Speaking Various Languages

In every case I am aware of in the Bible when it speaks of speaking in tongues it is in reference to a known language and not some gibberish. Most people who promote and propagate speaking in tongues today are of the charismatic movement and it is always in gibberish and not a kn … More

Tongues

Paul continues his discussion of the subject of irregularities in the worship of the Corinthian church.  There was a self-indulgent spirit in the area of spiritual gifts that produced selfishness, disunity and apparent chaos in the assembly (12:7,25). Unfortunately, the members were grieving the Holy Spirit by the carnal ways in which they were using spiritual gifts. While Paul is about to deal with the entire subject of spiritual gifts, it is clear from the start that a special emphasis will be on only one of them, tongues. Of the sign gifts (prophesy, healing and tongues), most conservative Bible scholars say these have ceased, but others say they have not. Since it is very difficult to prove either way, this continues to be a debate to this day. Another issue concerning tongues is whether it was always a known language or sometimes an ecstatic speech. We know for sure that it refers to a known language in Acts. A study of the New Testament usage of glossa reveals the fact that it always refers to foreign languages and not some gibberish or unknown sounds.

Robert Gromacki, in his book on “The Modern Tongues Movement,” says, “Speaking in foreign languages which were not learned would certainly constitute a divine miracle; however, speaking in gibberish can easily be done by either a Christian or an unsaved person and has no objective standard by which it can be evaluated. Therefore it is not logical to assume that God would institute a miracle that men could duplicate through human simulations.” Warren Wiersbe, in his book “Be Wise,” page 123), says it is important to note that the believer is always in control of himself when the Holy Spirit is at work because Jesus Christ the Lord is in charge (14:32). Any so called “spirit manifestation” that robs a person on self-control is not of God; for “the fruit of the Spirit is.....self-control” (Gal. 5:22-23).

Application

I need to evaluate everything I do as to whether it is for God’s glory or my glory.

I Corinthians 12:1-11 (English Standard Version)


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