As the month of October has arrived, many of us remember reformation. All over Protestant countries, like in the Netherlands there are events and programs to commemorate reformation. Thus, every year in October/November I meditate on my personal convictions and examine them carefully. In relation to this, I choose to write (re-write) my statements of what I call: "A New Kind of Pentecostalism". As a Pentecostal pastor, I see it as my calling to address these points below, even though I may not be widely heard, read or be accepted when it comes to the following 19 statements:
1. —New Kind of Pentecostals believe that Holy Spirit is for the entire Church, with all its branches, denominations and traditions, including the Pentecostal / Charismatic churches.
2. —New Kind of Pentecostals respect other Christian denominations and traditions, and are willing to engage in fellowship, share and cooperate with them.
3. —New Kind of Pentecostals believe in dialogue with those who think and believe differently, without losing their own identities and believes.
4. —New Kind of Pentecostals believe that the unconditional love that is inspired and directed by the Holy Spirit is the greatest sign of our being filled with / and inspired by the Holy Spirit.
5. —New Kind of Pentecostals share the Good News with others, but in a manner full of grace and love and not out of arrogance and with a “we-know-better-than-you-attitude…”
6. —New Kind of Pentecostals believe that miracles, signs and wonders are still possible today, but do not elevate these above the humility and the message of Jesus Christ.
7. —New Kind of Pentecostals are against commercializing and merchandising the gifts and signs of the Holy Spirit, they are against turning the Gospel into a product!
8. —New Kind of Pentecostals are not only concerned with miracles, signs and wonders, but are also concerned with justice, and with the welfare of the poor, the oppressed, the orphans, the widows and the immigrants.
9. —New Kind of Pentecostals are those who defend human rights of the others, regardless their religion, faith or belief.
10. —New Kind of Pentecostals do not tolerate any form of fear-theology and manipulation in the name of the Holy Spirit in order to gain personal or ministerial wealth.
11. —New Kind of Pentecostals believe in the grace that is in giving, but are against abusive and manipulative forms of preaching and quoting from the scriptures. Giving must come from the heart. Fear preached from the pulpit provides neither proper incentive nor honest result.
12. —New Kind of Pentecostals are against witch-hunting the LGBTs. Instead of using hate language against them, New Kind of Pentecostals choose to rather treat them as their neighbors.
13. —New Kind of Pentecostals choose to be bridge builders and peace makers between the Jews and Palestinians.
14. —New Kind of Pentecostals respect other cultures, as well as people’s convictions and religious commitments, and so they are willing to enter into dialogue with them without any hidden agendas.
15. —New Kind of Pentecostals respect and have an ongoing dialogue with other cultures/religions, yet takes a critical stance on the types of inhumane practices that exist within these cultures/religions, including Christianity.
16. —New Kind of Pentecostals are deeply concerned with the environment and creation care. (Even-though it is hypocritical not to mention that my lifestyle may not always be environmental sensitive)
17. —New Kind of Pentecostals believe in the Bible as the inspired collection of Holy Scriptures, and use the scriptures to bring forth grace and mercy instead of a doom and gloom theology.
18. —New Kind of Pentecostals believe that leadership is service to humankind and to the body of Christ (community of believers) i.e., that leaders should serve instead of being served. They should sacrifice instead of demanding sacrifice. Leadership should be based on love and fellowship and not on rank and titles.
19. —New Kind of Pentecostals respect traditional churches, or organized religions, but believes that the real church is built of people and their relationship with Jesus Christ/God and with each other, who believe that the church is not a “building” but it is evidence of God’s love manifested in neighborly love.
2nd of October 2018