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Spirit Got Your Tongue 1 Cor.14

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                   SPIRIT GOT YOUR TONGUE?

1 COR.14:1-36

INTRODUCTION: (EX: NEW YEARS EVE 1900 BETHEL BIBLE COLLEGE IN TOPEKA, KX STUDENT AGNES OZMAN ASKED DIRECTOR TO LAY HANDS ON HER HEAD & PRAY SHE RECEIVE BAPTISM OF HOLY SPIRIT. WHEN HE DID SHE SPOKE FLUENTLY IN SYLLABLES WHICH NO ONE UNDERSTOOD. THIS IS MARKED AS BEG. OF MODERN PENTECOSTAL MOVEMENT—SPREAD TO L.A. IN THE AZUSA MISSION WHICH BECAME CENTER OF PENTECOSTALISM FOR YRS.)  SPEAKING IN STRANGE WORDS/SOUNDS WAS COMMON IN GRK/ROMAN CULTS OF PAULS DAY. THERE WAS BELIEF SPIRIT LEFT BODY & COMMUNED WITH GOD/GODDESS (LANGUAGE OF GODS)—THE SPIRIT (DEMON) TOOK OVER SPEECH & MIND LEFT. THE COR. WERE INFLUENCED BY THESE EXPERIENCES—THERE WAS MUCH EMOTIONALISM/SELFISHNESS WITH EACH DOING THEIR OWN THING AT SAME TIME. PAUL WROTE TO GET THEM UNDER CONTROL OF HOLY SPIRIT. HIS MAIN CONCERN IS CHURCH BE BUILT UP (EDIFIED—V.4,5,12,26)

I.                  DESIRE GIFTS THAT BUILD UP THE CHURCH (V.1-5)

PURSUE (CHASE AFTER) LOVE—DESIRE GIFTS BUT NOT FOR SELFISH REASONS OR TO GET ATTENTION OR APPEAR MORE SPIRITUAL. GIFTS MINISTER TO THE BODY.  PROPHECY (DECLARING GODS WORD) IS BEST. IT BUILDS UP—IT ENCOURAGES (SAME WORD USED TO DESCRIBE HOLY SPIRIT) IT INSPIRES US TO SPEAK WORDS TO WITNESS—IT COMFORTS—CALMS FEARS & HELPS US STAND UP UNDER PRESSURE.  PAUL SAID THERE WERE “VARIOUS KINDS OF “TONGUES” (LANGUAGES) (12:10)—THE WORDS GENERALLY MEANS TO SPEAK IN LANGUAGE YOU NEVER LEARNED. JESUS NEVER SPOKE IN ECSATIC SPEECH NOR ENCOURAGED ANYONE ELSE TO DO IT—HE DID WARN ABOUT VAIN REPITIONS AS PAGAN USED (MATT. 6:7)—THERE WAS TENDENCY IN COR. FOCUS ON THE SPECTACULAR—“MYSTERIES” REFERS TO PAGAN MYSTERY RELIGIONS—IT APPEARS THIS IS DONE “BY HIS OWN SPIRIT” (V.2). BUT IT ALSO SEEMS THOSE WHO HAD THIS GIFT WERE GETTING PROUD RATHER THAN USING IT IN HUMILITY. GIFTS WERE TO MINISTER FOR GOD NOT TO GOD OR FOR SELF. PAUL SAID IF SPIRIT CHOSE TO GIVE YOU ALL GIFT OF “TONGUES”—HE WOULD BE HAPPY!  BUT WITH THAT GIFT THERE IS TO BE AN INTERPRETATION (TRANSLATION)—IT NEEDS TO MAKE SENSE TO BUILD UP CHURCH.

II.                THE GIFT OF TONGUES (LANGUAGES) IS LIMITED (V.6-19)---

A.   LIMITED IN UNDERSTANDING (V.6-12)—GIFTS ARE TO BE HELPFUL/UNDERSTOOD.  SATAN LOVES TO COUNTERFEIT—SOME INTERPRETATION MAY BE FALSE (WE MUST DISCERN SPIRITS)—ALSO PEOPLE ARE DRAWN TO UNUSUAL/SPECTACULAR.  PAUL POINTED OUT INSTRUMENTS MUST MAKE INTELLIGENT/HARMONIOUS SOUND (NOT JUST NOISE)—I CAN MAKE NOISE ON GUITAR/DRUM BUT IT WONT EDIFY ANYONE.  (EX: COR. HAD GREAT MUSIC HALL THAT SEATED 20,000) AGAIN MANY WERE DOING THEIR OWN THING & IT WAS VERY CONFUSING (EX: MY AUDIT OF CHURCH IN FT. WAYNE)  FOREIGN LANG. HAVE MEANING BUT ONLY TO RIGHT AUDIENCE. IF OUR WORDS DON’T COMMUNICATE SOMETHING MEANINGFUL THEN ITS BEST NOT TO COMMUNICATE (V.12)  (EX:THIS IS LIKE CATHOLICS DOING MASS IN LATIN EVEN THOUGH NO ONE COULD UNDERSTAND IT)

