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Church Guidelines for Prophesying, Praying, and Speaking in Tongues, Part 6 (Praying Through the Bible #255)



TEXT: 1 Corinthians 14:8-19:

1 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy.

2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.

3 But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.

4 He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church.

5 I would that ye all spake with tongues but rather that ye prophesied: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying.

6 Now, brethren, if I come unto you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you, except I shall speak to you either by revelation, or by knowledge, or by prophesying, or by doctrine?

7 And even things without life giving sound, whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped?

8 For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?

9 So likewise ye, except ye utter by the tongue words easy to be understood, how shall it be known what is spoken? for ye shall speak into the air.

10 There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification.

11 Therefore if I know not the meaning of the voice, I shall be unto him that speaketh a barbarian, and he that speaketh shall be a barbarian unto me.

12 Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church.

13 Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret.

14 For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful.

15 What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.

16 Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest?

17 For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified.

18 I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all:

19 Yet in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue.

— PRAYER —

We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible.” The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have completed 253 messages in this series.

This is message #255 titled, Church Guidelines for Prophesying, Praying, and Speaking in Tongues, Part 6.

Today, we will continue looking at the application of the Bible’s teaching regarding speaking in tongues in the church. We have seen that Paul values understanding, edification, and interpretation above the mysteriousness of speaking in tongues. The first place that Paul applies this to is his personal prayer life. He says that even if his spirit prays in a language that he cannot speak, he will demand understanding. He will not stop praying until he has an understanding of what his spirit has communicated to God.

The second place where the principle of understanding must be applied is in the assembly of believers. Paul says, “When thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest? For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified.” In many churches, there is a whole lot of shouting and saying “Amen” when the preacher utters something in tongues. But, if you ask those people what the preacher meant, they wouldn’t be able to tell you. (And some people can’t tell you what the preacher means when he’s speaking English either.) That is what Paul is getting at.

Dr. Warren Wiersbe comments, “Paul assumed that the believers would listen to the message and respond to it. But if they did not understand the message, how could they respond? The ‘unlearned’ person was probably a new believer, or possibly an interested ‘seeker.’ He could not be edified unless he understood what was being said. Again, it was a matter of priorities. While Paul did not oppose the ministry of tongues, he did try to put it into a right perspective. The issue was not quantity of words, but quality of communication.”

Interestingly, Paul declares, “I speak with tongues more than ye all.” But Paul refrained from speaking in tongues in the church. He did not act, as some do, as if he couldn’t help himself. He believed that all things had to be done decently and in order, and breaking out in speech which no one else understands is not decent or orderly. Paul says, “In the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue.”

Speaking in tongues is not a sign of spiritual maturity, as some believe. It is not a sign of being baptized with the Holy Spirit. It is not evidence of salvation. You can have a powerful and impactful church service without speaking in tongues because something more important is present — understanding of what the Lord has in store for His people to hear through the ministry of the Word.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Now, if you are with us today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, your first prayer needs to be what we call the Sinner’s Prayer. First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.

If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on trusting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. You have done the most important thing in life. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door, by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”

God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.

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Praying Your Way Through the Depths of Despair

[audio http://gospellightminute.buzzsprout.com/3192/133462-praying-your-way-through-the-depths-of-despair.mp3]

Praying Through the Bible #65

TEXT: Psalm 88

We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible”. The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have done 64 messages in this series.

This is message #65, titled “Praying Your Way Through the Depths of Despair”

During this time of year — the Fall and Winter seasons — many people experience feelings of depression and gloom. Doctors call it “seasonal affective disorder” or SAD. According to the Mayo Clinic, people begin showing “symptoms of this disorder in the fall and may continue into the winter months, sapping their energy and making them feel moody.” This seasonal depression is also attributed to the fact that the amount of sunlight during the day is declining. Because our side of the earth is now tilted away from the sun, the sun takes longer to rise and is quicker to set. Consequently, there is more darkness during this time of the year.

Some other reasons why people have these kinds of feelings during this time of the year are:

1. Many people are remembering family members whom they have lost either by death, or by divorce, or by separation. For some reason or another, their family is not together.

