“Prophets, Faust, and First-Years: Bonhoeffer and the language of charismatic experience”

Patrick J Dunn


Across the Global South, contemporary Christian theology is grappling with the best way to understand and respond to the rise of neo-Pentecostalism and the associated emphasis on charismatic experience. Speaking from a vastly different contest, the theology of Dietrich Bonhoeffer nonetheless offers a way to critique the self-serving excesses of this phenomenon while engaging it seriously and graciously, on its own terms, in a productive ecumenical conversation. Bonhoeffer’s understanding of discipleship as the condition in which it is possible to speak truthfully challenges our normal expectations for theological discourse. It redirects our attention from speech that is merely semantically correct and towards the conformation of the act of our speaking with the intention of Christ.


Bonhoeffer; global south; Pentecostalism; charismatic; discipleship

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17570/stj.2016.v2n2.a02


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