Signs and Wonders: Why Pentecostalism Is the World's Fastest Growing Faith [NOOK Book]

Overview

Combining personal stories and sound scholarship, Paul Alexander, a young scholar with a Pentecostal background, examines the phenomenal worldwide success of Pentecostalism. While most other works on the subject are either for academics or believers, this book speaks to a broader audience. Interweaving stories of his own and his family's experiences with an account of Pentecostalism's history and tenets, Alexander provides a unique and accessible perspective on the movement. ...
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Signs and Wonders: Why Pentecostalism Is the World's Fastest Growing Faith

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Overview

Combining personal stories and sound scholarship, Paul Alexander, a young scholar with a Pentecostal background, examines the phenomenal worldwide success of Pentecostalism. While most other works on the subject are either for academics or believers, this book speaks to a broader audience. Interweaving stories of his own and his family's experiences with an account of Pentecostalism's history and tenets, Alexander provides a unique and accessible perspective on the movement.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Drawing on personal experiences and numerous interviews with individuals who practice Pentecostalism, Alexander, who teaches at Azusa Pacific University, attempts to provide insights into why the Pentecostal faith continues to grow by leaps and bounds around the world. He examines such key elements of Pentecostalism as speaking in tongues, healing, prophecy and visions, and spiritual warfare and prayer in arguing that they provide freedom to hope for and experience a better life. Alexander's unfortunately superficial survey would have been strengthened by more attention to historical context. For example, his shallow chapter on the "prosperity gospel" espoused by many Pentecostals fails to point out the dangers-including fraud-of this version of the Christian message. This highly repetitious book would have been more successful as a short article. (Apr.)

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Library Journal

Pentecostalism's promise of immediacy of experience and influence with God is part of its appeal and one of the causes for the movement's explosive growth. Alexander (theology & ethics, Azusa Pacific Univ.) explores these and the other significant fundamentals of the sect, such as the emphasis on signs and wonders, healings, spiritual warfare, speaking in tongues, and, most notably, the promise of prosperity. Alexander rightly faults the formulaic premise of Pentecostalism and its appeal to controlling one's own world by believing and bargaining with God through great faith. This concept—simply stated that if one does this, then God must do that and that a happy, prosperous life will be the result—creates a land mine of uncertainty that must be more thoroughly explored. Alexander's position in the book, "I believe, and I don't believe," sums up his relation with Pentecostalism and its version of Christianity. VERDICT This is only an elemental look at the movement, but it is a good introductory volume for a general audience, dedicated bibliophiles, and religious seekers; not for scholars.—Nancy Richey, Western Kentucky Univ. Lib., Bowling Green


—Nancy Richey
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470456392
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 3/27/2009
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • File size: 316 KB

Meet the Author

Paul Alexander is the founder of Pentecostals and Charismatics for Peace and Justice, a multiethnic, international, and ecumenical network of pastors, laypeople, academics, missionaries, and students. He teaches at Azusa Pacific University.

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Table of Contents

Foreword vii

Acknowledgments xiii

CHAPTER 1 Just Ask: A World of Miracles Awaits 1

CHAPTER 2 Worship and Music 19

CHAPTER 3 Tongue-Talking 41

CHAPTER 4 Prosperity (or Money, Money, Money, Money) 61

CHAPTER 5 Storytelling 79

CHAPTER 6 Power and Spiritual Warfare 95

CHAPTER 7 Prophecy, Visions, and Dreams 115

CHAPTER 8 Hope, Joy, and Emotion 131

Notes 151

The Author 167

Index 169

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 20, 2012

    I loved this book. I have attended Baptist churches all my lif

    I loved this book. I have attended Baptist churches all my life so much much of the information in this book was new to me. I found this book very entertaining and the information very informative. Highly recommend.

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  • Posted May 2, 2011

    Great Insight into the Growth of Pentecostalism

    Very interesting thoughts on the growth of current day Pentecostalism. Been Pentecostal most of my adult life, and learned so much from Paul Alexander's work. Must read.

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