2. Many people are truly lonely. They simply don’t have anyone to share the holidays with. They don’t have anyone to give gifts to or anyone who will give gifts to them. They see other people rushing home to be with family members and friends, and they have no one to rush home to.

3. Many Christian people do not have their hearts right with God, and they are pretending to be joyful and happy. They are not truly joyful in their hearts because of sin in their lives.

All of us are familiar with feelings of depression, sadness, grief, and loss. Sometimes, we get to the point of utter despondency. The word “despondent” means “in low spirits from loss of hope or courage.” This is the type of feeling we get from the writer of Psalm 88.

This writer is identified as a man named He-man (HE-men). According to the Jewish Encyclopedia, Heman (HE-men) was the grandson of the prophet Samuel. He is identified as “the singer”. He was one of the three chief Levites appointed by David to oversee the musical service in the Tabernacle. He had fourteen sons, all of whom assisted in the choir under their father.

Psalm 88 is a lament — it begins and ends on a note of sadness. Derek Kidner writes, “There is no sadder prayer in the Psalter. Here, as with other laments, the reader’s part need not be that of spectator, whatever his current mood, but that of companion in prayer to the depressed or outcast people whose state of mind the psalm puts into words: words which are for use.”

We do not know the reason why Heman was in the depths of despair. Some have suggested that Heman contracted leprosy and had to live outside of the city — away from his family and his work as a servant of the Lord. However, this Psalm is categorized as a “Maschil” (MAS-KILL) — a psalm meant for instruction. Heman does not want us to just mourn with him, but to learn a lesson from his experience in the depths of despair. In this Psalm, there are three lessons that I believe God wants us to learn.

1. Sometimes, God allows us to descend to the depths of despair. As he begins his lament, Heman cries out: “O Lord God of my salvation, I have cried day and night before thee: Let my prayer come before thee: incline thine ear unto my cry.”

2. The loneliness of separation ought to draw us closer to God. Heman says in verse 4: “I am counted with them that go down into the pit: I am as a man that hath no strength.” When we are in the depths of despair, we will feel separated from all that we know and enjoy.

3. Understand that there is always light at the end of the tunnel. In verse 13 of this psalm, we see a glimmer of hope in the midst of his despair. Heman has not given up crying out to God even though he has yet to receive an answer, and in verse 13 he says, “But unto thee have I cried, O Lord; and in the morning shall my prayer prevent thee.”

No matter how we feel, no matter how dark our situation may be, no matter how lonely and separated from life, from others, or from God we think we are, we must find a rope to cling to and a light to fix our eyes upon.

Prayer is that rope. God is our light. Prayer is our lifeline to God. Like Heman, even though we may be in the depths of despair, we must never, never give up on prayer to God.

How to Cast Your Burdens on the Lord Through Prayer (Part 2)

Praying Through the Bible #55 | with Daniel Whyte III

TEXT: Psalm 55

We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible”. The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the new Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have done 54 messages in this series.

This is message #55 titled “How to Cast Your Burdens on the Lord Through Prayer (Part 2)”

On last week, we began looking at the topic of worry and how to handle it from this psalm. We have a lot to worry about. The terrible shooting at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday just reminds us of the fragility of our world. Just when it seems like we have everything under control, when everything is going well, when we tell ourselves we have nothing to worry about — all of that can be shattered in an instant, and worry sets in again.

We worry about our families. We worry about our circumstances. We worry about our children. We worry about the future. What will happen tomorrow? What will happen 5, 10, or 15 years from now? We often wish that we could roll all our burdens, troubles, cares, and worries on someone else, and let them handle it — let them fix it. Well, the Bible tells us to “cast all our cares upon God, for he careth for us.” And Jesus Christ said, “come unto me all ye that are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.” So, we are invited to cast all our burdens on the Lord, and we can do that through prayer.

We have seen from Psalm 55, this psalm of instruction, three things that we must realize in times of worry.

1. We must realize that times of worry are times to pray.
2. We must realize that there is no easy escape from worry.
3. We must realize that the only way out of worry is to look up.

Today, I want us to see from this psalm three more things that we must do when we are faced with the cares, worries, and burdens of this life.

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