The Pentecostal theologian Dale Coulter continues his analysis of the intellectual, and anti-intellectual, heritage of American Evangelicalism and Pentecostalism, described in Mark Noll Got It Wrong, Maybe . He is not happy with Mark Noll’s take on these things, which he argues wrongly separates the intellectual Evangelicals from the anti-intellectual Pentecostals.

In  Noll, the Evangelical Mind, and the Elephants in the Room , Dale writes against two of the claims he thinks Noll got wrong:

Elephant #1: Populist forms of Christianity can be intellectual, just not populist forms of American evangelical Christianity

Elephant #2: Fundamentalist, Pentecostal, and Holiness Christians devalued creation and developed creation science while Reformed Christians did not.


As I said before, I have no opinion on this but find the history fascinating. Even if one agrees with Mark Noll, Dale at least offers a helpful insight into the history and thought of a movement most other Christians in America tend to dismiss as rubes, fundamentalists, reactionaries, crazies (snake handling?), conmen, etc. Everyone wants someone to look down upon and for much of American Christianity, as divided as it is, at least everyone can agree that they’re not those guys.

Dale himself counters the stereotype, by the way, being among other things an expert in the work of Richard of St. Victor and twelfth century theology in general.

Articles by David Mills

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