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Truth about "Speaking in Tongues"!

What is the meaning of the so-called "Charismatic Renewal" sweeping the churches today?
Here is the shocking TRUTH about a fast-growing movement fooling thousands!


"SOMETHING like a series of bolts of lightning went down my spine," confessed a Protestant minister. He was telling what happened when he took part in a religious service seeking "Charismatic" manifestations or "tongues-speaking."

A recent article in "The Saturday Evening Post" disclosed that this type of religious activity is sweeping through many major Protestant denominations. It is a SHOCKING new religious trend. Few ministers understand its significance!

Formerly confined to what are known as "Pentecostal" churches, "tongues-speaking" has now broken the barriers. Interestingly, it first leaped past the middle-class Protestant churches and made a startling appearance in the staid Episcopal Church — whose membership comes largely from the better economic, social and educational level.


Strange Manifestations

Most unusual sensations and manifestations accompany the "tongues movement." After describing the "series of bolts of lightning," the above-mentioned Protestant minister — quoted in the Post article — described other manifestations which occurred later.

"The next morning," he recalled, "I woke up just soaked with perspiration. I did not know then that it was the heat of the Holy Spirit . . . but then I had a vision of ticker tape and I saw 'Sa-dama-li' printed. As I spoke this, a few more syllables came vocally."

Soon this minister was using many other strange words and phrases — utterances not part of any known human language.

"A while later," he said, "I put my hands up and began to praise the Lord in these words He'd given me — and my tongue took wings. I just worshipped Jesus."

But was it true worship?


A New "Pentecostal" Movement

Several years ago — mainly as a matter of curiosity — your author attended some of these so-called "Pentecostal" meetings. They were conducted by some of the well-known Pentecostal evangelists — a few of whom still command a following.

Let me tell you my personal observation.

I found — and this was true in EVERY meeting of this type I attended — that the appeal was almost one hundred per cent to human emotion. The "Pentecostal" ministers were obviously quite proficient at mass psychology — especially when directed, in this case, toward the backward or uneducated types of people.

In one such meeting where everyone was exhorted to "seek the spirit," I happened to be sitting just in front of a Negro woman who was suddenly seized with strange convulsions. She began to throw her body forward and backward, her head shaking and her neck almost snapping with the ferocity of these convulsions. She was literally foaming at the mouth, gnashing her teeth, groaning with strange, guttural, mournful-sounding moans, and her eyes were rolled back in her head and had a strange, glazed appearance.

I have been in hospital wards and seen people dying and near death. But I have never seen a more revolting sight in my life than the type of convulsive "fit" which suddenly seized this poor woman!

I have seen couples in these meetings "dancing in the spirit." This takes place while the "Pentecostal" song leader is leading the emotionally aroused crowd in a jazzy, bouncy-type of religious hymn. The couples or persons involved hold hands facing each other and — in a disjointed sort of way — shuffle and "dance" about with a fixed and rather weird or silly-looking smile on their faces — gazing upward in a type of ecstatic leer as they bounce around to the jazzy hymn music. Some individuals — dancing alone by themselves — seem to be just shuffling around as though lost in a trance. They might easily be mistaken for being drunk if they were doing the same thing out on a street corner.

In every one of these "Pentecostal" meetings, there was no sermon or discussion of how to love and serve God or your fellow man. There was no appeal to study and understand the Bible. No effort whatsoever was devoted to explaining how to master the weaknesses and temptations of human nature so as to become more like Christ.

Rather, the entire effort in these meetings was devoted to whipping up human emotion!

The people were exhorted to try to "receive" feelings, manifestations, and strange-sounding utterances which the Pentecostal leaders labeled "tongues." Constantly — over and over again — the ministers, song leaders and congregation repeat certain key phrases such as: "Glory!" or "Jesus!" or "Hallelujah!"

With the jazzy-type of hymn-singing, the rythmic, emotion-filled chant of these repeated utterances, the congregation is gradually whipped up into an emotional frenzy.

