1 corinthians 14 commentary

1 corinthians 14 commentary

And if this was true in those days, how much more is it true today, generations and centuries after the true gift disappeared altogether. Perhaps Paul is saying that tongues are indeed a sign to unbelievers, but not a positive sign. What is it then, brethren? (b) The apostle Peter, on Pentecost, cited the Old Testament Scriptures which prophesied that in the times of the new covenant, "Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy" (Acts 2:17). If it is a fact that God is speaking in such a manner to people today, and that there are interpreters who might tell what is spoken, why has it not been published, in order for all people to be able to share in it? The need for an interpreter of the true gift proves that the possessor of it would not have known what he said, unless, of course, he also had the gift of interpreting tongues. Let your women, &c. — The last clause of the preceding verse is by some critics, and among the rest Bishop Pearce, joined with this, so as to make this sense; as in all the churches of the saints, let your women keep silence in the churches, namely, of Achaia. Their vigorous advocacy of it had cast them in a role of immodesty and rebellion even against their husbands, hence Paul's rule as stated here. There were not to be over three on any one occasion; two may not speak at once; and if one prophet was interrupted by another, that was the end of the first prophet's message! The notion that speaking in tongues is to convert unbelievers is foreign to this text. Paul, of course, made the comparison with instruments known in his day. Moreover the essential authority of the eldership is such that a woman's place in it would violate the primal law regarding her lawful subordination to her husband. There is no rule, however, that this must always be done. The way to keep peace, truth, and order in the church, is to seek that which is good for it, to bear with that which is not hurtful to its welfare, and to keep up good behaviour, order, and decency. This drew attention, more than the plain interpretation of Scripture; it gratified pride more, but promoted the purposes of Christian charity less; it would not equally do good to the souls of men. If any man thinketh himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him take knowledge of the things which I write unto you, that they are the commandment of the Lord. If therefore the whole church be assembled together and all speak with tongues, and there come in men unlearned or unbelieving, will they not say that ye are mad? Both then and now the author is Satan. Perhaps Paul is saying that tongues are indeed a sign to unbelievers, but not a positive sign. One can only be amazed at the near-universal acceptance of the idea that what those Corinthians were doing was actually CAUSED by the Holy Spirit! references to encouragement and consolation (1 Cor 14:3, 31) and the scene describing the ideal exercise of prophecy (1 Cor 14:24–25). In one of your teachings on 1 Corinthians 14 you said … 1 Corinthians 14:23-25 but in the assemblies of the church prophecy is more useful. 363-367. The spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets ... means that any true prophet could control his speaking; there was not any such thing as an irresistible compulsion for any TRUE prophet to speak. To make this a universal rule for all women is to ignore the limitations evident in the passage. Is it any different in the New Testament? The idea of "teaching a man" as a violation of that law is, however, far-fetched. It is not permitted unto them to speak ... That is, it was not permitted for them to speak in tongues, that having been the subject Paul was discussing. Anyone in possession of God's Spirit would have exactly the same attitude; but no, the tongue-speakers would rather speak ten thousand words in tongues than five words that anybody could understand! It must have been of great value to have such directly inspired teachers in that age of the church (the infancy age); and the foolishness of the Corinthians is seen in their astounding preference for the showy gift of tongues, instead of honoring and preferring a gift that could have blessed and benefited. There is no understanding of this chapter without taking into account the falsity of those Corinthians tongues, but at the same time not denying a legitimate gift as then existing and having been prostituted to unholy ends. * [ 14:20 – 22 ] The Corinthians pride themselves on tongues as a sign of God’s … The word from which the Pauline expression "edifieth" is translated is related to the building up of an edifice; and Paul demanded that EVERYTHING ("all things, 1 Corinthians 14:26) be done unto edification of the church. This would have made for shorter services, since the probable result was that they could run through the maximum number of three rather quickly under those rules! as absolutely sarcastic, meaning that no matter how "well" they thought they were giving thanks, the Holy Spirit was opposed to what they were doing, on the simple grounds that the rest of the congregation would not know "what thou sayest." By way of revelation ... refers to what was revealed in Scripture. All religious services should be so performed in Christian assemblies, that all may join in, and profit by them. There cannot be any doubt that formalism, which is the current religious