A Reader wrote: The act of speaking in tongues is not the evidence of being filled with the Holy Spirit.  However it is the evidence of one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  God gives to whom He chooses. and we cannot deny His power

My Answer:

Dear ?,
We are not dealing with God's ability to do or not to do. He is unlimited in what He can do.  We cannot tell Him what to do or what not to do.  However, we cannot expect God to do what He has not promised.  There is a movement today that demands God to do this or that and that makes God not our Sovereign, but our Servant. This is absolutely wrong.  We have no creative powers and cannot speak things into being. I believe if I went to a foreign country and God wanted me to speak to a people that I did not know their language He could enable me to do it.  The reason I am saying this is that God can do what is necessary for the time at hand; but He does not entertain us with what we want Him to do, but do not need.

This is what the Bible says about the gift of tongues. They were sign gifts given to the 11 apostles that begin preaching without the New Testament. Read it in Mark 16:15. . . .  They were only used three times in the Book of Acts.

The word of the Lord is perfect Ps. 19:7  In 1 Cor. 13: 8--10 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.  But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.

That which is perfect is neuter in gender. It refers to the complete revelation of God in the New Testament.  When it would come the three gifts mentioned would cease.  Knowledge was intuitive, given directly from God.  Prophesy was only given by a direct revelation from God. Tongues were given miraculously and was to confirm an unconfirmed word at the time. 

These evidently cease as sign gifts because they were no longer needed after the Book of Revelation was written.

I trust this helps and that you understand that I am in no way doubting God's ability to do what He has promised or whatever is needed to promote His purposes.

Love in Christ,

Harold


All comments and questions to: Harold Smith

Updated March 16th, 2014 by Sandra Felix