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Posts tagged ‘Pentecost’

Death of Christ and Silent or Black Saturday #3 A sincere man or an imposter

After the horrible experience, having seen how their beloved master had died on the stake, the apostles had retreated themselves. The women who had watched the impalement from some distance got the courage to see if they could not give their friend a proper burial before the high holy day.

“30 Therefore, when he had received the vinegar, Jesus said, “It has been accomplished!” And then his head fell and his last breath escaped.

31 Since it was Preparation, the Jews, so that the bodies might not remain upon the stake–for it was the day of a Great Sabbath–they requested that Pilate break their legs and take the bodies down.” (Joh 19:30-31 mhm)

“38  Now after these events Joseph of Arimathea–a secret disciple of Jesus out of fear of the Jews–asked Pilate that he might carry away the body of Jesus. Pilate gave his permission. So Joseph came and removed the body. 39 Also, Nicodemus–the person who approached Jesus at night originally–brought a roll of myrrh and aloes weighing a hundred pounds. 40 And so, they took the body of Jesus and bound it in bandages with the spices, according to the custom of the Jews in preparation for burial. 41 Now near the place where Jesus was impaled there was a garden, and in the garden a new memorial tomb in which no one had ever been placed. 42 It was there, then, because of the Preparation of the Jews, they placed Jesus.” (Joh 19:38-42 mhm)

They were aware many had a big laugh, now having seen that special man being killed as a criminal. For many, it looked like all the stories they heard about that Nazarene were just fake messages. How was this dead person going to save the world like he so many times had given the impression?

The day after Jesus had died, the day after the Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees were gathered together to Pilate, remembering what Jesus had said over those few years when he was actively going around the region. For them, it was clear that Jesus was a nice talker and a deceiver who could please a lot of people. Now they were afraid some of his friends would do everything to have his predictions come true. Jesus had more than once said he would rise again after three days. For sure such a thing could and should not happen according to those leaders. Therefore, they asked the governor to command that the tomb be made secure at least until the third day, lest perhaps his disciples come and steal him away, and tell the people,

‘He is risen from the dead’;

so that the last deception will be worse than the first.

“62 On the next day–after Preparation–the religious hierarchy and Pharisees assembled together before Pilate, 63 saying, “Lord, we remember that plotter said when he was alive, ‘After three days I will be raised up.’ 64 So, command that the grave be secured until the third day so none of his disciples can come and steal his body and then claim to the people, ‘Jesus was raised up from the dead.’ Then the final plot will be worse than the first.” 65 Pilate said to them: “You have a custodial guard. Go and make the security as you know how.” 66 These went their way and secured the grave, sealing the stone with the custodial guards.” (Mt 27:62-66 mhm)

In the stillness of the night, soldiers kept guard in front of the tomb.

The close friends of Jesus were not at all interested to take away Jesus’ body. For them, it was more important to have their master teacher buried according to Jewish customs and to pay him honour by mourning for him.

Around those apostles and friends of Jesus it had become very quiet. That moment of silence is in Belgium remembered by several churches as “Stille Zaterdag” or “Silent Saturday”. Some churches also call it “Holy Saturday” or the “Great Sabbath”, “Easter Eve” or even “Black Saturday” according to the custom that people were clothed in black when in mourning and that we now had to mourn for the death of Jesus.

The followers of Christ were sad they had lost their master and could not understand how the one they thought was going to save them from the Roman oppression, was now impaled and could not do anything anymore, because he was under the dead. In the Jewish faith (as in our faith), dead people can do nothing anymore, because their corps disintegrates to become dust.

“For the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing; they have no further reward, and even the memory of them is forgotten.” (Ec 9:5 NIV)

They did not forget Jesus so quickly, though the religious leaders would have loved to see that happen. Those religious leaders and their disgust for Jesus were enough to hide and to keep themselves quiet. Their fear of coming out in public was to stay like that until the day of the festival of Pentecost.

The apostles knew how Joseph from Arimathea had given his own prepared sepulchre so that Jesus could be buried there. Having received a place in that rich man’s grave Isaiah’s prophecy became fulfilled.

“He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth.” (Isa 53:9 NIV)

“As evening approached, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus.” (Mt 27:57 NIV)

“So Joseph bought some linen cloth, took down the body, wrapped it in the linen, and placed it in a tomb cut out of rock. Then he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb.” (Mr 15:46 NIV)

“At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no-one had ever been laid.” (Joh 19:41 NIV)

The women had balsamed Jesus and wrapped him in a linen cloth before they laid him in the tomb which had been cut out of a rock for Jesus’ (secret) follower Joseph. They were fully aware that there was rolled a stone against the door of the tomb and that soldiers were guarding the sepulchre.
They could stay inside with confidence, with the assurance that their master would not be done about it now and that no one could steal his body.

The felt very sad because they had lost the one in whom they trusted so much. On him who they hung their very hope, their everything. They were so sure he was going to lead them to a new kingdom and be their king. Now they came to see those Romans still governing over the Jews.

Many of them forsook all to follow him. They left their trade and day by day they were with the man they believed to be the Messiah. But now all their hope seemed to have gone. There was no Messiah any more because their master was dead. Would the sayings of some be true, and had they all the time followed a con-man, a charlatan or defrauder?

How could an eternal Kingdom now be established?

Those who had seen how Jesus was hanged, wept and wondered how it would go with them and what would happen with their dreams and hope they so deeply felt.

They had heard so many stories from their master about him going to build a new temple and to restore God’s Kingdom and how we had to be patient and wait for God to intervene. How could this now fit the plan about which Jesus spoke so many times? Could it be true, that that man from Nazareth was just a good storyteller and was fooling so many?

For the close followers of Christ there was a lot of disappointment. For them this could not be the plan to see perfection torn to shreds, to bury a breathless body in forged out stone to fit the one they thought was the beloved son of God. They did not understand this way of God’s handling, letting His son be killed in such a manner. At that time they perhaps forgot how Jesus had spoken of the Lamb of God and the need for him to bring the sacrificial offering as a ransom for all.

“The next day John saw Jesus approaching, and he said: “See, the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world of humankind!” (Joh 1:29 mhm)

For them it was a real sad Passover, them not seeing yet Christ was the new Passover lamb. Several days later they would come to understand ho Jesus was a very special lamb, his bloodshed being the part of whitewashing our sins.

“Purge out the old leaven that you may be a new mixture as you may become unleavened. For, surely, Christ our Passover was sacrificed!” (1Co 5:7 mhm)

“but rather with the precious blood of an unblemished and spotless Lamb –Christ’s.” (1Pe 1:19 mhm)

Many churches remember that day after Jesus death where the apostles were mourning with other friends and beloved ones of Christ. For some, it looked like the darkest of all nights because all their hope seemed to gone up in smoke.

Some of them saw Jesus transfigured with Moses and Elijah and heard there for a second time that their master was the beloved of God. How now could God let such a thing happen to His beloved son?

“1  Now after six days Jesus took with him Peter, James, and John (the brother of James) and ascended with them to a very secluded place on a tall mountain. 2 And right before them Jesus was metamorphosed–his face illuminated like the sun and his cloak as white light. 3 And, look! they could see Moses and Elijah speaking with Jesus.” (Mt 17:1-3 mhm)

“5 Yet while Peter was talking, look! a shining cloud rested over them, and, look! a Voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my beloved Son whom I approve–listen to him.” 6 Now, hearing this the disciples were frightened and fell on their faces. 7 Jesus approached the disciples and touching them, he said, “Rise and do not be afraid.”8 But, when the disciples looked up they saw nothing but Jesus himself. 9 Now while descending the mountain Jesus charged the three disciples: “Tell no one about the vision until the Son of Humankind is raised from among those dead.” (Mt 17:5-9 mhm)

They remembered that Jesus spoke about him being raised from the dead, so they wondered, could that really happen? In the silence of the night, they waited for a miracle to happen and wondered how Jesus could have life in him and could give life to others, when he was now under the dead.

They kept believing Jesus was the sent one from God and believed also he was the beloved son of God. Today there are still lots of people who call themselves Christian, but do not believe that Jesus is that son of God who died for our sins. That is a shame, and that brings us also to mourn for those lost souls who do not want to believe in Jesus, him being able to bring us closer to his heavenly Father, the God of Israel and the God of Jesus and his disciples.

“I tell you this truth: The person who listens to my word and continues to believe in the One who sent me possesses endless Life. And so that person does not come into condemnation, but has crossed over from the Death unto the Life.” (Joh 5:24 mhm)

“For just as the Father has Life within Himself, so also He gave to the Son to have Life within himself.” (Joh 5:26 mhm)

“I know You always hear me. But, because of the crowd standing around I said this so that they should believe that You sent me forth.”” (Joh 11:42 mhm)

“Jesus said to Thomas: “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one can approach the Father, if not through me.” (Joh 14:6 mhm)

With sadness in their eyes, they kept praying to their heavenly Father, the God of Christ and asked for strength and guidance.

We too when we remember Christ’s death can think about his ransom offering and how by his blood could come liberation to us. Like the apostles sometimes doubted, we do that as well. It is part of life and part of our imperfection and part of our not yet mature faith in Jesus and his God.

A pity that even when we live in the aftermath of the resurrection there are still so many who do not want to believe that it was the son of man and son of God who really died (remember God cannot die) and who was taken out of the dead. We know today that what we celebrate at Pascha and remember what happened on that third day after Jesus’ death, is the promise, bore witness to by the Spirit, that we who believe will one day be raised with him. And that is our consolation and Blessed Hope.

After several centuries there have come many false prophets and teachers, trying to bring people away from God and from His well beloved son. They have told people that they would not be able to understand the Scriptures on their own. And many believe that and prefer following the human doctrines instead of taking the words of the Bible for what they say and to go by the biblical doctrines.

Mankind now is in such darkness and silence as it was the days before Jesus his resurrection.

Three days after the death of Christ came a big change for the apostles, bringing not only disbelief and wonder but also a renewed hope. (That is for next chapters.)

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Previous articles

Matthew 17:1-9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Transfiguration Vision

Matthew 21:6-9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Blessed the One Coming in God’s Name!

God’s Face shining on His servant

10 Nisan An entrance for a king

Matthew 21:10-11 Who Is This? – a Question still posed today #1

Matthew 27 – The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – Bible Students Intro

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #1 Matthew 27:1-2 – Priests Hand Jesus Over to Pilate

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #2 Matthew 27:3-10 – Judas Hangs Himself

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #3 Matthew 27:11-14 – “Are You King of the Jews?”

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #4 Matthew 27:15-23 – Barabbas or Jesus?

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #5 Matthew 27:24-26 – “His Blood Come Upon Us!”

