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Tongues | The Fulfillment





All rights reserved "Lion tongue" by Doug Wheller       1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant
All rights reserved "Lion tongue" by Doug Wheller




  • Tongues | The Foundation
  • Tongues | The Foreshadowing
  • Tongues | The Fulfillment
  • Tongues | The Facts
  • Tongues | The Familiar



  • Tongues What's that about?

    1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant

    The Gifts of the Spirit

    There are several lists in the New Testament about gifts; they do not speak about the same thing or to the same people. Neither are any of the lists meant to be exclusive or all encompassing. Rather, these are to give us some functional insight into the common ways God works in our lives… while leaving room for God to be God outside his box.

    The primary section in all the bible commonly studied for The Gift of Tongues is 1 Corinthians 12-14. As we've seen from Part 1 and Part 2 of this study, it's not anywhere near the only place it's mentioned. But this section of scripture is dedicated by Paul to address this topic of Tongues and the other gifts of the Spirit. We will dive in and take it all apart and look at it on the inside…

    But first, we must take a step back, and see the big picture.

    Paul is addressing the Church of Corinth. These are a wild bunch. Prone to wild things. These are the ones that Paul had to dress down in chapter 5 for having a person who had taken his father's wife. This is a wild bunch. They are excited about this Tongues deal and the other gifts. Paul makes a VERY important statement here.


    1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant

    There is no excuse to be ignorant of spiritual gifts in this day and age. We not only have the bible, and 2,000 years of Church history. We have, in the last 100 plus years have had more people walking in the miracle powers of God at one time than in the history of the world.

    Starting from the day Martin Luther posted his statement that men are saved by Faith, God has been restoring the basics of Christian Living to the Body of Christ one revelation at a time.

    Slowly but surely, Religion is being cast out for the evil spirit it is and replaced with the simple truths of God's Word.

    As Jesse Duplantis often says: "It takes a good theologian to help you misunderstand the bible."

    So, we have no excuse to be ignorant. There are many great teachers of the Word. There are many who walk in these gifts in varying degrees today. Find someone who does and learn from them.


    This set of chapters (1 Corinthians 12-14) can be divided into sections.

    • Admonition to not be willing ignorant of this subject.
    • Origin - Chapter 12 primarily addresses the origin and power of the gifts and put’s them forth in a list.
    • Power - Chapter 13 speaks about where the true power in these gifts is found; In Love.
    • Effectiveness/Use - Chapter 14 goes on to break down the one on one aspects, personal prayer, and more on group dynamics.

    All In All

    One of my favorite scriptures in the bible, 1 Corinthians 12:6, settles forever any lingering debate in my mind that any of the gifts, especially Tongues, were for some people and not for others. The same God works ALL IN ALL.

    All means all, and that's all "all" means.

    That means that all the gifts are worked in all the people. However it’s clear from the rest of the book that the Corinthians were using this to their ruin by having all the people speaking in Tongues all the time. The very fact that they were all doing this is evidence that it's available to all people.

    No gift, by itself, meets all the needs of the people present. Therefore, in a group/ministry setting, no gift should be used exclusive unto itself without the others. This is why in chapter 14, verse 26 Paul concludes the three chapter section by saying that all of the gifts should be used, a few at a time, for the whole church to be edified. Fittingly and in order.


    Lists and More Lists

    There are many “gift” lists in the New Testament. Some writers simply dump everything that mentions the word “gift” into one box and call them all the same thing. But the bible puts these lists in separate places on their own because they are different things.

    So let us take a look at these lists briefly. A note to make, it’s quite simple to understand these lists if you actually read the whole section. Each list is found within a context (leadership, body of Christ, etc). Each list begins by a brief description of it’s content and intent.

    Here is a another great article on this topic: http://iblp.org/questions/what-are-three-categories-spiritual-gifts

    Manifestations of the Holy Spirit.

    1Cor 12:7-11 gives us a specific list of nine gifts. Paul calls these the manifestations of the Holy Spirit. What does that mean? The Holy Spirit is always there, he’s everywhere. But He isn’t always physically noticeably there. When HolySpirit shows up in a way that can be tangible He brings certain characteristics with Him to the environment.

    Just as when a grumpy person shows up they bring a certain atmosphere with them, and when a cheerful person shows up they bring a certain atmosphere with them. “Manifestations of the Holy Spirit” means that when the Holy Spirit shows up, He is likely going to bring these primary characteristics with him. He works all of them. They are His gifts to His people. He may work some or all. He works out what, who, and when. It will always be in His order. And you can’t truly have them without Him involved.

