School of Theology and Seminary Graduate Papers/Theses

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Date of Award


Document Type

Graduate Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Systematic Theology


School of Theology and Seminary

First Advisor

Susan Wood, SCL

Second Advisor

Helen Rolfson, OSF

Subject Categories

Christianity | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion


Without denying the charismatic experiences so powerfully animating the Christian community today, I have challenged the traditional Pentecostal understanding which separates Spirit baptism from water baptism, and I argue instead for a view that joins the two in a single process of Christian initiation.

After reviewing the development of classical Pentecostal perspectives on Spirit baptism, I present three specific challenges arising first, from a survey of the New Testament witness, second, from a theological consideration of the unity of the Christ and the Spirit, and third, from a Roman Catholic understanding of the unity of baptism and confirmation. In light of these challenges, I argue for a view that links reception of the Holy Spirit to the single integrated process of Christian initiation, and finally, I note several implications which flow from this perspective


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