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Featured What is the Function of Xenoglossy (Tongues) in the Church

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Steven Yeadon, Sep 16, 2019.

  1. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    Xenoglossy is also called the gift of tongues. It is the speaking of intelligible languages by someone who does not under ordinary means have proficiency in that language. It is a spiritual gift spoken of in His Word, the bible. As a note, this not the gibberish of the Pentecostals and Charismatics, which are not real languages. Not everyone has xenoglossy, and there is no "baptism of the holy spirit" after salvation and baptism.

    The key scriptures here for the gift of xenoglossy are Acts 2 and 1 Corinthians 14, which I provide below. Does scripture allow for a private prayer language, as the SBC now seems content to allow? Does scripture allow for utterance beyond strictly evangelism? If it is shown that the utterances are just gibberish, should that Christian be told to stop using it even in a private prayer language? What are the rules for speaking in tongues according to the bible?

    Acts 2 NASB

    The Day of Pentecost

    2 When the day of Pentecost [a]had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared to them tongues as of fire [b]distributing themselves, and [c]they [d]rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other [e]tongues, as the Spirit was giving them [f]utterance.

    5 Now there were Jews living in Jerusalem, devout men from every nation under heaven. 6 And when this sound occurred, the crowd came together, and were bewildered because each one of them was hearing them speak in his own [g]language. 7 They were amazed and astonished, saying, “[h]Why, are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 And how is it that we each hear them in our own [i]language [j]to which we were born? 9 Parthians and Medes and Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and [k]Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the districts of Libya around Cyrene, and [l]visitors from Rome, both Jews and [m]proselytes, 11 Cretans and Arabs—we hear them in our own tongues speaking of the mighty deeds of God.” 12 And they all continued in amazement and great perplexity, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13 But others were mocking and saying, “They are full of [n]sweet wine.”

    Peter’s Sermon
    14 But Peter, [o]taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and declared to them: “Men of Judea and all you who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you and give heed to my words. 15 For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only the [p]third hour of the day;
     
  2. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    1 Corinthians 14 NASB

    Prophecy a Superior Gift

    14 Pursue love, yet desire earnestly spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. 2 For one who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God; for no one [a]understands, but [b]in his spirit he speaks mysteries. 3 But one who prophesies speaks to men for edification and exhortation and consolation. 4 One who speaks in a tongue edifies himself; but one who prophesies edifies the church. 5 Now I wish that you all spoke in tongues, but even more that you would prophesy; and greater is one who prophesies than one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may receive edifying.

    6 But now, brethren, if I come to you speaking in tongues, what will I profit you unless I speak to you either by way of revelation or of knowledge or of prophecy or of teaching? 7 Yet even lifeless things, either flute or harp, in producing a sound, if they do not produce a distinction in the tones, how will it be known what is played on the flute or on the harp? 8 For if the [c]bugle produces an indistinct sound, who will prepare himself for battle? 9 So also you, unless you utter by the tongue speech that is clear, how will it be known what is spoken? For you will be speaking into the air. 10 There are, perhaps, a great many kinds of [d]languages in the world, and no kind is without meaning. 11 If then I do not know the meaning of the language, I will be to the one who speaks a [e]barbarian, and the one who speaks will be a [f]barbarian [g]to me. 12 So also you, since you are zealous of [h]spiritual gifts, seek to abound for the edification of the church.

    13 Therefore let one who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret. 14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful. 15 What is the outcome then? I will pray with the spirit and I will pray with the mind also; I will sing with the spirit and I will sing with the mind also. 16 Otherwise if you bless [i]in the spirit only, how will the one who fills the place of the [j]ungifted say the “Amen” at your giving of thanks, since he does not know what you are saying? 17 For you are giving thanks well enough, but the other person is not edified. 18 I thank God, I speak in tongues more than you all; 19 however, in the church I desire to speak five words with my mind so that I may instruct others also, rather than ten thousand words in a tongue.

    Instruction for the Church
    20 Brethren, do not be children in your thinking; yet in evil be infants, but in your thinking be mature. 21 In the Law it is written, “By men of strange tongues and by the lips of strangers I will speak to this people, and even so they will not listen to Me,” says the Lord. 22 So then tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophecy is for a sign, not to unbelievers but to those who believe. 23 Therefore if the whole church assembles together and all speak in tongues, and [k]ungifted men or unbelievers enter, will they not say that you are mad? 24 But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an [l]ungifted man enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all; 25 the secrets of his heart are disclosed; and so he will fall on his face and worship God, declaring that God is certainly among you.

    26 What is the outcome then, brethren? When you assemble, each one has a psalm, has a teaching, has a revelation, has a tongue, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification. 27 If anyone speaks in a tongue, it should be by two or at the most three, and each in turn, and one must interpret; 28 but if there is no interpreter, he must keep silent in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God. 29 Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment. 30 But if a revelation is made to another who is seated, the first one must keep silent. 31 For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all may be exhorted; 32 and the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets; 33 for God is not a God of confusion but of [m]peace, as in all the churches of the saints.

    34 The women are to keep silent in the churches; for they are not permitted to speak, but are to subject themselves, just as the Law also says. 35 If they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is [n]improper for a woman to speak in church. 36 [o]Was it from you that the word of God first went forth? Or has it come to you only?

    37 If anyone thinks he is a prophet or spiritual, let him recognize that the things which I write to you are the Lord’s commandment. 38 But if anyone does not recognize this, he [p]is not recognized.

    39 Therefore, my brethren, desire earnestly to prophesy, and do not forbid to speak in tongues. 40 But all things must be done properly and in an orderly manner.
     
