Monday, February 4, 2008

God's Spirit is Sufficient

My academic supervisor, Dr. Vincent Atterbury, in his doctoral dissertation, describes eleven (largely unwritten) tenets of early Pentecostal leadership theory (Atterbury V E 2002:65). Some of these tenets are characteristically Pentecostal. However, it is striking how many of them would seem typically Global South. Here are two examples: “[Tenet No. 9]. Persons who have been baptised in the Spirit, and have thus directly experienced the touch of God, will also have the faith that God’s plans for them, and for His church, will be fully developed through them. [Tenet No. 10]. Any other means, which might be described as a means of assistance, should be regarded with suspicion. God’s Spirit is sufficient to build up His church. He does not need any means of assistance. All that is needed to effectively lead the church, and to build it up, is persons, baptised in the Spirit, who live obediently under His leading. The proof of this is found in the Scriptures. In the Scriptures, the Spirit led -- while obedient, called persons, such as Peter and Paul, acted as His instruments. Where needed, the charismata worked through them. Nothing more than this is needed.” The original text (only in Afrikaans) is available free at (5.8 MB). QUESTION: What is meant by: “He does not need any means of assistance”? Would this be true without qualification?

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