Gift of divers tongues – It is a little frustrating reading books by people or listening to people about the gift of divers tongues who have never spoken in tongues. Neither do they know what a gift of divers tongues (different tongues) is about. Rather than simply saying they simply don’t know anything about tongues, they attempt to say the gift of divers tongues are not for today. In actuality, most do not want to speak in tongues. Rather than saying they are ashamed to speak in tongues, they produce lame teachings about how the gift of divers tongues have ceased. 


The Weapon Of The Gift Of Divers Tongues

by Delbert Young

Weapons of Our Warfare

The Weapon Of The Gift Of Divers Tongues

Scriptures: 2 Corinthians 10:4-6, Acts 10:45, 1 Corinthians 14:5, 1 Corinthians 12:7-11, 1 Corinthians 14:1, 1 Corinthians 14:39, 1 Corinthians 14:13, 1 Corinthians 14:27-28, 1 Corinthians 14:39, 1 Corinthians 14:32, 1 Corinthians 14:26

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:

2 Corinthians 10:4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)

2 Corinthians 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

2 Corinthians 10:6 And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled. (KJV)

2 Corinthians 10:3 For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.

2 Corinthians 10:4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

2 Corinthians 10:5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

2 Corinthians 10:6 And we will be ready to punish every act of disobedience, once your obedience is complete. (NIV)

The apostle Paul teaches there are weapons of warfare. He says that one stronghold of the enemy is a high thing (KJV) or a pretension (NIV) that sets itself up against the knowledge of God. A high thing would be something that has been elevated above the knowledge of God. Nothing is more important than knowing God and knowing about God! The enemy will give us things that seem or pretend to be more important than knowing or knowing about God. That is a pretension. The weapons of warfare cause things to be placed in proper order. These weapons knock down and destroy these pretensions and high things.

The enemy will do everything to help us justify our not gaining knowledge about God. With no knowledge we are easy prey. The devil goes about looking for any person to devour (1Pe 5:8). If we are ignorant, we provide a tasty meal for him. The weapon we have taken much time with is a perfect example. That weapon has been tongues. So many are totally ignorant about tongues. We continue looking at that weapon in this lesson. We vary the look somewhat. In this lesson, we look at the weapon of tongues in the church service.

The Weapon Of Tongues 4

Tongues During The Church Service – A Mighty Weapon

Tongues Focused Heavenly

Scripturally tongues are the universal sign of receiving the Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit. When a person received the Holy Ghost in scriptures, they also received tongues (Act 2:4; 8:17; 10:45-46; 19:6).

Acts 10:45 The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles. [46] For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God.

Acts 10:45 The Jews who came with Peter were amazed that the gift of the Holy Spirit would be given to Gentiles too! [46] But there could be no doubt about it, for they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. [TLB]

Every tongue speaking believer can activate their individual tongue at any moment. I can speak in tongues lying in my bed, riding in my automobile, or taking a shower. This is me using my tongues given me by God. If I desire, any place and any day at any time I can speak in tongues. In fact, every day at least once I should speak in tongues, i.e. pray, sing, speak to God, and edify myself. This use of my tongues does not need an interpretation.

I now take this truth to the corporate gathering at church. I can speak in tongues at any time during a church service. I can speak in tongues during prayer time. I can speak in tongues during praise time. I can speak in tongues during worship time. Now for the question. We agree I should speak or sing or pray in tongues sometime during my day. Should I speak in tongues sometime during a congregational meeting? Notice how the question is worded. It was not “Is it all right to speak in tongues during the congregational meeting?” The question is “Should I speak in tongues sometime during a congregational meeting?”

The answer should be yes. If a person actually is the temple of the Holy Ghost (1Co 3:17; 6:19; Eph 2:21) and the Holy Ghost is home, then tongues should come out of that temple with ease. If the Holy Ghost is home, then tongues should be the natural rather than the unnatural. If a person has been given tongues that once acknowledged the presence or the Holy Ghost, then tongues should be used by that person sometime during the service. Why is this? Why do I say that every tongue speaking believer should speak with tongues during the service?

