[CS-FSLUG] Spiritual Gifts - was: Prayer Request

Warren Sanders warren at sandersonline.org
Wed Jul 26 12:49:01 CDT 2006

Hash: SHA1

Nathan T. wrote:
> I prayed for him, but I seldom admit to praying because I don't want
> my parents to think all those years of forcing me to go to church
> didn't end in vain. Who knows what they'll drag me off to next. Right
> now we're attending a Pentecostal church, and they're just too liberal
> for me: the convulsions, praying in tongues, and this one lady who
> makes strange noises while doing what looks like a karate chop just
> weirds me out. I'm used to a much more conservative church, but here
> there aren't too many viable options for us: it's either this church,
> or the one that used to be a barn and still smells like manure.
I found your observation humorous Nathan.  :-D  Just remember there is
a church for every one of us; that is why so many flavors of
Christianity.  I too prefer a more conservative environment.  I attend
a Four Square church which is of Pentecostal roots and even within our
region the level of charisma greatly differs.  IMHO, those
charismatics' may not be appealing to new seekers in Christ and tends
to put the focus on themselves (self edification); not the example you
want display.  They may only be beneficial to mature believers.  My
church is no stranger to modern changes.  In the six years attending,
we have witnessed more modernisation than a typical liturgical church
may see in twenty year period!  And it is all in an effort to win more
younger folks to Christ.

About speaking in tongues, here is what I believe the Bible says about
such gifts:

    Follow the way of love and eagerly desire spiritual gifts,
    especially the gift of prophecy. For anyone who speaks in a tongue
    does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him;
    he utters mysteries with his spirit. But everyone who prophesies
    speaks to men for their strengthening, encouragement and comfort.
    He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies
    edifies the church. I would like every one of you to speak in
    tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. He who prophesies
    is greater than one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets,
    so that the church may be edified. 1 Corinthians 14:1-5

    Again, if the trumpet does not sound a clear call, who will get
    ready for battle? So it is with you. 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. 1 Corinthians 14:8-10

    So it is with you. Since you are eager to have spiritual gifts,
    try to excel in gifts that build up the church.

    For this reason anyone who speaks in a tongue should pray that he
    may interpret what he says. For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit
    prays, but my mind is unfruitful. 1 Corinthians 14:12-14

However, contrary to what I said about who speaking in tongues around
there is this part I am confused with:

     In the Law it is written:
       "Through men of strange tongues
          and through the lips of foreigners
       I will speak to this people,
          but even then they will not listen to me," says the Lord.

     Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers;
    prophecy, however, is for believers, not for unbelievers. So if
    the whole church comes together and everyone speaks in tongues,
    and some who do not understand or some unbelievers come in, will
    they not say that you are out of your mind? 1 Corinthians 14:21-23

I suppose if the tongue spoken is a language such as a foreign
language well known in parts of our world... then yes I can see how
this would be effective for the non-believer to better know Christ.

    What then shall we say, brothers? When you come together, everyone
    has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an
    interpretation. All of these must be done for the strengthening of
    the church. If anyone speaks in a tongue, two?or at the most
    three?should speak, one at a time, and someone must interpret. If
    there is no interpreter, the speaker should keep quiet in the
    church and speak to himself and God. 1 Corinthians 14:26-28

    Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid
    speaking in tongues. But everything should be done in a fitting
    and orderly way. 1 Corinthians 14:39-40

The first time I ever heard someone speaking in a tongue was when a
pastor gave us an example of his own tongue.  Whether he knew what he
was saying or not I do not, but IMHO, I think if it's an
unintelligible tongue, then you should whisper.  In my understanding,
this gift is like an intercessor for you while praying when your own
words may need a fuller meaning.  This I truly need as I tend to
ramble a lot!  I need to listen more.  Any others have something else
to add or correct?

- --
Warren Sanders
Version: GnuPG v1.4.4 (GNU/Linux)
Comment: Using GnuPG with Mozilla - http://enigmail.mozdev.org


More information about the Christiansource mailing list