The Spirituality of a quarter of all Christians can be characterized as "charismatic." Pentecostalism itself is one of the most rapidly growing religious movements in America and abroad. Despite these facts, little serious effort has been made to develop a systematic Pentecostal theology - until now. Word and Spirit at Play is the first work to outline a theology that does full justice to the Pentecostal experience of God's Word and Spirit. Dutch scholar Jean-Jacques Suurmond, who is himself a Pentecostal, draws on two decades of work in Pentecostalism to demonstrate in a simple yet scholarly way how a charismatic approach shapes the lives of Christians and the church. Suurmond describes the history and characteristics of present-day Pentecostalism, discusses the significance of Spirit baptism to the Pentecostal life, reflects seriously on the "gifts of grace," (including tongues), and celebrates the role of "play" in Pentecostal worship. This book will be invaluable both to theologians - who have long wanted a scholarly synthesis of charismatic theology - and to laypeople, especially Pentecostals wanting to deepen their faith and other believers searching for a spirituality that opens up new sources of Christian community. JEAN-JACQUES SUURMOND is a Reformed minister in Vlaardingen, the Netherlands.
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