These uses of tongues – talking to God (1Co 14:2), singing, praying, edifying myself – in a corporate setting are not for the corporate body. As I used my tongues when alone, I now join with the tongues of others as the body comes together into one. As one person we join our tongues together in prayer, praise, worship, speaking to God, and building up. Our body is edified and built into the mighty Holy Temple that it was intended to be. It is identical to being alone using tongues to pray, praise, worship, or speak to God, and build up. This use of tongues is focused upward or heavenly or to God. It is the Holy Ghost in my temple praying to God. It is the Holy Ghost in my temple praising God. It is the Holy Ghost in my temple worshiping God. It is the Holy Ghost in my temple speaking to God. It is the Holy Ghost in my temple building Himself up. As I build myself up and activate my weapon of warfare when alone, the body now activates the weapon as it builds itself up! There is no need for an interpretation because it was not focused toward people (1Co 14:2). It was focused toward God.

Tongues Focused Earthly

If you have read the first three lessons on tongues then you have more understanding about tongues than most preachers. It is a little frustrating reading books by people about tongues who have never spoken in tongues. Rather than simply saying, “I do not know about tongues,” they attempt to say tongues are not for today. In actuality, most do not want to speak in tongues. Rather than saying, “I do not want to speak in tongues,” they come up with all these lame teachings about how tongues have ceased. Is that not blasphemy against the Holy Ghost?

As discussed previously, all tongues do not require an interpretation. This is clearly seen when the scriptures are studied. When people received the Holy Ghost in the scriptures (Act 2:4; 8:17; 10:45-46; 19:6) no interpretation was given. When we are instructed to build ourselves up by praying in the Holy Ghost (Jude 1:20) no interpretation is necessary. When Paul instructed us to sing spiritual songs (Eph 5:19; Col 3:16), he did not say, “Make sure an interpreter is present before you sing.” All tongues do not require an interpretation.

There is a time when an interpreter is necessary. That time is when the gift of tongues is given for the body. The focus for this tongue is not from us toward heaven. This focus is from heaven to us. The following statement may surprise you somewhat. This tongue is God speaking in an unknown tongue to His church. That may sound strange, but it is accurate. A tongue accompanied by an interpretation of tongues is identical to a prophecy.

1 Corinthians 14:5 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.

We may ask, “Why would God speak to us in tongues when He could speak in English?” Well, why would God choose to use the gifts of healing (a healing takes time) when He could use the gift of miracles (miracles are instant)? The answer is plainly it was the gift the Holy Spirit deemed needed. Why would God speak to us through tongues? Because the body needs to be spoken to through tongues. It is that simple.

Let’s look at the gifts of the Spirit as listed for us in 1 Corinthians 12.

1 Corinthians 12:7-11 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. [8] For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; [9] To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; [10] To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another DIVERS KINDS OF TONGUES; to another the interpretation of tongues: [11] But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

Every one of these gifts are given to us (every man) to profit the body (withal). They are from heaven and focused on earth. The gift of divers kinds of tongues is from heaven and focused on earth. Thus it is the Lord speaking through tongues to us.

Tongues And Interpretation Of Tongues In A Church Service

Desiring The Gifts Of The Holy Ghost

We should desire the gift of tongues and interpretation of tongues in a church service as much as we desire healing, miracles, word of wisdom, discernment of spirits, prophecy, etc.

1 Corinthians 14:1 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy.

1 Corinthians 14:1 Follow the way of love and eagerly desire spiritual gifts, especially the gift of prophecy. [NIV]

1 Corinthians 14:39 Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues. [40] Let all things be done decently and in order.

