In my essay, I am going to do a comparison and contrast essay which is based on evangelical and pentecostal Christianity and how these are mainly focused in a specific region.
In dealing with evangelical and pentecostal Christianity, it is important to examine their similarities especially where they come together in their ideologies. They come together especially in their universality of their teachings and the timelessness ( Wolffe, 2002). They tend to agree with each other in their teachings and philosophies which are inherently tied to each other and are especially predominant when they are dealing with conflict or tension situations where they actually see eye to eye. It is also important to take into account that because we are dealing with these religions, I am using the Wolffe's perspective on a lot of these issues. He suggests that it is predominantly in the developing world that Evangelism and Pentecostal Christianity have their strongest foothold with particular emphasis being placed on Latin America (2002).
In examining the criteria for their comparison, it is noteworthy to mention that Pentecostal religion and Evangelism have similarities in that they are especially geared towards migrants and people from a similar ethnic background-a sort of common background that brings about ethnic groups with similar ideologies together (Wolffe, 2002).
Another obvious identifying feature of Pentecostal and Evangelicals is that they both believe that the Bible is divinely inspired and believe that the Holy Spirit is involved in the evangelical process. Here we see this to be true especially in the Western world with the rise of evangelicals who speak under the authority of the Holy Spirit and therefore have the ability to prophesy and speak in tongues (Wolffe, 2002).
Evangelical and Pentecostal Christianity have been a trend of the late centuries and are actually a breakaway from Protestanism which split from Catholicism in the 16th century. But it was not until the 18th century, that we see visibly the Evangelical movement that rose from the Protestant reformation (Wolffe,2002).
Since they are ethnically geared so to speak towards people from similar ethnic backgrounds, they formed the backbone for a lot of the revivals of the movement in regions such as Northern Ireland where "it gained from being an important focus for Protestant identity in the face of ongoing struggles over the constitutional status of the province (Wolffe, 2002, p.20)." There was in Ireland, considerable turmoil and conflict between the Catholics and the Protestants and due to their common interests and struggles, the Evangelicals formed a common bond to come together.
Whereas by contrast where Pentecostal and Evangelical Christianity differed, was in "its teachings of the need for Christians to be baptized in the Holy Spirit, as a second intense spiritual experience subsequent to conversion. Pentecostalism was particularly successful among the black and Hispanic communities in the USA, and from the 1950s onwards gained significant ground in the UK as a result of West Indian immigration (Wolffe, 2002,p.21)." Again we see the trend where the minorities form the backbone for the rise of the Evangelical and Pentecostal movement in the Americas and the United Kingdom.
Although our focus in this essay, will be the rise in these two movements, I will focus more on the developments in the United kingdom, the USA, and Latin America. The former two countries are more industrialized but the last Latin America is more on the less advantageous side economically speaking. In the United Kingdom, for instance, we see statistically speaking an increase in numbers among the Pentecostal and Evangelical Christians. This is denoted by the rising numbers who are church attendants. The famous evangelist Billy Graham from the United States on making his visit to the United Kingdom drew very large audiences (Wolffe, 2002). In the early