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #6 Matthew 27:27-31 – Jesus Afflicted by Troops

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #7 Matthew 27:32-37 – Executed at Golgotha

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #8 Matthew 27:38-44 – The Mob’s Abuse

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #9 Matthew 27:45-50 – Jesus Expires During a Darkness

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #10 Matthew 27:51-54 – Temple Curtain Torn in Earthquake

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #11 Matthew 27:55-56 – The Women Who Witness the Execution

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #12 Matthew 27:57-61 – Jesus’ Body Given to Joseph of Arimathea

Matthew 27 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Final Hours: Trial, Execution and Burial – #13 Matthew 27:62-66 – Guards Seal the Tomb Against an Imposter

Death of Christ and Silent or Black Saturday #1 Abandonment and burial

Death of Christ and Silent or Black Saturday #2 A son of God and king who died

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Additional reading

  1. Biblical Yeshua/ Jesus or Another European Greco- Roman Jesus ??
  2. Jesus son of God
  3. Jesus son of God or God the son
  4. Jesus Christ, his Mission, Life and Work
  5. Spoken in the name of Jehovah God for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience
  6. Entrance of a king to question our position #2 Who do we want to see and to be
  7. Seeing or not seeing and willingness to find God
  8. A meal as a mitzvah so that every generation would remember
  9. The Last Supper was a Passover meal
  10. Inauguration of the New Covenant
  11. The New Covenant Victim and Mediator
  12. Not dragged unwillingly to death
  13. The day Jesus died
  14. Redemption #4 The Passover Lamb
  15. Ransom
  16. Crucifixion for suffering
  17. A perfect life, obedient death, and glorious resurrection

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Related articles

  1. On god the son
  2. Beloved son
  3. Another Son of God? Pilate’s Tiberieum at Caesarea Maritima
  4. Why is Jesus called the “Son of God” in the Bible?
  5. Like a Lamb to the Slaughter
  6. Jesus our Passover
  7. The Passover Lamb
  8. Behold the lamb
  9. Silent Saturday
  10. Silent Saturday – Many call today silent Saturday. “nothing” happens in the Biblical text between the Friday crucifixion and Sunday’s resurrection, and yet this silence encapsulates much of our lives today.
  11. Silent Saturday – For the first time in decades, it seems like the world has gone quiet… no more major sporting events, concerts canceled, and Late Night T.V. hosts are home in their pajamas watching the television
  12. Life is a lot like the Saturday before Easter
  13. A Silenter Night
  14. Animating The Atonement (Where the Beams Meet)
  15. Jesus is Dead: What’s Next? Hopelessness or Hope?
  16. Sound of silence
  17. The Silence of Saturday
  18. Prayer for Holy Saturday
  19. Waiting for God
  20. Understanding the Passover and Good Friday
  21. 2020 Vision: Pacem
  22. Let’s Go TO and FROM Bethlehem: Preparing
  23. Breaking Bread in Our Homes… Passover 2020
  24. Pandemic 2020-vision: The Tomb

A new school-, academic and church year

The first of September is in many countries the beginning of the new school year and the first of October the beginning of the new academic year.

That first day of a new year brings a lot of excitement and many questions with it. Every  “Beginning” brings expectations with it and brings an exciting experience. Some of those experiences bring over and over again, each year, new tensions or get us nerve system working strong. The adrenaline gets high.

Such a beginning of a “new year” gives us the opportunity to bring a brush-stroke over the previous year. We take the opportunity to make a new start again. We also dare to give free space to new ideas and projects which can stimulate us and others to continue with renewed energy.

The freshness of a new project or a new relationship sharpens our senses. When that novelty diminishes, though, it’s difficult to maintain the same level of excitement. so often when the year progresses people become less enthusiast or tired. They loose energy and are not so willing any more to spend energy in what they started earlier.

On the first of September many little toddlers face their first day in “the big world”. From then onwards their protected little world of the safe ‘home’ shall not be there always. They shall get to face the cruelty of the world, with others not liking them, or being jealous. By time they shall become confronted with infliction of physical or mental distress. Throughout its life the growing up person will have to find compromises between the claims of the narcissistic pole of his drives and the intensity of his love for the object. They shall have to proof themselves and to defend themselves, making sure they can stand straight  and endure all the hardships which shall come over them.

For many it will be looking afraid at the day, which according to the Hebrew mode, is conceived as a measure to be filled up. The apostles also once had taken refuge in their small safe house.

From the second day of unleavened bread they for fifty days had got very strange experiences which frightened them so much they had closed all doors and did not dare to come out and meet the people who laughed at the followers of the man which was impaled and could not bring any message in public any more because he had become part of the dead.

Christ his disciples were also in doubt and in expectancy.  In those days of expectancy they felt that they had to stick together, united in the thoughts of their master teacher Jeshua (Jesus Christ). A cycle of seven times seven days, from the time of the gathering of the sheaf of first-fruits, had past. At the day of the anniversary of the Law covenant at Sinai they suddenly where shaken.

The same eleven apostles who witnessed their master’s ascension were in the upper room complying with the injunction of Jeshua, waiting in an attitude of prayer and expectancy, and in readiness to begin their mission. Following the order to stay together and to come close to each other in prayer, they had enough time to think about all the things that happened in those three years of public preaching of Jeshua.

Пятидесятница. Около 1497. Собор Успения Богор...

The decent of the Holy Spirit (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

At that moment they did not know yet they where going to go through something very unique which would give them the nerve to get out of their enclosure. They would receive Power from above which was going to give them enough guts to dare to speak about unbelievable events.

For many a new year going into a new initiative demands a plan which shows great daring.

In Acts 2 we can find a process of fulfilment described.  As in the other writings of the Book of books we get an inside view of how God worked to gather a new community of believers to Himself. Pentecost and the arrival of the Holy Spirit signalled a new era and produced a new community, as both Jews and “devout men from every nation under heaven” converted to what would be later called the Christian faith (Acts 2:5).

“Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven.” (Acts 2:5 NIV)

Now, many centuries later, it’s easy for us to see Pentecost as the pivotal moment in the history of the Church — an unparalleled event that changed the world forever. It must have been incredible to see those young men  coming onto the street and having them speaking in so many tongues that all sorts of tourists and inhabitants could understand them.

There where Christ Jesus never brought so many to convert and to be baptised those shy disciples over-won their fear and got on the street to speak in the name of God, telling what for importance Jesus is for humankind. Three thousand people came to faith.

When we celebrate the holiday of Pentecost, however, we are remembering the firstfruits of the harvest — the coming of the Holy Spirit and the original community of believers under Jesus Christ. Firstfruits are only the start of a harvest; they hint at future abundance. Every year we can see how plants are coming up again and how the cereal crop comes nice brown to be reaped. The grain crop harvested brings again new seed for the next year. Every-time there has to be sown and harvested, over and over again. In schools and as a service in Christian churches in many countries the people have a harvest festival, a celebration of the annual harvest, but also a thanksgiving for the fruits they may receive and bear.

The harvest the Greek writings is speaking of is the continuing process of people who get inspired by the work of Christ and his disciples and follow the master teacher his commission. We as a community do hope we can bring the seeds in fertile ground and shall be able to fertilise it well, so that it can bear good fruits.

 

As the young children at school have to respond to the bell, giving the sign to enter the class. We also should enter the class of the disciples, following our teacher, the rabbi Jeshua. Fresh at the beginning of the year we should be eager to learn new things and be curious what we can find in all those Books. God has prepared the Knowledge for us. We can take it or leave it. It is our free choice. Nothing is pushed forward, but the call of Jesus sounds all over the earth and everywhere the gospel of the Good News should be preached.

Each person that calls himself or herself a Christian should every year again take up the good spirit to tell the world what happened with the impaled Nazarene and his followers, who gave an example for the world to follow.

The wonders that began at Pentecost should still be happening today. On that day when the Holy spirit came over the disciples the start was given to a new era. A new beginning could take place.  It were the first days of the church which had to come into being.
Today there are still many places on earth where such seeds should be planted. Belgium is no exception. It is a very difficult ground. Like there are many clay grounds in Brabant, hard to work on, we do have to work hard to get people coming to our ecclesiae (churches). In Belgium there are many ‘babies’ waiting to go to kindergarten or school, to find more knowledge. They only have to find ways in doing it, finding the right knowledge.

At the beginning of a new church year we should offer our services to God and should express our hope that our community shall be blessed by Him. That we may find strength to continue the important work and receive enough knowledge, given to us by God’s Power (the Holy Spirit). We ask God that we can have enough patience to continue to preach His Word and to plants seeds wherever He wants.

Each of us should open his or her mind and heart for the teachings of Jesus and should be eager to come like Christ. We all should do our best to put on the armour of Christ and to open our mouths, bringing the Good News to the world. Witnessing about the coming Kingdom of God we should allow God to work in us and to have Him renewing us. He is active and present in our lives, just as He was gathering His Church about 20 centuries ago.

We need a fresh perspective. The beginning of the new academic and church year may bring that. We need the motivation and the boldness of the apostles and followers of Christ Jesus of the first hour. We need to rekindle our original excitement when announcing that the kingdom of heaven is at hand, because He is at work, in us and around us.

To have a successful new year the ecclesia needs the Light of the Spirit. Without the Power of God we are nothing. Like the apostles received the comforter from above, we also do need Light coming over us to be able to preach and to reach people, to bring them closer to God.

Let us pray that the Holy Spirit may enlighten us and give the force to go out in the world, making people aware of what God is willing to give to His People and how He wants us to be His children. It is God Who needs to give us power to be able to contribute to the formation of His Church. We can only hope we may be a work-instrument with many others, being thankful that we can receive so many blessings already here on this earth, preparing ourselves and others for the Kingdom of God.

 

English: A Protestant Church altar decorated f...

A Protestant Church altar decorated for Pentecost with red burning candles and red banners and altar cloth depicting the fire and sound of blowing wind of the Holy Spirit. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

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Preceding article: An academic year ending, again a new year standing ready for us

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Additional readings:

  1. First Century of Christianity
  2. Promise of Comforter
  3. Seven full weeks or seven completed Sabbaths and ascension of Jesus
  4. Nazarene Acts of the Apostles Chapter 1
  5. Hebraic Roots Bible Book of The Acts of the Apostles Chapter 1
  6. Hebraic Roots Bible Book of The Acts of the Apostles Chapter 2
  7. The Acts Of The Sent Ones Chapter 2
  8. The day of the festival of Pentecost
  9. Nazarene Acts of the Apostles Chapter 2 v1-13 Working Spirit
  10. Speaking in tongues
  11. Meaning of “speaking in tongues”
  12. Tongues a sign of authenticity or divine backing
  13. Coming to the end of the year
  14. A new year with hopes and challenges
  15. Passion and burn out of a teacher
  16. An academic year ending, again a new year standing ready for us
  17. Move forward, not standing still
  18. Proclaiming shalom, bringing good news of good things, announcing salvation
  19. Bringing Good News into the world

