws of the South and other racial cultural norms of the early 19th century America contributed to the early demise of racial unity with these Pentecostal leaders with the predominately African-American Church of God in Christ denomination.

The Assemblies of God experienced a schism early in their history when they adopted the Statement of Fundamental Truths affirming their belief in the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity at their Fourth General Council in October 1916 in St. Louis. Those that withdrew from the fellowship were known as “Oneness or Jesus Only Pentecostals”, who believed in baptizing “in the name of Jesus Christ” and not “in the name of The Father, The Son, and the Holy Ghost/Spirit.” This schism caused the loss of approximately one-fourth of recognized A/G ministers, including all but one minister in the state of Louisiana (Rev. George Harrison remained with the Assemblies of God).

In 1988, the loose body of cooperative councils joined under the name World Pentecostal Assemblies of God Fellowship as result of an initiative by Dr. J. Philip Hogan, then executive director of the Division of Foreign Missions of the General Council of the Assemblies of God of the United States. The initial purpose was to coordinate evangelism, but soon developed into a more permanent organism of inter-relation. Dr. Hogan was elected the first chairman of the Fellowship and served until 1992 when Rev. David Yonggi Cho was elected chairman. In 1993, the name of the Fellowship was changed to the World Assemblies of God Fellowship.[9]

 Doctrine

Two years after the church’s founding, the pioneers of the Assemblies of God adopted a set of core beliefs for the Fellowship, which remain virtually unchanged. These are known as “The 16 Fundamental Truths.” The Assemblies’ doctrines are summarized in its Statement of Fundamental Truths.[10]

Numerous Christian groups share some or all of these tenets — and some positions (like the Trinity) are considered more central to the faith than others. Of these sixteen, four are considered “core beliefs of the Fellowship”, or “Cardinal Doctrines.” These are:

  • Salvation Through Jesus Christ
  • Baptism in the Holy Spirit
  • Divine Healing
  • The Second Coming of Christ

These statements of belief have a biblical basis and are considered non-negotiable. Below is a summary of the Assemblies of God’s doctrinal positions and biblical references which are used to back up these statements.

 16 Fundamental Truths

source: Our 16 Fundamental Truths – General Council of the Assemblies of God – AG.org

1. The Scriptures Inspired – The Scriptures, both the Old Testament and New Testament, are verbally inspired of God and are the revelation of God to man, the infallible, authoritative rule of faith and conduct. (2 Timothy 3:15-17, 1 Thessalonians 2:13, 2 Peter 1:21)

2. The One True God – The one true God has revealed Himself as the eternally self-existent “I AM”, the Creator of heaven and earth and the Redeemer of mankind. He has further revealed Himself as embodying the principles of relationship and association as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. (Deuteronomy 6:4, Isaiah 43:10,11, Matthew 28:19, Luke 3:22)

The AG doctrine clarifies the position of The Adorable Godhead into ten detailed sub-categories:
  • Defining the “persons” or Trinity of the Godhead (Matthew 28:19, 2 Corinthians 13:14, John 14:16-17)
  • Distinction and Relationship in the Godhead – three persons, one God (Luke 1:35, 1 Corinthians 1:24, Matthew 11:25-27, Matthew 28:19, 2 Corinthians 13:14, 1 John 1:3-4)
  • Unity of the One Being of Father, Son and Holy Spirit (John 1:18, John 15:26, John 17:11, John 17:21, Zechariah 14:9)
  • Identity and Cooperation in the Godhead (John 5:17-30, John 5:32, John 5:37, John 8:17,18)
  • The Title, Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 1:1-3, 2 John 1:3)
  • The Lord Jesus Christ, God with Us (Matthew 1:23, 1 John 4:2, 1 John 4:10, 1 John 4:14, Revelation 1:13, Revelation 1:17)
  • The Title, Son of God (Matthew 1:21-23, 2 John 1:3, 1 John 3:8, Hebrews 7:3, Hebrews 1:1-13)
  • Transgression of the Doctrine of Christ (2 John 1:9, John 1:1-2, John 1:14, John 1:18, John 1:29, John 1:49, 1 John 2:22-23, 1 John 4:1-5, Hebrews 12:2)
  • Exaltation of Jesus Christ as Lord (Hebrews 1:3, 1 Peter 3:22, Acts 2:32-36, Romans 14:11, 1 Corinthians 15:24-28)
  • Equal Honor to the Father and to the Son (John 5:22-23, 1 Peter 1:8, Revelation 5:6-14, Philippians 2:8-9, Revelation 7:9-10, Revelation 4:8-11)

