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May 1, 2020 1:00 am
Live a part of the right and that is the newly was a sign that prove the legitimacy of the gospel today. I can get into this, but today I I believe in divine healing but I do not believe in divine dealers.
Those were temporary apostolic gifts given those men in the apostolic community prove that they were really telling representing God. Welcome to wisdom for the heart.
The Bible teaching ministry of Stephen Davey Stephen pastors a church in Cary, North Carolina, and he's our daily Bible teacher here on this program. Normally, our broadcast involves Stephen taking us through passages of Scripture one verse at a time, but we set aside our normal broadcast answer questions that we've received from listeners. It's really become one of our listeners favorite programs on a monthly basis today is that day and Stephen is here in the studio to answer some questions that we've received.
So here's the first question hello Lori question preacher. I felt really everything is totally true.
From the top home restaurant that you cannot have without having that show can you clarify that for me. Thank Lori thank you so much for calling and with that question. Stephen Lori really brings up a topic that's fairly controversial speaking in tongues and so probably in order to answer this thoroughly when you delay a little bit of foundation.
Yes, Lori, thank you so much for calling and if I can backup just a little bit.
Let me begin with the idea of tongues in the category it's presented in Scripture it's one of what we call the sign gifts.
There are several of them. In fact, if I get even broad little further. I like to think of gifts in three different categories with support gifts.
We find the gifting of apostles and prophets and evangelists, and pastors and teachers in the New Testament we have service gifts where there mentioned in several different letters to the churches. In fact, that the lists are never the same. If we combine them together will have gifts like administration, exhortation and encouragement, leadership, faith, giving hospitality, etc. and then there's this section of miraculous gifts. I like to call them sign gifts which would include healers, tongues, interpreters, the word of knowledge.
And that's a special category that fits what I think well within this title of sign gifts they were given as signs or they were given to proof or to attest the legitimacy of the message of the New Testament church statement.
Do we really know that the kinds of gifts that you just mentioned healing times.
Do we really know that there signs. Well, good question. So let me clarify little further first 2014 would be a very important text because it explicitly places tongues in that category were Paul writes to the church in Corinth. So then tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers, but prophecy is for assignment not to unbelievers but to those who believe in other words prophecy in this context, which is speaking the truth in the known language of the listener is for the believer. The believer grows and is edified by the teaching and preaching of truth tongues. He clearly says is assignment not to believers but to unbelievers. In fact, I often will ask people who go to a tongues speaking church. How many people are coming to faith because of it. They would say why why just that. Well Paul very clearly says it's for unbelievers.
Why because it's proving by its miraculous experience, something that only God can do in tongues.
By the way, was in people getting up and just say halos have a party after church or picnic or let's get you whatever this was a revelation by God to that congregation initially on the day of Pentecost to all those who didn't believe. And of course went back to their countries. Having the gospel been presented to them. Another important verse by the way Scott that I want to add Lori to your question as relates to sign gifts is something often misunderstood and that's the healing of their people who believe that you know a legitimate attestation of a prophet or apostle or even faith filled believers is the ability to heal people there healers today that go around saying this is proof that from God. Well, they have a part of it right and that is that the healing gift was a sign that prove the legitimacy of the gospel now today and I can get into this, but today I did. I believe in divine healing but I do not believe in divine healers. Those were temporary apostolic gifts given to those men in the apostolic community to prove that they were really telling the truth that they were representing God was often missed and that is the belief that well. If you have enough faith you can be healed. God doesn't want anybody to be sick and they missed the very ministry of Jesus Christ. Fact is Peter's preaching on the day of Pentecost says this interesting statement.
He says men of Israel, listen to these words of Jesus the Nazarene, a man who was proven or attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God the father performed through him in your midst. In other words, when Jesus healed someone.
It wasn't because they were sick, it was because that miracle proved he was in fact the son of God. If Jesus healed people because they were sick and I can I say this to you that Jesus would've been a very cruel healer. Why because he left a lot of people sick on the planet. Vicki left a lot of people sick around him. One of heal all the lepers in Israel.
Why only heal a few wildly healed and why not go to the leper colonies and clean them out.