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  • undefined (spiritualconnectedness.wordpress.com)
    Each of you acquires opinions and beliefs about yourself during your upbringing. You absorb ideas and images from your parents, family, peers, school, etc. You begin to play certain roles without questioning them, and you soon develop something called a “personality”: a set of habits, behaviors, and thoughts. But at some time in the course of growing up, something else awakens in you. First, it is no more than a whisper; a memory that you cannot place; a knowing that you are more than what is just determined by the world outside yourself. There is something deeper, a layer that cannot be contained and understood by the human intellect. Herein lies your core, that which precedes and survives the earthly sphere – your soul.
  • Differences Between Pentecost and the Jewish Feast of Weeks (differencebetween.net)
    The children of Israel are also important on this occasion. In celebration of Pentecost, they are to bring two loaves of leavened bread to the temple. These loaves of leavened bread are used as wave offerings. They can only be eaten after the harvest ceremony is fully completed. The Jews also offer burnt animal offerings before the Lord. They can share and eat the meals with the poor people, and even the strangers.
  • Pentecost (rjowles.wordpress.com)
    The Apostles and disciples were praying together and the Holy Spirit came, sounding like a forceful wind and “tongues” of fire settled on them and they began to preach. Saint Peter began to preach a sermon and the multicultural and multi-ethnic crowd each heard him preaching in their own language. Of course, many have attempted to explain this.
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    If Saint Peter preached and everyone, regardless of language, understood what he was saying in their own language (either by the Holy Spirit speaking a special language through him that is like the “Master Key” language that everyone understands, or through the Holy Spirit interpreting what he was saying within their own hearts), then Pentecost is the undoing of the confusion of language at Babel. If you remember the story of the Tower of Babel, before that time everyone spoke the same language and after that time God confused the language so that different people started speaking different languages. Perhaps, what happened is that the Holy Spirit was active within the world and after the Tower of Babel incident, the Holy Spirit retreated from the world at large, occasionally moving through people but not the world itself, until after the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. I will leave it to you to decide for or against that idea as you see fit.
  • It’s Time to Celebrate! (tamimyer.wordpress.com)
    Pentecost is  a “firstfruits” celebration for us, too, meaning that we are offering to God our first and best–not our leftovers–both as an expression of gratitude for what He has given and also as a statement of confidence that He will provide again.
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    An interesting Jewish tradition on Pentecost is to read from Ezekiel 1, a passage which refers to a great windstorm and to fire. Perhaps these images were in the disciples’ thoughts as they then encountered for themselves the sound of a mighty wind and the sight of fire.
  • Call Sinners to Respond to the Gospel! (defendingcontending.com)
    A child of God could faithfully give the gospel, speak of God and His character, man and His desperate need, Christ and His sufficient atonement, repentance and faith in clear terms, but one element that evangelists seem to omit is the urgent call for sinners to respond to the gospel!
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    Often, in the Temple against the backdrop of the hypocritical, works-righteousness system of Judaism, Christ would teach how He came down from heaven as the living Bread, as the water of life, as the door to heaven, as the Shepherd for the sheep, as the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and he invited all to come to Him. If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me. He exemplified not only the clear and bold proclamation of gospel-truth, but he also modeled urgent and compassionate exhortations to respond to the gospel. We must do the same.
  • The Feast of Shavuot (Pentecost) (yehudafm.wordpress.com)
    The early summer harvest of Shavuot in Israel was a small harvest in comparison to the larger harvest that came in the autumn of each year. This has prophetic significance. Strange as it might seem to mainstream Christianity today, God is not trying to save the whole world right now. He has planned a far larger harvest of souls when Jesus returns. Those of us who are saved today are only part of the smaller harvest. When most people in this present evil age are traveling the broad road to destruction, we have been uniquely called to enter in by the narrow gate that leads to eternal life (Matthew 7:13-14) and make our calling and election sure (2 Peter 1:10).
  • Firstfruits? Can an Old Testament holiday apply to your life today? (lightenough.wordpress.com)
    The ancient Israelites had an annual cycle of feasts or holidays (also called festivals) that they kept throughout the year as appointed by God. Four of these were in the spring, and three in the autumn. These holidays were a sacred time to remember God’s provisions in the past, His work in the present, and the hope of future provision.
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    By offering God a portion of the first fruit to ripen, it was also seen as a pledge, or an earnest, for the full harvest that was yet to come. It anticipated the harvest that would be reaped in the following months, even though it had not yet been received.
  • “Ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit,” (tru3j0y.wordpress.com)
    At this present moment we have the first fruits of the Spirit. We have repentance, that gem of the first water; faith, that priceless pearl; hope, the heavenly emerald; and love, the glorious ruby. We are already made “new creatures in Christ Jesus,” by the effectual working of God the Holy Ghost. This is called the firstfruit because it comes first. As the wave-sheaf was the first of the harvest, so the spiritual life, and all the graces which adorn that life, are the first operations of the Spirit of God in our souls. The firstfruits were the pledge of the harvest.
  • In the Spirit — A Reflection for Pentecost (Gathering Voices) (bobcornwall.com)
    That was Jesus’ command to the gathered disciples on the day of his ascension. He had given them an assignment – go and be my witnesses to the ends of the earth. But to do this, they would need the baptism with the Spirit (Acts 1:1-11). This baptism with the Spirit would come on the day of Pentecost.
    +
    Pentecost offers us an excellent opportunity to consider the nature of our ministries and the way in which we are engaging the Spirit of God. Are we focused more on organizational principles learned from the secular world (not that we have nothing to learn) or are we rooting our ministry in the work of the Spirit?
  • Acts 2 – The Image of Pentecost (readingacts.wordpress.com)
    The imagery of Pentecost may be important. Pentecost is a pilgrim-holiday also known as the Feast of Weeks or Shavuot.
    +
    The point of the festival was “to declare God’s ownership of the land and his grace in bringing forth food. According to a tradition found in the book of Jubilees, Pentecost was the day on which Moses was given the Law (cf. Tob 2:1, 2 Mac 12:32). This tradition is based on the belief that the Israelites arrived at Sinai 50 days after the first Passover (Exod 19:1). Some scholars (Knox, Snaith) have made a connection between this tradition and the gift of the Holy Spirit (ie., Moses gave out the Law to Israel on this day, Jesus gives the Holy Spirit to the church). Fitzmyer thinks Luke was aware of the tradition since there are some indirect allusions to the giving of the Law in Acts 2, not the least of which is the image of fire descending (Exod 19:18).

Election of the Apostle Matthias

Joseph Barsabbas and Matthias were the two candidates suggested as possible replacements for Judas Iscariot as an apostle. The lot fell to Matthias. Even though Justus was not chosen, his being considered for the office shows he was a mature disciple of Jesus Christ.—Ac 1:23-26.

(Mat·thi′as) [probably a shortened form of the Heb. Mattithiah, meaning “Gift of Jehovah”].

Judas Hangs Himself

Judas Hangs Himself (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The disciple selected by lot to replace Judas Iscariot as an apostle. After Jesus’ ascension to heaven, Peter, noting that not only had the psalmist David foretold Judas’ deflection (Ps 41:9) but David had also written (Ps 109:8) “his office of oversight let someone else take,” proposed to the approximately 120 disciples gathered together that the vacancy of office be filled. Joseph Barsabbas and Matthias were put up for selection; after prayer, lots were cast, and Matthias was chosen. Occurring just a few days prior to the outpouring of holy spirit, this is the last instance reported in the Bible of the lots being resorted to in determining Jehovah’s choice in a matter.—Ac 1:15-26.

According to Peter’s words (Ac 1:21, 22), Matthias had been a follower of Christ throughout Jesus’ three-and-a-half-year ministry, had been closely associated with the apostles, and was quite likely one of the 70 disciples or evangelists whom Jesus sent out to preach. (Lu 10:1) After his selection, he was “reckoned along with the eleven apostles” by the congregation (Ac 1:26), and when the book of Acts immediately thereafter speaks of “the apostles” or “the twelve,” Matthias was included.—Ac 2:37, 43; 4:33, 36; 5:12, 29; 6:2, 6; 8:1, 14; 9:27; see PAUL.

– it-2 pp. 354-355

+

Though having strong conviction and proofs as to his own apostleship, Paul never included himself among “the twelve.” Prior to Pentecost, as a result of Peter’s Scriptural exhortation, the Christian assembly had sought a replacement for unfaithful Judas Iscariot. Two disciples were selected as candidates, perhaps by vote of the male members of the assembly (Peter having addressed himself to the “Men, brothers”; Ac 1:16). Then they prayed to Jehovah God (compare Ac 1:24 with 1Sa 16:7; Ac 15:7, 8) that He should designate which of the two he had chosen to replace the unfaithful apostle. Following their prayer, they cast lots and “the lot fell upon Matthias.”—Ac 1:15-26; compare Pr 16:33.

There is no reason to doubt that Matthias was God’s own choice. True, once converted, Paul became very prominent and his labors exceeded those of all the other apostles. (1Co 15:9, 10) Yet there is nothing to show that Paul was personally predestinated to an apostleship so that God, in effect, refrained from acting on the prayer of the Christian assembly, held open the place vacated by Judas until Paul’s conversion, and thus made the appointment of Matthias merely an arbitrary action of the Christian assembly. On the contrary, there is sound evidence that Matthias was a divinely appointed replacement.

English: Saint Matthias, who replaced Judas Is...

Saint Matthias, who replaced Judas Iscariot as apostle. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

At Pentecost the outpouring of holy spirit gave the apostles unique powers; they are the only ones shown to have been able to lay hands on newly baptized ones and communicate to them miraculous gifts of the spirit. (See Apostle [Miraculous powers].) If Matthias were not in reality God’s choice, his inability to do this would have been apparent to all. The record shows this was not the case. Luke, the writer of Acts, was Paul’s traveling companion and associate during certain missions, and the book of Acts therefore undoubtedly reflects and coincides with Paul’s own view of matters. That book refers to “the twelve” as appointing the seven men who were to handle the matter of the food distribution problem. This was after Pentecost of 33 C.E. but before Paul’s conversion. Hence Matthias is here acknowledged as one of “the twelve,” and he shared with the other apostles in laying hands on the seven designates.—Ac 6:1-6.

Whose name then appears among those on the “twelve foundation stones” of the New Jerusalem of John’s vision—Matthias’ or Paul’s? (Re 21:2, 14) One line of reasoning would make it appear that Paul is the more likely one. He contributed so much to the Christian congregation by his ministry and particularly by his writing a large portion of the Christian Greek Scriptures (14 letters being attributed to him). In these respects Paul ‘outshone’ Matthias, who receives no further direct mention after Acts chapter 1.

– it-2 pp. 585-590

+

Who replaced Judas Iscariot as a twelfth apostle?

Because of the defection of Judas Iscariot, who died unfaithful, there were only 11 apostles remaining, and during the 40 days from Jesus’ resurrection until his ascension to heaven he made no appointment of a replacement. Sometime during the ten days between Jesus’ ascension and the day of Pentecost it was viewed as necessary that another be selected to fill the vacancy left by Judas, not simply on the basis of his death but, rather, on the basis of his wicked defection, as the Scriptures quoted by Peter indicate. (Ac 1:15-22; Ps 69:25; 109:8; compare Re 3:11.) Thus, by contrast, when the faithful apostle James was put to death, there is no record of any concern to appoint anyone to succeed him in his position of apostle.—Ac 12:2.

It is evident from Peter’s statements that it was then considered that any individual filling the position of an apostle of Jesus Christ must have the qualifications of having been personally conversant with him, having been an eyewitness of his works, his miracles, and particularly his resurrection. In view of this it can be seen that any apostolic succession would in course of time become an impossibility, unless there were divine action to supply these requirements in each individual case. At that particular time before Pentecost, however, there were men meeting these requirements, and two were put forth as suitable for replacing unfaithful Judas. Doubtless having in mind Proverbs 16:33, lots were cast, and Matthias was selected and was thereafter “reckoned along with the eleven apostles.” (Ac 1:23-26) He is thus included among “the twelve” who settled the problem concerning the Greek-speaking disciples (Ac 6:1, 2), and evidently Paul includes him in referring to “the twelve” when speaking of Jesus’ postresurrection appearances at 1 Corinthians 15:4-8. Thus, when Pentecost arrived, there were 12 apostolic foundations on which the spiritual Israel then formed could rest.

The Boppard Room:  Pashal Candle Holder: Saint...

The Boppard Room: Pashal Candle Holder: Saint Matthias (Photo credit: peterjr1961)

Congregational Apostleships.

Matthias was not a mere apostle of the Jerusalem congregation, any more than the remaining 11 apostles were. His case is different from that of the Levite Joseph Barnabas who became an apostle of the congregation of Antioch, Syria. (Ac 13:1-4; 14:4, 14; 1Co 9:4-6) Other men also are referred to as “apostles of congregations” in the sense that they were sent forth by such congregations to represent them. (2Co 8:23) And, in writing to the Philippians, Paul speaks of Epaphroditus as “your envoy [a·po′sto·lon] and private servant for my need.” (Php 2:25) The apostleship of these men was clearly not by virtue of any apostolic succession, nor did they form part of “the twelve” as did Matthias.

