The human Son of God and the Holy Spirit: Toward a Pentecostal Incarnational Spirit Christology

S. D. L Jenkins, Marquette University

Abstract

After having proposed the three primary aspects of the theological task (raw materials of identity, ecclesial demarcation, and ecumenical intelligibility), the author follows this methodology through in order to construct a Pentecostal, Incarnational, Spirit Christology that may be a platform for dialogue between ecclesial communions. While this is the external aim of the project, there is also a problem internal to Pentecostal theology that a Spirit Christology may address: the inherent disjuncture between holiness and power. Utilizing the theology of Edward Irving, a "proto-Pentecostal," the author begins the construction of a Pentecostal Spirit Christology. For Irving holiness and power in the Christian is of a continuum with that in Jesus Christ. According to Irving Jesus Christ was holy and powerful by virtue of the Holy Spirit. This entailed for Irving that the Son of God assumed a fallen human nature, and that through the Spirit Jesus was made (at conception) and preserved (through life) holy. This becomes the key for addressing the current Pentecostal problem of "fusing holiness and power." In subsequent chapters, the author brings the discussion of the assumption of a fallen nature into the 20th century, engendered in the biblical theology of James D. G. Dunn and Karl Barth's dogmatic theology. In order to fill any pneumatological deficit, the author turned to the Spirit Christology of David Coffey, and subsequently utilized it as the infrastructure of his own construction. In conclusion, the author, following basic Pentecostal intuitions, proposes an Incarnational, Spirit Christology that is a re-deployment of Coffey's "bestowal model," which deployment is founded upon Irving's assertion that holiness and power may be fused in Christ through the Holy Spirit, and incorporates the insights of Dunn and Barth into that re-deployment. The desired end is that this construction would help to facilitate theological, ecumenical dialogue between Pentecostals and other ecclesial traditions, a facilitation that a dialogue based on the so-called fivefold Gospel is unable to do (because that paradigm is inherently evangelical (for conversion and discipleship) not ecumenical (theological and dialogical).

Recommended Citation

S. D. L Jenkins, "The human Son of God and the Holy Spirit: Toward a Pentecostal Incarnational Spirit Christology" (January 1, 2004). Dissertations (1962 - 2010) Access via Proquest Digital Dissertations. Paper AAI3141104.
http://epublications.marquette.edu/dissertations/AAI3141104

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