 

3. The Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ – The Lord Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. The Scriptures declare:

4. The Fall of Man – Man was created good and upright; for God said, “Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness.” However, man by voluntary transgression fell and thereby incurred not only physical death but also spiritual death, which is separation from God. (Genesis 1:26,27, Genesis 2:17, Genesis 3:6, Romans 5:12-19)

5. The Salvation of Man – Man’s only hope of redemption is through the shed blood of Jesus Christ the Son of God.

  • Conditions to Salvation – Salvation is received through repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ. By the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, being justified by grace through faith, man becomes an heir of God, according to the hope of eternal life. (Luke 24:47, John 3:3, Romans 10:13-15, Ephesians 2:8, Titus 2:11, Titus 3:5-7)
  • The Evidence of Salvation – The inward evidence of salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit. (Romans 8:16)
  • The outward evidence to all men is a life of righteousness and true holiness. (Ephesians 4:24, Titus 2:12)

6. The Ordinances of the Church

  • Baptism in Water – The ordinance of baptism by immersion is commanded by the Scriptures. All who repent and believe on Christ as Saviour and Lord are to be baptized. Thus they declare to the world that they have died with Christ and that they also have been raised with Him to walk in newness of life. (Matthew 28:19, Mark 16:16, Acts 10:47,48, Romans 6:4)
  • Holy CommunionThe 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 ), and a prophecy of His second coming (1 Corinthians 11:26 ), and is enjoined on all believers “till He come!”

7. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit – All believers are entitled to and should ardently expect and earnestly seek the promise of the Father, the baptism in the Holy Spirit 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 24:49, Acts 1:4, Acts 1:8, 1 Corinthians 12:1-31) This experience is distinct from and subsequent to the experience of the new birth. (Acts 8:12-17, Acts 10:44-46, Acts 11:14-16, Acts 15:7-9)

With the baptism in the Holy Spirit come such experiences as:

  • an overflowing fullness of the Spirit, (John 7:37-39, Acts 4:8)
  • a deepened reverence for God (Acts 2:43, Hebrews 12:28)
  • an intensified consecration to God and dedication to His work (Acts 2:42)
  • and a more active love for Christ, for His Word and for the lost (Mark 16:20)

8. The Initial Physical Evidence of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit – The baptism of believers in the Holy Spirit is witnessed by the initial physical sign of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of God gives them utterance. (Acts 2:4). The speaking in tongues in this instance is the same in essence as the gift of tongues, but is different in purpose and use. (1 Corinthians 12:4-10, 1 Corinthians 12:28)

9. Sanctification – Sanctification is an act of separation from that which is evil, and of dedication unto God. (Romans 12:1,2, 1 Thessalonians 5:23, Hebrews 13:12) The Scriptures teach a life of “holiness without which no man shall see the Lord.” (Hebrews 12:14) By the power of the Holy Spirit we are able to obey the command: “Be ye holy, for I am holy.” (1 Peter 1:15,16)

Sanctification is realized in the believer by recognizing his identification with Christ in His death and resurrection, and by the faith reckoning daily upon the fact of that union, and by offering every faculty continually to the dominion of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 6:1-11, Romans 6:13, Romans 8:1,2, Romans 8:13, Galatians 2:20, Philippians 2:12,13, 1 Peter 1:5)

10. The Church and its Mission – The Church is the Body of Christ, the habitation of God through the Spirit, with divine appointments for the fulfillment of her Great Commission. Each believer, born of the Spirit, is an integral part of the General Assembly and Church of the Firstborn, which are written in heaven. (Ephesians 1:22,23, Ephesians 2:22, Hebrews 12:23)

Since God’s purpose concerning man is to seek and to save that which is lost, to be worshipped by man, and to build a body of believers in the image of His Son, the priority reason for being of the Assemblies of God as part of the Church is:

  • To be an agency of God for evangelizing the world. (Acts 1:8, Matthew 28:19,20, Mark 16:15,16)
  • To be a corporate body in which man may worship God (1 Corinthians 12:13)
  • To be a channel of God’s purpose to build a body of saints being perfected in the image of His Son. (Ephesians 4:11-16, 1 Corinthians 12:28, 1 Corinthians 14:12)

The Assemblies of God exists expressly to give continuing emphasis to this reason for being in the New Testament apostolic pattern by teaching and encouraging believers to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. This experience:

  • Enables them to evangelize in the power of the Spirit with accompanying supernatural signs. (Mark 16:15-20, Acts 4:29-31, Hebrews 2:3,4)
  • Adds a necessary dimension to worshipful relationship with God. (1 Corinthians 2:10-16, 1 Corinthians 12, 1 Corinthians 13, 1 Corinthians 14)
  • Enables them to respond to the full working of the Holy Spirit in expression of fruit and gifts and ministries as in New Testament times for the edifying of the body of Christ. (Galatians 5:22-26, 1 Corinthians 14:12, Ephesians 4:11,12, 1 Corinthians 12:28, Colossians 1:29)

11. The Ministry – A divinely called and scripturally ordained ministry has been provided by our Lord for the threefold purpose of leading the Church in:

  • Evangelization of the world. (Mark 16:15-20)
  • Worship of God. (John 4:23,24)
  • Building a body of saints being perfected in the image of His Son. (Ephesians 4:11-16)

12. Divine Healing – Divine healing is an integral part of the gospel. Deliverance from sickness is provided for in the atonement, and is the privilege of all believers. (Isaiah 53:4,5, Matthew 8:16,17, James 5:14-16)

13. The Blessed Hope – 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, Romans 8:23, Titus 2:13, 1 Corinthians 15:51,52)

14. The Millennial Reign of Christ – The Second Coming of Christ includes the rapture of the saints, which is our blessed hope, followed by the visible return of Christ with His saints to reign on earth for one thousand years. (Zechariah 14:5, Matthew 24:27, Matthew 24:30, Revelation 1:7, Revelation 19:11-14, Revelation 20:1-6)

  • This millennial reign will bring the salvation of national Israel, (Ezekiel 37:21,22, Zephaniah 3:19,20, Romans 11:26,27)
  • and the establishment of universal peace. (Isaiah 11:6-9, Psalms 72:3-8, Micah 4:3,4)

15. The Final Judgment – There will be a final judgment in which the wicked dead will be raised and judged according to their works. Whosoever is not found written in the Book of Life, together with the devil and his angels, the beast and the false prophet, will be consigned to the everlasting punishment in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second death. (Matthew 25:46, Mark 9:43-48, Revelation 19:20, Revelation 20:11-15, Revelation 21:8)

16. The New Heavens and the New Earth – “We, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness.” (2 Peter 3:13, Revelation 21, Revelation 22)

 

 The Assemblies of God  Pentecostal supporters, members are noted for their opposition to the Florida Lakeland revival, and to the Latter day movement.. and I  rightfully as I do dislike their too often abusive unchristian like posts too.. but why the opposition?  Jealous? How wordly, ungoldy? It supposedly competes with their own revival?
“I have just returned from Buffalo and am now home in Pensacola. What awesome services on Sunday! Pastor Tommy Reid said to his congregation, “There are moments when God moves in a church and today is one of them!” I am always humbled when the Lord moves. From the first service at 8 am to the last service at 11:30 God moved in all three. The first service, which is mainly seniors, had a wonderful sense of God’s power! As I prayed for the saints of the church, each one fell under the power of God! How humbling! When the second service crowd started to move into the sanctuary they saw their beloved seniors prostrate out on the floor! That’s enough to build anyone’s faith. I had the privilege of praying for probably another two to three hundred people. The second service rolled right into the third service which is primarily a multi cultural service. God was faithful and moved again touching lives at the altar! http://www.brownsville-revival.org/” 

 

and like many other Pentecostals, Alliance, Baptist, Evangelcial Churches they falsey do not include helping poor people in their own churches as an essential Christian  doctrine now too? why?
 
(Rom 15:26 KJV)  For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem.
 
(2 Cor 9:9 KJV)  (As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever.
 
(Gal 2:10 KJV)  Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same which I also was forward to do.
 
(James 2:5 KJV)  Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?
 
(James 2:6 KJV)  But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats?
 
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