When we receive the Holy Spirit a transformation takes place – and it is a day by day process. Jesus came to set us free from ourselves – from sin, but our sin is usually not a vicious plot to unseat God from His throne; but a failure to allow Him to rule our lives. It can be our own trinity of ‘me, myself and I’ doing what’s right in our own eyes. To fully walk in the Spirit we must allow God complete leadership in our lives, refusing to be led by our lives any longer – but allowing Christ, the Holy Spirit to lead. Jesus desires to have complete rule in our lives. We learn in two different ways – Humanism learning through discovery and Supernaturalism – learning through divine revelation from God; revealing Himself to us through His Son and His Word.
We cannot ‘discover God’, in trying to do so we bring God down to our level of thinking – or trying to exult ourselves to a level of God’s thinking. Many want a God that is completely comprehensible to their human mind. If you want to truly worship God you have to do it in ‘Spirit and in Truth’. Neither one can be learned or discovered – only revealed. God will give us intellect, but that intellect must always be submitted to the mind of the Spirit…not the mind of the intellect or of the flesh.
As we learn about the Spiritual gifts we must ‘yield ourselves to the leading of the Holy Spirit’. Yielding means literally to ‘give right of way to another. Not choosing the direction but allowing the other person to go before me’. If we do not have this level of trust in the Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit then we will not have the ability to go where He is leading in our lives.
Romans 12:3closeRomans 12:3 Gifts of Grace 3 For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. (ESV) - (NKJV) For by the grace given me I say to every one of you; do not think of yourselves more highly that you ought, but rather think of yourselves with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we – being many – are one body in Christ…and individual members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us let us use them….. We have to be careful as we are lead in the Spiritual gifts not to let pride get in the way. We need to always have our focus on Him and not on ourselves. God will not share His glory with anyone, so pride has no place in things of the Spirit of God. But we are instructed to ‘use them’ as well. It states that we do not all have the same gifts, but we all have gifts. We should not just sit in church non-active. But, we should be re-producing Jesus to others. Using the gifts He gave us to do so.
1 Corinthians 12:1-11close1 Corinthians 12:1-11 Spiritual Gifts 12:1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be uninformed. 2 You know that when you were pagans you were led astray to mute idols, however you were led. 3 Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is accursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit. 4 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5 and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. 7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one inspanidually as he wills. (ESV) Speaks of the nine Spiritual Gifts. Today we will be addressing the Gift of Tongues and the Interpretation of Tongues. While we are in this study, if you cannot figure this out in your human mind know this – it is not about understanding it but in learning to yielding yourself to the Spirit of God. The Bible actually speaks of four different types of tongues: Two are Private and Two are Public. If you don’t realize there are four different types then you will get very confused when you read the Bible.
- 1st one: Tongues as a sign for unbelievers. 1 Corinthians 14:22close1 Corinthians 14:22 22 Thus tongues are a sign not for believers but for unbelievers, while prophecy is a sign not for unbelievers but for believers. (ESV) – Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers… Acts 2:4closeActs 2:4 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. (ESV) And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. Jesus had instructed them to ‘wait for the promise’…If they had not waited – if they had tried to rationalize things with their natural minds this would not have happened. But, they allowed their minds to be yielded to Him.
Vs. 6 – When this sound occurred the multitude came together and were confused because everyone heard them speak in his own language. This was a sign to unbelievers. They could not understand how this was possible. This is a great example of how ‘tongues were spoken as a sign to unbelievers’.
Mark 16:17closeMark 16:17 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; (ESV) – And these signs shall follow those who believe; in My Name they will cast out demons and they will speak with new tongues. A sign is : An uncommon occurrence – transcending the natural course of nature.
- 2nd one: Tongues as a sign for interpretation. 1 Corinthians 12close1 Corinthians 12 Spiritual Gifts 12:1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be uninformed. 2 You know that when you were pagans you were led astray to mute idols, however you were led. 3 Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is accursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit. 4 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5 and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. 7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one inspanidually as he wills. One Body with Many Members 12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit. 14 For the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? 18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. 21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, 24 which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, 25 that there may be no spanision in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together. 27 Now you are the body of Christ and inspanidually members of it. 28 And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, administrating, and various kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all possess gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? 31 But earnestly desire the higher gifts. And I will show you a still more excellent way. (ESV) : 10 – ….to another tongues, and to another the interpretation of tongues. Vs. 28 – 30: And God has appointed these in the church; first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healing, helps, administration, variety of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret?
If you are not reading this correctly you will become confused. This doesn’t say that some do not have the gifts of tongues; it is saying that not all will have the gifts of tongues and interpretation for a public place. Tongues and the interpretation is a sign for unbelievers, not believers. **Therefore if tongues are spoken in public they must have an interpretation.
**Always remember – we are not to put any of ourselves into what the Spirit does through us- that is a danger zone. When the Spirit flows through us in any gift it is His alone, not ours to interject our own thoughts or impressions on it.
- 3rd one: Tongues for Personal Prayer 1 Corinthians 14:2close1 Corinthians 14:2 2 For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit. (ESV) For who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him, however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries. Vs. 4 – He who speaks in tongues edifies himself… Jude 1:20closeJude 1:20 20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, (ESV) – But you , beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, by praying in the Holy Spirit.
- 4th one: Tongues for Personal Intercession Romans 8:26-27closeRomans 8:26-27 26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. 27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. (ESV) Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weakness. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groaning’s that cannot be uttered, Now He who searches the heart knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God. This type of prayer cannot be rationalized with the human mind. It is a complete yielding to the Holy Spirit.
If you are not careful your intellect will rob you from flowing with the spirit of God. God is not humanistic – He is Divine and His thoughts are far above ours – never try and ‘figure Him out’…it cannot be done! But if you will allow Him to direct you His Spirit will allow you to operate in the Spirit at a level you never dreamed possible! Trust Him, He will never disappoint or be unfaithful – you can trust Him 100% with anything and everything in your life!