Charles Fox Parham - Beliefs - Initial Evidence

Initial Evidence

His most important theological contributions were his beliefs about the baptism with the Holy Spirit. There were Christians speaking in tongues and teaching an experience of Spirit baptism before 1901. However, Parham was the first to identify tongues as the "Bible evidence" of Spirit baptism. It is not clear when he began to preach the need for such an experience, but it is clear that he did by 1900.

Initially, he understood the experience to have eschatological significance—it "sealed the bride" for the "marriage supper of the Lamb". The bride of Christ consisted of 144,000 people taken from the church who would escape the horrors of the tribulation. It was Parham's desire for assurance that he would be included in the rapture that led him to search for uniform evidence of Spirit baptism.

Later, Parham would emphasize speaking in tongues and evangelism, defining the purpose of Spirit baptism as an "enduement with power for service". Parham believed that the tongues spoken by the baptized were actual human languages, eliminating the need for missionaries to learn foreign languages and thus aiding in the spread of the gospel.

Read more about this topic:  Charles Fox Parham, Beliefs

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