Since speaking in tongues is a New Testament phenomenon and we are in the New Testament era, why should not speaking in tongues, therefore, continue? If it should not, where is the historical line drawn?
Where in Scripture did the theological change take place? There is no historical line drawn and there is no theological change in Scripture. We are commanded to speak in tongues as late as Ephesians 6:18 in AD 64 and Jude 20 in AD 70. Since the Holy Spirit was given with the confirmation of speaking in tongues, He is continually given with this confirmation.
God does not change to fit our theological perspective. It is correct to claim tongues should occur today, because this manifestation came with the Holy Spirit in the New Testament. The Bible shows that believers received the baptism with the Holy Spirit as confirmed by speaking in tongues on numerous occasions for approximately 40 years after the Day of Pentecost, attesting to its continuance.
Some people argue that Satan speaks in tongues and that we might, therefore, get a counterfeit if we speak in tongues. We should rest assured that Satan does not speak in tongues, because if he did or if this were an issue with which we should be concerned, Paul or Jesus would have addressed this issue in Scripture. Since they were not concerned about it, neither should we be concerned about it.
Some people argue that since Jesus did not speak in tongues, neither should we. Jesus did not need to speak in tongues, because He had full communication with the Father and knew how to pray. Also, Jesus' earthly life pre-dated the era of the New Testament. Speaking in tongues is a New Testament phenomenon. The era of the New Testament began on the Day of Pentecost. So, the fact that Jesus did not speak in tongues cannot be used as an argument against His followers speaking in tongues.
When speaking in tongues, is it possible that one is speaking gibberish? There is no such thing as gibberish according to 1 Corinthians 14:10, which says that every utterance has meaning with God.
The baptism with the Holy Spirit is the most needed experience that God provides for all Christians. It takes us into deeper communion with God, changes us, and transforms us into dynamic Christians and powerful witnesses.
James F. Linzey received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biblical Studies at Vanguard University of Southern California (1979), and a Master of Divinity degree at Fuller Theological Seminary (1983) where he studied Church Growth under Peter Wagner and Signs and Wonders under John Wimber. He hosted Operation Freedom television and radio programs on the baptism with the Holy Spirit around the world. He authored The Holy Spirit, A Divine Appointment in Washington, DC, and is the chief editor of the Modern English Version Bible translation. He served as an Air Force and Army chaplain for 24 years attaining the rank of Major and authored The Space Force Hymn (Creator of the Universe). Listen to the full episode of "Introduction to the Baptism with the Holy Spirit" with Chaplain Jim Linzey on the Charisma Podcast Network here.
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