By R. G. Robins
A.J. Tomlinson (1865-1943) ranks one of the best figures of the early Pentecostal circulate, and prefer such a lot of of his cohorts, he used to be as complicated as he used to be colourful. Arriving in Appalachia as a house missionary decided to uplift and evangelize negative mountain whites, he stayed to turn into the co-founder and leader architect of the Church of God (Cleveland, TN) and the Church of God of Prophecy, which including their minor offspring now represent the third-largest denominational relatives inside American Pentecostalism. R.G. Robins's biography recreates the area during which Tomlinson operated, and during his tale deals a brand new figuring out of the origins of the Pentecostal stream. students have tended to view Pentecostalism as only one amongst many anti-modernist events of the early 20th century. Robins argues that it is a misreading of the movement's origins-the results of projecting the modernist/fundamentalist controversy of the Nineteen Twenties again onto the sooner non secular panorama. looking to go back the tale of Pentecostalism to its right old context, Robins means that Pentecostalism may still rightly be obvious as an outgrowth of the novel holiness flow of the overdue 19th century. He argues that, faraway from being anti-modern, Pentecostals tended to embody modernity. Pentecostal modernism, notwithstanding, used to be a operating classification or ''plainfolk'' phenomenon, and it's the plainfolk personality of the flow that has led such a lot of students to mislabel it as anti-modern or fundamentalist. in the course of the compelling narrative of Tomlinson's existence tale, Robins sheds new gentle on late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century American faith, and gives a extra sophisticated lens wherein to view the non secular dynamics of our personal day. v
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Additional info for A. J. Tomlinson: Plainfolk Modernist
The struggle to possess the term modern reﬂected real and important differences, but those differences had little to do with one’s orientation to social modernization. Unfortunately, the Protestant Modernist self-portrait would be largely taken at face value by historians, who naturally accepted the proprietary claims of a cultural elite whose heirs they, by birth or by training, were. The current generation of historians, then, has been left with an inherited wisdom that cannot help but spawn artiﬁcial conundrums.
Furthermore, even in its amended form the deﬁnition perpetuates numerous inaccuracies. Even when hedged with caveats, the old deﬁnition implies a unique correspondence between modernity and the speciﬁc cultural movement implied by the term modernism. ) Consequently, when historians do observe the essential modernity of a movement heretofore labeled “antimodern,” the observation inevitably bears a hint of expose´, as if unveiling a contradiction at the core of the movement. When we revisit the historical baseline for the prevailing deﬁnition, moreover, the problems only multiply.
It spoke eloquently of spiritual integrity, communal legitimization, and personal status. It produced inner fulﬁllment and strengthened group identity. It was both a ritual of initiation and an experiential catechism. ” To say the least, the God of civilized company did not speak the holiness vernacular. “Christ said ‘Follow me,’ ” wrote one newspaper editor, appalled by what he had just witnessed at a holiness campground, “but we fail to ﬁnd . . where Christ jumped, screamed or rooted in the dust .
A. J. Tomlinson: Plainfolk Modernist by R. G. Robins