The correct understanding of the wider application of the term “apostle” can help to clear away any apparent discrepancy between Acts 9:26, 27 and Galatians 1:17-19, when applied to the same occasion. The first account states that Paul, on arriving in Jerusalem, was led “to the apostles” by Barnabas. In the account in Galatians, however, Paul states that he visited with Peter and adds: “But I saw no one else of the apostles, only James the brother of the Lord.” James (not the original apostle James the son of Zebedee nor James the son of Alphaeus, but the half brother of Jesus) was evidently viewed as an “apostle” in the wider sense, namely, as “one sent forth” by the Jerusalem congregation. This would allow for the Acts account to use the title in the plural in saying that Paul was led “to the apostles” (that is, Peter and James).—Compare 1Co 15:5-7; Ga 2:9.

– it-1 pp. 127-130

The Election of Saint Matthias

The Election of Saint Matthias (Photo credit: Lawrence OP)

***

15 Now during these days Peter rose up in the midst of the brothers and said (the crowd* of persons was all together about one hundred and twenty): 16 “Men, brothers, it was necessary for the scripture to be fulfilled,+ which the holy spirit+ spoke beforehand by David’s mouth about Judas,+ who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus,+ 17 because he had been numbered among us+ and he obtained a share in this ministry.+ 18 (This very man, therefore, purchased+ a field with the wages for unrighteousness,+ and pitching head foremost*+ he noisily burst in his midst and all his intestines were poured out. 19 It also became known to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that that field was called in their language A·kel′da·ma, that is, Field of Blood.)
20 For it is written in the book of Psalms, ‘Let his lodging place become desolate, and let there be no dweller in it,’+ and, ‘His office of oversight* let someone else take.’+ 21 It is therefore necessary that of the men that assembled with us during all the time in which the Lord Jesus went in and out* among us,+ 22 starting with his baptism by John+ and until the day he was received up from us,+ one of these men should become a witness with us of his resurrection.”+

23 So they put up two, Joseph called Bar′sab·bas, who was surnamed Justus, and Mat·thi′as. 24 And they prayed and said: “You, O Jehovah,* who know the hearts of all,+ designate which one of these two men you have chosen, 25 to take the place of this ministry and apostleship,+ from which Judas deviated to go to his own place.” 26 So they cast lots+ over them, and the lot fell upon Mat·thi′as; and he was reckoned along with the eleven+ apostles.

+

Proverbs 16:33

33 Into the lap the lot is cast down,+ but every decision by it is from Jehovah.+

Proverbs 18:18

18 The lot puts even contentions to rest,+ and it separates even the mighty from one another.+

+

Act 6:2:

2 So the twelve called the multitude of the disciples to them and said: “It is not pleasing for us to leave the word of God to distribute [food]* to tables.+ 3 So, brothers, search out+ for yourselves seven certified men from among YOU, full of spirit and wisdom,+ that we may appoint them over this necessary business; 4 but we shall devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”+ 5 And the thing spoken was pleasing to the whole multitude, and they selected Stephen, a man full of faith and holy spirit,+ and Philip+ and Proch′o·rus and Ni·ca′nor and Ti′mon and Par′me·nas and Nic·o·la′us, a proselyte of Antioch; 6 and they placed them before the apostles, and, after having prayed, these laid their hands+ upon them.

Acts 9:26, 27:

26 On arriving in Jerusalem+ he made efforts to join himself to the disciples; but they were all afraid of him, because they did not believe he was a disciple. 27 So Bar′na·bas came to his aid+ and led him to the apostles, and he told them in detail how on the road he had seen the Lord+ and that he had spoken to him,+ and how in Damascus+ he had spoken boldly in the name of Jesus.

***

*

 

v 23: Joseph, also called Barsabbas (perhaps a family name or merely an additional name) and surnamed Justus, was a witness of the work, miracles, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
A Levite surnamed Barnabas and a native of Cyprus. (Ac 4:36, 37) He was a close associate of the apostle Paul.—See Barnabas.

v 24: Jehovah: “Jehovah.” Heb., יהוה (YHWH or JHVH):

There is evidence that Jesus’ disciples used the Tetragrammaton in their writings. In his work De viris inlustribus [Concerning Illustrious Men], chapter III, Jerome, in the fourth century, wrote the following: “Matthew, who is also Levi, and who from a publican came to be an apostle, first of all composed a Gospel of Christ in Judaea in the Hebrew language and characters for the benefit of those of the circumcision who had believed. Who translated it after that in Greek is not sufficiently ascertained. Moreover, the Hebrew itself is preserved to this day in the library at Caesarea, which the martyr Pamphilus so diligently collected. I also was allowed by the Nazarenes who use this volume in the Syrian city of Beroea to copy it.” (Translation from the Latin text edited by E. C. Richardson and published in the series “Texte und Untersuchungen zur Geschichte der altchristlichen Literatur,” Vol. 14, Leipzig, 1896, pp. 8, 9.)

Matthew made more than a hundred quotations from the inspired Hebrew Scriptures. Where these quotations included the divine name he would have been obliged faithfully to include the Tetragrammaton in his Hebrew Gospel account. When the Gospel of Matthew was translated into Greek, the Tetragrammaton was left untranslated within the Greek text according to the practice of that time.

Not only Matthew but all the writers of the Christian Greek Scriptures quoted verses from the Hebrew text or from the Septuagint where the divine name appears. For example, in Peter’s speech in Ac 3:22 a quotation is made from De 18:15 where the Tetragrammaton appears in a papyrus fragment of the Septuagint dated to the first century B.C.E. (See App 1C §1.) As a follower of Christ, Peter used God’s name, Jehovah. When Peter’s speech was put on record the Tetragrammaton was here used according to the practice during the first century B.C.E. and the first century C.E.

Sometime during the second or third century C.E. the scribes removed the Tetragrammaton from both the Septuagint and the Christian Greek Scriptures and replaced it with Ky′ri·os, “Lord” or The·os′, “God.”

v 24: who know the hearts of all:

(1 Samuel 16:7): 7 But Jehovah said to Samuel: “Do not look at his appearance and at the height of his stature,+ for I have rejected him. For not the way man sees [is the way God sees],*+ because mere man sees what appears to the eyes;*+ but as for Jehovah, he sees what the heart+ is.”*
(1 Chronicles 28:9): 9 “And you, Sol′o·mon my son, know+ the God of your father and serve+ him with a complete heart+ and with a delightful soul;+ for all hearts Jehovah is searching,+ and every inclination of the thoughts he is discerning.+ If you search for him, he will let himself be found by you;+ but if you leave him,+ he will cast you off forever.+

(Jeremiah 11:20): 20 But Jehovah of armies is judging with righteousness;+ he is examining the kidneys* and the heart.+ O may I see your vengeance on them, for it is to you that I have revealed my case at law.+

(Acts 15:8): 8 and God, who knows the heart,+ bore witness by giving them the holy spirit,+ just as he did to us also.

(1 Kings 8:391 Chronicles 28:92 Chronicles 16:9Psalm 7:9Proverbs 24:12; Jeremiah 17:10)

v 25: apostleship: (John 6:70): 70 Jesus answered them: “I chose YOU twelve,+ did I not? Yet one of YOU is a slanderer.”*+

v 26: they cast lots: (Proverbs 16:33): (Proverbs 16:33): 33 Into the lap the lot is cast down,+ but every decision by it is from Jehovah.+

with the eleven+ apostles: (Matthew 28:16):  16 However, the eleven disciples went into Gal′i·lee+ to the mountain where Jesus had arranged for them,

+ by the lot / drawing lots: (Numbers 26:55; Joshua 18:10; Proverbs 18:18)

+

Compare:

The Acts Of The Sent Ones Chapter 1

Hebraic Roots Bible Book of The Acts of the Apostles Chapter 1

Nazarene Acts of the Apostles Chapter 1 v23-26 Choice of Matthias

Dutch version/ Nederlandse versie: Verkiezing van Matthias

Afrikaans: Matti′as is gekies als een van “die twaalf

Deutsch: Da warfen sie Lose und das Los fiel auf Matthias

Français: Élection de Matthias

++

Please also do find:

+++

  • Commemoration of the Apostle Matthias, Martyred in Colchis, and Apostolic Succession (georgianorthodoxchurch.wordpress.com)
    there is evidence that the Apostle Matthias was martyred in Colchis  (the ancient name for Georgia’s Black Sea regions) and buried in Gonio, near Batumi.
    +
    The elevation of Matthias from the Seventy to the Twelve Apostles is interesting, as it is one of the first written accounts of Apostolic Succession
  • *Apostolic* (motivation1000.wordpress.com)
    Furthermore, for a person to profess to be a Christian (one who is like Christ) and do not obey God’s word in the bible is to make that person a hypocrite – hence, a hypocrites teachings is hypocrisy. In a narrower since, Doctrine is Teachings, and Teachings is Doctrine! Every movement has a doctrine, every religion has a doctrine, the Christian’s doctrine is the Holy Bible (God’s words passed on to His people by the Prophets and Apostles of the bible.
  • Acts 1 (sisterspray4me.com)
    23 So they nominated two men: Joseph called Barsabbas (also known as Justus) and Matthias. 24 Then they all prayed, “O Lord, you know every heart. Show us which of these men you have chosen 25 as an apostle to replace Judas in this ministry, for he has deserted us and gone where he belongs.” 26 Then they cast lots, and Matthias was selected to become an apostle with the other eleven.
  • Acts 14-15 (whatshotn.wordpress.com)
    When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question.
  • Wait Upon The Lord (rootstothestream.net)
    Then they cast lots, and the lot fell to Matthias; so he was added to the eleven apostles.
    +
    Consider if there are any aspects of your life that may be best served with simply waiting on the direction of the Lord.
  • Intro to the Book of Acts and the choosing of Judas’ replacement (sundayschoolbiblestudy.wordpress.com)
    Luke gives us a brief introduction and then summarizes the 40 days after His death and resurrection when Jesus prepares the Apostles for ministry. He instructs them to wait for the baptism of the Holy Spirit (see The Holy Spirit and the Day of Pentecost).
  • Acts of the Apostles 4.32-5.11
    Thus far in the Acts of the Apostles the narrative has primarily been concerned with the formation of the Messianic community that would eventually become known as the Christian Church and the opposition to this community by the Jewish leaders and some of the Jewish people.
  • Acts 6:2-4…”So the Twelve gathered all the disciples
    New Testament model, and biblical clarity in the deacons’ role and function is invaluable for promoting peace and unity in our congregations.

  • It is the spirit of your Father that speaks by you
    Paul knew well the importance of God’s holy spirit when it comes to speaking the truth. He even entreated the congregation in Ephesus to make supplication for him that “ability to speak” might be given him. (Eph. 6:18-20)
  • The Greatness of the Apostle Paul / Die Größe des Apostels Paulus
    Among people critical of Christianity, the apostle Paul has a pretty bad press. Whilst quite a few of them recognize that Jesus had an exceptionally high ethic (at least for his time), Paul is generally regarded as a villain having sort of corrupted the message of his master.
    +Während nicht wenige von ihnen anerkennen, dass Jesus eine außenordentlich hohe Ethik (zumindest für seine Zeit) hatte, wird generell Paulus als einen Bösewicht angesehen, der irgendwie die Botschaft seines Meisters verdorben hat.

