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1 Corinthians 14 :: English Standard Version (ESV)

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Prophecy and Tongues

Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:1 - Pursue love, and earnestly desire the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:2 - For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:3 - On the other hand, the one who prophesies speaks to people for their upbuilding and encouragement and consolation.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:4 - The one who speaks in a tongue builds up himself, but the one who prophesies builds up the church.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:5 - Now I want you all to speak in tongues, but even more to prophesy. The one who prophesies is greater than the one who speaks in tongues, unless someone interprets, so that the church may be built up.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:6 - Now, brothers,[fn] if I come to you speaking in tongues, how will I benefit you unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or teaching?
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:7 - If even lifeless instruments, such as the flute or the harp, do not give distinct notes, how will anyone know what is played?
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:8 - And if the bugle gives an indistinct sound, who will get ready for battle?
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:9 - So with yourselves, if with your tongue you utter speech that is not intelligible, how will anyone know what is said? For you will be speaking into the air.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:10 - There are doubtless many different languages in the world, and none is without meaning,
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:11 - but if I do not know the meaning of the language, I will be a foreigner to the speaker and the speaker a foreigner to me.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:12 - So with yourselves, since you are eager for manifestations of the Spirit, strive to excel in building up the church.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:13 - Therefore, one who speaks in a tongue should pray that he may interpret.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:14 - For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays but my mind is unfruitful.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:15 - What am I to do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will pray with my mind also; I will sing praise with my spirit, but I will sing with my mind also.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:16 - Otherwise, if you give thanks with your spirit, how can anyone in the position of an outsider[fn] say “Amen” to your thanksgiving when he does not know what you are saying?
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:17 - For you may be giving thanks well enough, but the other person is not being built up.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:18 - I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:19 - Nevertheless, in church I would rather speak five words with my mind in order to instruct others, than ten thousand words in a tongue.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:20 - Brothers, do not be children in your thinking. Be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:21 - In the Law it is written, “By people of strange tongues and by the lips of foreigners will I speak to this people, and even then they will not listen to me, says the Lord.”
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:22 - Thus tongues are a sign not for believers but for unbelievers, while prophecy is a sign[fn] not for unbelievers but for believers.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:23 - If, therefore, the whole church comes together and all speak in tongues, and outsiders or unbelievers enter, will they not say that you are out of your minds?
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:24 - But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or outsider enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all,
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:25 - the secrets of his heart are disclosed, and so, falling on his face, he will worship God and declare that God is really among you.

Orderly Worship

Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:26 - What then, brothers? When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:27 - If any speak in a tongue, let there be only two or at most three, and each in turn, and let someone interpret.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:28 - But if there is no one to interpret, let each of them keep silent in church and speak to himself and to God.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:29 - Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others weigh what is said.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:30 - If a revelation is made to another sitting there, let the first be silent.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:31 - For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all be encouraged,
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:32 - and the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:33 - For God is not a God of confusion but of peace. As in all the churches of the saints,
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:34 - the women should keep silent in the churches. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be in submission, as the Law also says.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:35 - If there is anything they desire to learn, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:36 - Or was it from you that the word of God came? Or are you the only ones it has reached?
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:37 - If anyone thinks that he is a prophet, or spiritual, he should acknowledge that the things I am writing to you are a command of the Lord.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:38 - If anyone does not recognize this, he is not recognized.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:39 - So, my brothers, earnestly desire to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.
Unchecked Copy Box1Co 14:40 - But all things should be done decently and in order.
ESV Footnotes
Or brothers and sisters; also verses 20, 26, 39
Or of him that is without gifts
Greek lacks a sign

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version copyright © 2001, 2007, 2011, 2016 by Crossway Books and Bibles, a Publishing Ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

See detailed copyright information.

For more information on this translation, see the ESV Preface.

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