Jesus asked them: “Where is your faith?” He could certainly ask us all, the same question today.
Faith, we are all given a measure, the measure that allows us to see and accept, Jesus as Lord and Savior.
Unfortunately, many refuse to act on this Faith. They prefer to trust in themselves, someone else or the government.
They do not realize they are rejecting the good and perfect gift of God.
“God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights,”
Since we are only given a measure of Faith, (the Faith to believe), it is up to us to nurture and grow our Faith,
How? By the renewing of our mind, (reading, meditating, praying and knowing His Word), that we could prove, what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
That we would come into:
“the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God,”
“might perfect that which is lacking in our faith?”
“For by grace are we saved through faith;”
“that which is lacking in our faith?” What?
Paul was so concerned, for what the Thessalonians lacked, that He spent:
“Night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?”
1 Thessalonians 3:10
Which brings us to today:
Although my Faith, sometimes wavers, (lacks), I believe I was brought by God, to this little UMC, to teach them, and lead them, into all that God has to offer.
The Pastor, always listens, says he is glad for me, BUT “God didn’t give him that gift. He doesn’t need that gift. That gift only brings confusion.”
He refuses to accept that the gift of Tongues could be his own; and in so doing, tells his congragation, they don’t need it.
~ He is maybe afraid that he would not be able to control the gift of tongues if he had it.
~ He cannot seem to seperate the prayer language from public tongues and interpretation.
~ He believes God would have forced it upon him if he needed it. (He had to ask for Salvation, but thinks the Baptism of the Spirit is not a separate Spiritual Blessing).
I have told him the scriptures, but he refuses to allow Gods truth, to bless him.
I will list some scripture here, in the hopes the Lord would open eyes.
~ First Question: Who should receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirt? (The Gift of Tongues, included).
“And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;”
Some will argue, that verse is not in the original text it was added later. (OK, then:)
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” 2 Timothy 3:16
Alright, you reject that scripture, how about these other witnesses?
“And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
The one hundred and twenty believers, in one accord, in one place. “all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues,”
We have other witnesses:
“And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.”
Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed? No? Here, by gosh, they spoke in tongues. (This is evidence, you can see and hear).
“And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God.”
“they heard them speak with tongues” Those who believe, is that you?
For the Lords sake, ask him to give the gift to you. Like with pSalvation, you know not the Spiritual Blessings until you allow the Lord to work His will in your life. (check out Deuteronomy 29:29), this is for us all to do His work).
~ Prayer language (No Interpretation) Confusion:
Do we understand what we pray, when we pray in Tongues? Are we hampered in our Faith or helped?
Selected verses from Romans 8:
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:”
“ For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.”
“Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
“And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
We love that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
Why are we afraid to allow the Spirit to pray the will of God in our lives, we claim that is what we desire.
Selected verses from 1 Corintians 12, 14:
“Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant.”
“covet earnestly the best gifts:”
“he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.”
“He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; “
I would that ye all spake with tongues but rather that ye prophesied: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying.” (Notice switch from private prayer to public, keep the difference in mind while reading this chapter).
“Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church.” (Public tongues uplifts the church, only with interpretation).
“Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret.
For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful.
What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.” (In public must have interpretation, in speech and song to bless the church).
“Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest?”
“For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified. I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all: Yet in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue.”
We speak to God well, but others do not understand, so in public we need to interpret.
“Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men.”
Please recognize the difference between a private prayer language and public tongues and interpretation.
“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.”
If no Interpretation then: “keep silence in the church and let him speak to himself, and to God.” Private prayer.
“And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.”
You do not have to speak in tongues, like salvation it is a gift, we must receive it and take it off the shelf and exercise it.
“But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant. Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues. Let all things be done decently and in order.”
To my mind too many want to remain ignorant.
My question to you is: Do you long to be strong in the Lord, to have the wisdom, power and grace to do his will?
Then accept, open and experience all the gifts He has given. They are the Talents the Master has left His servants, He did not leave us a talent of speaking, playing an instument or singing.
NO, He left us His Holy Spirit, to teach, guide and comfort. Yet we refuse His Gifts. We apparently truly think He is the author of confussion. “If any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.”
Do you accept the Word of God, or the Doctrine of your church?
“And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:”
Ask the Lord for His truth. Amen.