Apologetics · Christian Responsibilities

SPEAKING IN TONGUES; a quick study

I want to ask you a serious question.  What makes more sense to you? (based on your knowledge of the Holy Spirit and God):

Would the Holy Spirit allow a child of God to speak in tongues (another language, foreign to them) to people where the language is NOT understood….

Or would the HS speak of the wondrous things of God to people who speak a language where it COULD be understood?

For example – imagine you’re in an English only speaking church.  Do we really believe the Lord would give a message to a whole congregation in say – Italian?  Or any language where the message could not be understood?

Does God just like to “show off” His skills, or is it a lie when it cannot be interpreted?

This subject came up today with a Facebook friend that I THOUGHT had sound doctrine under her belt.  She shared a post and boldly, and brazenly defended it, calling me a liar, wouldn’t read the scripture that pointed out what I was trying to tell her plainly, basically calling the scripture I shared with her unworthy, and then proceeded to block me.  Just like that – POOF!  Gone.

This is not a follower of Jesus folks…..this is a right fighting, prideful, self-righteous, refusing-to-accept-sound-doctrine fool that Jesus may just spew out of His mouth.  She needs serious prayer.

2 Timothy 4:  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

I know this tongues thing is a VERY controversial subject and the scriptures I’m going to share about it are something most will skip right over….when they really shouldn’t because it’s KEY to understanding the context in full, and, HOW we are to understand and discern speaking in tongues.

Note:  I’m not saying people CANNOT  or DO NOT speak in tongues….Heaven forbid I deny God any power He chooses among His children.  What I AM saying is that people need to know how to DISCERN what is REALLY speaking in tongues, what is fake babbling, and what is from Satan.

My argument with this FB friend was:  based on scripture, the foreign language – when spoken amidst others – MUST be understood by at least one hearing it; interpreted so to speak by someone in the room, based on Acts 2.  These passages are after the Holy Spirit entered the disciples and the people around them heard them speaking in tongues as a witness to them:

Acts 2:  5 And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven. And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language. Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born? Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11 Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” 12 So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?”

Here, scripture mentions approximately 17 different groups of people who all spoke different languages than the disciples – who all witnessed these GREEK speaking disciples speak in tongues in all the witnesses foreign languages.  We know this because in vs. 11, the witnesses mention hearing about the “wonderful works of God”.  This could not be understood had it not been spoken in their language.  It was INTERPRET-able by those in the area who HEARD it.

Her argument was that speaking in tongues doesn’t need to be interpreted based on 1 Corinthians 14:2;

For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.

First, her error in pulling this solitary verse was that she’s not getting the message in CONTEXT.  (I see this SO OFTEN it makes me sick).  1 Corinthians 2 talks greatly about our uttering(s) to the Lord that don’t always come in words from our spirit IN PRIVATE, but the Holy Spirit can discern what we are praying and get the right message to the Lord.

Another problem with her quoting the above verse is there is also a translation problem within that verse.  Instead of the verse reading as the above, it should read (based on proper translation):  “….for no one HEARS him, however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.”  The NKJV states “UNDERSTANDS” when it’s supposed to say “HEARS”:

Strong’s G191 – akouō

(BLUE LETTER BIBLE TRANSLATION COUNT)  The KJV translates Strong’s G191 in the following manner:

hear (418x), hearken (6x), give audience (3x), hearer (2x).

And following is an example of the above Strong’s word used in another verse, including the word “understand” in it, but showing they are not the same word:

Mat 13:15
For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing,(G191)  and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear (G191) with their ears, and should understand (G4920) with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

Scripture has so much more depth when you do proper studies, doesn’t it?

Once again, we see here another case of a lack of study, too much pride, and too little love for God, His Word, or His children.  I’m sad she blocked me but I will pray for her anyhow.

I wrote a blog quite some time ago called A WORKMAN APPROVED BY GOD.  You see, I have this rule:  it’s called the 20/20 rule.  When studying scripture, we must read 20 verses before AND after the verse in question to help us gain insight to its context.  I take it further than that by reading up on other (well respected) teachers’ commentaries, as well as studying the words that have been translated/transliterated for their accuracy.  Despite what we may all think, the many different translations of scripture into English are not all correct – not even the King James Version; yes I have found word errors in there too.  The newer translations are horrid in their “accuracy”.  Seems they get worse every time a new one comes out.

You can see just from my example above how it works.  The word “understands” is a far cry from “hears”.  This is why we MUST show ourselves workmen approved by God.

2 Timothy 2:15
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

TRUTH is not our own interpretation….we must pray and study to find that truth, and to KNOW the God we claim to worship, lest we create a different one and prop that god up for ourselves (idolatry).

Peace to you all, today and every day.

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