Original Research

The ecclesiastical difficulty of Ephesians 4:1–6 in view of the different perspectives on the baptism in the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Holy Spirit

Frederick J. de Beer
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 54, No 1 | a2641 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v54i1.2641 | © 2020 Frederick J. de Beer | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 21 May 2020 | Published: 22 October 2020

About the author(s)

Frederick J. de Beer, Unit for Reformed Theology, Faculty of Theology, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa


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Abstract

Visible church unity, where believers from different theological traditions accept and regard one another as part of the invisible church, has always been a contentious issue. This article will address this issue by focusing specifically on the relationship between the Reformed and the Pentecostal tradition, being two of the major theological traditions, as it relates to contemporary Christianity and a post-Christian world. While attempting to create an awareness of the necessity that the Reformed and Pentecostal traditions need to re-evaluate their disposition towards one another, Paul’s exhortation in Ephesians 4:1–6 is interpreted. The hypothesis of the article is that the Pentecostal and Reformed tradition should, without negating their respective theological traditions, consider Ephesians 4:1–6 as a possible measuring ethos in view of visible unity, to validate the witness of the church in a contemporary post-Christian world.

Keywords

church unity; Pentecostal; Reformed; Holy Spirit; tongues; gifts of the Spirit; cessationists; continuationists.

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