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Old 11-28-2022, 07:09 PM
 
Location: PRC
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I am pleased we got a number of different views on this phenomenon. I too think it is rather strange and I wonder to myself that if it is something to be valued and something of the Holy Spirit, then why doesnt every preacher have that ability (since they have many years of training and are supposed to be our leaders (in this religion) in prayer etc.)

I would have thought if the preachers were training people to do it then it would be demonstrated, but if they were leaving it up to the Holy Spirit to manifest itself in certain people, then there would be some kind of formal training to "get in the mood" kind-of thing. Maybe they do and maybe there is.

From a religious point of view, what is the point of this, because as others have said, I dont see any religious value in the practice and besides, who deemed it was the Holy Ghost rather than some "evil entity" taking over this person who opened themselves up to spirit?

People doing it at home? well that is almost like a seance and we all know how those are viewed by orthodox religion !

Coming from a spiritualist background, I would say that these people are opening themselves up to spirit and the spirit which comes through is not one which most spiritualists would want speaking through them or being anywhere near them. Sitting in any body of people, there is a lot of energy floating about, particularly in churches which concentrate that energy and are often built on underground streams and quartz rock formations. It is mixed energy due to there being all kinds of personalities present, both constructive and destructive, and the folks who are not keeping a close eye on their boundaries are open to the possibility of those energies coming and taking over.
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Old 11-28-2022, 07:25 PM
 
Location: Northeastern US
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In my experience (my first wife had a brief flirtation with the charismatic movement and while I drew the line at participating, I observed it from both an Assembly of God megachurch and a small independent charismatic church over about a year or so), people had to be instructed / helped / urged to begin to speak in tongues. I'm not saying it NEVER happened on its own -- some people were way more disposed to it and less self-conscious around it -- and I'm not saying that it ALWAYS took something more than the laying on of hands or being swept away in the atmosphere of a service. But a lot of people struggled with it and needed instruction, and got it.

The ministers did not seem particularly concerned about this, as some here seem to be implying that if it were genuine it would not have to be coached, or that coaching makes it suspect. I think their attitude was that some people just needed help getting over the top and when the tongues would come, it was as legitimate if it came hard or easy. They likened it to teaching a child how to walk; once they start walking on their own they can get from point A to B as well as if they had figured it out on their own, without help.

My thought was that even if it were never coached I'd still question it. It's weird, even bizarre. It isn't some sort of sign or wonder. It doesn't help communicate anything -- indeed, it gets in the way of just straightforward talking.

And from a scriptural point of view I came to see it as based on a questionable reading of a half-verse in the book of Acts, that the pastor of the smaller church mentioned above admitted he clung to not because it was justified but because that is what makes a charismatic a charismatic. Lose the belief in the baptism of the holy spirit as a distinct experience with tongues as the sign it has happened, and you lose the primary thing that gives you an identify as a charismatic or pentecostal.

The other distinctive part, for pentecostals but not usually charismatics, is that they are part of the holiness tradition which believes in "entire sanctification", the notion that one can be perfected in holiness -- some would even claim to the point of no longer sinning.
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Old 11-28-2022, 07:39 PM
 
Location: Townsville
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Some people claim to have been 'speaking in tongues' for many years, as though this is supposed to add authenticity to what they are doing. All this really means is that they have been 'babbling' for many years.

It would appear that, even in Jesus' day, 'babbling' was a practice by some. Regarding prayer, Jesus said,


"But when you pray, go into your inner room, shut your door, and pray to your Father, who is unseen. And your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not babble on like pagans, for they think that by their many words they will be heard. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.…[Matthew 6:7-8)."

Jesus is saying that God knows what you need without the need for unnecessary ecstatic utterances. Either speaking to God in your own native language without the 'babble' or reciting the Lord's Prayer is sufficient.
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Old 11-28-2022, 08:13 PM
 
Location: Townsville
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You know, Paul was rebuking those in the Church of Corinth for doing pretty much what many of the Pentecostal churches are doing today.

Yep, Paul was rebuking them!

In addition to what may have been 'ecstatic babble' (Paul is not clear on this) there were also the languages of a number of different nationalities prevalent in the City of Corinth. Ancient Corinth was a center of commerce and therefore frequented by many foreign maritime visitors who brought with them an intention to spend, but also, apparently, a variety of vices and a plethora of religions. AND ...a number of different languages or 'tongues'.

It's ONLY in 1 Corinthians where 'tongues' are addressed. You won't find tongues mentioned at all in the Books of Romans, Galatians, Ephesians, Colossians, etc. And so, we know that 'something' was going on SOLELY within the Church of Corinth that irked Paul. And THIS - the phenomenon surrounding the Church of Corinth - is where we need to concentrate when dealing with this subject from a biblical perspective.
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Old 11-28-2022, 09:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ocpaul20 View Post
As a complete outsider of this, (since my childhood church did not have this phenomena) my understanding of it is that, it is the Holy Spirit filling the person and causing them to express themselves in sounds without any limitation.
Someone looking at this phenomena for the first time might think it is just a babble of sound, but is there any meaning in it for others? What is the point of it? What can be gained from a Speaking in Tongues event?
Speaking in tongues (meaning foreign languages) was only for the 1st-century Christians around the time of Pentecost.
This was to kick start the preaching work (Matthew 24:14; Acts 1:8) so that the foreign-speaking people in Jerusalem could clearly understand what was being said about God's kingdom as Jesus instructed.

