The grassroots of Pentecostalism is to be found among common folk. These godly, deeply spiritual people were generally not academics. They were folk who often came out of a Methodist / Holiness tradition where there was awareness of spiritual experience. When the pioneers of the Pentecostal revival, C.F. Parham, W. Seymour, E. Roberts (Wales), began to spread the message of the Holy Spirit’s presence and gifts (as described in the Bible) they began a spiritual tsunami that has changed the course of world history. But this revival also spored a rash of untrained Bible teachers who often appealed to ‘revelation’ as the source of their novel doctrine. Many of these doctrines were re-taught and soon became a part of the warp and woof of Pentecostal theology.
Healing was one the hallmarks of Pentecostal teaching and preaching. In one sense it was one of the major distinctives of Pentecostalism until the Charismatic Revival began in the late 1960s. While prayer for healing has always been a Christian practice and its granting was seen as God’s grace, Pentecostals turned it into a ‘right’. Because Jesus suffered and died for your sins and your healing, you have a right to be healed, was the essence of this doctrine.
There are some Scriptures that on their surface do appear to promote this doctrine, but upon closer examination it appears that these Scriptures generally refer instead to ‘spiritual’ healing, that is, salvation.
13th June 2010