Posted by: missionventureministries | June 6, 2019

A BIBLICAL UNDERSTANDING ABOUT SPEAKING IN TONGUES – Acts 2:11

“We hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” (Acts 2:11)

Let us start by first clarifying that the gift of speaking in tongues in the New Testament occurred 2000 years ago when a Christian was given the gift by the Holy Spirit to speak a language he did not know in order to teach someone the gospel of Jesus Christ, (1 Corinthians 14:6).

The gift of tongues was present for only a while, because the Scripture tells us that “as for tongues, they will cease” (1 Corinthians 13:8). However, if the gift of speaking in tongues were active in the church today, it would be performed in agreement with Scripture. It would be a real and intelligible language (1 Corinthians 14:10). It would be for the purpose of communicating God’s Word to a person of another language (Acts 2:6–12), and it would be done “in a fitting and orderly way” (1 Corinthians 14:40), “for God is not a God of disorder but of peace—as in all the congregations of the Lord’s people” (1 Corinthians 14:33). 

Sadly, due to pride, like in the church of Corinth, a phenomenon referred to glossolalia or “ecstatic utterances,” which means making unintelligible sounds while in a state of ecstasy, is occurring in a number of churches today.  

Please understand that glossolalia is babbling in a nonexistent language, while xenoglossia is a supernatural ability to speak fluently a language the speaker has never learned. In contrast to speaking a real language, studies have shown that glossolalia is a learned behavior.  

There are basically two aspects to glossolalia. First, it equates to making ecstatic sounds, which practically everyone is able to do or mimic, and is an easy learned behavior. The other aspect of glossolalia is ecstasy or the demonstration of trance-like elation, which is very dangerous. Sadly many have been taught and believe that the chief purpose of the gift of speaking in unintelligible ecstasy or glossolalia is to manifest the Holy Spirit who is being poured out upon them just as it happened on the day of Pentecost. To think in this way is to slap the face of Jesus who sent us the Holy Spirit to guide us. Instead some choose to mock Him with this kind of performance; or maybe they do not realize that they are being dominated by a demon. 

Please read the Scriptures for yourself and do not be mislead by so many false prophets of today, remember Jesus warned us of them in (Matthew 7:15; Matthew 24:24). 

We receive the Holy Spirit through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. When we believe that He died for our sins and that He was raised from the dead, at that moment we are born again. At that same moment we receive the Holy Spirit “For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body” (1Corinthians 12:13). 

Simply put, there is a tremendous difference between what happened in Acts 2 and the practice of glossolalia in the church of Corinth and many churches today. 

Let me explain that glossolalia is a phenomenon of psychiatry and language studies, generally linked to situations of religious fervor, in which the individual believes to express himself in a language unknown to him, and non-existent, but which he considers to be of divine origin; however, these speeches are characterized by repetition of the sound chain, with no systematic meaning and still with rare predictable language units, and the speaker is unable to repeat any of the pronouncements already pronounced, unless they were practiced beforehand by the desire to speak in an unknown languages. 

Paul made it perfectly clear that the chief purpose of the gift of speaking in tongues (understandable languages) was to be a sign for those who did not believe and to spread the good news, the gospel of Christ with others (1 Corinthians 14:19, 22). You don’t do this with ecstatic speech, yelling, confusion and falling on the floor like a drunken person out of their mind.

Remember that it is dangerous to seek something that God is not giving, because you’re wide open to Satan’s counterfeit. Research has been completed where 50 supposed tongue speakers were speaking in unknown tongues, the interviewers demanded that the speakers identify themselves; 95% of the speakers were identified as a demon manifesting itself, the other 5% were mentally unstable people.

In Corinth, the counterfeit practices of heathenism had taken over the church. Sadly, the same thing is happening today. Ecstatic, feeling-oriented experiences are never associated in the New Testament with the true work of the Holy Spirit, never! Paul says: “But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way” (1 Corinthians 14:40).  It’s not the Holy Spirit’s way to have a worship service where everybody jumps up and starts praying in unknown tongues, rolling on the floor, laughing uncontrollably, barking like dogs and having a total chaotic state. Beware; this kind of behavior is nothing more than the confusion of paganism that has engulfed the church and Satan and his demons are rejoicing over this kind of performance.