B.   LIMITED IN EFFECTS (V.13-19)—HOLY SPIRIT DOESN’T BY-PASS THE MIND. PAUL SAID IF I SPEAK AS SOME OF YOU ARE I WOULD BE SPEAKING INTO THE AIR—IT WOULD BE LIKE WHAT HAPPENED AT PAGAN TEMPLES. THE MIND MUST BE INVOLVED. WE ARE “TRANSFORMED BY THE RENEWING OF MIND” (ROM.12;1,2). IF PEOPLE DON’T UNDERSTAND THEY CANT BE ADMONISHED,ENCOURAGED, COMFORTED.  THEY CANT AGREE (SAY AMEN) WITH WHAT IS SAID (V.16) (EX: TRIP TO MEXICO & RUSSIA—INTERPRETER SO PEOPLE COULD HEAR IN THEIR LANGUAGE)—PAUL COULD SPEAK IN FOREIGN LANGUAGES—AS MISS. THAT NEEDED TO COMMUNICATE GOSPEL & PROVE HE WAS APOSTLE. BUT HE WOULD RATHER SPEAK FEW WORDS THAT INSTRUCTED  (EX: JAMIE & JAMES THOMAS IN ARGENTINA & BRUCE OLSON MISS. TO COLUMBIA)—HOLY SPIRIT EMPOWERED APOSTLES AT PENTECOST—THEY SPOKE IN DIALECTS OF PEOPLE WHO WERE GATHERED THERE.

III.           THE PURPOSE OF TONGUES (LANGUAGES) (V.20-25)

PAUL HAS ALREADY URGED COR. TO BE MATURE IN THEIR THINKING (3:1)—BUT MANY WERE SELFISH/PROUD EVEN IN USING SPIRITUAL GIFTS—THEY WERE NOT VERY DISCERNING IN TESTING SPIRITS—GIFTS NOT FOR ENTERTAINMENT OR MAKE US FEEL GOOD.  PAUL REF. ISA.28:11,12—STRANGE LANG. WOULD BE SIGN OF COMING JUDGMENT ON ISRAEL—ISRAEL THOUGHT ISA. WORDS WERE NONSENSE—SO GOD WOULD SEND ASSYRIANS TO TAKE THEM CAPTIVE. ISA. WARNED IF THEY WOULD NOT REPENT THEY WOULD HEAR GENTILE LANG. IN THE CITY.  ARE WE HEARING STRANGE LANG. IN U.S.?  FOREIGN LANG. SPOKEN IN JERUSALEM WAS SIGN TO “UNBELIEVING ISRAEL”—THEY WERE NOT LISTENING TO GODS WORD---IN V.22 “UNBELIEVERS” ARE THOSE WHO WANT MORE THAN JUST PLAIN PREACHING—(THEY MAYBE THE CURIOUS—ATTENDING BUT NOT COMMITED TO JESUS YET) THEY WERE LIKE ISRAEL IN ISA. DAY AND LIKE PHARISEES IN JESUS DAY-“GIVE US A SIGN” –YET DEAD WERE RAISED BUT THEY REFUSED TO BELIEVE.  SO WARNING IS DON’T DO ANYTHING IN YOUR ENTHUSIASM & SELF-INDLUGENCE THAT WILL DRIVE THEM BACK TO UNBELIEF.  “UNBELIEVERS” IN V.23 SEEMS TO BE MORE DIRECT REF. TO OUTSIDERS/THOSE STILL IN WORLD--BOTH GROUPS NEED UNDERSTANDABLE PREACHING NOT FOREIGN LANG.—IF THEY HEAR THAT THEY WILL THINK PEOPLE ARE CRAZY—THEY WILL NOT KNOW JESUS OR GOSPEL.  (EX: THEH MIRACLE AT PENTECOST WAS SIGN GODS JUDGMENT COMING TO JEWS (A.D. 70 TEMPLE & CITY DESTROYED)—PEOPLE HEARD APOSTLES SPEAKING GENTILE LANG—SIGN GOD WAS TURNING TO GENTILES—IT FULFILLED JOEL’S PROPEHCY—PEOPLE OF ALL TRIBES/LANG. WELCOME IN KINGDOM—(CORNELIUS IN ACTS 10:44)---SO THE FOREIGN LANG. VALIDATED GODS MESSENGERS.

IV.           KEEP ORDER IN WORSHIP  V.26-36)

IN COR. CHURCH SOME WERE SPEAKING IN FOREIGN LANG, SOME WERE TRANSL & SOME WERE PREACHING IN NATIVE LANG.—ALL AT SAME TIME, NOT WAITING FOR ONE TO FINISH.  SO THE PEOPLE COULDN’T LEARN OR BE ENCOURAGED. HERE WIVES ADDED TO CONFUSION BY ASKING HUSBANDS QUESTIONS OUR LOUD AT SAME TIME OTHERS WERE TEACHING (NOTE: WOMEN & MEN SAT IN DIFF. SECTIONS  & MOST WOMEN DIDN’T HAVE OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN AS MEN DID) SO WIFE MIGHT YELL OUT TO HER HUSBAND (V.34,35)—THE CONTEXT IS ORDER IN WORSHIP—NOT A RULE THAT WOMEN MUST KEEP SILENT.  FOR THE WIVES TO SPEAK OUT LIKE THAT WOULD HINDER OTHERS FROM LISTENING & LEARNING.

CONCLUSION:  WHEN GIFT OF LANG. IS MISUSED THERE IS CONFUSION/FRUSTRATION—UNBELIEVERS ARE NOT BROUGHT TO GOSPEL & BELIEVERS ARE NOT HELPED TO MATURE IN THEIR FAITH. PROPHECY BUILDS UP & GOD IS HONORED & PEOPLE ARE BLESSED.  THEN ALL CAN TESTIFY THAT “GOD IS CERTAINLY AMONG US”  (V.25)

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