Tag Archives: liberation theology

Pentecostals vs the Empire

by Luis Aranguiz Kahn.

It is a known story that some group of radical Jews wanted to go against the Roman Empire fighting for the independence of the land of Israel. In such a context, the figure of Jesus was at least contradictory. He claimed to be a king though without a land to rule, he said his realm was not of this world and he proclaimed freedom for the slaves, but not Israeli independence. It was understandable to see some Jews rejecting him, because why should we follow a liberator that can’t give political freedom?

This story has a different meaning depending on the place where it is remembered. For instance, it is not the same to speak about it being a Christian of a first world country like England -that was a big Christian empire until just some years ago- or United States -that still looks to be like a kind of empire for many parts of the world-, than to reflect on it from a third world country like a Latin-American one. Continue reading Pentecostals vs the Empire

Is a Pentecostal Liberation Theology Possible?

by Luis Aranguiz Kahn. Part 2 of 4. Read the whole article as a PDF here.

In Latin America, there have been some developments on Eco theology that come from other traditions. I cannot speak theologically from Latin America without mentioning one of the main Latin American theological frames, Liberation Theology.[1] In a Pentecostal view, we could say that Pentecostals were worried about “spiritual issues” while liberationists were worried about “worldly issues”.

However, I would like to go beyond this distinction because it is not that liberationist Christians were not worried about spiritual issues but that they understood spirituality in other terms. And it is not that Pentecostals were not interested in worldly issues, but that they understood worldliness in other terms. I would like to take two concepts from liberation theology.

The first comes from the hand of Leonardo Boff; in his book Ecología: Grito de la tierra, grito de los pobres[2], the Brazilian theologian develops a critical analysis of technological human progress. In his view, modern civilization is oriented by an anthropocentric (then androcentric) concept that divides human being and cosmos, and therefore, technological progress concludes as domination over nature. This can be seen clearly in the various forms of natural exploitation in the region, especially those regarding mining, water and forests.[3] The call of Boff is to rethink our cosmology, so we can better savor the greatness and glory of God in his creation. Continue reading Is a Pentecostal Liberation Theology Possible?

Escaping Whiteness: Egypt as Whiteness

Vintage engraving of Ancient Egyptians building a Pyramid

by Paul Alexander

Part 2 of 8

It is well known that Israel’s exodus from Egypt is a central story for liberation movements, and it could be a way for people who have been raced by Whiteness as White to “inhabit the world beyond the theological problem of whiteness.”[1] I am inspired by African American biblical hermeneutics and the lyrics of slave spirituals that underline the resonances of exodus within enslaved Africans’ hearts and their hermeneutical freedom to identify the Egypt land with the US south.[2]

Continue reading Escaping Whiteness: Egypt as Whiteness