Casting aside all caution and mental control, the people — through emotional frenzy — desperately try to "get" or "receive" what they believe is the Holy Spirit — or "the baptism of the Holy Ghost" — or "speaking in tongues." Yes, they are trying only to "receive" or GET!

They are not trying to GIVE their lives as a living sacrifice in service to God and their fellow man (Rom. 12:1). They are NOT trying to really study and show themselves approved to God by understanding and LIVING BY His revealed Word in the Bible (II Tim. 2:15; Matt. 4:4).

In these "Pentecostal" meetings, people are not taught to live God's WAY OF LIFE and to follow the example of Jesus Christ. The emphasis is rather upon human emotions and sensations which are systematically "worked up" by those who are experts at mass psychology.


What about the Day of Pentecost?

"But," many will ask, "what about the Day of Pentecost when the original Disciples of Christ spoke with tongues?" "All right," I answer, "WHAT ABOUT IT?"

Have you really STUDIED this chapter? Have you read ALL of it in context — and sincerely and objectively compared it with the other examples of God's blessing and power from the lives of John the Baptist, Jesus Christ, Peter and Paul?

Let's notice carefully what the description of the Day of Pentecost in the second chapter of Acts really DOES say!

"And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place" (Acts 2:1).

As any interlinear or Greek text will show, the original Greek is better translated: "And when the Day of Pentecost was being fulfilled" — or "being accomplished."

The point is that Pentecost is NOT an experience, but a DAY!

Any real Biblical scholar understands that this day was given to ancient Israel as the "Feast of Weeks" or "Firstfruits." Since its observance involves counting fifty from a certain point — the New Testament designation became the "Day of Pentecost." This is because, in Greek, "pente" means fifty and "cost" means count. In other words — the very name of this Day means "Count fifty" or was referring to the "fiftieth day."

This day came around every year in the late spring and celebrated the completion of the smaller spring harvest of "firstfruits." Notice that this day was observed several years after the one mentioned in Acts 2 by the Apostle Paul, in Acts 20:16. Also, on yet another occasion it was observed by Paul in the city of Ephesus as described in I Corinthians 16:8.

Strangely, and significantly, the very people who call themselves "Pentecostal" do NOT even observe the Biblically commanded Day of Pentecost!

But now, let's continue with the account in Acts 2 to see what DID happen on this particular Day of Pentecost which came just after Christ's resurrection.

"And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting" (verse 2).

Notice that the sound did not come from a smirking, "jazzy" Pentecostal song leader gradually and systematically whipping up the congregation with emotional songs and sayings. Rather, it came "from heaven." It sounded NOT like the moans and squeals emanating from the mouths of excited human beings, but rather like a powerful wind rushing through the temple.

"And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them" (verse 3).

Observe that literal tongues of FLAME quite evidently came down from above and hovered over each of Christ's disciples on this occasion. Absolutely NOTHING like this ever occurs in the "Pentecostal" meetings.

"And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance" (verse 4).

There is no mention whatsoever of them being gradually worked up to an emotional pitch by special songs, shouts and other methods of crowd psychology, but rather that they were filled with God's Holy Spirit — "whom God bath given to them that OBEY Him" (Acts 5:32).

Now notice verses 5-8. Here the Bible reveals that the "tongues" or languages spoken by these apostles were literal, living LANGUAGES of that day which were clearly understood by the Jews who were meeting there in the temple also observing the Day of Pentecost and had come from many nations all over the world in order to do so. It says that, "Every man heard them speak in his own language" (verse 6).

The Jews asked one another, "And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?" (verse 8).

Yes, completely CONTRARY to the ideas of the "Pentecostal" people and even that of the Post article referred to above, the languages spoken by Christ's disciples were definitely NOT some "spiritual language" or "language of the angels," but literal human dialects in use in THAT DAY. They were clearly UNDERSTOOD by the people from other countries who were listening.

That, of course, was their PURPOSE!