1 Corinthians 14:39 So, my fellow believers, long to be prophets so that you can preach God’s message plainly; and never say it is wrong to “speak in tongues” [TLB]

We are instructed to desire spiritual gifts and to even  covet to prophesy. To not desire the manifestations of the gift of divers tongues and interpretation would be the same as not desiring all of the Holy Spirit. We are saying, “We like this and this about you Holy Ghost, but we don’t like this about you.” Would you say, “Lord Jesus, I like this and this about you, but I don’t like this about you”? I sure hope not. We are to eat the whole Lamb (Exo 12:10). The gifts, especially tongues, have been made to appear so distasteful by the Contemporary Dispensationalists. Rather than desiring them (1Co 14:1) they have taught us to despise them and doubt them. Do we not recognize that in so doing we are despising and doubting the Holy Ghost? You or I should desire to bring a message in tongues as much as we desire to be used to lay our hands on people and heal them. I ask, “Which is more important, the gifts of healing or gift of divers tongues? Which is more important, the word of knowledge or the gift of divers tongues?”

The Manifestation Of The Gift Of Divers Tongues

Most of us have at some point and some place witnessed the gift of divers tongues released in the church congregation. At that moment which did we think: (1) “God is speaking to us through tongues, listen!”, or did we think, (2) “That is just so-in-so talking in tongues”? Which did we think?

Next, what did we do during and after the gift of divers tongues operated? Did we ask for the interpretation? Did we even listen to the interpretation? Were we comfortable or uncomfortable during the tongue and the usual wait for the interpretation? Did we feel spooky?

What should the answers have been to the above? Sadly, the correct answers are not what most answer if they answer honestly. We do not respect the gift of tongues as we should. We do not desire the gift of divers tongues as we should. We do not ask for the interpretation and give the interpretation as we should.

How does a person know if they are speaking to God (1Co 14:2) or if they are speaking from God to man?

The focus of our spirit is different. Notice the direction of focus by your spirit as you speak in tongues? Are you focused on the body and believers? Is there a thought or person or instruction coming into your mind? If so then that is the gift of divers tongues. The Spirit is desiring to speak to the body of believers. Is your focus “upward” on God. If so, then you are speaking to God. The upward tongue does not require an interpretation. The earthly focus of a tongue requires an interpretation.

I will never forget the first time I operated in the gift of divers tongues in a church assembly. My focus totally changed from God to the body. I suddenly felt the love and concern that the Lord had for His people. I felt the hurt the Lord desired to express to us about our tough times. My heart pounded. I thought it was coming out of my chest. I burst out in tongues, first loudly and then softly. The tongue ended. I hushed and paused waiting for someone, anyone to interpret. The entire congregation was silent. I knew what the interpretation was, but wanted someone else to give it. I waited for what seemed an hour (only 15 seconds) and then I gave the interpretation. Many people came to me after the service and encouraged me by saying that was exactly what they needed to hear from the Lord.

How do you know which type of tongue it is? You know by the focus of your spirit.

OK, I gave a tongue and it was not interpreted. What happened?

This is the fear of every person that has ever given a tongue. I have actually seen the failure for their tongue being interpreted stop people from giving a tongue again.

First of all, was the tongue to be interpreted? As I trust we have seen, every tongue does not require an interpretation. Did you know for certain that your tongue was the gift of divers tongues operating? Most people have been taught someplace that if they speak in tongues in church then the tongue must be interpreted. It may well have been that you were ahead of everyone and speaking to God in prayer, praise, worship, edification, etc.

If that was not the case and you know it was the gift of divers tongues operating and there was no interpretation then we have several thoughts.

Did you pray for the interpretation?

Often a tongue is given and a pause and silence is experienced after a tongue. This is first to see if the person who gave the tongue will interpret. After a few seconds it will become obvious if they do or do not have the interpretation. We need to know that the primary responsibility for the interpretation is upon the person that gave the tongue. Most people think it is upon the pastor or leader. Often the pastor or leader will interpret, but the primary responsibility is upon the giver of the tongue.

1 Corinthians 14:13 Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret.

The person giving a tongue and the interpretation is equated the same as one giving a prophecy (1Co 14:5). If you gave a tongue and the tongue was not interpreted, blame first yourself. Before you get upset with others for not interpreting your tongue, know how the gift is to work. You should pray for the interpretation of your tongue. Many times this is not the case. In our opening comments of this lesson, we said the enemy builds high places to keep us from knowing God and knowing about God. These are pretenses. If a person does not know the way the gift of divers tongues and interpretation of tongues work, they will be hurt and discouraged when their tongue is not interpreted. The fact is it was first their responsibility to interpret that tongue.

