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AFRREV IJAH: An International Journal of Arts and Humanities

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Iconolatry and Pentecostal Christianity: The Nigerian Experience

John Okwudiri Obineche

Abstract


This work “iconolatry and the African Christianity: the Nigerian experience”, examines the resurgence of the veneration and otherwise the worship of icons and symbols that shook the foundation of the early church history now in Nigerian Christianity. It could be recalled that iconolatry as the worship of images or icons, was one of the major issues in Christian history that led to the iconoclastic controversy in the 8th century of Christianity (c725 to 787). More so, iconolatry was one of the burning issues in the 16th century protestant reformation that vehemently criticized the Roman Catholic Church for idolatry. From the historical perspective of the contemporary trend in African Christianity, especially in Nigeria, this work observed that image worship or veneration has taken a center stage in the beliefs and practices of the entire spectrum of faith in Nigerian Christianity, especially the new Christian religious movements here represented by the Pentecostals. This paper is therefore poised to lead the Nigerian church (Christianity) to cast a retrospective look at Christian history to guide against the obvious resurgent of iconolatry for which the church suffered a great deal in history.

Key Words: Iconolatry, African Christianity, Pentecostal, Pentecostalism, Catholicism, Idolatry, Nigeria, Iconography




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