Meaning of “speaking in tongues”

Meaning of filled with the Holy Spirit and “speaking in tongues”

Pentecost-holy-spirit-descent-on-disciples

In Acts 2:4-11, where the disciples first started speaking in tongues we get the first impression of what it really meant.

“And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men out of every nation under heaven. Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together and were confounded, because every man heard them speaking in his own language. And they were all amazed and marveled, saying one to another, “Behold, are not all these who speak Galileans? And how then do we each hear them speaking in our own tongue wherein we were born? Parthians, Medes, Elamites and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, in Egypt and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.”” (Acts 2:4-11 KJ21)

Speaking in Tongues Real or FakeIn Greek, the word for tongue is the same as the word for language.  We do find the “glossa” or  speaking in another kind of language also in  1 Corinthians 13:1, referring to a state of high spiritual excitement or ecstasy from inspiration, unconscious of external things wholly absorbed in adoring communication with God, breaking forth into abrupt expressions of praise and devotion which are not coherent and therefore not always intelligible to others.

“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not charity, I am become as sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal.” (1 Corinthians 13:1 KJ21)

So “speaking in tongues” is identical to “speaking in languages”. In the passage cited, it is clear that the apostles spoke in the languages of the Parthians, Medes, Elamites, etc.

The followers of Christ gathered in the upper room who received the comforter or Holy Spirit, got gifted to relate to other’s with common ground and got inspired to tell others about what they understood from what they learned before from Christ Jesus and from what is written in the scrolls or Holy Scriptures.

The word ‘spirit’ in Hebrew is the same word (ruakh) ‘ruach‘ as  ‘breath’ or ‘wind’. These are the first two uses in the Bible Genesis 1:2 and Genesis 6:3 and we can find many verses where the (Holy) Spirit is personified, but this happens less with the Spirit or the Holy Spirit than with several other concept words (e.g. the flesh, sin, the world, creation, etc). So, overall, the way that the phrase “the Holy Spirit” is used in the Bible indicates a concept, a way of expressing characteristics or activities of God, or of holiness in those who follow his Son, not a sentient being or literal power. The addition of the adjective ‘holy’ or ‘set apart‘ is as simple as it appears – a spirit which is holy, a spirit of holiness, something special, something different than other things, ‘set-apart’. And the presence of the definite article, “the”, indicates a specific holy spirit, a specific spirit of holiness. In many cases, “the Spirit” means exactly the same as “the Holy Spirit”, since the idea of holiness is understood by context.

God gave His Word to the people. He made it clear that it was the word for all. Everyone can take up the Bible and read in it. But at the time of the first century of this Common Era Jesus had promised those who where willing to listen to his and his Fathers Words would receive the Send One of his Father, the Holy Spirit or the Force of God which would enlighten them. People with the eyes of the lord would get the Force of God (the Holy Spirit) to be able to interpret the Bible with common sense. God didn’t make anything in the Bible complicated but men tend too just too suit their selfish needs.

Christ had given his apostles “power” [Greek dynamis] but not “spirit” [pneuma]. Jesus knew that only his Father can draw people closer to Him and give them the most necessary power and spirit. But Jesus also knew God would not leave Jesus his followers on their own. Jesus was sure his Father would send a comforter or Help so that the apostles and other disciples could continue the work Jesus had tarted on this earth. In Christ Jesus we might have an Advocate, Comforter, Paraclete from the verb parakaleo, to call alongside, (1 John 2:1) but without the Work of God Jesus would have been nothing and we would be nothing. All the Power comes from Jehovah God. Christ breathed this “holy spirit”, holy breath, into the disciples on that first Sunday morning, when their thoughts where with Christ Jesus. From this it is easy to see where Paul found the idea of that “breath” of Christ as an allegory of the new breath, new life, in the believer as he or she walks towards the kingdom. (Rom 5:5, 2 Co 1:22, 2 Co 3:3, Gal 4:6)

For Jesus the Advocate or Comforter is ‘The Spirit of Truth’, which enable men to worship God the right way. After the apostles where blessed with the gift of the Spirit they also could go out and bring the word of the Spirit to life bearing witness.

“But the hour cometh and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship Him. God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”” (John 4:23-24 KJ21)

“”But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of Truth who proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me.” (John 15:26 KJ21)

“However when He, the Spirit of Truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth; for He shall not speak from Himself, but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak; and He will show you things to come.” (John 16:13 KJ21)

“These things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Spirit teacheth, comparing spiritual things with spiritual.” (1 Corinthians 2:13 KJ21)

“In Christ ye also trusted after ye heard the word of truth, the Gospel of your salvation. In Him also after ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise,” (Ephesians 1:13 KJ21)

“But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren, beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you for salvation, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth,” (2 Thessalonians 2:13 KJ21)

“We are of God; he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby we know the Spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.” (1 John 4:6 KJ21)

“This is He that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.” (1 John 5:6 KJ21)

File:17 Lorenzo Veneziano, Apostle Peter Preaching. 1370 Staatliche Museen, Berlin..jpg

The apostle Peter preaching – 1370, Lorenzo Veneziano, Staatliche Museen, Berlin

(Remember also that the gifts/powers “of” the Spirit, cannot be the spirit itself, or the word “of” is redundant.)

God provided those fearful men to have contact with others so that they also could get to know the Word of God. God made it possible that they could answer their many questions in a language which they could understand. Those men got the possibility of interpretation of tongues (like spoken of in 1 Corinthians 12:10). From God they received the ability to  understand many mysteries and received lots of knowledge, which they also could give to others so that they, at their turn, could grow.

Some may think the gift of speaking in tongues is also a gift for some today. That the gifts fail to meet the qualifications of the “Spirit of Truth” promised in John ch.14-16 is evident even from 1 Corinthians itself, where context shows that the gifts were failing and tongues already had ceased (compare 1Co14:2 with Acts 2:6,8,11) even when Paul was writing (also see ‘Have the Holy Spirit gifts died out?‘). It also fails the Deuteronomy 13:3 test that even successful miracles were no guarantee of truth, but just the opposite.

If the “Advocate” and “Spirit of Truth” contains any element of Christ’s own activity, then inevitably we are forced to see Christ as the major person in the promise of “another advocate”, simply because there is no other person between God and man, so there is no other advocate. Jesus has become the only mediator between God and men. The main argument in favour of Christ himself, in a different role, himself being the “another advocate” he promised, is the lack of other persons to concretely be between man and God.

“For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,” (1 Timothy 2:5 KJ21)

The gifts of the Spirit appear to have ceased with the death of the Apostles (including Paul) as they were the only ones who could pass on the gifts by the laying of hands or Imposition of Hands. For some if the apostles had not been able in some way or other to transmit the gifts hat they possessed in a pre-eminent degree the Holy Spirit would have been a belief of little value for the later church if they had not been able in some way or other to transmit the gift. But those believers or denominations add than straight away: “Of course, not to every one, but only to those who could be regarded as their successors in office.” But what was given to the apostle should not mean it is also given to any successor of that apostle. It was that special high measure of the gift of the spirit which is peculiar to the apostles. For example:

“whom they set before the apostles. And when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them.” (Acts 6:6 KJ21)

“And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.” (Acts 19:6 KJ21)

“Therefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God which is in thee through the putting on of my hands.” (2 Timothy 1:6 KJ21)

In the early times Simon tried to buy this power of passing on the Spirit but found that it was something only the apostles could do.

“And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money, saying, “Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Spirit.”” (Acts 8:18-19 KJ21)

The Spirit gifts were given for a purpose — to help convince people that the gospel message was true (Mark 16:15,17-18) and establish the early Christian church (Eph. 4:8-14). Once Christianity was established (Eph. 4:13 — ‘mature’, perfect), the gifts passed away (1 Cor. 13:10).

At the beginning of the Church of God the frightened apostles did need a incentive and some pep-talk.  They needed help to come over their fear and to go out into the world to witness about the works of Christ. But once they had received the power to overcome their fear they did not need the Spirit gifts any more because they had the full revelation of God in the Bible to guide them (2Tim. 3:16-17)

“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly equipped for all good works.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17 KJ21)

juanita bynum speaking in tongues on facebook

“Juanita Bynum speaking in tongues on Facebook.”

Today we too have the full Scripture to guide us. The Bible is the Word of God, which should be our Watchtower and the Light for the world. The Holy Scriptures, or Bible has everything we need to make us ‘competent, equipped for every good work’. In the times of the New Testament, they only had the Old Testament and a few of the books of the New Testament as they were written. When the Bible was finally completed, the gifts ceased to be.

In Hebrews 6:4-5, the author speaking of the Spirit gifts says that they were a taste of the powers of the age to come:

“For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good Word of God and the powers of the world to come,” (Hebrews 6:4-5 KJ21)

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Preceding articles:

Hebraic Roots Bible Book of The Acts of the Apostles Chapter 2

The Acts Of The Sent Ones Chapter 2

The day of the festival of Pentecost

Nazarene Acts of the Apostles Chapter 2 v1-13 Working Spirit

Speaking in tongues

Tongues a sign of authenticity or divine backing

Our readers who speak Dutch can find a similar discussion in Dutch in our previous postings:

In Talen sprekend

Teken van authenticiteit of goddelijke backing” & in

Betekenis van ‘Spreken in Tongen’ en ‘Uitstorting van de Geest’

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Please read also:

  1. Did the Inspirator exist
  2. The manager and Word of God
  3. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #1 Creator and His Prophets
  4. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #6 Words to feed and communicate
  5. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #7 Prayer #5 Listening Ear
  6. Creator and Blogger God 1 Emptiness
  7. Creator and Blogger God 2 Image and likeness
  8. Creator and Blogger God 3 Lesson and solution
  9. Creator and Blogger God 4 Expounding voice
  10. Creator and Blogger God 5 Things to tell
  11. Creator and Blogger God 6 For His people
  12. Creator and Blogger God 7 A Blog of a Book 1 Believing the Blogger
  13. Missional hermeneutics 3/5
  14. God Helper and Deliverer
  15. The radiance of God’s glory and the counsellor
  16. He has given us the Pneuma, the force, from Him
  17. Promise of Comforter
  18. Speaking in tongues
  19. The inspiring divine spark
  20. Worship and worshipping
  21. Make a joyful noise unto Yahweh, rejoice, and sing praise unto Jehovah
  22. Song of Praise for the Elohim Set-Apart
  23. Songs of Moses and the servants of God
  24. 144 000 following the Lamb
  25. A secret to be reveiled
  26. Faith a commitment to the promises of Christ and to to the demands of Christ
  27. A Living Faith #1 Substance of things hoped for
  28. A Living Faith #6 Sacrifice
  29. God’s Special Gift
  30. Singing gift from God
  31. A Breath for tomorow
  32. Prophets making excuses
  33. The great ideal of this age
  34. Words in the world
  35. United people under Christ
  36. God make us holy
  37. Be holy
  38. Get up in the morning and pray for the Lord’s blessings
  39. Be still and listen
  40. Listen, or thy tongue will keep thee deaf
  41. When discouraged facing opposition
  42. Kindness
    Speaking in a language which nobody in the meeting can understand does not from a proof of kindness or love for the other members at the meeting. In the first place we should show the Gift of Love, and so should do our best that everything we have to say can be understood by all around us.
  43. It is often forgotten that:
    Christianity is a love affair
    and that everything should have its fundament in this gift of having special attention to the others in creation. The things we receive from god we should love to share with others and we would do everything to be sure that others can understand those blessings and can enjoy those gifts as well.
    By speaking in words nobody else can understand we can not really help them nor would be building them up. though at the first place we should be willing to witness for Jehovah and to bring the Good News of the Gospel of the coming Kingdom of God.
  44. The Spirit of God imparts love,inspires hope, and gives liberty
  45. With the words we utter in the congregation we should be trying to bring understandable edifying words to the meeting. Like Jesus Christ, the son of God, pulls us from the dark and lightens our path making clear all the signs which direct to the One and Only One God, God of gods, the Father of Jesus Christ, Jeshua, the son of Mary (Miriam/Maria) and Joseph,  from the tribe of king David, we too should try to be clear guides like the
    Ember and light the ransomed of Jehovah
  46. Our hope should be that our community can grow and we should work for it, encouraging everybody in words they can grip.
    Be an Encourager
  47. Our Contribution – Contributie, bijdrage should not be with financial gifts nor with our so called ‘gifts of tongues’ but with our clearness and willingness to help all people around us, especially in our own community or parish. Often we do find in such churches where they put an importance on the ‘Speaking in tongues’ that after they spoke in such non-understandable language, that the preacher touches or lays hand on that person, let everybody pray for that person, and afterwards demands a financial contribution. By all the hocus pocus many are taken by the happening they do not understand, but do not want to show it to others, and therefore try to contribute more than the other person, so to give a sign he or she believes a great miracle is taking place.
  48. What we should be giving is our spirit, our love, our effort and that what can be good for the whole community:
    Blessed are those who freely give
  49. Not enlightened by God’s Spirit
  50. Pope Francis I on the Holy Spirit
  51. Why hasn’t anything been inspired recently? Revelation was the last inspired book and it was a long time ago. Why aren’t there any more?