    1 Corinthians 12

    7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8 for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.

    Motivational Gifts | Appointments - God's Gifts To The Church

    There are a slightly different set of gifts mentioned later in chapter 12. This list is specifically addressing appointed gifts. These are not the random things that may happen in the midst of a service or gathering, these are gifts given to certain ones. These are the things people are gifted to BE not just DO.

    These are appointments within the Church body, which Paul just got finished expounding upon. Some people are called to take the gifts of the Spirit listed earlier and the Word of God and add their supply to the Church in a more official capacity. These gifts are located here.

    1 Corinthians 12

    28 And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues.



    Ministry Position Gifts: Leadership roles of the Church


    These gifts are also listed in a more specific list in Ephesians 4. This list however is specifically referring to the leadership gifts. These five positions: Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor, and Teacher are given specifically to the entire body of Christ as the ones charged with preparing them for the work of ministry and helping them grow up and mature.

    Notice here that it is the BODY OF CHRIST that should be ministering and the ministry gifts are given to prepare them for it. So often, especially in the USA, we consider “Ministers” as the ones who are hired to do full time ministry. These are the ones who make their living writing books and preaching. But that’s not the bible definition, really. We are all ministers. The writing and the preaching is supposed to be preparing the Body of Christ in the USA to minister. Church services are classrooms. Real Life ministry should be taking place, mostly, outside the Church. Malls, Stores, Grocery Shopping, Elevators… that’s where the majority of the healing, salvations, etc ought to be taking place.
      

    7 But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ's gift. 8 Therefore He says: "When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men." 9 (Now this, "He ascended"--what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.) 11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head--Christ-- 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.


    Measure of GRACE-Charis(ma):

    Paul starts this section off by talking about the Body of Christ. Just as before. Here he tells us to be sober in our self-judgment or self-evaluation. This has been abused by preachers and people to think that you should beat yourself up and call yourself a dog. This type of teaching is contrary to the teaching of this verse. We should be sober, not emotional or lead by outside influences, in our evaluation of who we are and what we do. This means we should not think more lowly of ourselves OR more highly. We throw out our opinion of ourselves altogether and replace it with God’s opinion of us. Which by the way, is much higher than our own usually.

    Then we see that we are given grace/gifting to do these things. All of these things are things we, as the body, should be doing. However when we do them, we should do them at the level and ability we have developed through God. Some are called and gifted more highly in a specific area than an another. It is the GRACE of God that is the primary subject of this section of scripture not the gifts. It is this GRACE which should be on our minds as we do everything we do. We all have these gifts, but these gifts are going to differ in their function in us according to the level of GRACE we walk in.

    GRACE can be defined as God’s supernatural ability. The word GRACE in verse 3 is Charis (GRACE). The words used during the rest of the chapter translated gifts are Charis-ma (Gracious Gifts), this is from the root of Charis. This is all talking about the same thing. This list is a list of the ways GRACE can operate through us, and how the measure of our understanding of GRACE we walk in, determines how well we walk in these gifts.

    Therefore, if you teach, teach with GRACE on your mind. If you give, give liberally, because of the GRACE of God on your life. If you show mercy, do it with cheerfulness. Why? Because there are people who give mercy and forgiveness with a frown on their face. “I’ll forgive but I won’t forget!”, they say. However that is not forgiveness. Jesus tells us about the man who was forgiven much and chose to punish someone who owed him little. That man wasn’t walking in the GRACE he received.


    3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. 4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. 6 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; 7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. 9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.


    Cultivate The Gifts
    Paul encourages us several times throughout 1 Corinthians chapters 12-14 to desire and seek the gifts of God. Each of us should be ready at a moments notice to be used of the Holy Spirit in these gifts for the building up of the Body of Christ. However, if you haven’t spent your time praying and cultivating yourself in the Love of God and GRACE of Jesus you are not as likely going to be ready to be used in these ways.

    These scriptures, 1 Corinthians 12-14, Romans 12, and Ephesians 4, are the primary places that list out gifts. The word “gift” or “gifts” can be found many other places, and a thorough study of all of those could be interesting. The main point here is to remember what these lists pertain to in context for a proper understanding of who they pertain to and how to cultivate them.

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    So... what are your thoughts about this? What did this make you think about? 

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    By Darrell Wolfe

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