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DOCTRINE QUESTION 47
Is the gift of tongues for today?
I do not believe the gift of tongues is for today. I will give you my reasons why:
- They are said to be a "sign to unbelievers." 1 Corinthians 14:21-22. This is a quote from Isaiah 28:11-12, and there it is the Nation of Israel that is in view. God used this special gift to speak to an unbelieving and Christ rejecting nation.
- In Mark 16 where it speaks of five sign gifts, we must understand a sign gift is not the same as a spiritual gift. A sign gift is a sign of something. In 1 Corinthians 14:22 sign" to unbelieving Israelites and in Mark 16 a sign to confirm a spoken word. Jesus spoke these works about 33 A.D.; Mark recorded them about 63 A.D. This is about thirty years later. The history of the Book of Acts was then completed. Now what Jesus said they would do, by speaking in tongues, Mark looks back over thirty years of history and says this; "So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, "...And they WENT FORTH, (past tense) and preached (past tense) everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen." Mark 16:19-20. To this, it is agreed to in Hebrews 2:3-4. "...so great; which at the first, (Mark 16) began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto US (not Paul, for he wasn't there in (Mark 16) by them that heard Him (i.e. the eleven disciples Mark 16:14); God also bearing THEM (not us) witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to His own will." These were special sign gifts for the Apostolic age. "Truly the signs of AN APOSTLE were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds." 2 Corinthians 12:12. We now have a complete Bible and the nation of Israel has been laid aside for now, hence these sign gifts have no more use. Now this doesn't mean that God died with these gifts. He is still God and can do exceeding abundantly to all that we can ask or even think. (Ephesians 3:20).
All comments and questions to: Harold Smith
Updated July 2009, by Shelly Allen