Are we to pray in tongues?

Automatic Transcript Generated

Speaker 1

Alright, so Derek is asking what is meant by Mark 1617? Are we to pray in tongues and pray to speak prophecy? Please explain to me.

Speaker 2

All right. Thank you, Mark. So Mark, what you’re asking here is a great question. A lot of people struggle with this, I think, and there’s a lot of different major misconceptions and divergent views on this. So let’s take a look at first at the verse you site, Mark 1617. And Wendy, would you like to read that verse?

Speaker 1

Sure. And these signs will follow those who believe in my name. They will pass out demons, they will speak with new tongues.

Speaker 2

So here it says new tongues. What does that mean? They will speak with new tongues. So that word, their tongues is the Greek word glossa. And so glossa is an interesting word and it just means tongue, like the literal tongue in your mouth. Or it could also mean like a language, like a foreign language or a dialect, something of that nature that people have. So those are the two main definitions of that word. And then we see this, for example, used in other places like Acts to eleven. If we look at the X 211, it talks about the creek, the Arabians, all these other people that were there during the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came down on the twelve apostles. On that day, though they had the tongue of fire on their heads, they were speaking in tongues. Acts 211 says people spoke and said, do we hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God? So they’re showing the use of the language. And then we can see this again in Revelation Ten, verse eleven. And he said to me, you must prophesy again before many peoples, nations, tongues and kings.

Speaker 2

So there again, we’re not seeing tongues being used as this weird event where people just think, nobody knows. No, it’s talking about languages, different foreign languages. And also in that version, just looked at Revelation 1011, uses the word prophesy. And that was also a question that Stan asked. And we will get to that. There we go. Yes. So you see it up there, you must prophesy again. What does it mean, prophesy? And you often see this, right? Prophesy versus tongues. And Paul gets into that. So let’s go back to what is the purpose of the sign that we have Jesus saying of speaking in tongues. It starts off in a section in Mark 16, verse 15, where Jesus says, go into all the world and preach the Gospel. Go into all the world and preach the gospel. So you have to ask, okay, if you’re going to all the world, who are the people who go in there? They’re Jews. And what languages do they speak? They speak Aramic and Greek, maybe Latin, and that was it. They’re probably not going to speak ancient Chinese, they’re not going to speak ancient garlic, they’re not going to speak a lot of the language of these places they’re going to go.

Speaker 2

Paul wanted to go to Spain. He said, many times, I want to go to Spain. Well, did he know ancient Spanish? Probably not, whatever they spoke there at the time. So to overcome this problem, this challenge that God created back at the day of when he caused confusion at Babel, god gives this gift of tongue so that his people can go anywhere or be heard anywhere, so that it’s not going to be a hindrance, language won’t be a hindrance to the Gospel. And so when God says, go into all the world, this is a command. And implicit in that command, or as a part of that command, is this promise that God will make it happen, whatever it takes. And that includes giving the gift of tongues, the gift of languages. And then we go on to after that command, go into all the nations. Then Jesus says, and these signs will follow. This is in verse seven of Mark 16. It says in these signs will follow. For example, in my name you will cast out demons and believers will speak in new tongues. So these are signs, signs of being a believer, but they’re not doing it.

Speaker 2

It’s not like special something, like they’re mustering up something within them to do it. God is bringing about the sign. And this is confirmed again, when you look at verse 20 of Mark 16, it says, and they the apostles and disciples went out, and not just disciples, but all the followers of Christ. They went out to the world and preached everywhere we know. I think it was Philip Thomas got to India. These guys got really far. We know records. They got to the whole world, maybe not like Brazil, but in the Amazon, but just about everywhere they could in the known world. So they preached paperwork and the Lord working with them and says, in confirming the word through the company side, who did this, who did the signs? It was the Lord working through them. So there’s so many people who get so obsessed with, well, I have to speak with tongues. I got to do it. But again, it’s not your job to do it. That’s God’s job to do it when you’re in a situation where it will serve a purpose. So why that sign? Why the tongues? Again, it’s to share the Gospel.

Speaker 2

It’s to reach non believers. And we see this now discussed by Paul in One Corinthians 14. Very important chapter for anybody who’s interested in the gift of tongues. Paul is talking about, hey, guys, you’re so obsessed with this gift and you’re missing the point of it. You aren’t using it the right way and you’re missing even more important things. So let’s look at one. Corinthians four. Sorry, one Corinthians 14. Starting at verse 21, paul says, 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. So he’s quoting the Old Testament and in verse 22 Paul says therefore tongues are a sign not to those who believe, but to unbelievers. So if you’re in your church and everybody’s there, you shouldn’t be just doing tons to one another. That’s not the point of it. It’s too sure, the gospel to nonbelievers. But continuing in verse 22, Paul says 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 they’re coming, those who are uninformed or unbelievers, will they not say that?

Speaker 2

You are out of your mind, right? It just sounds so crazy. What are you guys talking all these weird languages, nobody knows what’s going on. It’s disorderly, nobody’s learning anything. Why would we want to come to this church service? Paul says by verse 24 he says but if all prophesy oh, I like this all. Actually all people are prophesied. And an unbeliever or an uninformed person comes in, he is convinced by all, he is convicted by all. So why does prophesy do that? Why does prophesy convince and convict? So a lot of people think prophesy means predicting the future and that is a component of prophecy. Prophecy involves part of this predicting God or God revealing something or divine revelation such as the future. But that’s not the only thing. If you look at the Old Testament, a lot of the profits, most of their messages are hey, you guys have this problem, you need to reform, you need to change, you should do this or that, god loves you. God has a special message for you. God wants you to hear this. God loves you. That is all prophesy coming from God. And indeed that word prophesy is the Greek word propheto, interesting word that basically means what we think it is, right?

Speaker 2

And what I’m talking about. So it’s not just predicting future but also revealing, declaring things by divine revelation. And so Jesus uses this word in fact prophesied to refer to what the Old Testament did. It says for all the prophets and the law referring to like the five books of Moses, prophesied unto John or until John. So a good thing to be doing in fact is speaking scripture, resigning scripture, studying Scripture, that’s very close then to prophesying. The same Holy Spirit that inspired those scriptures can then work in you to interpret them in. Paul’s saying is this gift of prophecy that is the most important or at least the most desirable spiritual gift. In fact, it just grabbed me. I didn’t think about it ahead of time. But when you study the Bible and you look at God’s end time people in the book of Revelation, the 144,000, what do they have? The Bible says they have the spirit of prophecy, which is the testimony of Jesus. This is a very important thing. It’s more important than tongues. And it’s so sad that Satan has sort of distracted a lot of us with these things that we think is really cool, it’s really novel, maybe it’s fun to experience, but it’s completely missing the mark of what God wants us to really be doing when we come together as believers.

Speaker 2

And that’s to prophesy, to really explore the messages that God wants us to hear today and now transform our lives, build a better relationship with them, and to just have better relationships and have a bigger impact on those around us. So I hope that answers your questions. Thank you very much for asking, Stan.

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BibleAsk Team