A side issue in the Kim Davis saga is that she is described as being an Apostolic Christian, one of the many splinter groups in Christianity that differ over matters of obscure doctrine and practice. I had not heard of this group before but this article explains who they are and what they stand for.
Without getting too complicated, Apostolic Pentecostals believe “Father,” “Son” and “Holy Spirit” aren’t three distinct persons, but three different titles for one person: Jesus.
The group also believes you must speak in tongues to be saved, a practice known as glossolalia, which involves uttering a foreign language previously unknown to the speaker.
Vinson Synan, a professor of church history at Regent University in Virginia and an expert on Pentecostalism, estimates there are 15 to 20 million Pentecostals in the United States; of those, maybe 1 million are Apostolic Pentecostals. Apostolic Pentecostals claim to have a total 25 million members worldwide, he said.
Apostolic Pentecostals are the strictest of all the Pentecostal groups, according to Synan. Like most Pentecostals, they do not use alcohol or tobacco. They generally don’t watch TV or movies either. Women who are Apostolic Pentecostals also wear long dresses, and they don’t cut their hair or wear makeup. It’s called “external holiness,” he said, and it’s meant to separate its followers from the rest of the world in the way they look and act — although, he noted, men who are Apostolic Pentecostals look “like everybody else.”
Meanwhile, according to an ABC News/ Washington Post poll released yesterday, most people don’t agree with what Davis did.
In general, 74 percent in this ABC News/Washington Post poll say that when a conflict arises, the need to treat everyone equally under the law is more important than someone’s religious beliefs. In the specific case at hand, 63 percent say Davis, of Rowan County, Kentucky, should be required to issue marriage licenses despite her religious objections.
Among those who say Davis should be required to issue the licenses, 72 percent also favor the decision by U.S. District Judge David Bunning to jail her. That’s less than a majority of the public overall, however: Forty-five percent both say she should have to issue the licenses and support her jailing; 16 percent agree she should have to issue the licenses but oppose her being jailed; and 33 percent oppose her having to issue the licenses in the first place.
The only subgroups in which a majority supports her consists of evangelical white Protestants (61%) and strong conservatives (66%).
But not only is Davis losing in the court of public opinion, she keeps losing in actual courts of law as well. Yesterday brought the latest of such defeats but they have filed other lawsuits.
At this point, it is not clear what she and her lawyers hope to achieve with their blizzard of lawsuits, other than try and keep themselves in the public eye.