Modern-day so-called 'speaking in tongues' has Nothing to do with the Bible but with human ideas outside of Scripture just being taught as being Scripture.
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Old 11-28-2022, 09:39 PM
 
Location: Townsville
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I don't know how many Pentecostals subscribe to this belief nowadays, but it was believed by some (and 'some' included Jimmy Swaggart and other Pentecostal leaders) that 'speaking in tongues' was a clear indication of "one's salvation". 'Tongues' was an indication of an infilling of the Holy Spirit, they claimed . . .without which one was/is lost. THIS is when 'tongues' takes on a sinister tone and perhaps then needs to be nipped in the bud rather than be given an "Oh well, whatever floats their boat" kind of attitude.

While "I" believe 'tongues' to be as phony as a $3 bill, I also have to accept that some who break out in ecstatic babble were not coached ...PER SE. That IS, of course, IF these people are being truthful and DIDN'T plan this 'instant tongues' stuff in advance. We're talking about human beings here, so anything is possible. Anyway, it's highly unlikely that people who are 'slain in the Spirit (another 'iffy' practice) would not be perfectly aware of the practice of 'tongues' in the setting in which they're supposedly having this experience. They KNOW ahead of time what is expected of them. This is where, I believe, human psychology and NOT the Holy Spirit comes into the mix.

If these people not only broke out into 'the tongues of angels' but also levitated and flew several laps around the church having sprouted the wings of an angel ...then I would seriously consider taking this claim seriously. But the latter experience doesn't occur. That's too difficult to fake - actually impossible - whereas 'making ecstatic gurgling sounds like a baby' or babbling in the manner that they've heard from others many times previously is not too difficult to fake, probably easier for some than for others.

Paul made the 'mistake' (as far as his contemporary Pentecostal audience is concerned anyway) of writing "Though I speak with the tongues of men AND OF ANGELS . . .etc." Paul is CLEARLY using hyperbole here. In hyperbolic language he is saying, "EVEN IF I spoke the tongues of angels (which I DON'T!) I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal if you (the congregation) don't understand what I'm saying."

The Charismatics, however, completely missed the hyperbolic reference in Paul's statement and instead interpreted this to mean that there IS an 'angelic language' that can be spoken through an infilling of the Holy Spirit. Hence ..."Pentecostal tongues" was born.
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Old 11-28-2022, 11:04 PM
 
Location: Townsville
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew 4:4 View Post
Speaking in tongues (meaning foreign languages) was only for the 1st-century Christians around the time of Pentecost.
This was to kick start the preaching work (Matthew 24:14; Acts 1:8) so that the foreign-speaking people in Jerusalem could clearly understand what was being said about God's kingdom as Jesus instructed.

Modern-day so-called 'speaking in tongues' has Nothing to do with the Bible but with human ideas outside of Scripture just being taught as being Scripture.
Agreed. However, this can be a very touchy subject to the few who REALLY believe that they have the gift of speaking in an 'angelic language' or they know of someone 'special to them' who claims to.

There was a poster (whose name I won't mention) who hasn't posted on here in a long time. He and I seemed to get along quite well in most areas of scripture until it came to the matter of 'tongues'. He referred to his dear grandmother who, he says, prayed every night 'in tongues'. There is no way, he said, that she would participate in anything phony. He actually berated me for having given the views that I'm presently giving on this thread. I felt bad at offending someone who I normally got along with. And so, I all but dropped out of the conversation or had to walk on eggshells with this poster in mind if I continued to participate.

Yes, some people believe in all sincerity that they have the gift of 'angelic language'. Sadly, they don't ...certainly not from a biblical perspective anyway.
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Old 11-29-2022, 07:22 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RomulusXXV View Post
[color="Navy"] I don't know how many Pentecostals subscribe to this belief nowadays, but it was believed by some (and 'some' included Jimmy Swaggart and other Pentecostal leaders) that 'speaking in tongues' was a clear indication of "one's salvation". 'Tongues' was an indication of an infilling of the Holy Spirit, they claimed . . .without which one was/is lost.
I don't think it's seen directly as evidence of salvation since salvation is said to be a necessary but not sufficient ingredient for the infilling of the holy spirit. But since I could pretend to speak in tongues and I VERY much doubt other tongues-speakers would know the difference, I don't see how by itself that would "prove" anything, either. I think sometimes preachers / evangelists are reaching for compelling metaphors in the heat of the moment and come up with nonsense like this. And not just on this topic.
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Old 11-29-2022, 07:37 AM
 
16,817 posts, read 5,299,394 times
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Originally Posted by Thoreau424 View Post
Speaking in tongues can be authentic. But that's left to God and the spirit, and is between them and the person.

It's like a choice of clothes. There's no right or wrong. It's a freedom of choice for the individual, but shouldn't warrant any special attention or significance.
In 30 years of being a Christian I can't say I've ever seen what seemed to be an authentic use of tongues. I have seen plenty of what appeared to be inauthentic expressions, and uses that would have been condemned by the apostles.
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Old 11-29-2022, 07:48 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
18,082 posts, read 11,888,559 times
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Originally Posted by BaptistFundie View Post
In 30 years of being a Christian I can't say I've ever seen what seemed to be an authentic use of tongues. I have seen plenty of what appeared to be inauthentic expressions, and uses that would have been condemned by the apostles.
IMO what would identify an authentic and utilitarian use of the gift of tongues would be if you could suddenly acquire the ability to speak fluent Portuguese for the purpose of communicating the gospel to a person who only understands Portuguese.

I have never seen any accounts in the NT of this phenomenon that were just prattling for the sake of prattling, in some alleged heavenly language. In I Cor 13 it says "If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels but have not love, I am nothing" but this is clearly poetic license saying it doesn't matter how eloquently you speak if you don't do it with love; the topic is love, not glossalalia. It is terribly insufficient as the basis of some gift of heavenly speech.
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