When we read the Bible, it offers no evidence that Jesus ever spoke in tongues. If Christ were going to speak in tongues, it would have been reasonable by the logic of some of today’s false teachers, for Him to do so at His baptism when “the Holy Spirit descended on Him like a dove” (Mark 1:10). However, as we continue reading verse 11, the Father spoke from heaven in words that all could understand, and we have no record of Jesus ever speaking in tongues.

We do however have record of Jesus speaking in Aramaic, the common language spoken in Israel at that time (Mark 5:41 and Acts 26:14), besides His native language of Hebrew.  

The first occurrence of the true speaking in tongues occurred on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2:1-4. When this happened, the apostles went out and shared the gospel with the crowds, speaking to them in their own language: “We hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” (Acts 2:11). The Greek word translated tongues literally means “languages.”

According to the apostle Paul, and in agreement with the tongues described in Acts, speaking in understandable tongues is valuable to the one hearing God’s message in his or her own language, but it is useless to everyone else unless it is interpreted or translated.

The apostle Paul who spoke several languages explained it this way: “But in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue” (1 Corinthians 14:19). Meaning, if he spoke, Latin, Greek, Aramaic and Hebrew to name a few, why would he speak Hebrew to his Latin speaking audience in Rome? 

Mission Venture Ministries has been gifted by God to teach, interpret and translate in more than one language. So to explain further, if you would read our weekly post in a language other than the one you understand what good would it do? It would just be gibberish and you wouldn’t gain anything from it.

Remember, that if the gift of speaking in tongues were active in the church today, it would be performed in agreement with Scripture. It would be a real and intelligible language because: “Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air. Undoubtedly there are all sorts of languages in the world, yet none of them is without meaning. If then I do not grasp the meaning of what someone is saying, I am a foreigner to the speaker, and the speaker is a foreigner to me” (1 Corinthians 14:9-11).

God most definitely can give a person the gift of learning to speak in different languages to enable him or her to communicate with others and to share the gospel.

Just imagine how much more productive missionaries could be if they did not have to go to school to learn a foreign language, and were instantly able to speak to people in their own language. However, today the speaking in tongues does not occur in the manner it did in the New Testament, despite the fact that it would be immensely useful if it were so.

As we have learned so far, the gift of tongues at the time of the apostles was the supernatural ability to speak a foreign language that the speaker had never learned. We see this gift in use in Acts 2:4–12, as the Jews in Jerusalem heard the gospel preached in a wide variety of languages.  

The goal was that all could understand and benefit from the truth being spoken. According to the apostle Paul, and in agreement with the tongues described in Acts, the gift of tongues was meant to communicate God’s message directly to another person in his or her native language. Of course, if those present could not understand the language being spoken, the tongues were useless—and that’s what made the interpreter, necessary; because, the goal was the edification of the church (1 Corinthians 14:5).

One of the problems in the Corinthian church was that people who spoke gibberish interrupted during the service, drawing attention to themselves, but their words made no sense because no one could understand them. This was very frightening, presumptuous and disrupting to those that were there to learn. 

Paul told the Corinthians that, if two or three real tongues-speakers wanted to speak in a meeting, then a spiritually gifted interpreter must also be present. In fact, “if there is no interpreter, the speaker should keep quiet in the church and speak to himself and to God” (1 Corinthians 14:28). 

It is unfortunate that many today see “glossolalia or ecstatic utterances” as a form of supernatural discourse that comes from God, when it is a lie of the enemy and an offense to God.

Many church goers have been taught that a person has to learn to speak in tongues to prove that they are really saved. Then, after studying Paul’s letters and the scriptural teaching concerning the cessation of the gift of tongues, they ask, “What should I do now?” Simply: Stop! Stop babbling because this does not come from the Holy Spirit.

There are many warnings in the Bible, and this is one of them that gives us a lot to think about. In Matthew 7:22-23 Jesus said: “Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

They were falsely prophesying in Jesus’ name, they had not cast out demons, because demons do not cast out demons and they were lying when they claimed to have done miracles in His name. That is why it is so important that our faith is based on the Word of God and that we only do the will of the Father who is in heaven.

Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

Matthew 5:8

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Responses

  1. “8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, hey will be stilled;

    ————> t where there is knowledge, it will pass away. <————9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Has knowledge already passed away too?

    No. It has not. THESE times are NOT yet.

    Respectfully- your personal view seems a bit angry and it carried over to your use of scripture.

    • These do not end until we are in heaven-


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