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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Does anyone know of a solid biblical response to MacArthur's sermons on tongues and spiritual gifts?

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Lysa that was a great story and thanks for that but she was not converted through the hearing of tongues.

 2010/5/14 14:53


I spent a long time over this issue and prayed and asked for the gift and studied it myself in scripture and came to the conclusion that it is not of God.

It has to be of God, God worked in that gift through the Apostles.

I think what was most frustrating was asking for the gift and not getting it and coming to the conclusion that it must not be of God, else he would have given it to me. Been there done that.

I remember a dear old saint who went off to be with the Lord recently. She had sought the baptism of the holy Spirit for 15 years. I never thought anyone could have sought that long for this gift that is freely given to those that obey Him. It was clear that she was not properly ministered to regarding this free gift. After watching people get filled one would wonder if God even cared, I know I would. But she persevered like the woman with the unjust judge. She bugged him until she got what she wanted. And God comes off as being unjust sometimes, it sure seems that way, but He is looking to see if we are determined. How badly do we want it?

The only thing that has ceased in the word of God is the law of sin and death by works.

Now, it is greatly assumed that that which is perfect has come in order for the tongues, knowledge to cease.

When did this perfection come?

 2010/5/14 15:14


Brenda writes........

"I spent a long time over this issue and prayed and asked for the gift and studied it myself in scripture and came to the conclusion that it is not of God."

For six months after coming to the Lord I asked for the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. Nothing. It became all that I thought about......nothing. One day I said to the Lord "Oh Lord, this thing is coming between you and I, I just want to walk with you and I do not care if I am ever Baptized in your Holy Spirit. The very next day, in my bedroom, I was baptized in the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues. The day after that, I announced to all the guys on the scaffold(I was a Bricklayer at the time) That I was a Born-again Christian, I announced it as they were all joking about Jimmy Swaggart, who had been in the news the day before for sleeping with a prostitute. Up till then they all just thought I was a nice guy. So I would say that the effect of being baptized in the Holy Spirit, for me, was boldness, boldness to share regardless of the costs.

I did not conclude that because I did not have it then it did not exist, I had read the Word and knew that it was real and I knew genuine people who had been Baptized in the Holy Spirit. What I did do was yield to the will of Frank

 2010/5/14 15:21


It was not through unanswered prayer that I decided it was not of God - it was though the study of scripture which the Lord confirmed to me I felt.

Perfection comes when we consent to the crucifixion of the old man in us - really and not just as a notion. Paul is speaking of it when he says that then, we will leave behind childish things and see through the veil clearly, face to face with God united with Him in baptism of the Spirit.

 2010/5/14 15:22


Brenda, that is simply not the context of the Scripture. There is simply no way that you can twist the context to make it say that, without coming up with a pre-text. There is a reason why the word perfect is not a person, it is not referring to a person. We now live as children,

1Co 13:12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall fully know even as I also am fully known.

Sister, Paul is speaking to Christians. We now see in a mirror dimly, but then we will see face to face. We will fully know even as we are fully known.

Do you claim to have the same knowledge of God as He has of you? God knows every part of you, do you know every part of God? The perfect is describing our state in heaven, that is why it is not a Frank

 2010/5/14 16:20

Joined: 2004/2/12
Posts: 4636
Independence, Missouri


Perfection comes when we consent to the crucifixion of the old man in us - really and not just as a notion. Paul is speaking of it when he says that then, we will leave behind childish things and see through the veil clearly, face to face with God united with Him in baptism of the Spirit.

In I Corinthians 12:13 we read:

For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

The Greek verb for baptized (ἐβαπτίσθημεν) here is in the aorist tense meaning a completed action. If Paul is saying that once a person is baptized in the Spirit they are in 'face to face' relationship and therefor are no longer in need of tongues then he has grossly contradicted himself. Because he goes on to give instruction as to the right-use of tongues all through Chapter 14.

In fact, after having himself been Baptized in the Spirit he states:

I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all: (I Cor. 14:18)

This was an ongoing process for Paul. The idea is that tongues is typically a God-wards phenomena. This is even true in interpretation of tongues. Genuine prayer is prophetic. Prayer and prophesy are linked in Corinthians. (I Corinthians 11:5) The Spirit of God enables us to pray so as to pray according to the will of God. I think this is why God allows 'interpretation' of tongues because it enables us insight into what the Spirit is praying on our behalf. If there is no interpreter, the person is to pray with the Spirit so as not to cause a distraction in the gathering. They are to pray with the understanding so that others can be edified and say 'amen' to what is said.

Again Paul states clearly that the phenomena he is talking about is not multiplied linguistic capabilities, but 'with the Spirit'. Koine Greek (common or 'street' Greek) was the lingua franca of the Roman Empire. Paul also spoke Hebrew, etc. But he cannot be referring to the languages he knew as he states in I Cor. 14:14, For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful.

