I have recently been studying the bible for myself with the holy spirit’s guidance. This was one of the topics I looked into because a group of people I come in contact with regularly believe they can lay hands on (and no one has ever been healed but of course it’s their lack of faith) and speaking in tongues. My study led me to this same conclusion. I found verses I’d never seen before or simply skimmed over. It was met with total disdain with a few ‘false prophet’ quotes. Anyway, I knew it would be but still got a little depressed and crawled into my own cave. I just asked God was I wrong and did I miss something. Your article was the first thing I brought up. I think God wanted to reassure me and if others are caught up in the power issue there is nothing more I can do. At least I know God is still revealing the truth of the bible to me as He knows I’m ready for.
What biblical or theological evidence is there that tongues have ceased? First, the gift of tongues was a miraculous, revelatory gift, and the age of miracles and revelation ended with the apostles. The last recorded miracles in the New Testament occurred around A.D. 58, with the healings on the island of Malta (Acts 28:7-10). From A.D. 58 to 96, when John finished the book of Revelation, no miracle is recorded. Miracle gifts like tongues and healing are mentioned only in 1 Corinthians, an early epistle. Two later epistles, Ephesians and Romans, both discuss gifts of the Spirit at length—but no mention is made of the miraculous gifts. Scripture Images
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, ... Biblical Verses Image
And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song, saying, “Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.” Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” ...
Anthony…my friend, you are giving me more credit than I deserve. Yes, it would be like you being there with us in church. I like that thought. I record almost every Sunday when our tech guy is there anyway and he and his wife are only there about 2 out of every 4 to 5 Sundays about which I am concerned for their trying to follow Christ seriously and taking Matt 6:33 as face value as Jesus said. By the way, the enemy loves our terror but God is the God of all comfort but even longtime Christians battle this fear and doubt and times of lack of faith so you are not alone my brother. Why I pop into your head…that’s a scary thought…I will pray that doesn’t happen too often. Just kidding…don’t know why it happens. The Holy Spirit maybe? Not sure. Take care Anthony my friend. Biblical Verses Image
Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. Bible Scripture Images
The gift of “distinguishing between spirits” is having the gift of discernment. It is able to discern scriptures and their application to believers in the church. It is also being able to tell whether someone is earnest and sincere, or they appear to have an agenda. Peter displayed this in Acts chapter five when Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property and kept back part of the money and brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet but lied saying they had given it all to the church (Acts 5:1-10). Those with this gift of discernment or “distinguishing between spirits” may be able to know whether the church should or should not do particular things.
I could share many more experiences of the tangible manifestation of the word of God. But I remember the Holy Spirit telling don’t go chasing after miracles, but chase after the God of the word, and miracles will come as needed. He told me that the devil knows the words of the Bible better than any Christian does. Satan can quote the Bible word for word. even letter by letter, even though he does not have the understanding of it that we can receive from the Holy Spirit. He can perform deceptive miracles, and twist our understanding of what it says. I remember my father was a member of a demonic cult that claimed to believe in Jesus. They prayed for a cousin of mine that was blind and he received his sight. Bible Verse Wall Art
Then Hazael king of Aram went up and fought against Gath and captured it, and Hazael set his face to go up to Jerusalem. Jehoash king of Judah took all the sacred things that Jehoshaphat and Jehoram and Ahaziah, his fathers, kings of Judah, had dedicated, and his own sacred things and all the gold that was found among the treasuries of the house of the LORD and of the king's house, and sent them to Hazael king of Aram. Then he went away from Jerusalem. Bible Verse Wall Art