He didn't heal them because they had leprosy healed a few of leprosy to prove he was God the son, so this was a sign then that proved he was in fact who he said he was. So we have support gifts with service gifts and we have sign gifts gifts that prove that these men were messengers from God. Tongues was one of those sign gifts that authenticated these men is doing something miraculous, thus being empowered by God, thank you, Stephen in Lori we have a grieving mother with a son who is being taught that he must speak in tongues in order to enter heaven, so there's probably a sense even in which the people, teaching him that would also believe that tongues is a sign, but is to be a completely different kind of sign a sign of true conversion. I'm glad you mentioned that Scott again because Lori this is the part of your question. It really troubled me. It has made a special class out of one particular gift to give Diebel he was temporary temporarily used by the apostolic community no longer necessary that the word of God is completed. That's another subject. But what troubles me is an individual who says you got it demonstrate one particular gift in order to be saved well. I've two problems with that are narrowed down to two okay one is doctrinal. We believe that we are justified by faith alone, it is faith in Christ alone. For by grace you been saved through faith, not of yourselves, it is the gift of God not as a result of work so we could just put in there, or gifts of the spirit that man should boast. We are not saved because we do anything but we believe the gospel of Christ alone and said that man is adding a work whether he calls it a sign or manifestation Oregon experience he's added something to belief in the gospel and faith in Christ alone. The second problem I have with it is simply practical.
If you go to the Scripture and simply read for screen is 12, 13 and 14 and makes it very clear that gifts are the decision of the spirit of God, and he does different things in different people's lives. In fact, very clearly Paul writes in first Corinthians chapter 12 all do not have gifts of healing do they all do not speak with tongues, do they all do not interpret do they he's making it very clear that everybody doesn't do the same thing infected be foolish if anyone gift was a gift everyone dead or had to the exclusion of others. This is making a special distinctive class out of this particular experience. This experiential gift and it is misleading that only your son but it's misleading. Thousands upon thousands of people to try to pursue this experience because it's proof that they are indeed saved Stephen those who hold to this really they see it as evidence of being filled by the Holy Spirit. And, of course, the Bible does teach that believers are filled with the Holy Spirit. That's a good distinction to make as well and maybe we can end on on this point. Lori, you need to understand that there's a difference between baptism, the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the filling of the Holy Spirit.
You cannot be a believer without believing the gospel of Christ and what God does his part is giving you the Holy Spirit to indwell you in the Bible speaks of that in terms of a baptism. There is no such thing as a believer is not been baptized by the spirit of God into the body of Christ event.
Paul wrote to the Corinthians in chapter 12 in verse 13 for by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body. So this Spirit baptism occurs in the life of every believer who believes in Christ and the gospel. By faith Stephen so what about filling well that's Ephesians chapter 5 verse 18 where the apostle Paul makes a present tense command do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation or or disorderly does. But be filled with the spirit so baptism is a past tense experience. It happens to all believers at conversion filling is a present tense experience for obedient believers.
It might help to just understand that that verb filled or be filled could be translated be dominated be under the control of, be swayed by effect, Paul uses illustration. Don't get drunk with wine, what is that mean don't come under the influence of wine can affect the way you walk can affect the way you talk the way you think. But be filled with the spirit that is be under the dominating controlling influence of the spirit, and that the daily surrender and he will influence the what we walk in the way we talk and the way we think Stephen I think you said you're going to try to end on this, but I'm not gonna let you because I have one more question. Okay, so I I meet people who talk about gifts in the way that Lori did that. It's evidence of a filling and evidence of salvation but I also meet people who think of the gift of tongues a little bit differently and they refer to it as a private prayer language. So could you comment on that. Just a little bit what we make of a private prayer language that's important subject. Scott, because I've talked over the years to individuals who go to churches that is speak in tongues and I'll take them to for screen is 14 where the guidelines are given no more than two and a service or speaking in tongues. They take turns.
They don't speak the same time they need to make sure interpreters present a woman is not to use this gift and in the public assembly.
All these different guidelines which they ignore and a lot of times what this is okay Stephen you kinda convinced me that my churches and even following the guidelines, but I do this in my closet. I do this at home.
I do this in private and more than likely what they're going to do is go to a well-worn text and that's for screen is 14 verse two where Paul writes for one who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God and the put. There and I'll say no there's not it. There there is a; there. I think when Paul put it, Laura; Earl: whatever he did. That was just as inspired as anything else. So there's a seminal he's not finished when he read the whole verse for one who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands. In other words, Paul is saying that if you do not have that gift of tongues interpreted, and by the way, every gift is for someone else. While we might be encouraged and edified my gift of teaching is not for me to go on my closet my gift of helps is not to do my own yardwork know it's for someone else. Tongues was a sign to someone else but someone who says what to do in the closet with us understand the purpose of the sign, but Paul clearly says that if it's not interpreted your speaking to God and knows only God can understand. Just keep reading to the chapter Paul wants us to have this gift, at least in Corinth.
