This is Dreamwalker1960. As a reminder you can read the transcripts of all my podcasts at dreamwalker1960.com. You can use most podcast platforms if you wish to listen. All you need do is do a search for Dreamwalker1960.
There is a need to address an understanding of 1 Corinthians 14.
Why seek understanding of this chapter in the Bible?
I have come across those that have turned this teaching into a false doctrine that is leading many not into salvation, but damnation.
An additional clarifier: I have spoken in tongues when I was born again in 1984. I felt the pouring of the Holy Spirit fill me and I then began to speak in this divine language that very moment. Yet I did not nor do I do as those that have turned this into a false teaching.
So now let us begin this study:
1 Corinthians 14:1-2 NKJV – Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. 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.
“For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God.”
I centered in on this part for starts for a reason. When speaking in tongues it is a direct line of commination with God, which in essence is a type of prayer. So how are we taught by Christ to pray? I did a full podcast on this teaching in Podcast #103, but to summarize we are not to pray in public. Therefore, speaking in tongues should also be done in private.
Matthew 6:5-8 NKJV – “And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
However, as shown here in 1 Corinthians 14 there is an exception. That of giving “prophecy.” As we go through this chapter we will see that there are ground rules required to give true verification that what is being given is truly from and for God. But that will be seen later so let us continue:
1 Corinthians 14:3-5 NKJV – But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men. He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church. I wish you all spoke with tongues, but even more that you prophesied; for he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks with tongues, unless indeed he interprets, that the church may receive edification.
Here is the next important part of the teaching:
“I wish you all spoke with tongues.”
This means that we should seek to speak in tongues, but not all do. In the false doctrine being taught they state that ALL must speak in tongues. This is what labels this false teaching as just that: false. For look at this from the Bible about spiritual gifts:
1 Corinthians 12:1-11 NKJV – Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant: You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led. Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit. There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.
Now here is another point that needs to be made, well actually two but we will address each in order:
“To another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.”
the first of the two points is the statement “different kinds of tongues” to get some insight into that we must look to Pentecost:
Acts 2:1-7 NKJV – When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. 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?
Mainly we see that speaking in tongues can be in languages that are spoken throughout the world, yet in normal circumstances the person speaking it has no knowledge of the language they speak when led by the Holy Spirit.
Next, we need to look at the word in the Greek:
1 Corinthians 14:2 KJV – For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.
Unknown tongue – G1100 – glossa – the tongue, by implication a language
a – language – a system of communication consisting of sounds, words, and grammar
Simple put truly speaking in the “unknown” tongue is still an actual language. Comprising of words and sentences.
I attendant a “church” that emphasized the need to speak in “tongues.” I went three times and heard the exact same sounds being made each and every time. Each time I heard it the more and more uneasy I felt.
In my private prayer life, where time to time I enter into speaking in tongues. It is usually different every time. Not always, but usually, for I do not have the same issues pressing upon me. Also, I can tell there are complete words and sentences being spoken.
the second point that is if there is prophecy it must have an interpretation. For without interpretation those present are not edified.
what does it mean to edify?
edifying – G3619 – oikodomé – confirmation, spiritual advancement
It is a confirmed message that help those present come closer to God. To be “confirmed” means it must work within the teaching that were given to all by Jesus Christ.
An example: if a message says you will become more finically solid soon. This is not a confirmed message for Christ teaches this:
Luke 16:13-15 NKJV – “No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” Now the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, also heard all these things, and they derided Him. And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God.
Since seeking after wealth is seen as an abomination in the sight of God this would be a false interpretation and so is not confirmed, nor is it truly edifying.
In the verses that follow we are given why it is important that we seek to have interpretation if tongues are spoken:
1 Corinthians 14:6-19 NKJV – But now, brethren, if I come to you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you unless I speak to you either by revelation, by knowledge, by prophesying, or by teaching? Even things without life, whether flute or harp, when they make a sound, unless they make a distinction in the sounds, how will it be known what is piped or played? For if the trumpet makes an uncertain sound, who will prepare for battle? So likewise you, unless you utter by the tongue words easy to understand, how will it be known what is spoken? For you will be speaking into the air. There are, it may be, so many kinds of languages in the world, and none of them is without significance. Therefore, if I do not know the meaning of the language, I shall be a foreigner to him who speaks, and he who speaks will be a foreigner to me. Even so you, since you are zealous for spiritual gifts, let it be for the edification of the church that you seek to excel. Therefore let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret. For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful. What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding. Otherwise, if you bless with the spirit, how will he who occupies the place of the uninformed say “Amen” at your giving of thanks, since he does not understand what you say? For you indeed give thanks well, but the other is not edified. I thank my God I speak with tongues more than you all; yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.
Who is speaking in tongue is important to?
1 Corinthians 14:20-25 NKJV – Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be mature. In the law it is written: “WITH MEN OF OTHER TONGUES AND OTHER LIPS I WILL SPEAK TO THIS PEOPLE; AND YET, FOR ALL THAT, THEY WILL NOT HEAR ME,” says the Lord. Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophesying is not for unbelievers but for those who believe. Therefore if the whole church comes together in one place, and all speak with tongues, and there come in those who are uninformed or unbelievers, will they not say that you are out of your mind? But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an uninformed person comes in, he is convinced by all, he is convicted by all. And thus the secrets of his heart are revealed; and so, falling down on his face, he will worship God and report that God is truly among you.
This also emphasizes that speaking in tongues in public gets no true edification. Yet true prophecy, with true interpretation can cause someone coming into to a place receiving true prophecy will in most likelihood repent.
This also shows that true prophecy as shown earlier will cause spiritual growth. Therefore if people interpreting do not give a message of conviction. Are they truly giving something inspired by the Holy Spirit?
1 Corinthians 14:26-30 NKJV – How is it then, brethren? Whenever you come together, each of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification. If anyone speaks in a tongue, let there be two or at the most three, each in turn, and let one interpret. But if there is no interpreter, let him keep silent in church, and let him speak to himself and to God. Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge. But if anything is revealed to another who sits by, let the first keep silent.
These verses show how prophecy and interpretation are to work in a gathering of people. It is shown that it will not always be the same person every single time. That there must be more than one to and at the maximum three that speak in prophecy. If this criteria is not met we are to keep it to ourselves and not share it with others. We are to be silent.
For if it does not cause those listening to grow closer to God. It is not an edifying message. A truly “edifying” message may cause some to feel conviction. It may cause others to repent of their sins. It may cause others to accept Christ as their Savior. It will not make you feel good or make you think you are living right with God if you are going against the teachings given by Christ and His disciples in the New Testament. For true edification causes people to grow closer to Christ and become a true reflection of He who died upon the cross for our sins.
We are nearly out of time to commit ourselves to Jesus Christ and seek to become His true servants. Soon the Tribulation will begin and those that missed the first calling will have to suffer the torment and tortures of true and complete persecution at the hands of those that take the mark of Satan. Refuse the mark even if it means you must face starvation and die in pain. It is best to die this death than to face all eternity in the eternal and second death that is yet to be fully revealed. For Christ is quickly returning and only those that truly choose the difficult path will find eternal life.