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The Blue Letter Bible

Don Stewart :: Is It Proper to Gather to Speak in Tongues?

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Don Stewart

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Is it proper procedure for believers to assemble for the purpose of speaking in tongues? Do we find an example of this in Scripture? The Bible records tongue-speaking on the following occasions:

The Coming Of The Holy Spirit

In the three instances in the Book of Acts where speaking in tongues is recorded, they all have to do with the coming of the Holy Spirit. On the Day of Pentecost, in Samaria, and in Ephesus we find the tongues used in connection with reception of the Holy Spirit. It was a spontaneous happening, not something that was planned.

During Worship Services

The only other biblical example that the Bible gives of tongue-speaking was during the gathering of believers. However, on these occasions the believers assembled for the purpose of instruction, not for speaking in tongues. The Apostle Paul made this clear:

Yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue (1 Corinthians 14:19).

Thus, the Bible records tongue-speaking on only two different situations, the coming of the Holy Spirit and the worship service. There is no example of believers gathering for the sole purpose of speaking in tongues.

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