Additional reading:

Tongues

  1. The Gifts of the Spirit – Speaking in Tongues
    Altogether there were eight different gifts in this list and it is noteworthy that the gift of the tongues and their interpretation were listed last as being of the least importance. The reason for this would be that these gifts were effective in the ecclesias generally for their immediate profit but the ability to speak in tongues or languages was only useful when preaching in a foreign country where that language was spoken.
    It must be remembered that the use of the gift of tongues or different languages was not mentioned in any of the four gospel records. This is because the preaching of Jesus was confined to those of his own race, the Jews and occasionally to Samaritans who apparently could also speak the same language as the Jews.
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    It is only natural that the brethren and sisters should be enthusiastic about using these gifts of the Spirit. Paul describes this as follows, “When ye come together, everyone of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.” (1 Cor.14:26) Here Paul points out that the Spirit gifts were given for the express purpose of edifying the Church. This means that the gift of tongues must be used to the same end. So Paul adds, “If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret. But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God.” (14:27-28)
    The whole purpose of these gifts of the Spirit was to build up the Church with knowledge and understanding so that it attains a state of maturity, an appropriate Holy Temple for God to dwell in. Consequently Paul, when writing to the Ephesian Church about these gifts wrote, “And he gave some apostles, and some prophets; and some evangelists; and some pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of the faith, and the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” (Eph.4:11-13)
  2. Do You Speak in Tongues?
    What would you say if we told you that speaking in tongues was necessary for your eternal salvation? Many of you would be trembling in fear because you have never spoken in tongues. Yet there are members of the Pentecostal church who insist that you are not sealed by the Spirit of God unless you speak in tongues. In other words, speaking in tongues is the outward sign of your redemption and salvation.
  3. Brief hiatus
    First, a happy Shavuos (celebrating the giving the of the Torah at Mt. Sinai) to all those celebrating and a happy Pentecost (celebrating the Holy Ghost descending on the early Christian apostles) to all those celebrating.
    These holidays are sometimes celebrated through study, and especially to those of you who are studying, I wish that you enjoy full fruits of your study and that your study brings understanding and wisdom.
  4. Tuning-in to the Holy Spirit
    Powerful and peaceful transformation!!! That is one sentence that captures the Pentecost event.
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    How can we as Christians become so powerfully transformed that we become transforming witnesses to others and abide in Christ’s own peace? How can we have this powerful transforming experience?
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    The first way of tuning-in to the Spirit is by constant prayer. The disciples gathered to pray for the gift of the Holy Spirit. Though the gift of the Holy Spirit was promised to them, prayer remains necessary. Prayer opens our hearts to the presence and action of the Holy Spirit. Jesus even promised that the Holy Spirit is the guaranteed answer to every prayer: “How much more will my Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask?” We must pray always and everywhere in the ways that we find helpful like the Holy Rosary, pray with the scriptures, pray at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, etc. We close ourselves to the Spirit the moment we give up prayer.
  5. Pentecost Preaching
    Just as Jesus promised He bestows the Holy Spirit on His apostles and the church.  “A sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting.”  “Tongues of fire.”  “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit.”
  6. Being Governed by the Spirit
    When are minds are dominated by worldly and sinful thoughts, then those thoughts control us and we act upon them. However, when we focus our thoughts on Christ, then we live a life of peace. Allow the Holy Spirit to guide and direct your thoughts and allow God to work in and through you!
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    The Holy Spirit is miraculously bestowed – manifested in the power of the wind and fire so that His church and His pastors are equipped and prepared to be a witness to Jesus, the Savior of the world, in word (Acts 2:14-36, 38-40) and deed (Acts 2:42-47).  So that in the preached Gospel, Holy Baptism, and the Lord’s Supper the forgiveness or salvation that Jesus won for the world is bestowed to died-for sinners like you and me!  That you believe that not only did Jesus die for the world but that He died For You!
  7. A Rushing Mighty Wind
    For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.
  8. Acts for today!
    The Holy Spirit is necessary and available to every follower of Christ today! It is through God’s Spirit that we are wooed to Christ and it is by that same Spirit we will move and operate in our giftings as we serve Him. The same giftings and blessing that those men and women received on the day of Pentecost are the same giftings and blessing that we can receive today!
  9. What does it mean to speak in tongues? by Todd Clippard
    In its simplest form, speaking in tongues simply means to speak in an established and understandable language. English is a tongue, as is Spanish, French, German, and a host of other languages one might mention. To speak in tongues, in a biblical sense, is to speak a language one has never studied or learned.
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    If the Holy Spirit could enable them to speak one foreign language, why not more than one? This would be consistent with the promise Jesus made to the apostles in Acts 1:4-8, where they would be able to communicate the word of God no matter where they were.
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    To be able to communicate the gospel to all mankind at that time would require the ability to speak whatever language was spoken by the indigenous peoples.
  10. The Baptism In The Holy Spirit for All is the Biblical Norm.
    Those that are especially effective when using tongues, be it in prayer, bringing a word that requires interpretation seem to have some kind of proper office or function. 1 Corinthians 12:28 reads, “And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues”.
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    If it was a “federal” outpouring, ie: tongues of fire, wind, and speaking in tongues that does not have to be repeated because the rest of the world will straightway receive on conversion, one can discount everything I say in this chapter of the book. But if it was an infusion that every single born again Christian who ever lives qualifies to have a similar experience we need to be concerned about those who have not received it. It is this writers conviction that what happened in Acts 2: 4 is for everybody who believes. It is the inheritance of every child of God.
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    It is this writers opinion that wherever in the New Testament the phrase “filled with the Spirit” is used it is referring to either the baptism in the Holy Spirit, with the manifestation of speaking in tongues, or prophecy. Or for people who have already received their baptism in the Holy Spirit, it is a statement or encouragement to utilise those gifts.
  11. Impartation to Team Acts 19:1-7.
    the bible teaches  that there are some gifts, even some characteristics, some intuitive blessings of God, that under His leading and initiation, can be given to somebody else by some sort of action that commonly, externally looks artificially symbolic to the untutored. What I am saying here is denigrated and even ridiculed by some Christians, with questions like; “What if the person isn’t worthy of the imparted blessing?” (Is anybody “worthy”?). “How can we be sure it was God’s will for a blessing to be imparted?”  “Isn’t this putting into human hands something that is totally God’s responsibility and ability?”
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    There were gifts that Paul imparted to Timothy through prophecy and the laying on of hands. Paul was present when the impartation was made, and he encourages Timothy to keep those moments in the fore front of his mind to inspire him in the midst of life’s battles. That is, that by faith, Timothy was to remember how things that were intrinsic to Paul’s gifting and authority, had been given to Timothy by the laying on of Paul’s own hands.
    The English Dictionary defines, “impartation,” and, “to impart,” as Firstly, to communicate (information); relate. Secondly, to give or bestow, especially some abstract quality: to impart wisdom. Plain enough. The word used in the Greek New Testament is,  μεταδίδωμι, transliterated as “ metadidomi”, phonetically spelt as “met-ad-id’-o-mee”. It means, simply, “to offer by way of change. One offers so that a change of ownership is produced. One shares; sometimes merely: One imparts, bestows. “ In short, “One shares , and one gives.” I am speaking like a geek of Greek (which I am not), to make the point that there is no theological skulduggery here. We are simply using a commonly spoken word, but using it in the realm of the Spirit. Biblical examples of  impartation of spiritual life, or gifts are quite plentiful.  It is my conviction that Paul imparted the gifts and aspects of authority of his apostolic ministry to those twelve disciples. (Acts 19:6). I believe that the apostle taught his new team of twelve the power of apostolic impartation, by he himself imparting much to them as he taught.
  12. Speaking in Tongues
    Does the Bible say that all who would have God’s spirit would “speak in tongues”?

1 Cor. 12:13, 30: “Truly by one spirit we were all baptized into one body . . . Not all have gifts of healings, do they? Not all speak in tongues, do they?” (Also 1 Corinthians 14:26)

1 Cor. 14:5: “Now I would like for all of you to speak in tongues, but I prefer that you prophesy. Indeed, he that prophesies is greater than he that speaks in tongues, unless, in fact, he translates, that the congregation may receive upbuilding.”
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Can the ability to “speak in tongues” come from a source other than the true God?

1 John 4:1: “Beloved ones, do not believe every inspired expression [“every spirit,” KJ, RS], but test the inspired expressions to see whether they originate with God.” (See also Matthew 7:21-23; 2 Corinthians 11:14, 15.)