style, and which certainly corrected the shameful disorders like those at Corinth, has nevertheless left many a congregation in a state of abiosis. The question persists regarding the authenticity of those Corinthian tongues. Women may not be evangelists. The fact of Paul's calling it a "sign" for believers instead of saying that it was merely for the benefit of believers indicates that the miraculous endowment of certain teachers in the primitive church is in view. Therefore, we view Paul's words, "Verily givest thanks well? The three phases of mortal life: babies, children, and men were intended to explain the whole matter of spiritual gifts, belonging as they did to the infancy and childhood age of the church, and not to its maturity. From this, it seems mandatory to view the genuine gift at Corinth as different from that of Pentecost, and also of far less importance, even that genuine gift (at Corinth) being by Paul ranked last among spiritual gifts. Language plain and easy to be understood, is the most proper for public worship, and other religious exercises. 7. When the apostle exhorts Christian women to seek information on religious subjects from their husbands at home, it shows that believing families ought to assemble for promoting spiritual knowledge. Or of prophesying ... refers to intelligible teachings given by the Holy Spirit to Paul as a spiritual gift. "[20] This was addressed to abuses of the formal worship by women of a certain class in an ancient culture. The collection for the Jerusalem church. A truly Christian minister will seek much more to do spiritual good to men's souls, than to get the greatest applause to himself. In this the third chapter of Paul's writings specifically related to tongue speaking and other spiritual gifts, the full thrust of his purpose is revealed. This shows how unspectacular it was as compared with tongues. Certainly, in the case of the tongue speakers: (1) they were all speaking at once, (2) perhaps dozens were participating every Sunday, and (3) such a thing as interpreting what was spoken in tongues had been ignored altogether. They are a sign of judgment, as the unknown tongues of the Assyrians were in Isaiah’s day. These reasons were: (1) The Old Testament gave man the authority over the family, as in verses cited above, and (2) the customs of the age made it shameful for a woman to speak in public. This mingling of the true (even though perverted as to purpose and use) tongues with the false is evidently the reason for Paul's tenderness in dealing with this sin. As Billy Graham said of tongues in the United States at this present time (March 26,1976), "There is much that is counterfeit ... tongues are no evidence that a person has been baptized in the Holy Spirit. This indeed posed a delicate problem. speaking in an unknown tongue to you of another foreign country. [21] Raymond C. Kelcy, First Corinthians (Austin, Texas: R. B. One humble teacher of the word of God does more good than a thousand tongue-speakers, even if their alleged "gift" should be accepted as genuine. This applied even if an interpreter was present. As McGarvey said it: In this connection, see also 1 Corinthians 13:8-11, above. This refers to the true gift of tongues as manifested in Corinth and has the information that it was PRIVATELY utilized. In the law it is written, By men of strange tongues and by the lips of strangers will I speak unto this people; and not even thus will they hear me, saith the Lord. Sweet Co., Inc., 1967), p. 69. 1 Corinthians 14:34-35. Any use of a tongue in such prayers contravened the purpose of congregational participation in the public prayers; and it is an error, therefore, to suppose that the Holy Spirit was guiding those tongue-speakers to do anything of that kind. Paul's admonition that they should pray to be able to interpret is, on the contrary, a declaration that they could not interpret. Despite this forbearance, there never was a church anywhere which could practice tongue-speakings while observing Paul's rules, which inevitably diminished them to the vanishing point; and which, after the cessation of miraculous gifts, eliminated them altogether. It was customary from the earliest times for Christians to say Amen to the public prayers and thanksgivings of the church. The spiritual gift of prophecy was largely a teaching gift (1 Corinthians 14:3), but also included, at least in some cases, the ability to foretell future events. Bruce gave the probable explanation thus: If Paul had not possessed the gift, some of his critics would have responded merely by saying, "Well, you know nothing about it." Did Priscilla usurp authority over Apollos when she (and her husband) taught him the word of God (Acts 18:24ff)? Not as long as there is a single believer in it! A truly Christian minister will seek much more to do spiritual good to men's souls, than to get the greatest applause to himself. Tongue speakers may not set aside the rules designed to control and eliminate tongues; but it is equally true that churches may not set aside the limitations imposed upon women in the realm of authority, in evangelism, and in holding offices of authority in the church. Paul's method of doing so was a marvel. "This clause belongs to the preceding chapter."