Scripture Reading: Acts 2:1-4
When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues x as the Spirit enabled them.
Verse for Meditation: I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. – 1 Corinthians 14:18
Devotional: It is hard to conceive of a more misunderstood spiritual gift than the gift of tongues. Initially, we see the Holy Spirit pour this gift out on the day of Pentecost. We see it poured out on a group of people again in Acts 10 at the house of Cornelius as gentiles are received into the church. Again in Acts 19 we see a group of 12 disciples who knew of John’s baptism but did not understand the message of Jesus or the Holy Spirit. When they believe in the gospel they are baptized and then begin to speak in tongues and prophesy when Paul lays hands on them.
In 1 Corinthians 12-14 we begin to get a glimpse at how tongues were used (and abused) in the early church. This is a gift of which the Apostle Paul said, “I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you.” It is a good gift that comes from God as a blessing to his church. Here is a working definition of this gift: The gift of tongues is a gift of Holy Spirit, given to some Christians, that enables them to speak in a language that they do not know or understand.
As one of the many gifts the Holy Spirit gives it is not meant to set up some people as more spiritual or godly than others. It is simply one of God’s good gifts to his people that he uses for his own glory. It is not to be feared, tossed to the side, or elevated above other gifts. The gift of tongues is one way that God richly blesses his church.
Question to Consider: Do you have pre-conceived notions about that gift of tongues that makes it hard for you to acknowledge or accept this gift as legitimate? Why not read through 1 Corinthians 12-14 carefully and consider more closely what the Bible has to say about this gift.