Posts Tagged ‘1st Corinthians 14’

God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son — Hebrews 1:1-2a

Many claim to speak for God and in the past many have but the Bible tells us something changed when God sent his son, Jesus.

No more Old Testament type prophets are needed to represent God to us low-lings; everyone and everything since is focused on Christ — who he is, what he has done, what he is now doing, what he shall do when he returns. In fact, the whole gift of Prophesy is now changed.

[H]e that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort – 1st Corinthians 14:3

Prophesy since Christ, as my old preacher friend said long ago, is to “Build up, Stir up, and Cheer up” — and everyone can do it (1st Cor. 14:31) because the Holy Spirit is given for all who receive Christ as their savior.

Stay clear of those that want to speak to you for God, all his sheep can hear his voice.

— fritz@langgang.com

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[T]wo men, … did not go out to the tent. Yet the Spirit also rested on them, and they prophesied … Joshua son of Nun … said, “Moses, my lord, stop them!” … But Moses replied, “Are you jealous for my sake? I wish that all the LORD’s people were prophets and that the LORD would put his Spirit on them!” – Numbers 11:25-29

God told Moses to choose 70 elders to help share the load, and they were instructed to gather but two didn’t. Whether or not they were part of the 70 is unclear.

What is clear is Joshua didn’t like it – they weren’t following the program and doing what they were told! This was uncontrolled by leadership and Joshua wanted it stopped!

Wise Moses called it for what it was, jealousy. He knew being the head guy didn’t mean he was in control and told Joshua he actually longed for the day everyone would have the Holy Spirit and prophesy!

That day has come!  All followers of Christ can now have the Holy Spirit and can all prophesy (1st Corinthians 14:31).  A wise leader will encourage all to go for God whether they follow instructions or not.

Sound Bite: God is not limited to my rules and my leadership.  He’s in charge here and it’s wonderful!

– fritz

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“What? came the word of God out from you? or came it unto you only?” – 1st Corinthians 14:36

There’s a curious little literature construct unexpected in the Bible, yet, there it is!

Paul has a “woman-hater” reputation among the uninformed and failure to recognize this construct is partly to blame.

Paul wrote to the Corinthian believers about church life and how to exercise the gifts of the Spirit.  Then, almost out of context he writes,

“Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law.  And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church. – 1st Corinthians 14:34-35

That’s where most stop, without looking at the next word.

That next word, “What!”, is translated various ways and sometimes not at all, but in the original language it not only means, “What!”, but presents a negative to what was just said, sometimes even accompanied by a “God Forbid!”.1 Today, it would be like us presenting a silly idea then saying, “NOT!”. This better translation is further indicated by Paul’s choice of the following word, “YOU”, which literally means, “You men”.

So, Paul is really saying, a little sarcastically, “Everyone can exercise the gifts of the Spirit in Church except your women.   They should be silent, getting their understanding of God from their husbands because it’s a shame for them to speak! — Not!  Does the word of God come just from you men?! Of course not!”

The Holy Spirit moves equally on both men and women and Holy Spirit’s ministry is valid for all!

“I will pour out my spirit … and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy” – Joel 2:28b

Let God’s gifts flow!

1 – 1st Corinthians 6:15b-16a

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“For to one is given by the Spirit … divers kinds of tongues” – 1st Corinthians 13:8a, 10d

Tongues is a hot topic in some churches. Godly people believe those who speak in tongues are of the devil and others, just as godly, believe only those who speak in tongues are saved – both sides saying they believe the Bible.

Tongues is a prophetic utterance in a human or angelic1 language unknown by the speaker and sometimes unknown to the hearers.

Its primary purpose is personal spiritual growth2 but there are two (2) more worth mentioning.

1. The Bible says tongues are a sign to non-believers3 that this group of people is different, and not afraid to be so.   That group may be considered strange or crazy but when everything “normal” fails one often inquires from the unique.

God excels at satisfying those who have found the world’s “normal” ways wanting.

2. There’s also another purpose and here, in combination with the gift of Interpretation of tongues, is its place in church services.4 It is encouraging when the church gathers and experiences an act of God. I have seen it, it’s awesome!

Much of what we do in church is of human origin – our liturgy, our programs, our efforts as we express our love to God. It’s awesome to experience God’s response.

Sure we’ll get it wrong sometimes and use God’s gifts ineffectively but that’s to be expected. A wise pastor will teach, direct in right ways, and encourage his people to step out into God’s gifting.

Paul’s admonition still stands

“Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues.” – 1st Corinthians 14:39

– fritz
1 – 1st Corinthians 13:1
2 – 1st Corinthians 14:4
3 – 1st Corinthians 14:22
4 – 1st Corinthians 14:5

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“For to one is given by the Spirit … divers kinds of tongues” – 1st Corinthians 13:8a, 10d

This gift has always been a little controversial so the apostle Paul goes into great detail in later in his letter.

Tongues is the prophetic utterance in a human or angelic 1 language unknown by the speaker 2 and sometimes the hearers.

Not engaging the speaker’s language, it doesn’t affect the speakers thinking unless it is interpreted2 – so what is its purpose?

Paul lists several, but primarily as a tool to strengthen the participant’s inner man.3

Originating from the speaker’s human spirit (inner man) it is a direct prayer link between the speaker and God4 unhindered by the person’s preferences and paradigms.

We dare not discount the importance of that; how and what we think affects our spiritual growth! If everything must be filtered through our thought processes much won’t make it through!

This is so important Jesus’ own brother wrote

“But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost keep yourselves in the love of God” – Jude 1:20-21a

Who can have this gift? As a manifestation of the Holy Spirit all in Christ have the equal access, as any spiritual gift.

We are admonished to seek the “best” gifts.5 Which is best? The one you need at the time, of course!

Do you need to be built up in your faith and kept in the love of God?

– fritz
1 – 1st Corinthians 13:1
2 – 1st Corinthians 14:14
3 – 1st Corinthians 14:4a
4 – 1st Corinthians 14:2
5 – 1st Corinthians 12:31

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