Did you repeat the tongue you gave?

Most people would say, “Do what? Repeat the tongue?!” That response shows how little we actually understand about the operation of the gifts of the Spirit in the congregation. But then, why should we know? We have been told the gifts, especially tongues, are not for today. We have allowed high places to remain much too long.

What you should have done when there was no interpretation of your tongue was stand and give the tongue again. Most likely you were in a congregation that may have asked you to leave if you did that. However, that is what we are instructed to do. If there still was no interpretation, you should stand once more and give the tongue. If there still is no interpretation, pray.

1 Corinthians 14:27-28 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. [28] But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God.

We have been told that these verses mean that only three tongues can be given in a meeting. That is not what the verses mean. If any man speak in an unknown tongue…. ….if there be no interpreter…. It is funny reading translations that attempt to write this in a way we can understand it. What is funny is they have never spoken in tongues. They have never been around the gifts. Then they attempt to explain how the gifts are to work. The context is clear. If you believe that your tongue is to be interpreted and you do not have the interpretation, give the tongue two more times. If not interpreted, hush and pray. If you do not have it, and no one else has it or gives it, allow the service to proceed.

At what point in the service did you give the tongue?

The apostle Paul never once insinuated that he wanted the church at Corinth to stop utilizing the gift of tongues. The problem was the congregation was out of order–literally. As he concludes his instructions to the church at Corinth concerning the gifts operating in the church, Paul says,

1 Corinthians 14:39 Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues. [40] Let all things be done decently and in order.

If the tongue you gave was not interpreted, it could have been that you were not in order. What I mean is there is some order to every service. Even the most charismatic, seemingly out of order, services have some degree of order. There is a time to greet, a time to praise, a time to give, a time to preach, a time for communion, a time to testify, a time to bring a tongue and interpretation. Obviously at Corinth there was people attempting to share the word and others would stand and interrupt with a tongue or a prophecy. How rude. Imagine your pastor sharing the word he felt the Lord gave him to share. Then someone jump up and begin delivering a message in tongues. On top of that, they did not give the interpretation–just tongues. No one will interpret that tongue because it was out of order.

I have been in services where a preacher was preaching the Word. A person began yelling out in tongues. It was completely out of order and obviously the wrong time. That tongue should not be interpreted. It was out of order.

A person may say, “Well, the Holy Ghost was on me and I had to speak.” No that is not accurate. Again we see the ignorance we have concerning the gifts. The spirit of a person is in subjection to that person. First let’s look at the verse.

1 Corinthians 14:32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.

1 Corinthians 14:32 Remember that a person who has a message from God has the power to stop himself or wait his turn. [TLB]

Paul said that our spirit will not overpower us and make us be out of order. Our spirit will not make us jump up in the middle of a message and bring a message in tongues. I have myself spoken in tongues as a preacher delivered a message, but it was not a message in tongues. It was more a tongue of praise and encouragement to that preacher. It was in order. It was more an “Amen.” But it was not a message to be interpreted. Our spirit will not make us be out of order.

Tongues and interpretation of tongues are a part of a New Testament church service.

When we come together into the congregation, tongues and interpretation of tongues is to be a part of our services. Tongues should not be limited to only our time in the building. We should utilize these wonderful gifts any time we come together.

1 Corinthians 14:26 How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.

If we do not have tongues and interpretations then our legitimacy of being a New Testament church must be questioned. In the previous verse (1Co 14:26) Paul is not asking how it should be when they come together. He is answering the question of how it should be when they gather corporately. Tongues and interpretation are listed in how it should be. He says these things are done unto edifying. Remember the meaning of edify. It means to build up and restore. I want you built up. I want you restored. I want our church bodies built up. I want restored back to us all that has been taken. How about you? We need tongues and interpretations!

Other Related Sermons:

Baptism For Remission Of Sin – sermon notes

Rapture – sermon video audio notes

Build Stick and Straw Huts – sermon video audio notes

Also see:

Sermons Change The World

Life Gate Church sermons by Delbert Young