  • Speaking in Tongues—Is It From God? — Watchtower Online
    Significantly, the Bible does not mention that Jesus or any of the pre-Christian prophets miraculously spoke in tongues that they had not learned. The gift of tongues bestowed upon Jesus’ disciples, then, evidently had some additional objective.
  • Speaking in Tongues—A Growing Phenomenon
    In his book Tongues of the Spirit, Cyril G. Williams suggests that there may be a “correlation between a sense of failure, and the desire for ‘tongues.’” He describes it as a release mechanism that has “therapeutic value as a reducer of tension” and a “resolver of inner conflict.” Frustration in church work, emotional stress, failure in a career, bereavement, domestic tensions, or illness in the family are cited as factors that contribute to such ecstatic speech.
    Similarly, in The Psychology of Speaking in Tongues, John P. Kildahl says that “anxiety is a prerequisite for developing the ability to speak in tongues.” Through personal research and careful interviewing, it was found that “more than 85% of the tongue-speakers had experienced a clearly defined anxiety crisis preceding their speaking in tongues.” For example, a mother wanted to speak in tongues so that she could pray for her son who was sick with cancer. A man began to speak in tongues during his period of indecision over an offered job promotion. A woman began speaking in tongues within a week after her husband joined Alcoholics Anonymous.
  • Speaking in Tongues—Is It From God?
    When writing to Christians in the city of Corinth, some of whom apparently could speak in tongues, Paul explained that “tongues are for a sign . . . to the unbelievers.” (1 Corinthians 14:22) Hence, along with other miraculous abilities, the power to speak in tongues was an indication to observers that the newly formed Christian congregation had God’s approval and backing. The miraculous gifts were like a street marker pointing out where truth-seekers should now go to find God’s chosen people.
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    Clearly, modern-day speaking in tongues is very different from the gift of holy spirit given to Jesus’ early followers. In fact, there is no reliable record of anyone receiving that same miraculous power since the death of the apostles. This is not surprising to Bible readers. Regarding the miraculous gifts, including that of speaking in tongues, the inspired apostle Paul prophesied: “They will cease.” (1 Corinthians 13:8) How, then, can one discern who has the holy spirit today?
    Who Give Evidence of Having Holy Spirit?
    Jesus well knew that the gift of tongues would cease relatively soon after the formation of the Christian congregation. Shortly before he died, Jesus mentioned a timeless sign, or mark, that would identify his true followers. “By this all will know that you are my disciples,” he said, “if you have love among yourselves.” (John 13:35) In fact, in the same verse where God’s Word foretold that the miraculous gifts would eventually cease, it says: “Love never fails.”—1 Corinthians 13:8.
  • Is Speaking in Tongues an Evidence of True Worship?
    Jesus cured the sick, raised the dead and performed many other amazing deeds. These miraculous powers identified him as a true prophet and servant of God, just as the performing of miracles established Moses’ authenticity as God’s prophet. However, speaking in tongues was not one of the miraculous powers exercised by Jesus. It was not until the festival of Pentecost A.D. 33 that this gift was first received, and on that occasion it served as an effective evidence that Christians had God’s spirit upon them.
    In the late spring of A.D. 33 the Jews had gathered from inside and outside the Roman Empire for their annual festival of Pentecost. Just ten days before, Jesus had ascended into heaven, and, in obedience to his instructions, 120 of his disciples were waiting in Jerusalem to receive the promised “power from on high.” (Luke 24:49)
  • Tongues, Speaking in
    Jesus said that holy spirit would come upon his followers and that they would be witnesses of him to the most distant part of the earth. (Acts 1:8) He instructed them to “make disciples of people of all the nations.” (Matt. 28:19) He also foretold that ‘this good news of the kingdom would be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all nations.’ (Matt. 24:14) Who today, both as a group and individually, are doing this work? In harmony with what Jesus said, should we not look for this as an evidence that a group has holy spirit?
  • Is the Gift of Tongues Part of True Christianity
    “I Felt, as I listened to him praying in tongues, as if there were an electrifying charge in the air,” said Bill after he and six others had gathered before the preacher near the church altar. Do such experiences repeat the first-century operation of the holy spirit? Do they identify the religion of the Bible? We can find satisfying answers by carefully examining the Scriptures.
  • Is speaking in tongues Biblical?
    The sin of the Corinthian church was that it elevated one gift (i.e., speaking in tongues) above all other gifts in importance and desireability, and the church taught all members to seek the attainment of that gift. Paul responded by teaching that this kind of thinking regarding spiritual gifts is wrong.
  • Speaking in Tongues : Real or Fake?
    There seems to be three divisions in the use of tongues: First, a private prayer language that is not interpreted; second, a language that is interpreted — this defines proper usage in the Christian congregation; and third, missionary context — that is, it appears in the context of evangelism where people are presenting the gospel.
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    Sometimes some people speak false gibbish, some times people speak in devil tongues but other times some people do correctly use the real gift from God known as speaking in tongues. If and when done from and of God, it is Biblical. The ministers that forbid it are going against 1 Cor. 14:39 “forbid not to speak with tongues”! Paul’s solution to the tongues problem in the Corinthian Church was not to forbid tongues, but to correct the improper use of the gift from God.
  • The Cripplegate on Cessation and Continuation
    Very few theologians believe that there are Apostles in the church today. That fact alone means that they are “cessationists” in at least some sense of the word. In fact, in his book, To be Continued?, Sam Waldron has demonstrated that the cessation of the office and gift of the Apostle implies the cessation of the other miraculous/revelatory gifts.

 

But for those who would dispute even that, and argue that there are indeed Apostles in the church today, Nate provides five reasons why that is not the case.

  • Speaking in tongues. Heresy
    “Keep in mind, then, that the word tongues in the Greek means traditional languages. It is used in the New Testament fifty times and is never used to teach some heavenly speech of ecstasy. The Bible says nothing about going into a frenzy, a trance or an ecstasy to receive a ‘gift of tongues.’

 

Out of sixty-six books in the Bible, only three mention tongues except one reference related to the Jews in the book of Isaiah. And where it is most mentioned, in 1 Corinthians, God through Paul is correcting and regulating.
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If the church that you attend speaks in jibber-jabber tongues, then you are in a false cult my friend, and it would be advisable to leave immediately. Biblical churches center around the plain and simple preaching of God’s Word and Soul Winning.

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  • Day 5 – Miracles, Power & More (citychurchuth.wordpress.com)
    Pastor Tom explained that speaking in tongues was a gift for ANYONE who has excepted Christ to receive that wanted it, not a reward that you had to work for; this surprised me! He also said scripture talks about praying in the spirit edifying you, in other words, charging you up! I knew that this is something I wanted and needed to have in my life. At the end of the message Pastor Tom called those up who were wanting to receive this gift. To my surprise it was the majority of the congregation and the team.
  • Three Questions About Speaking In Tongues – by Jim Dearman (Questions 2 and 3) (braggschurchofchrist.com)
    Is there an apostle still living today? No. So there is no one who can give this power to anyone else. And no one is still alive today who was given this power by an apostle. Therefore, the gift of tongue speaking is not available today.
  • Speaking in Tongues (truthinwisdom.net)
    Now the Holy Spirit sets the foundation for our communication with God, and we communicate with the Holy Spirit through our spirit.  Now the soul mediates desires and observations between spirit and body, so it sets the foundation for the body to express the spirit, and that expression is observed through speaking in tongues.
  • William Dwight McKissic Gives a Biblical Basis for Speaking in Tongues In Private (blackchristiannews.com)
    Based on the context of Jesus’ statement, coupled with Paul’s statement on the subject (1 Cor. 12:30), Jesus clearly did not teach that all believers everywhere, would speak in tongues–but He certainly was saying some believers, somewhere would speak in tongues. How can the IMB disqualify, what Jesus qualified? And that is speaking in tongues. Neither did Jesus preclude or promote the notion that his reference to “new tongues” would be limited to public forums–to the exclusion of private worship and devotion.
  • Three Questions About Speaking in Tongues, By Jim Dearman (1st Question) (braggschurchofchrist.com)
    Many people say they are able to speak in tongues today as some in New Testament times did. They claim this power is given by the Holy Spirit. By looking at three questions about tongue speaking we can know whether or not this miraculous gift is still available today.
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    Today, those who claim to be “Pentecostal” in their practice of tongue speaking are not doing what was done on Pentecost at all. On the day of Pentecost, the Spirit gave the apostles the power to communicate the gospel to people in the native languages of those people. Such is not being done today.
  • Ask for His Holy Spirit: #11 (mylegacyofferings.com)
    Knowing that God has sent a helper for us is so wonderful. How often do we actually admit our need or ask for His Spirit to be with us?
  • Holy Spirit Remains The Same (weushe.org)
    Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.
  • Tongues a sign of authenticity or divine backing (belgianbiblestudents.wordpress.com)

Tongues a sign of authenticity or divine backing

English: The Pentecost Mosaic, in the center i...

The Pentecost Mosaic, in the center is the dove of the Holy Spirit with the twelve apostles below. This is one of the oldest mosaics in the church dating from 1125 AD. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the previous articles “The day of the festival of Pentecost” and “Speaking in tongeus” we have cited that speaking in tongues or Glossolalia, was by the grace of God‘s Holy Power, the Holy Spirit, the holy Pneuma, which had been poured out on the disciples of Jesus gathered in the upper room in Jerusalem in the late Spring of CE 33.  They were surprised by a sound from the shamayim as of a groaning Ruach or a rushing stiff breeze, filled with the Ruach Hakodesh, the Holy Spirit or counsellor,  presented by tongues as if of fire, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Ruach Hakodesh or Pneuma gave them the utterance. It was bringing the followers of Christ outdoors to meet the foreigners, who were not pagans but returning returning Israelites in varying stages of return, who were there in Jerusalem for the annual festival of Pentecost, the Shavuot feast or moed of Shavuot . No pagans would go and worship יהוה YHWH {Jehovah} on Shavuot/Feast of Weeks.

It was not until the festival of Pentecost CE 33 that the gift of speaking in tongues was first received, and on that occasion it served as an effective evidence that Christians had God’s spirit upon them.

You can imagine the effect it had on the people in town when the Jews heard Jesus’ followers speaking in perhaps over a dozen different languages. But their talking at that time had nothing to do with what certain Christians today believe is ‘speaking in tongues’. The people at the beginning of the Chrisitian church heard the followers of Christ speaking in their tongues about the magnificent things of God and not in a sort gibberish or in ‘loud and fervent shouts’ of the Pentecostals. — (Acts 2:5-11) (Please do find our next article about the meaning of “filled with the Holy Spirit” and “speaking in tongues” : Meaning of “speaking in tongues”)
In “Is Speaking in Tongues an Evidence of True Worship?” a sister also goes deeper into the subject.
Knowing the beliefs of other religions always helps to understand why they think so or where certain religions go wrong. Therefore it is worth looking into the matter if speaking in tongues is really a necessary requirement of true worship. In the article the sister discusses the three chapters in which the apostle Paul discusses the gift of tongues.

This special gift of tongues received in Jerusalem through God’s holy spirit assisted the disciples there in preaching the good news for a sign to those Jewish worshippers from distant parts of the earth. But the real fulfilment of the prophecy of Joel 2:28-32 on that day of Pentecost was the fact that those who were filled with the spirit prophesied. Speaking with tongues was incidental, for a sign of authenticity or divine backing. — Acts 2:16-22. {Is Speaking in Tongues an Evidence of True Worship?}

To emphasize the importance and permanence of love as compared to the miraculous gifts of the spirit, the Apostle Paul wrote: “Love never fails. But whether there are gifts of prophesying, they will be done away with; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will be done away with.” — (1 Corinthians 13:8).
On the basis of Paul’s words here, there should be no question that the miraculous gifts of the spirit were to pass away. Find out in the above mentioned articles how Paul is comparing the temporariness of the gifts of the spirit with the permanence of love; and how he links the transitoriness of these gifts, not with unbelievers, but with the infancy of Christianity and how these miraculous gifts passed away when the community or congregation reached maturity by becoming a recognized, established organization. (1 Corinthians 13:9-13; Acts 8:18)

Our readers who speak Dutch can find a similar discussion in Dutch in our previous posting: “In Talen sprekend” & “Teken van authenticiteit of goddelijke backing” & in the coming publication “Betekenis van ‘Spreken in Tongen’ en ‘Uitstorting van de Geest’”

+

14 But Peter stood up with the eleven {1} and raised his voice and made this utterance to them: “Men of Ju·de′a and all YOU inhabitants of Jerusalem,{2} let this be known to YOU and give ear to my sayings. 15 These [people] are, in fact, not drunk,{3} as YOU suppose, for it is the third hour {*4} of the day. 16 On the contrary, this is what was said through the prophet Joel, 17 ‘“And in the last days,” God says, “I shall pour out some of my spirit {*5} upon every sort of flesh,{*6} and YOUR sons and YOUR daughters will prophesy and YOUR young men will see visions and YOUR old men {*7} will dream dreams;{8} 18 and even upon my men slaves and upon my women slaves I will pour out some of my spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.{9} 19 And I will give portents in heaven above and signs on earth below, blood and fire and smoke mist;{9} 20 the sun {10} will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood before the great and illustrious day of Jehovah {*11} arrives.{12} 21 And everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah {*13} will be saved.”’{14}

*

(NWT)

 

Pentecostés. Óleo sobre lienzo, 275 × 127 cm. ...

