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!” ...
I have struggled with this question, literally, for years — at least 30, I would say. It began with an experience that occurred when I was friends with a young man who was Charismatic and was, he, himself, very charismatic! He introduced me to the concept of speaking in tongues. He did it himself and encouraged me to do so as well. As I look back on it, I felt like he PRESSURED me to speak in tongues, making me feel like I was missing something if I didn’t. It made me feel inadequate as a Christian and I so wanted to be fulfilled by everything the Spirit had to offer, yet, somehow, I could just not muster a syllable. Then one evening, we had a small prayer group of mostly his friends that I had become acquainted with and they laid hands on me. I opened my mouth and out spilled this gobbledy-gook of words that I knew in my heart I was just making up so that I could prove to them that I had the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. I felt shame, not joy. I continued to fake it, questioning the depth of my faith and why the Spirit was not giving me this gift.
My friendship with him dissolved soon thereafter. I no longer felt like this was a teaching I could follow — the Holy Spirit led me away from it. Over the years, I continued to ask questions from time to time of people who I considered filled with the Spirit of God. Time and again, I would receive confirmation that tongues was an edification for the person, not God, and served no valid purpose in the way it is practiced by various Pentecostal and Charismatic churches. I also would encounter those that spoke in tongues. I would usually not react adversely in any way or judge that person, but I still did not feel at peace with it. Now, let me clarify that with the statement that I believe if God the Spirit DID have a purpose that glorified Him and not the speaker, absolutely, He could bestow such a gift upon him — as He WILLS and for His glory. Are there people that speak in tongues today? I’m sure there are. Does the language always come from God? Hmmm, now that’s a good question and one that is between God and the person doing the speaking. Bible Verse Wall Art
I admitted to my friend that I had faked it all those years ago. I stood on the message that God had given me that I did not have to speak in tongues to know that the Spirit is alive and working in me. I already know it. And as far as other spiritual gifts? Yes, I have them. Several. But, tongues is not one of them. God has blessed me, protected me (often from myself) and humbled me over the years. I have experienced the presence of the Spirit for over 40 years.
It was at that moment that I also understood the vitality of our relationships with one another, our family, our friends, and the love of our brothers and sisters in Christ as well as all humanity. Didn’t God offer the gift of Grace to ALL people? Everything in this world will one day be returned to dust or torn down to its foundations and the only thing that goes from this world into the heavenly realm is our spirits and what accompanies them is love — our love for each other, our love for God and God’s love for us. Nothing. Else. Matters.
Spiritual Warfare, Causes OfSpiritual Warfare, Enemies InSuffering, Of BelieversBeneficial Afflictions For FaithAfflictions, Consolation DuringDeath Of The Saints, Results InMartyrdom Of The SaintsAfflictions, Benefits OfFear, Of PersecutionSatan, Work OfPersecution PredictedTen Or More DaysCrowns For God's PeopleBemaTribulation MartydomSpiritual crownsCasting Out FearPersecutionLuciferEnd Of DaysWorrying About The Futurejail
For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of his faith;read more.
Receiving The SpiritSigns Of RepentanceSymbols of the Holy SpiritConfession of sinChristian BaptismForgiveness Through RepentanceGod Giving His SpiritBaptismForgiving YourselfBaptism Of The Holy SpiritGentlenessBeing Born AgainAccepting ChristSalvationForgiveness, In Ministry of ChristThe Holy Spirit Described As God's GiftPreaching, Content OfCeremoniesUrgencyGrace, And Holy Spirit Bible Verse Wall Art