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In Acts 8 Simon saw something that caused him to believe that the Holy Ghost was given, enough evidence for him to offer money to buy that power, if it were possible.
Many say that what he saw was that the people spoke in tongues. He must have seen something as evidence.
Those who know well what speaking in tongues is, should also know what it is not. It isn’t just people making vowels and constanants sounds as they make them up in their mind by their own imagination, or creative organization by their own mind. Doing that would be much too stressful, wearisome, and awkward. They would also be stumbling. It wouldn’t flow, and it wouldn’t sound like a real language.
Everyone’s tongue has a distinct sound. Some sound similar to one language or another that we hear on earth, or could connect mentally with some people group, somewhere in the world, while other tongues sound unlike any language we have ever heard before.
One man’s tongue sounds like his tongue, and though tongues sometimes shift a bit in the sounds, Mr. X’s (for example) tongue usually sounds like Mr. X’s tongue, (unless he has received kinds of tongues in which case he might speak in a different tongue each time he speaks in tongues, having a variety of tongues or languages) while Mr. T’s tongue will tend to always sound like Mr. T’s tongue.
Each language on this earth has it’s own sounds, and it’s the same with speaking in tongues. English sounds different than German for example.
The way tongues works is that the Spirit of God gives the man what to say as the man says it. The man doesn’t decide in his mind what he’s going to say in a tongue before hand. He just speaks whatever sound he has to say. He formulates the sounds with his lips and tongue just as when he speaks in his common language.
When we speak in a language we know, we think about the words we are going to say. We choose the words by deliberate thought and make the sounds by deliverate action.
But when we speak in tongues we do not decide on a word to say with our mind. We simply say whatever it we have to say and it comes out as it does, flowing like a river of water. As fast as we decide to speak, God gives us what to say and we simply say it. It’s so easy. It’s given by God what we say for the Spirit gives the utterance, as the man does the speaking.
So tongues today is the same as back in the first century Church, though the actual language or tongue, (dialect) certainly may / no doubt be different, just as the tongues we hear at once church will be different as the tongues we hear at another church, for each man has his own tongue.
What I find interesting is the interpretation of tongues. How wonderful it would be to be able to hear hear the interpretations of the first century Church, if I could understand their language, or to put it another way, what I find interesting is the content or meaning of what was spoken in a tongue.
Today God brought some things to my remberance about the story I told about the man on the bar stool next to me. I had told him that I had told my mother, that she does know where I live, but I do remember how bad I felt about that situation because I had not told her about my move for a very long time and it had caused her some trouble.
So the man was simply a drunken man speaking whatever came to his mind I suppose. Maybe he made it a habbit to talk to strangers the way he did when he was drunk, but he knew nothing about me not telling my mother where I lived.
I’ve heard a prophet talk about how he speaks what the Lord gives him, and doesn’t remember what he said. He simply speaks what he’s given to say by the Lord, not knowing about situations at all, many times.
Amazing how God works. Amazing how his Spirit moves people sometimes, and how the Spirit of God is connected to our minds and bodies.
My question would be: Dr McArthur,as a Calvinist do you consider the Phelps from the Westboro Baptist Church to be representative of your movement?
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