Pentecostés. Óleo sobre lienzo, 275 × 127 cm. Madrid, Museo del Prado. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

{1} the eleven: (Matthew 28:16): 16 However, the eleven disciples went into Gal′i·lee+ to the mountain where Jesus had arranged for them,

{2} Jerusalem: (Acts 7:2): 2 He said: “Men, brothers and fathers, hear. The God of glory+ appeared to our forefather Abraham while he was in Mes·o·po·ta′mi·a, before he took up residence in Ha′ran,+

(Acts 22:1): 22.1 “Men, brothers+ and fathers, hear my defense+ to YOU now.”

{3} not drunk: (Acts 26:25): 25 But Paul said: “I am not going mad, Your Excellency Festus, but I am uttering sayings of truth and of soundness of mind.

(1 Thessalonians 5:7): 7 For those who sleep+ are accustomed to sleep at night,+ and those who get drunk are usually drunk at night.

{*4} the third hour of the day: That is, about 9 a.m., counting from sunrise:

{*5} pour out some of my spirit: Or, “active force.” Gr., pneu′ma·tos; Lat., Spi′ri·tu; J17,18,22(Heb.), ru·chi′, “my spirit.” See Ge 1:2 ftn, “Force.”: (Isaiah 44:3): 3 For I shall pour out water upon the thirsty one,+ and trickling streams upon the dry place.+ I shall pour out my spirit upon your seed,*+ and my blessing upon your descendants.

(Ezekiel 36:27): 27 And my spirit I shall put inside YOU,+ and I will act so that in my regulations YOU will walk,+ and my judicial decisions YOU will keep and actually carry out.+

(Zechariah 12:10): 10 “And I will pour out upon the house of David and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem the spirit* of favor+ and entreaties,+ and they will certainly look to the One whom* they pierced+ through, and they will certainly wail over Him as in the wailing over an only [son]; and there will be a bitter lamentation over him as when there is bitter lamentation over the firstborn [son].+

{*6} every sort of flesh: Or, “upon all flesh.” Gr., e·pi′ pa′san sar′ka; Lat., car′nem; J17,18,22(Heb.), ba·sar′.

{*7} old men: Or, “elders.” Gr., pre·sby′te·roi.

{8} dream dreams: (Joel 2:28): 28 “And after that it must occur that I shall pour out my spirit*+ on every sort of flesh,+ and YOUR sons and YOUR daughters+ will certainly prophesy. As for YOUR old men, dreams they will dream. As for YOUR young men, visions they will see.

{9} prophesy: (Numbers 11:29): 29 However, Moses said to him: “Are you feeling jealous for me? No, I wish* that all of Jehovah’s people were prophets, because Jehovah would put his spirit* upon them!”+

(Joel 2:29): 29 And even on the menservants and on the maidservants in those days I shall pour out my spirit.+

(Acts 21:4): 4 By a search we found the disciples and remained here seven days. But through the spirit+ they repeatedly told Paul not to set foot in Jerusalem.

(1 Corinthians 12:10): 10 to yet another operations of powerful works,*+ to another prophesying,+ to another discernment+ of inspired utterances,*+ to another different tongues,+ and to another interpretation+ of tongues.

{10} sun: (Matthew 24:29): 29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened,+ and the moon+ will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.+

{*11} illustrious day: “Jehovah.” Heb., יהוה (YHWH or JHVH)

{12} illustrious day of Jehovah arrives: (Joel 2:31): 31 The sun itself will be turned into darkness,+ and the moon into blood,+ before the coming of the great and fear-inspiring day of Jehovah.+

(Mark 13:24): 24 “But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light,

{*13} the name of Jehovah: Heb., יהוה (YHWH or JHVH)

{14} be saved: (Joel 2:32): 32 And it must occur that everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will get away safe;+ for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will prove to be the escaped ones,+ just as Jehovah has said, and in among the survivors,* whom Jehovah is calling.”*+

(Romans 10:13): 13 For “everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah* will be saved.”+

+

Preceding articles:

The day of the festival of Pentecost

Speaking in tongues

Compare also with:

Hebraic Roots Bible Book of The Acts of the Apostles Chapter 2

The Acts Of The Sent Ones Chapter 2

Nazarene Acts of the Apostles Chapter 1

Nazarene Acts of the Apostles Chapter 2 v1-13 Working Spirit

and later to: Nazarene Acts of the Apostles Chapter 2 v14-21

++

Additional reading:

  1. Did the Inspirator exist
  2. The manager and Word of God
  3. The Soul not a ghost
  4. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  5. The radiance of God’s glory and the counsellor
  6. He has given us the Pneuma, the force, from Him
  7. Speaking in tongues (article on Christadelphian World)
  8. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #6 Words to feed and communicate
  9. The Great Trinity Debate
  10. How do trinitarians equate divine nature
  11. True riches
  12. The Spirit of God imparts love,inspires hope, and gives liberty
  13. Followers with deepening
  14. Not enlightened by God’s Spirit
  15. Pope Francis I on the Holy Spirit
  16. Know Who goes with us and don’t try to control life
  17. Why hasn’t anything been inspired recently? Revelation was the last inspired book and it was a long time ago. Why aren’t there any more?

+++

  • What does it mean to speak in tongues? by Todd Clippard (braggschurchofchrist.com)
    There is a general misunderstanding, especially among modern pentecostals and charismatics as to the nature of tongues. Those who claim to speak in tongues today are referring to ecstatic utterances made after a so-called personal manifestation of the Holy Spirit. Ecstatic coming form the word “ecstasy” meaning to be beside oneself, beyond reason or self control, given over to extreme and engrossing emotions. Utterances are simply vocalized expressions. Participants in such babbling believe the Holy Spirit has taken over their verbalization and caused them to speak some heavenly language or tongues of angels.
    What does it really mean to speak in tongues?
    +
  • The Baptism In The Holy Spirit for All is the Biblical Norm. (keithlannon.wordpress.com)
    To minister as New Testament preachers did without the baptism in the Holy Spirit would not be consistent with what Jesus commanded the 120 to do.  In the very mouth of Christ, before He returned to heaven, was the command for the disciples to stay in Jerusalem – ie: no preaching, no healing, no casting out demons, until they were baptised in the Holy Spirit. That was the priority that Jesus Christ placed on the Holy Ghost baptism.
    +
    The outward sign of the inward work of grace that John the Baptist referred to as, the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, was unwelcome in many churches of the world when the Pentecostal move began. Zealous evangelical movements, as well as the lukewarm nominal denominations, ejected many “tongue talking” believers who had sought after and received what they believed to be the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. The ejected regrouped into newly formed churches. These “new” churches referred to themselves as “Full Gospel”, or “Pentecostal Churches.” The first few decades of the outpouring saw an incredible growth of zealous, biblically based, supernaturally inclined Christianity. However, the growth of those early days was stultified somewhat as mid century approached.
  • William Dwight McKissic Gives a Biblical Basis for Speaking in Tongues In Private (blackchristiannews.com)
    If the Bible does not back the practice of speaking in tongues, then no believer–period–should speak in tongues at any place or at any time.
    +
    It is not my purpose, desire, or place to attempt to persuade all Baptists or all believers to speak in tongues. I do not believe that it is God’s will based on His Word for all believers to speak in tongues (1 Cor. 12:30). Although it is debated among those of us who speak in tongues, neither do I believe that every believer is capable of speaking in tongues–even if they desire to. God sovereignly determines which believer gets which gifts (1 Cor. 12:7-12).
    +
    Those of us who speak in tongues often during times of intense worship, devotion, prayer, and praise spontaneously often speak in tongues as the Sprit gives utterance (Acts 2:4). It is my opinion, but, I don’t believe their tongues speaking was limited to Pentecost only. I believe it carried over to their private devotions.

  • The Gift of Tongues (thetruesacrifice.wordpress.com)
    Does the bible state that speaking in tongues is proof of receiving the Holy Spirit? In this article i will show you biblical proof that what the majority of Christians are taught about tongues is indeed false and the tongues most christians think they are speaking may indeed be satanic.
    +
    When Jesus was alive with his disciples, he instructed them not to preach to anyone who was not a Jew. You can read this in (Matthew 10). However, after Jesus died and resurrected, the command changed drastically. Jesus told his disciples almost the exact opposite in (ACTS 1:8). The time had come for the Apostles to preach to everyone whether or not they were Jew. Since Jesus went to his own people and they ended up killing him, Jesus made it then possible for anyone to be saved just by believing in him. This is the new covenant(testament). But how could the Apostles preach to everyone without being able to communicate with them? Good question! This is why Jesus gave them the gift of tongues so that they could preach to the Greek, Parthians, Medes, Elamites, Mesopotamians, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontos and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphylia, In Egypt, Libya about Cyrene and so on… you can read the full list in (Acts 2:9-10) The apostles needed to preach to everyone and the only way to do so was to be able to speak those people’s language or tongue.
    +
    The proof that you are saved and have the Holy Spirit is if you are Holy!! It is as simple as that. You will know if you are reborn or born again because you will be different.
  • Is Speaking in Tongues an Evidence of True Worship? (illustrationstoencourage.wordpress.com)
    someone may argue that there is a difference between the “gift of tongues” and the speaking in tongues as “evidence” of the outpouring of the holy spirit. All spoke in tongues upon receiving the spirit, they might say, but not all were later endowed with the “gift of tongues.” But where is the Scriptural support for such a supposition? It is lacking.
  • Wisdom: Evidence of God’s Breathe (mfmdelaware.wordpress.com)
    The spiritual gifts in the New Testament were also found in the Old Testament except for the gift of tongues. That marks the evidence of God’s nature in us. Demons speak in tongues as experienced on deliverance ground. The difference is that it is to confuse and deceive while that which is from the Holy Spirit caries power and fire. The one by demon entertains but that from God shakes the kingdom of darkness to the root and turns the believer to unquenchable flames of fire
  • Mark Driscoll Preaches About the Gift of Tongues (blackchristiannews.com)
    Cessationists, such as influential pastor and traditional Calvinist John MacArthur, believe that 1 Corinthians 13:8 and other Biblical passages indicate that the divine ability to speak in other languages or an unknown tongue (glossolalia) ended with the apostles’ deaths, as did prophetic revelations and faith-healings through individuals. Some Christians, however, believe that these Holy Spirit-inspired gifts will continue until Christ’s return.
  • Rose and Linda’s Journal Speaking in Tongues (momsfirstscreenn.wordpress.com)
    Jesus said that the Spirit would testify, and that the disciples would be the ones to witness.
    +
    Ten years after Pentecost, the Gentiles received the gift of the Holy Ghost; the Holy Ghost also testified through them when He came in.
    +
    Twenty-five years later we find some people receiving the same Holy Ghost in the same way. He took over their vocal organs and spoke in another tongue. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues (Acts 19:6).
  • Speaking in tongues (belgianbiblestudents.wordpress.com)

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