No one on the planet earth is speaking in the Biblical gift of tongues. Not one person, yet there are thousands of persons who are claiming that they do speak in tongues. What is happening? What is going on?
The Biblical gift of tongues was the ability to speak in a known foreign language without any prior training for the purpose of evangelizing the lost. No one is speaking in a foreign language without training today!
What about the baptism of the Holy Spirit? Every believer has the baptism of the Holy Spirit at the moment they trust the Lord as their Saviour. I Corinthians 12:13 says, “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond for free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” According to this verse, the baptism of the Spirit is the act of God whereby we are placed into the body of Christ. I Corinthians 12:27 goes on to say, “Now you are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” If you are not in the body of Christ, you are not saved. The baptism of the Spirit is the means by which we are placed into Christ’s body. All believers have the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Before tongues ceased (I Corinthians 12:30), only a few spoke in tongues even when the gift was operative.
Pentecost will never be repeated, nor can it be. Pentecost will not be repeated anymore than Calvary will be repeated. The word Pentecost means fifty days. It occurred fifty days after the resurrection of Christ. We are now nearly 700,000 days since the resurrection.
On the day of Pentecost, Acts 2:5-8 records, “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 that every man heard them speak in his own language. And they were all amazed and marveled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans? And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?
“Dialektos” is the Greek word translated language (Acts 2:6) and tongues (Acts 2:8). This Greek word refers to more than a specific language. It refers to the very dialect of the language. For example, there are many dialects of the English language. If you were to visit Plains, Georgia, you would hear one dialect of English. If you were to visit the Carolina’s, you would hear one dialect of English. Now, how about Brooklyn, New York, or what about Boston, Mass.? Each has a distinct dialect. Then if you were to visit England, you would find a totally different dialect of English, yet the British are speaking English, aren’t they?
Let’s imagine what happened at Pentecost, and let’s say that you were there. Let’s say that you were born in Plains, Georgia. You know, and everyone else knows, that few folks on the earth speak that brand (dialect) of English. You are in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost. A Jew approaches you. He is uneducated and has been raised around Galilee. He is a fisherman and has never traveled out of Israel. All of a sudden he speaks to you in Plains, Georgia English. You would have to admit this is a miracle. This Jew sounds just as though he was raised next to Jimmy Carter. It must feel great to be in a foreign country and hear someone who sounds like they are from back home. This Jew then gives you the gospel message in your native tongue. Friend, that is what happened at Pentecost.
Acts 2:5 says, Jews from every nation were visiting Jerusalem. Acts 2:6 says that these foreigners heard the gospel in the dialect of the language wherein they were born.
Why did God give the tongues (known foreign language) gift? In I Corinthians 14:21 we read, “In the law it is written, with men of other tongues and other lips will I speak to this people; and yet for all that will they not hear me, saith the Lord.” Isaiah had predicted that God would turn to the Gentiles during this age, after the rejection of Christ, and that He would give the gospel to the Jews in Gentile languages. At Pentecost this required a miracle. To witness to these foreign born Jews in a Gentile language required that God give them that language dialect on the spot.
As the gospel went to the Gentile nations the gift became unnecessary. For example, I witness to Jewish people in the Gentile tongue of English. German Christians witness to Jews in their country in German. French Christians witness to Jews in their country in French and so on. I think it would be rare indeed if any Jew on the earth today heard the Gospel in Hebrew. They are hearing it in Gentile languages just like Isaiah prophesied. I love to make it a point to tell Jewish people that I am fulfilling prophecy by telling them of their Messiah in a Gentile language. It is exciting!
Tongues are for reaching the lost! I Corinthians 14:22 says, “Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not:”
Tongues were to be easily understood. I Corinthians 14:9 says, “So likewise you, except you utter by the tongue words easy to be understood, how shall it be known what is spoken? For you speak into the air.”
The gibberish that is being done today is not the Biblical gift of tongues. The Pentecostals, Baptists, Presbyterians, Lutherans, Episcopalians, Methodists, Roman Catholics, and others are doing this gibberish. People of world religions also do it, such as the Buddhists and the Mohammedans. It is done by the cults, like the Mormons. It is done by the occult. A medium in a satanic seance will break into the same unintelligible speech described above!
The Biblical gift of tongues has ceased (I Corinthians 13:8-10) and is not present today! What we are seeing is a sign of the return of Christ. Jesus said, “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs, and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect (Matthew 24:24).”