Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Pentecostal mission in Palestine, 1906–1948: A postcolonial assessment of Pentecostal Zionism
by Newberg, Eric Nelson, Ph.D., Regent University, 2008, 678; 3305402
Abstract (Summary)

This dissertation offers a historical narrative and postcolonial assessment of the Pentecostal mission in Palestine. Its methodology is informed by Edward Said's Orientalism. The Pentecostal mission in Palestine is a virtually unknown episode in the history of Pentecostalism. The story of this mission starts out modestly in Los Angeles in an abandoned building requisitioned for the Azusa Street Revival (1906-1908). Palestine was the destination of three out of the first five missionaries commissioned by the Azusa Street Mission. In its first ten years (1908-1918), the Pentecostal mission gained a foothold in Palestine, due to the efforts of three pioneering missionaries, Lucy Leatherman, Charles Leonard, and A. Elizabeth Brown. In the interwar period (1919-1935), the Pentecostal mission expanded its territory into Transjordan, Syria, and Persia, but was severely tested and lost traction during the tumultuous period of the Arab Revolts, World War II, and the Partition Crisis (1936-1948). With the catastrophic war of 1948, the Pentecostal missionaries fled from the field of battle as their Arab clients were swept away in the Palestinian Diaspora. After 1948, a valiant attempt was grade to revive the mission, but it never recovered its vitality and suffered its demise in the 1970s. The thesis of this dissertation is that the Pentecostal missionaries in Palestine functioned as brokers of Pentecostal Zionism. Although the Pentecostal missionaries failed in their objective of converting Jews and Arabs, and resorted to proselytizing Eastern Christians, they can be credited with a number of accomplishments. They kept Pentecostals abreast of current events in the Holy Land, advocated philosemitism, repudiated replacement theology, and played a strategic role in the espousal of the Pentecostal metanarrative. However, in jumping on the Christian Zionist bandwagon, the Pentecostal missionaries in Palestine disregarded the civil rights of the Arabs, espoused Islamophobia, and left a legacy that militates against peace in Israel/Palestine today. To redress the deficiencies of the legacy of Pentecostal Zionism, the author tells the Arab side of the story and inquires into the promise of Palestinian liberation theology.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor:
Commitee:
School: Regent University
School Location: United States -- Virginia
Source: DAI-A 69/03, Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Religious history, Middle Eastern history, Theology
Keywords: Christian Zionism, Jewish studies, Mission, Missions and missionaries, Palestine, Pentecostal churches-missions, Pentecostalism, Postcolonial, Protestantism and Zionism, Zionism
Publication Number: 3305402
ISBN: 9780549517382
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