“If you can’t say amen, you ought’a say ouch!” – Voddie Baucham
Pastor Voddie Baucham pulls no punches when he confronts the anti-intellectualism of American Christianity. Nowhere is this more prevalent than in the Charismatic Movement, a movement I belonged to for over 20 years. It is my personal experience that theology, doctrine, church history, and apologetics are just something that most Charismatic men do not pursue. They love Jesus and read their Bibles. They actively and faithfully serve in their local churches but, when it comes to the serious study of theology and other disciplines, they fall short. Much of the blame falls on the leadership. These leaders constantly down-play the importance of doctrine and theology from the pulpit and promote subjective personal experiences as the genuine mark of a true believer. But orthopraxy (practice) apart from sound orthodoxy (belief) is nothing but idolatry. We cannot worship correctly, live correctly, or minister correctly, if we first do not believe correctly. It is hard for men to become passionate about theology and doctrine when week after week their leaders boast from the pulpit about the fact that they’ve never received formal training or attended seminary. This is usually followed by the statement “you don’t need seminary, all you need is the Holy Spirit”. It is this kind of mentality that produces happy dumb Christian men who are ignorant of the history, theology and doctrine of the very faith they claim to hold. After all, why spend all that time studying when you can just go to an altar-call and get zapped by the Spirit.
Here is an excellent article by a Pentecostal entitled Our Anti-Intellectual Heritage.