If Paul's understanding was 'unfruitful' what does that mean? Just what it says. It is the same term used in the parable of the sower; the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful. So if the understanding (mind) is unfruitful what is the benefit?

The one who speaks in a tongue builds-up himself, but the one who prophesies builds up the church. (I Cor. 14:14 Esv) The word for 'builds-up' (οἰκοδομέω/ᾠκοδόμησεν ) has a history. It's first use is Genesis 2:22 in the LXX;

And the rib that he had taken from Adam the Lord God fashioned into a woman.

Edifying is the fashioning/building of us up individually into the image of Christ. We have this explanation in Ephesians as it pertains to other Spirituals. The purpose?

For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (Ephesians 4:11ff)

Praying with the Spirit, that is, glossa (tongues) edifies the individual unto the same purpose as the Body is edified. Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.

Robert Wurtz II

 2010/5/14 21:57Profile


I believe that the gifts of the Spirit are still functional but the speaking of tongues as it was then, has ceased. I spent a long time over this issue and prayed and asked for the gift and studied it myself in scripture and came to the conclusion that it is not of God.


Brenda Brenda Brenda

Having not been here long enough to know your unwavering position that takes one half and disgards the other, how can anybody have a clear knowledge of scripture without the Holy Spirit's Work???

Yes, i understood and wanted more than anything to pour through the Bible after initial regeneration, however, it was nothing like after the 'pickling process'.

Salvation is one experience of many that those who are on the straight and narrow will experience.

I guess you will just have to keep on reading all those books and teachers and trying to sort everything out instead of trusting His Spirit to teach you without all the drivel of the cemetarians.

Do you realize how much doctrine created through Roman catholocism is still part and parcel of most protestant demonations, orthodox or not???

You believe that the gifts of the spirit are functional??? How so?

I don't know of anybody who has a clear picture of anything they do not experience.

You can think you know something in your head, but when head knowledge of being endued with power from on high becomes experience, it becomes heart knowledge. You can understand and not just assume.

I will tell you one thing right now that the Lord has just revealed to me.

Your spiritual life is barren though you pray, and do all the other things that good christian people are supposed to be pious enough to do, at least once a day.

When you become clothed in the power of the Holy Spirit, that staleness will go away.

Why does everything seem so dry and whithered to you?

Oh, you may be happy for a day or 3, but what if you could clearly recognize the voice of Jesus talking to you all the time?

The joy in the Holy Spirit is not a happiness thing. It comes from deep inside and leaps out.

Do you really as Jesus said, "have rivers of living water flowing from within?

How many people come to you for prayer or for learning about your relationship in Jesus?

How many people persecute you and you do not hesitate to rejoice even more, releasing them praying for their forgiveness because they just don't understand?

A person can know things in their head, and still be none the wiser, if not less.

When He regularly becomes a part of your experience, the spirit of the Holy One becomes so real in your heart, everything you percieve grows and becomes in relationship with Jesus and our Father -(that is, as you continue to hear and do the Spirit's bidding). Everything you intend grows and becomes in relation to God life living out through you.

You are challenged to do something every day and see what happens:

1. Tell God you drop all rationalizations recieved through men's teachings and will focus on His word alone, and we are not really talking about tongues here. Put up all those books and stick with the Bible alone. When you look into any passage, tell God you do not want to think what you think, but only what he reveals to you.

Read your Bible out loud, and not just in your head. Do this often.
(When you do this, you have a much greater tendency to shut down the mental ascent mechanism, and the mind wanders much less. The Bible is an oOriental book, and that is how Middle-Eastern Orientals do it.)

2. Tell Him you want His baptism in the Holy Spirit every day. Tell Him you trust Him and that you know He will not decieve you. Ask Him to pour out His Spirit from within you to the outside. Ask Him, if it is His will to give you this enduement with power.


Acts 20:32

p.s. If it was good enough for the first century church, and even the apostles, it's good enough for me.

"The kingdom then is not for weaklings, waverers, and compromisers... It is not for Balaam, the rich young ruler, Pilate, and Demas... It is not won by means of deferred prayers, unfulfilled promises, broken resolutions and hesitant testimonies. It is for strong and sturdy men like Joseph, Nathan, Elijah, Daniel, Mordecai, and Peter... Stephen... and Paul. And let us not forget such valiant women as Ruth, Deborah, Esther, and Lydia"
~William Hendrickson~

 2010/5/14 23:25

Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC


This topic can be very confusing when one doesn't have a proper foundation of what the doctrines of the church are to be at their core. At their core, the doctrines of the church are supposed to be "apostolic." That is, a doctrine is "apostolic" because it follows "the pattern" the apostles encouraged others to believe and follow in regard to them. What they taught and practice was to be followed.

Thus, if one is to be apostolic, one must believe what the apostles taught, and imitate what the apostles did. Being that Paul clearly taught in 1 Corinthians that there was a gift of tongues, that he himself personally exercised it, and encouraged others to do the same, we must conclude that the "apostolic pattern" to be followed for all the Church is that the gift of tongues is a genuine gift of the Holy Spirit that is to be sought after and exercised, just as Paul taught.