[5]. However, despite the absence of that thought from this particular verse, it was true of the tongue-speakers that they were all speaking at once. 1 Corinthians 4:14-17 New King James Version (NKJV) Paul’s Paternal Care. The tongue-speaking fraternity cannot claim Paul as an advocate of their practices, there being no record whatever that he ever did it in the presence of another human being; and, besides, his gift was the real thing! [10] Leon Morris, Tyndale Commentary (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. All tongue-speaking must be done "in turn," that is, by persons speaking one at a time. The teacher of the word of God is the true hero, not the tongue-speaker. This prohibition was directed against the arrogant leadership of some of the Corinthian women in the promotion of a fad, that of speaking in tongues. Neither the KJV nor the English Revised Version (1885) is correct here. This was a simple rule; and if this was observed, every thing would be done well. What Paul said here is applicable to both varieties of tongues, both kinds being forbidden in public worship, the true kind because it was not interpreted and had no business in the public worship to start with, and the false kind because it was nothing but pure nonsense anyway. No man today could need any such confirmation because the New Testament makes it clear that all believers who repent and are baptized into Christ enjoy the promise of the sacred Scriptures that they will in consequence of their obedience and subsequently to their obedience receive the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38ff); and that word is all the confirmation that any true believer really needs. By the above title is meant the counterfeit, faked and pretended gift of tongues. 1 Corinthians 14 - Speaking in unknown Tongues by Albert Barnes Commentary. This is the verse, beyond all others, that is supposed to take the lid off tongue-speaking and to legitimatize it for all generations; but this cannot be. Now, brothers and sisters, if I come to you and speak in tongues, what good will I be to you, unless I … God of course could hear. [1] S. Lewis Johnson, Jr., Wycliffe Commentary (Chicago: Moody Press, 1971), p. 634. There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and no kind is without signification. Difficult as some of Paul's intentions may be for people to discern, the unqualified inspiration of this chapter, and the entire epistle, must be received. Here he teaches them, among spiritual gifts, which they should prefer, and by what rules they should make comparison. What is it then? 8. Certainly the fact is plain enough that there was a POSSIBILITY of no such interpreter being present; and therefore Paul gave the order that if none indeed was present, tongues were not to be used under any circumstances (1 Corinthians 14:28-28). All Christians of all ages should heed this verse. Question 1: Hey Pastor Paul! Has there ever been preserved any of this supernatural wisdom that is said to be imparted to people by means of tongues? For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful. As Lipscomb said with reference to this and 1 Corinthians 14:15:. Anna spoke openly in the temple to everybody; and all Israel went "up to Deborah" for judgment. Since not even he understood what was said ("no man understandeth"), the nature of that edification would appear to have been the confirmation to him (by the gift) of his having received the Holy Spirit. Study the bible online using commentary on 1 Corinthians 14 and more! As Kelcy pointed out, "There is good textual authority for rendering this verse as the RSV does: "If anyone does not recognize this, he is not recognized."[21]. This is the golden rule for organizing and conducting public worship services of the church in all ages. 6 Dear brothers and sisters, # 14:6a Greek brothers; also in 14:20, 26, 39. if I should come to you speaking in an unknown language, # 14:6b Or in tongues; also in 14:19, 23. how would that help you? This adds another dimension to Paul's picture of the Corinthian assembles: they were scandalous examples of utter and complete confusion. The spontaneous, informal nature of the early church services is clearly visible. It was the teaching phase Paul stressed here, indicating that teaching was a much more desirable activity than tongue-speaking. Wherefore my brethren, desire earnestly to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues. The quotation of these verses in the sense of people singing and praying in the public services "with the spirit and the understanding" is based upon an incorrect discernment of their meaning. Tongue ... would mean, not the counterfeited non-sensical "utterings" of the fakers, but the real gift (with the great big IF stated in 1 Corinthians 14:29, IF there was an interpreter). Women may not be appointed to the eldership of a church, because, like most men, they are unqualified. His conscience might be touched, the secrets of his heart might be revealed to him, and so he might be brought to confess his guilt, and to own that God was present in the assembly. For he that speaketh in a tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God; for no man understandeth; but in the spirit he speaketh mysteries. It is a proof that a people are forsaken of God, when he gives them up to the rule of those who teach them to worship in another language. Much of 1 Corinthians 14 is recognizable because several of its verses are among the most popular verses in the Bible. 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