Pentecostals share a common belief that baptism in the Holy Spirit empowers Christians for service and holy living. There are over 700 distinct Pentecostal denominations worldwide, but many Pentecostals are non-denominational. Pentecostals hold diverse beliefs on a wide variety of social and doctrinal issues. Most Pentecostals' beliefs on marriage are in line with one or more of the major Pentecostal organizations.
Assemblies of God
The Assemblies of God (AG) maintain that marriage is a lifelong covenant between a man and a woman. The relationship between husband and wife reflects the relationship of Christ and His church. The AG believes that husbands and wives are to function as partners; however, they also believe the husband bears the responsibility of leadership in the home. The AG recognizes divorce and remarriage under circumstances such as infidelity or abandonment, but maintains that lifelong marriage to one spouse is the ideal. Those who have divorced and remarried may enjoy membership in a local church, but are not generally allowed to hold ministerial credentials.
United Pentecostal Church
The United Pentecostal Church International (UPCI) is the world's largest "oneness" Pentecostal organization. During their 2012 General Conference, the UPCI adopted a resolution affirming their belief that marriage as ordained by God involves one man and one woman joined together until parted by death. They are on record as officially opposing any attempts to redefine the traditional view of marriage and family. They further believe that marriage is the most important social institution ordained by God.
Church of God View on Marriage
The Church of God, headquartered in Cleveland, Tennessee, defines marriage as a lifelong spiritual union between a man and a woman. They emphasize the idea that the man is to be the head of the home. They also teach that the only acceptable reason for divorce is marital unfaithfulness. The Church of God permits remarriage of divorced persons, but only after they have been counseled on Biblical passages that deal with divorce and remarriage. They also affirm that choosing to forgo marriage is a viable alternative.
Church of God in Christ
The Church of God in Christ (COGIC) is the world's oldest Pentecostal denomination and the largest with a predominantly African-American constituency. According to the official statement of their president, they believe that marriage serves to unite a man and a woman for the purpose of facing the challenges of life. They further believe that marriage sanctifies sexual involvement, authorizes the bearing of children and provides a protective environment for raising children.
Other Pentecostal Views on Marriage
Most Pentecostal denominations agree that marriage is a lifelong relationship between a man and a woman, sanctified by God. Different Pentecostal groups have widely varying views on related subjects such as divorce, remarriage and family dynamics within a marriage. Some Pentecostals disagree with some of their church's teachings on marriage. Most Pentecostal churches teach their congregants that they should love and show grace towards those who disagree with their views of marriage.
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