It is my conviction, that anybody who teaches that the gift of tongues has already ceased, is somebody who has departed from the apostolic pattern handed down to the Church. There is no evidence whatsoever in all of Scripture to suggest that the gift of tongues was getting ready to fade away within one, two, three, four, or a thousand generations.

It's cessation, with the rest of the gifts, is tied up in the realm of eschatology and the purposes of God for the church in the present age. God is looking, through all of the varied gifts of the Holy Spirit, to build the body of Christ up to maturity at a corporate level. Such was the last day expectations of Paul in regard to the gifts of the Holy Spirit, that the body of Christ would grow up into Him who is the head, in all things. This is so that the Church might be presented to Christ as a spotless bride, without wrinkle, and that we might bear the ultimate witness that we as a Church are called to bear before all the nations in the last days.

Until those ultimate purposes are accomplished with the Church, purposes that those who espouse a cessationist view point are usually almost entirely ignorant of (in my personal estimation), then all the gifts and ministries of the Holy Spirit and the body of Christ will continue to function, until their ultimate end is accomplished. Contrary to the assertions of some, the ultimate end of the gifts of the Holy Spirit wasn't merely to validate the gospel message in the first century, or to produce the Scriptures. There is simply no Biblical basis for such an assertion.

These things, while important, instead of being the primary purposes of God in regard to the gifts, are actually simply the bi-products of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. For the primary purpose of the gifts of the Holy Spirit was not to validate the gospel in the first century, or produce the writings of the New Testament. Rather, the primary reason for the gifts of the Holy Spirit is so that you and I might fully become, as a corporate body, the people God has called us to be.

In a nutshell, whatever degree one is cessationist in their theology of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, that person is one degree departed from apostolic faith and practice, and are walking contrary to the pattern the apostles left for the Church to follow.

Jimmy H

 2010/5/14 23:58Profile

Joined: 2009/5/15
Posts: 1042
Pacific Ocean


The corporate speaking of tongues as lead by the Spirit of God touches something deep at the core of our Adamic nature. We naturally despise such things because it involves the abandonment of our soulish control. There are a thousand excuses that may rage in our minds as to why such a thing should not be performed, and today, because of riotous abuse, there are a thousand reasons more.

However, God did not send His son into the world so that we could continue to sew fig leaves together to cover our natural shame in hopes that God may not peak at our puerile nudity. He ascended, and lead captivity captive and distributed gifts to men that we may grow up into Him, whom is the head of all things. We must relinquish Adam...Adam who rails at God and blames Him for his sin, Adam, who was not deceived, but rather chose, knowing full well the implication, to defy God. This pride, like a lake of fire, swells and crashes against the shore of grace. Never to breach its alpine climbs. It must yield rather and humble itself that it may be lifted up, to rain upon the mountains as a fresh shower...a new spring dew. Where life may yet burst forth upon those seated in heavenly places.

Adam hates the gifts...because Adam hates to relinquish the control he thought he wrested from God's hand. was utter pride in me that resented the gifts as well. I was no new case. Just a prideful schmuck that thought God was not capable of keeping in decent order that which he designed.

It is always the folly of men to wrest control from Him whom designed it.

Good word Jimmy.

"Observe first. The Christian's armour which he wears must be of divine institution and appointment. The soldier comes into the field with no arms but what his general commands. it is not left to every one's fancy to bring what weapons he please; this will breed confusion. The Christian soldier is bound up to God's order; though the army be on earth, yet the council of war sits in heaven; this duty ye shall do; these means ye shall use. And [those who] do more, or use other, than God commands, though with some seeming success against sin, shall surely be called to account for this boldness. The discipline of war among men is strict in this case. Some have suffered death by a council of war even when they have beaten the enemy, because out of their place, or beside their order. God is very precise in this point; he will say to such as invent ways to worship him of their own, coin means to mortify corruption, obtain comfort in their own mint: 'Who hath required this at your hands?' This is truly to be 'righteous over-much,' as Solomon speaks, when we will pretend to correct God's law, and add supplements of our own to his rule." -William Gurnall, The Christian in Complete Armour.

Adam Hates to relinquish control to God. Even still, I struggle...the Spirit wars against the flesh, Oh help me God. Let Adam die at long last...

Jeremiah Dusenberry

 2010/5/15 0:28Profile


Dear Brenda, as I was praying tonight, I saw, in my mind's eye, a picture of you at the feet of Jesus , washing His feet with your tears and drying His feet with your hair. What it spoke to me was of closeness. May we all be found at the feet of Jesus, may we all continually strive to come to Him and be close to Him, for from that position flows the fountain of life, rivers of living water. When we drink of this water we will thirst no Frank

 2010/5/15 1:36

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