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Charismatic Christianity (also known as Spirit-filled Christianity by its supporters) is a form of Christianity that emphasizes the work of the Holy Spirit, spiritual gifts, and modern-day miracles as an everyday part of a believer's life. Practitioners are often called Charismatic Christians or Renewalists. Although there is considerable overlap, Charismatic Christianity is often categorized into three separate groups: Pentecostalism, the Charismatic Movement and Neo-charismatic movement. The movement is distinguished from Pentecostalism by not making the speaking in tongues (glossolalia) a necessary evidence of Spirit baptism and giving prominence to the diversity of spiritual gifts. According to the Pew Research Center, Pentecostals and Charismatic Christians numbered over 584 million or a quarter of the world's 2 billion Christians in 2011.[1]

Etymology

The term charismatic derives from the Greek word χάρισμα charisma ("gift", itself derived from χάρις, "grace" or "favor").[2] The 17th century form charism specifically refers to divine gifts. Middle English also adopted the word as karisme to refer to gifts of healing and teaching.[3]

History

With traditions of Pentecostalism already developed in the 18th century out of Protestant evangelicalism,[4] the beginning of the charismatic movement came in 1960 at St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Van Nuys, California. Dennis Bennett, the church's Rector, felt the Holy Spirit within him and announced the event to his church.[5] Some evangelical churches decided to follow this movement and take distance from their Pentecostal conventions.[6] Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, California is one of the first evangelical charismatic churches started in 1965.[5] In the United Kingdom, Jesus Army, founded in 1969, is an example of the impact outside of the United States.[7] The spread of the charismatic movement outside of the US was also encouraged by Bennett, who traveled to Vancouver to minister there.[5] Many other congregations were established in the rest of the world.[8] Modern churches internationally have embraced the charismatic movement or adapted their own practices to incorporate it. In the United Kingdom, the house church movement has grown to include charismatic practices. Hillsong Church in Australia is another example o

The term charismatic derives from the Greek word χάρισμα charisma ("gift", itself derived from χάρις, "grace" or "favor").[2] The 17th century form charism specifically refers to divine gifts. Middle English also adopted the word as karisme to refer to gifts of healing and teaching.[3]

History

With traditions of Pentecostalism already developed in the 18th century out of Protestant evangelicalism,[4] the beginning of the charismatic movement came in 1960 at St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Van Nuys, California. Dennis Bennett, the church's Rector, felt the Holy Spirit within him and announced the event to his church.[5] Some evangelical churches decided to follow this movement and take distance from their Pentecostal conventions.[6] Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, California is one of the first evangelical charismatic churches started in 1965.[5] In the United Kingdom, Jesus Army, founded in 1969, is an example of the impact outside of the United States.[7] The spread of the charismatic movement outside of the US was also encouraged by Bennett, who traveled to Vancouver to minister there.[5] Many other congregations were established in the rest of the world.[8] Modern churches internationally have embraced the charismatic movement or adapted their own practices to incorporate it. In the United Kingdom, the house church movement has grown to include charismatic practices. Hillsong Church in Australia is another example of a Pentecostal church that incorporates the charismatic movement.[5] The neo-charismatic movement, also known as the third-wave, has also spread widely since 1970; these churches often reject the charismatic or Pentecostal label but accept the general practice of accepting gifts of the Spirit.Pentecostalism already developed in the 18th century out of Protestant evangelicalism,[4] the beginning of the charismatic movement came in 1960 at St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Van Nuys, California. Dennis Bennett, the church's Rector, felt the Holy Spirit within him and announced the event to his church.[5] Some evangelical churches decided to follow this movement and take distance from their Pentecostal conventions.[6] Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, California is one of the first evangelical charismatic churches started in 1965.[5] In the United Kingdom, Jesus Army, founded in 1969, is an example of the impact outside of the United States.[7] The spread of the charismatic movement outside of the US was also encouraged by Bennett, who traveled to Vancouver to minister there.[5] Many other congregations were established in the rest of the world.[8] Modern churches internationally have embraced the charismatic movement or adapted their own practices to incorporate it. In the United Kingdom, the house church movement has grown to include charismatic practices. Hillsong Church in Australia is another example of a Pentecostal church that incorporates the charismatic movement.[5] The neo-charismatic movement, also known as the third-wave, has also spread widely since 1970; these churches often reject the charismatic or Pentecostal label but accept the general practice of accepting gifts of the Spirit.[4]

Some scholars attribute the quick and successful spread of charismatic Christianity to its successful use of mass media platforms, but also to the physical experience of religion that it provides, which creates a personal connection to spiritual mediation for believers.

Some scholars attribute the quick and successful spread of charismatic Christianity to its successful use of mass media platforms, but also to the physical experience of religion that it provides, which creates a personal connection to spiritual mediation for believers.[9]

Charismatic Christianity is an overarching grouping of connected beliefs and practices, and is not itself strictly defined within specific practices. Denominations within the grouping share a spirituality characterized by a worldview where miracles, signs and wonders, and other supernatural occurrences are expected to be present in the lives of believers. This includes the presence of spiritual gifts, such as prophecy and healing. While similar in many respects, some sub-groups do differ in important ways. These differences have led to Charismatic Christianity being categorized into three main groups: Pentecostalism, the Charismatic Movement, and Neo-charismatic Movement.[10]

Pentecostals

Assemblies of God or the Church of God (Cleveland, Tennessee). Classical Pentecostalism grew out of the holiness movement and developed a distinct identity at the start of the 20th century after being popularized by Charles Fox Parham and his student William Seymour, who founded what is considered the first Pentecostal ministry in Los Angeles in 1906.[4] At a time when most denominations affirmed cessationism (the belief that spiritual gifts had ceased), Pentecostals held that the gifts of the Holy Spirit were being restored to the Christian church.[11] The distinctive doctrine of Pentecostalism is that there is a second work of grace after conversion, which Pentecostals call the baptism in the Holy Spirit, that is evidenced by speaking in tongues.[12] Speaking in tongues is considered evidence of the presence of the Spirit. There are also non-trinitarian Oneness Pentecostals, who share such beliefs on the validity of the spiritual gifts in the modern church, but who differ on varying views on the Godhead and teachings on outward holiness.[13] Pentecostalism has several core doctrines around which their beliefs are centered; these include salvation through Jesus, healing through Jesus, baptism through Jesus and the Holy Spirit and finally that Jesus is coming again. Pentecostalism is also characterized by moralism, and often forbids followers to drink alcohol or wear jewelry.[4]

Charismatic Movement