Pentecostals get a bad rap from being associated with Sarah Palin, for they represent much better than she brings. Knowing them and having seen their ways up close, it seems Palin does not reflect the better side of their faith.
Pentecostal women wear their hair long, or pulled upon their heads. They usually dress in skirts or dresses, citing Paul’s directives in the New Testament that women should be modest in their dress and clearly differentiate themselves from men.
Palin wears form-fitting, bright-colored sexy, clothes and style, lots of makeup, jewelry and the rest of female fun. The modesty of Pentecostals is not reflected in her dress. Indeed her lack modesty in acquisitions, taking the clothes given her by the Republican party following the Presidential election of 2008, is also not reflective of the Pentecostal ways.
Dress is one thing; attitude another. Modesty of speech is commanded to those of fundamental beliefs, including not bearing false witness as well. Although many fall short of that dictum, just as folks of other faiths do as well, political condemnations are frowned upon in church.
Pentecostals don’t believe in abortion, same-sex marriage or sex outside of marriage, so are fundamental in social beliefs, like Palin. The difference is the political condemnations are not supposed to take place in church, where religion and politics remain separate in discussions. The cultish groups within these denominations can present quite extreme views, but there are those in every faith where religious bigotry remains.
The Assemblies of God in 1914 broke from the mainstream of Pentecostals in order to exclude blacks from their churches. Since then that practice has changed. Palin proclaims membership in this particular group, and without close relationships with African Americans racial reconciliation is not part of her foremost agenda. She was “saved” in the Pentecostal Church at the age of 11 in Alaska, according to researched reports.
While Pentecostals have various denomination splits, the fundamentals of their faith remain guidance of the Holy Spirit and even the speaking in tongues. This means revelation continues to individual members through encounters with the divine. To do this means the heart is open so the spirit enters in. The heart is opened up with love, not anger as its door.
Sarah Palin’s dress, decorum and readiness to condemn for the very sake of condemnation, as well as the immodest behavior of her children both on Facebook and Dancing with the Stars, are at odds with Pentecostal attitudes and way of life as well. Exceptions there are certainly, and wild and wooly ways from the more expressive Pentecostal groups. On the other hand, fundamental folk who stay true to simple ways of faith are apt to look askance at flagrant displays of pride and power and religion used to promote one’s self.
The Pentecostal Group of Denominations
Sarah Palin Religious Background
Does Sarah Palin Have a Pentecostal Problem?