Gifts of the Holy Spirit

 

 

5. Why donít all believers speak with tongues?

 

 

In order to answer this question I need to say first of all that when we talk about speaking in tongues we refer to the outward sign of the baptism with the Holy Spirit and to the gift of different kinds of tongues as well. However, while the sign is present in all those believers who have been baptized with the Holy Spirit, not all the believers who are baptized with the Holy Spirit have the gift of different kinds of tongues.

So, concerning the speaking in tongues as a sign, it is evident that not all the believers speak in tongues because not all the believers are baptized with the Holy Spirit. Why arenít some believers baptized with the Holy Spirit? It can be for one of the following reasons: because they donít know about the existence of this baptism (just as those about twelve disciples Paul met at Ephesus); or because they have been taught that when they were born again they were baptized with the Holy Spirit therefore they have already received this kind of baptism, and that the baptism with the Holy Spirit is not immediately followed by speaking in another tongue (therefore they have no intention of asking something they have already!), or because they are waiting for the Lord to baptize them with the Holy Spirit.

Instead, concerning the speaking in tongues as one of the gifts of the Spirit which Paul mentions in his first epistle to the Corinthians, it is evident that not all the believers speak with tongues because not all the believers have this particular gift, as it is written: ďDo all speak with tongues?Ē (1 Corinthians 12:30 Ė NKJV). When I say that not all the believers have this particular gift I refer to believers who are baptized with the Holy Spirit and consequently they speak in another tongue. For surely all of them speak in one foreign language, but not all of them are able to speak in more foreign languages because that is a gift which is not granted to everybody. In other words, whereas on the one hand all those who are baptized with the Spirit surely speak in another foreign language, on the other hand not all of them speak in several foreign languages (2, 3, 4 and so on), because thatís a supernatural ability or a gift of the Spirit given only to some of them.

I have said these things because I know that some pastors quote the above mentioned words of Paul in order to teach that not everyone who is baptized with the Spirit speaks in a tongue, which is a false teaching because the spiritual manifestation Paul referred to in 1 Corinthians 12:30 is not the sign (that is, speaking in a tongue) but the gift of divers kinds of tongues (that is, speaking in several tongues).

To sum up we say this: since speaking in tongues is a part of the baptism with the Holy Spirit, which is received after the new birth, all those who donít speak in any foreign languages by the Spirit have not yet been baptized with the Spirit (however, they have been baptized by the Spirit in the body of Christ, so they are believers, they are sons of God); while even though all those who have been baptized with the Holy Spirit speak in tongues, not all of them have the gift of different kinds of tongues because thatís a manifestation of the Spirit not granted to every believer.

 

 

 

 

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