This book not only articulates a tradition-specific Pentecostal rationality of Biblical Pragmatism, but also provides the first intellectual history of a major British classical Pentecostal denomination: the Elim Pentecostal Church. Pentecostal theologians increasingly acknowledge that their theological methodology should be informed by a Pentecostal rationality, epistemology and theological hermeneutics. Simo Frestadius offers such a Pentecostal rationality from a Foursquare perspective. Frestadius first analyses and evaluates some of the main contemporary Pentecostal rationalities and epistemologies to date, with a particular emphasis on the works of Amos Yong and James K.A. Smith and L. William Oliverio Jr., before proposing that Alasdair MacIntyre’s tradition-focused and historically-minded narrative approach is conducive in providing a more tradition-constituted Pentecostal rationality.
Utilising the methodological insights of MacIntyre, the book then provides a philosophically informed historical narrative of a major British Pentecostal tradition, namely, the Elim Foursquare Gospel Alliance, by exploring its underlying context and roots as a classical Pentecostal movement, its emergence as a religious tradition, and its two major ‘epistemological crises’. Based on this historical narration and analysis, it is argued that Elim’s tacit Pentecostal rationality is best defined as Pentecostal Biblical Pragmatism in a Foursquare Gospel framework. This form of rationality is then developed vis-à-vis Elim’s Pentecostal concept of truth, biblical hermeneutics, and pragmatic epistemic justification in dialogue with William P. Alston. In doing the above, the book not only articulates a tradition-specific Pentecostal rationality of Biblical Pragmatism but also provides the first intellectual history of a major British classical Pentecostal denomination.
Among this study's many strengths is that it is not a 'freeze-frame' portrait of Pentecostal thought at one stage of its life ... His analysis of its various elements at work in the movement's intellectual history is exemplary and highly instructive. * Theology * Simo Frestadius has produced a major work in Pentecostal epistemology that has advanced the discussion through addressing underdeveloped areas in Pentecostal studies - namely the relation of rationality and tradition as well as pragmatic realism to truth claims. Moving between concrete readings of theologians, philosophers, and other theorists on the one hand, and historic Pentecostal communities on the other, Frestadius displays breadth and talent as an emerging scholar in the world of Pentecostal studies. * L. William Oliverio, Jr., School of Urban Missions Bible College and Seminary, USA * Simo Frestadius's Pentecostal Rationality takes emerging Pentecostal academic work to a whole new level. The reader finds in this fine work a splendid engagement of philosophy, theology, hermeneutics, and history - plus an intriguing constructive proposal. A significant contribution of this monograph is putting Pentecostal theology in a critical-sympathetic dialogue with some leading philosophical-theological voices of our time; this alone would justify a careful reading of this book. * Veli-Matti Karkkainen, University of Helsinki, Finland * This original and thought-provoking book successfully applies well-informed philosophical sophistication to historical crises faced by one of the largest Pentecostal denominations in Europe, the Elim Pentecostal church. The philosophical reader will enjoy the intellectual energy found in the exploration of Pentecostal rationality, while the religious historian will discover new ways of understanding how crises of faith are resolved by the resources of a rich tradition. Frestadius serves us an intellectual feast. * William K Kay, Wrexham Glyndwr University, UK * Pentecostal Rationality is a well-written project that states what many other projects ... may have only implied or felt was incapable of clear articulation. It's accessible to the well-read layperson while still remaining a quality piece of academic scholarship ... I highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in contemplating tongues with scholarly words. * Reading Religion * Pentecostal Rationality is an excellent piece of scholarship that provides the reader with valuable insights both practical and theoretical in nature * Journal of the European Pentecostal Theological Association * This is an excellent book for a variety of reasons, but three are worth highlighting here. First, Frestadius demonstrates an impressive facility with philosophical texts and yet is able to consider them without oversimplifying things or losing his reader in technical jargon. Second, it pushes Pentecostal theology another important step forward in its appreciation of contemporary philosophy. Third, while building on the work of Smith, Yong, and Oliverio, Frestadius offers a decisively different way forward that opens new spaces for thought. * Pneuma: The Journal of the Society for Pentecostal Studies * Pentecostal Rationality is an important contribution to studying Pentecostal distinctive ways of meaning-making and knowledge production.... I recommend this volume as a beginning point for scholars and graduate students who wish to pursue Pentecostal (rationality) philosophical theology. * Mission Studies (MIST) *