The AG, PAOC, and the New Calvinism: A Pentecostal Response to Reformed Theology / Calvinism

young-restless-reformed-new-calvinismThe Assemblies of God (AG, USA) has created a position paper in response to Reformed Theology (found here). The AG document is written in response to “growing popularity of Reformed theology among younger ministers and ministerial students” (p. 1), which I would also say is a concern for some in the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada (PAOC).

Given the contextual impetus behind the document, the part of the document that is most interesting to me comes on the last page in a section called “More Recent Developments (or Branches of the Tree)” (p. 6). This section notes the influence of contemporary New Calvinists, aka the “Young, Restless, and Reformed.” Here the paper notes one reason Pentecostals might find the New Calvinism alluring: “Reformed movements in general have been cessationist in pneumatology, rejecting present-day manifestations of the Holy Spirit, [but] there are some in the Neo-Reformed ranks who are open to charismata or speak in tongues themselves.”

The main concern that the paper addresses in this section on the New Calvinism is complementarianism—“rejection in some cases of any ministerial role for women, and in other cases a sharply limited sphere of ministry for women” (p. 6). Most importantly, the paper reminds readers that the AG has rejected complementarianism (in their 2010 position paper here), which is also true of the PAOC today.

To learn more about the New Calvinism, see here.

I learned about this position paper just today from Roger Olson’s blog (here). Most of what Olson says about the theology of the AG also describes well the PAOC. If you are  interested in the presence of Reformed theology (more generally) in the AG or PAOC, I encourage you to also read further Olson’s comments here on his blog.


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