There is no single founder for Pentecostalism, however the movement through the Christian community began in the early 1900s. In the early beginning of the Pentecostal movement many people thought they were living in the last days of the second coming of Christ. They thought they were outsiders and were meant to prepare for Christ’s coming. This belief is no longer shared however between the 2.3 million Pentecostals today.
Pentecostalism is a Christian denomination meaning they share many of the same views as some of the other 3,000 Christian denominations. They believe in a spiritual presence or holy spirit known as God. They get their teachings from the Bible like other Christian denominations as well. They believe in a Heaven for the people who worship God and do good in this World, they also believe in Hell for people who do evil in this World and do not worship God. They believe and follow the ten commandments and believe that breaking them is a sin. They also believe that God created the Universe and everything seen and unseen and that you can talk to him through prayer.
A defining feature of Pentecostalism however is their belief in Glossolalia, or the ability to speak in tongues. What this means is when a Pentecostal believer is in a spiritual experience they may speak unintelligible mumbles or speak in an ancient language previously unknown to them. The function of this within the Church is to one, that baptism is the Holy Spirit and two, that when speaking, “in tongues,” it is seen as a prophetic utterance of reassurance to the congregation. It used to be believed that when speaking in tongues you were speaking an unknown human language such as Spanish or French. Now however it is believed by modern day Pentecostals that when speaking in tongues you speak in supernatural or Holy languages.
One thing that sets them apart from other Christians is that they do not believe in the trinity. The trinity is that God is made of three persons: The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit. They believe that God is a unity, a spirit who has manifested himself into three roles, such as a person who plays the roles of the father, the son, and holy spirit. There is usually a lot of misunderstanding between other Christian denominations and Pentecostalism when it comes to this matter, since it can be very confusing.
They believe in Baptizing in the name of Jesus Christ only. This can cause conflicts with other Christian denominations who baptize in the name of the Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit but, as you remember Pentecostals don’t believe in this trinity. they also believe that anyone not baptized in the name of Jesus Christ will not be allowed to go to Heaven, with the alternate being eternal damnation in Hell.
Pentecostals believe that Spiritual Healing, or a group prayer to God to heal someone, is possible. It is still practiced by many Pentecostals today. They also practice Foot washing in emulation of Jesus and his followers. There used to be many strict beliefs on what you could wear, do, and say in the pentecostal community. Some of these have been abandoned however some stuck around. Members are forbidden to join the Masonic Order and any other secret group. There used to be strict dress codes for women but they have been abandoned. There also used to be a strict belief of no T.V. or and sort of video as it could fill your mind with sins, this however has been abandoned as well.