1. Mapping a trajectory for foward growth for my original audience & providing more positively
Yes this blog has a broader focus, but is still related to my original blog. I wanted to provide in time something of a more staple diet for my readers to move on to, either because their interest in the topic of Pentecostalism has been exhausted, or because they want to see what I believe about the full spectrum topics relevant to current Evangelical discussion and thinking. I want to provide a full diet with diversity and richness as well as breadth. The goals of Talking Pentecostalism is to narrow for that.
What if somebody 'converts' from being a Pentecostal as I did? They can't read my apologetic and critique forever, which can tend to have more of a negatively constructive approach; they need to 'move on' to the positively constructive stuff I want to supplement with this blog.
Recent comments on my blog have helped me to realise I need to pick up a bigger goal:
"Every denomination seems to have it's own set of core doctrines. How would you define the core Gospel?"
"I was looking for a clarification of what you meant by "the gospel of the Apostles of the New Testament"This is an example of something I might tackle and hope to answer on this blog, and point my readers of Talking Pentecostalism through too there.
2. Symbolising the division that Pentecostalism has created within Evangelicalism, and our inevitable disunity
Although Pentecostalism is part of the family tree within Christianity, I do see it as being a sick and suffering branch. Akin to the sort of situation that would warrant Paul writing the sort of letter of which the Corinthians, Galatians and Colossians were recipients.
I don't put Pentecostalism in the category of something like Catholicism or Eastern Orthoxody. These I believe to be corrupt forms of Christianity - these religions are more than sick. This is false spirituality, and dead religiosity, because their beliefs and practices amount to idolatry.
I also don't put Pentecostalism in the category of a cult, such as Mormonism and Jehovah's Witnesses. These are not sects that came from Christianity, but were wild derivatives from the very start; they did not ever have a true origin with the family of Christianity, but were separate adaptations from the beginning, similar to Islam. A cancerous cell that begins multiplying might be a more fit metaphor here.
But Pentecostalism sits firmly within the family of Protestant Evangelicalism. Many Pentecostals share much in principle with Reformed theology and share a vast array of agreement with Calvin (from my reading of the Institutes anyway).
But like shifting techtonic plates, there has been an enormous movement away from some core emphases that New Testament Christianity centres on; and of course, there have been some huge additions. All of these things warrant serious concern and would be why by my assessment Pentecostalism is in league with the gross immaturity and worldliness of the Corinthians.
So there needs to be a degree of disassociation by Evangelicals generally with Pentecostals. It's in these situations that the Bible calls for disunity. I've described the sort of Biblical position behind this logic here: Where to draw the line.
And by the way Mikey, Pentecostalism is spelt with 2 'e's and only 1 'a', not the other way around (I know you love to be corrected on spelling!)