Understanding Pentecostal conversion: an empirical study

Milton, Grace (2014). Understanding Pentecostal conversion: an empirical study. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This thesis argues that a Pentecostal theology of conversion can be best understood in terms of the biblical concept of shalom. The thesis contributes towards a holistic practical-theological model, which presents conversion in terms of the work of, and response to, God’s shalom in three key dimensions: regeneration, identity and destiny.
This study responds to two main motivators: (1) an identified lack of an existing Pentecostal theology of conversion. This is a significant gap in the movement’s theology, particularly in the UK where Pentecostalism continues to buck the trend of church decline; and (2) a recognised stereotype of Pentecostal-charismatic conversion experiences in various disciplines according to an “event” motif, despite the field of conversion studies moving towards a more process-oriented, whole-life approach.
The aim of the thesis was to identify and critically analyse the conversion experiences and theology of ordinary believers within their congregational context and in dialogue with ecclesial and academic discourse. Intra-disciplinary methods were used, with Lewis Rambo’s stage-model of religious conversion providing the framework for data collection. Material was gathered and analysed from a case study of an Elim Pentecostal congregation, utilising qualitative methods: participant observation, literature analysis, and life-story interviews.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BX Christian Denominations
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/5104


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