1 Corinthians 14:1-17
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New Testament: 1 Corinthians 14:1-17
Summary: Prophecy and Tongues
Here, Paul illustrates his previous point about the uselessness of even the true gift apart from translation for the church to understand. If even inanimate musical instruments are expected to make sensible sounds, how much more should human speech make sense, especially when it deals with the things of God? 1 Corinthians 14:23
Paul simply points up the obvious: the purpose of every language is to communicate, not to impress, and certainly not to confuse, as the Corinthians had been doing with their counterfeits. That was clearly the point in the first instance of tongues when each heard the apostles speak in his own language (Acts 2:6, 1 Corinthians 14:8). This section makes an undeniable case for the fact that the true gift of tongues was never some unintelligible gibberish, but was human language that was to be translated (1 Corinthians 14:13).
From: ~ MacArthur Bible Commentary
Paul makes it clear that tongues, apart from utterances that are interpreted, are of no value to the church. For that matter, they bring no personal blessing to the speaker himself unless he understands what is being said (1Corinthians 14:14-15). Those who say that Christians should practice this gift in private ignore what Paul says here. In the first place, how can we edify the church if we use our spiritual gifts in private and not to serve others? And, second, if we do not understand what is being said, how can we profit from it ourselves? It is possible for the flesh and the devil to imitate spiritual gifts and lead a believer into a religion of shallow emotionalism instead of one of solid understanding and faith. This is not to deny the place of sincere emotions in the Christian life, for the fruits of the Spirit certainly involve the emotions (Galatians 5:22-23); these emotions, however, must be instructed by the mind and controlled by the will, or they will be destructive. From: Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines
Why go to church? God’s people assemble for one purpose to worship God. They worship him by their praying and singing, teaching and preaching. And worship should result in glory to God, blessing for God’s people, and fear and conviction for sinners. But for these things to happen, Jesus Christ must be lord of our lives and we must yield to the Holy Spirit. If we come to church to display our spirituality, well, we’ll not only miss the blessing ourselves, but also cause others to miss the blessing, you see, we come to honor Him. A key word in this chapter is edification, which means building up. A worship service should lift up the Lord and build up the saints, not puff up the participants.