I have been reading your sermons for years and using some of them in my own examples. I enjoy reading your thoughts and ideas on the Scriptures.
The one thing that you are missing in the text about Speaking in Tongues is the experience of hearing it first hand and seeing it work to the good of the church. I only wish that you could have experienced the power of God in a gift spiritually rather than speak about something that you have only read about.
Had you taken the same amount of time to seek the truth about tongues as you did to discredit it, you might have came to the knowledge of the truth.
Spiritual gifts are not something that we understand physically with the meager understanding of our mind, but they are spiritually understood through and by the spiritual wisdom and understanding that can only come through and by the Holy Ghost.
Tongues that are not understood†are our spirit praying to God. Tongues that are understood are called Prophecy. In either case you will have to agree that true spiritual gifts can not work in these mortal bodies unless God moves on us spiritually to do so.
Why is it so easy to believe that God can cause a donkey to speak to a prophet but is not able to speak through his own children?
I would like to go on and explain further but this is a subject that you would truly have to have a desire in your heart to want to understand it or it is in your terms "useless."
Thank you for your time.
For about a year and a half I taught in a private school run by Pentecostals. I've seen people "speaking in tongues." I've witnessed people who were called powerful faith healers pray over a woman who tore her rotator cuff -- she ended up having to go in for surgery anyway and explained it as "God must be telling me I need to see a doctor for this one." So, no I don't speak from a lack of experience.
I'm glad you find this site's information useful. But I don't treat the topic of speaking in tongues any different from the rest of the Bible. Notice that you did not justify speaking in tongues by the Scriptures. In fact, you state that one must go outside the Scriptures to direct communications from God in order to understand this topic.
But such is contrary to the teachings of the Bible. The passage you allude to:
"But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written: Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him." But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man's wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual" (1 Corinthians 2:7-13).
Is Paul's discussion on how the apostles and prophets were able to accurately record what God wanted taught. It is just another way of Paul saying he spoke and wrote by inspiration. "But I make known to you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ" (Galatians 1:11-12).
By that revelation from God, Paul stated "Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away" (I Corinthians 13:8). I've accepted what God has said through Paul. You appear to still struggle against it. It is not a question of what God is able to do. It is accepting what God said He would do.
But what Paul said is correct. Speaking in tongues is gone from the world. What practitioners of what is called tongue speaking today is nothing like what was talked about in the New Testament. The word "tongue" is just an older word for language. In the days of the New Testament people with the gift were able to teach other people in their native language with no prior knowledge of the language. "Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, "Look, are not all these who speak Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?" (Acts 2:7-8). What is called tongue speaking today doesn't involve communication. Modern practitioners violate the very principle Paul laid down for the true tongue speakers in Corinth. "So likewise you, unless you utter by the tongue words easy to understand, how will it be known what is spoken? For you will be speaking into the air" (I Corinthians 14:9).