  3. Calminian

    Calminian Well-Known Member
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    Tongues or any other miracle from God will be impressive and undeniable. There won't be any question about it, and no need for experimentation or inquiry. If someone truly has the gift of languages, they won't need to inquire of others. Everyone will be in awe.

    My advice is, cease from this. It's a waste of your valuable time and gifts. While we shouldn't despise miracles and should desire to see the works of God, we shouldn't search like this. This is a trap—the same pitfall you've correctly discerned others falling into.
     
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  4. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    I and those friends I have shared a recording with are in awe. I do not doubt my gift nor do they, it seems. I don't care about the opinion of others on whether I have the gift, except to go to wise Christians I am close to, who can give me guidance and test it like all things. I see your point though, this is a gift that has little use outside of a conversation starter to evangelize, especially to those people from evil churches teaching crazy things, that may not even be real Christians.

    I see the problem may be talking about it and not showing it. We are so skeptical in this society, that talk is cheap when talking of supernature. Hopefully the recordings can start conversations once posted on a blog I share my email on. I also do not foresee any real time sink from tongues, I do it so infrequently even now. The real time sink will be talking with those that need Jesus Christ as their savior or who need out of unbiblical churches. Thankfully I have a lot of gifts, with my biggest one seeming to be writing biblical lessons. Although, apart from delighting in my own spirit and starting conversations, I should move onto other pursuits that are edifying to the Body of Christ or serve Jesus in more tangible ways. It has just been wrestling with such a surreal experience the past two weeks is all, really.
     
  5. Calminian

    Calminian Well-Known Member
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    Sorry, bro. I heard it. It was pathetic, akin to all the other unimpressive "miracles" reported by the IHOP and the NAR crowd. I'm very open to miracles and believe in them. I'm willing to look at gift claims. I would urge you to let this go. I'm only being honest cuz you're asking for feedback.
     
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  6. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    Thanks bro, that helped understand something. Only half of the sentences translate perfectly, the other half use Latin phonemes but a few words are off spelling and the song uses both church and classical Latin. It was the Enemy. The second song is not Japanese. Instead it is Mandarin in terms of phonemes, but again things are a little off. I am in awe of the Enemy's attempt to convince me of something unbiblical. I'll have to correct my friends.
     
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  7. davidtaylorjr

    davidtaylorjr Well-Known Member

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    What purpose does it serve? How does it edify? Really?
     
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  8. Calminian

    Calminian Well-Known Member
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    That is some impressive humility. Thanks for listening. That is what's missing (humility) in the NAR movement and other similar movements.
     
  9. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    To be honest, I hate the NAR. I thought some of the anecdotes I have from experiences in that movement back when I was a member may have been real supernatural power. It seems they could have been, but not of God. I had been warned by a friend that could be the case due to the girl who predicted the future by the devil in Acts 16. Clearly I do not have enough understanding of the Enemy's power or of how vicious he is to believers. Thank you for standing up to me. I really appreciate it. I am telling my friends of the mistake. I see I need to have more wise counselors in the faith, since this got past my current ones. I have one more issue to investigate based on many anecdotes I have observed in my own life. I will have to be extra careful in investigating it.
     
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  10. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    True, in looking at anecdotes of xenoglossy, it seems what is needed is clear good fruit. I know of only two anecdotes like that. One a bit questionable about a NAR member talking in an Eastern European language during evangelism to someone who knew the language. One by a person in a normal church that said something in biblical Greek to their pastor that was a segment of scripture the man needed to take to heart to avoid leaving the faith. It even impacted those he told the story to in powerful ways. That latter example seems to be more of what I need to look for.
     
  11. davidtaylorjr

    davidtaylorjr Well-Known Member

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    Even those anecdotes seem highly suspect to me. They serve no real purpose.
     
  12. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    On the first anecdote, I must agree. On the second anecdote, I guess I don't see where you are coming from. The immediate fruit is that the man stays in the faith.
     
  13. davidtaylorjr

    davidtaylorjr Well-Known Member

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    Because there was no need for the tongue. Why not just say the verse in their own language? It, again, sounds showboat and hoaxy.
     
  14. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    I have met the source of this anecdote in an apologetics group. They hate the NAR, and I'm just not going to go so far as to call it a hoax. There could be a good reason to have the biblical section drawn attention to supernaturally, especially when eternity is on the line. I'll just have to disagree. It is far less wild than testimonies I hear of from globally frontline ministries like Voice of the Martyrs or anecdotes from church history.
     
  15. davidtaylorjr

    davidtaylorjr Well-Known Member

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    I just don't believe that all of a sudden someone spoke Koine Greek without knowledge of it in order to save someone that doesn't speak Koine Greek. The whole thing sounds staged.
     
  16. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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    Do you suppose that People don't have these gifts simply because they do not believe?
    MB
     
  17. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    No, God is in charge no matter what we think.
     
  18. atpollard

    atpollard Well-Known Member

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    An observation from other ‘gifts of God’ (some that seem to have been from God and some that do not) is: Who get’s the attention and the glory?

    Any charismata or miracle or teaching that elevates the person by drawing attention to the “vessel” is typically not from God. God tends to work a way that all the attention is on God and the people feel either gratitude or humility (or they are completely ignorant of what God has done).

    I am unqualified to speak about Xenoglossy (Tongues) except what scripture says. However I have encountered real miracles and I have encountered real attention seekers, so I have some experience at knowing the difference. God humbles men, he does not puff them up with pride.
     
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  19. MB

    MB Well-Known Member

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    If God is in charge then God must be responsible. right?
    MB
     
  20. Steven Yeadon

    Steven Yeadon Well-Known Member
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    No, that is to make God our Father in heaven the author of evil. He desires all to be saved, but many won't be. It is a paradox because we lack a mind anything like God's.
     
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