Is it Necessary to Speak in Tongues?
GWEA Monthly Message - September 2022
REVEREND GORDON WILLIAMS
One of the questions that I am asked most is: “Is it necessary for Christians to speak in tongues?” When Jesus said, “These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will… speak in new tongues…”; “new tongues” really mean “new languages”. When we receive the Holy Spirit, He gives us the ability to speak and to pray in real languages that are spoken today or in the past and we have never learned. The Greek word for “sign” as defined in the Greek Lexicon means: “a sign or distinguishing mark whereby something is known, sign, token, indication”. The four signs (Mk. 16:17-18) identify authentic Christian Believers.
Not everybody receives the Holy Spirit when they have their sins forgiven, as was the case on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:4), in Samaria (Acts 8:15-16) or with Paul (Acts 9:17) or John’s disciples (Acts 19:6). On the Day of Pentecost, the people in Jerusalem were from many countries and they all heard the 120 people speaking in their own languages which they had never learned naturally (Acts 2:8). The Gift of Speaking in Tongues (gift of other national languages) is proof that the Holy Spirit is in us. This is God’s unique way to give us control over our mouths and what we say.
It shows us that only the Holy Spirit can solve our mouth problem of which James reminds us that “but no human being can tame the tongue - a restless evil, full of deadly poison” (Jas. 3:8). The “Gift of National Languages” (tongues: 1 Cor. 12:10) is God’s unique “communications system”. It changes our personal prayer life (1 Cor. 14:4,15; Eph. 6:18) and when combined with the Gift of Interpretation of Tongues messages from God are revealed to people while they worship. (1 Cor. 14:22, 27)
When Paul writes, “Are all apostles? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all possess gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret?” The answer is: “No! No! No! Why? Because not all have received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit!” There were two groups of people in the church, just like there is today, they rejected the necessity of the Baptism of Holy Spirit. They are unbelievers (apistos), outsiders, not fully fledged Christians (idiotes – 1 Cor. 14:24). The same proof is necessary today or else many people will say: “There is something missing in me”, or “I feel empty all the time”, or “Why do I never hear the Holy Spirit speak to me everyday?”.
Jesus explained that forgiveness makes us into new wineskins and the Holy Spirit is the New Wine (Lk. 5:37-39). But he also warns, “And no one after drinking old wine desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better’.” In other words, the Holy Spirit does not taste the way that we think He should. Most church people do not like the taste or feeling the Holy Spirit gives them, especially when it is necessary to speak in the new necessary languages that He wants us to have. They go back to the “old wine” of their ineffective religion and reject the “new wine” of the Holy Spirit. We cannot rely on our feelings (Isa: 55:8).
Many people have written books about why it is no longer necessary to speak in tongues (languages) which proves that they do not have the Holy Spirit in spite of all of their eloquence. They may be religious people but not Spiritual people. It took me about six months to get accustomed to speaking in a language that I did not know and to later find out it was Portuguese. I like most people, had to acquire a taste for the new wine. When I did, it opened up a new and exciting way of prayer. “Did Jesus speak in tongues?” Yes of course He did, and does. He speaks in over 7,000 languages that are spoken on earth today. Through this unique sign of speaking in new languages (Mk. 16:17) which Jesus and Paul refer to as the “The Gift of Other National Languages”, Jesus gives His church the ability to reach every person in the world.
If you, and/or a family member, friend, co-worker, acquaintance, etc. want to receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, I invite you to come to one of our weekly "Holy Spirit" Zoom Meetings or contact me. With the Holy Spirit guiding us, we can be successful and succeed in doing everything that Jesus has planned for us.
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