chapter  42
11 Pages

Theology and science

Disciplines at the limits of Pentecostal discourse
WithFrederick L. Ware

Despite the aversion of early Pentecostals to modern science, there is now a warming of Pentecostal theology to scientific discourse, although these pioneering efforts lack an agreed upon hermeneutic for engagement with the sciences in the varied social contexts of Pentecostalism worldwide. Pentecostals have and continue to be very diverse ethnically, culturally, socio-economically, and doctrinally—a reality reflected in the essay’s examination of the multiple perspectives appearing in Pentecostal theology’s recent forays in modern science. Though Pentecostal theologians’ interests tend to be in scientific findings with implications for beliefs about creation, divine action, and eschatology; two primary concerns which lie at the center of any distinctively Pentecostal engagement with the sciences are: the interpretation of religious experience and the use of “spirit” as a category for study and interpretation of creativity, purpose, and mind. In Pentecostal theology’s engagement with these issues, the experiences and voices of underrepresented groups are required for a robust dialogue.