While it was being used and observed to be interpreted so the church would be edified so that it wouldn't seem like a mad house which he clearly says people will think it is. He says in verse 14 very clearly of chapter 14 for script ends. If I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful.
That's a nice way of saying it was meaningless. It was worth less. So Paul is not encouraging you to go in your closet and say some gibberish and not have interpreted he's wanting everything we do to have meaning, and he clearly speaks against someone who privately for their own benefit goes into a closet without any interpretation says something thinking that they are closer to God because of it.
And one more thing Scott, I've had people tell me what this gives me a special communion with God and it's in the hole in just a moment that you're creating a doctrine in fact if this gives you closer communion with God. Guess what I want.
I want to do it so that's why I think Scott they've had to create the special class where everybody has to do it because it is true. Something are closer to God by speaking in a tongue you don't understand what that for heaven sake. We all wanted. That's not what the New Testament teaches that all thank you so much Stephen and thank you Lori for calling and will be praying for you and for your son, that he will know the truth of friends we've spent just a few minutes dealing with the topic that really takes much longer than that completely unpack, but we have a resource. Stephen has preached on this topic and if you go to our website wisdom online.org and search for the series entitled holy confusion. That's holy firstname.lastname@example.org you're going to find a four-part sermon series. There that you will be able to listen to online. We have CDs of it available and there's written transcripts there. So I encourage you to go online and look for that resource. If you'd like to explore this topic a little bit more. Let me also give you the number that Lori used to call her question.
That number is 910-808-9384. Any time that you have a question regarding the Bible or the Christian faith. You can call that number.
Record your question will play it on a future broadcast for Stephen to answer that number once again is 910-808-9384 if you have any question about the Bible just pick up your phone and dial that number just like this listener did you calling from Alabama serious verse in the Bible were the most careful words of the Bible you will use that word in verse three. Lord says my spirit shall not always strive with man that he is also play, yet his days shall be 120 years.
Do you believe that based upon the judgments that God is bringing to America right now that we're living in a time where God's mercy is not striving to the same degree that it mentions here in Genesis chapter 6 verse three. How like your answer. Thank you so much for being such a student of God's work. Thank you so much Kevin for calling and with that question Stephen, I think I'd like to have you tackle this in two ways. One is Kevin brings up this passage from Genesis Genesis 6. The race will be good for us to understand what's happening in that verse and then he ties it to America and what's happening in America.
So maybe you could tackle both of those in that order.
Well let me reverse that about that. This guy let's start with the American allusion and I think that's something we gotta be very careful of friends don't see America in the text of Scripture. And when you see God refer to nations or people groups. Be careful that you understand, to whom he speaking, I often hear people interpret prophecy through the events that are happening in America.
You know there's persecution coming in America, so the coming of Christ has to be soon and often feel so badly for millions of Chinese and Sudanese and Turkish believers that are undergoing incredible persecution have for a long time.
There are general principles to consider when the Bible refers to nations that are true were not Israel, and there is a special covenant with the nation's wrote, we don't have that covenant America has been around for 350 years and it may be around 150 more or 350 more. I hope so, but there's a covenant when I can be reconstituted. One day the kingdom, Israel will be, but there are general principles to nations, for instance, Solomon writes in Proverbs 1434 righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people. And that's true. I believe that America is disgraced today.
I don't think it's under any more condemnation from God that 100 years ago or 50 years ago. I think the disgrace that we have brought about and in the presence of a holy God whom this nation is has abandoned and is ignoring his scriptures discarded well. That principle rings true were not being exalted by righteousness and were paying the penalty for there's grave confusion today because we've set aside the standards of righteousness which are wonderful and in the nation, and it blesses that nation, I think in terms of the New Testament error the church age. I love the way it's delivered to us in acts chapter 10 verse 35 where it says God doesn't show partiality, but in every nation the man who fears him and does what is right is welcome to him in every nation that may be disgraced. Whoever it is in that nation that fears the Lord is well pleasing to the Lord. So in America today is God wiped his hands of this country will I think we have to be very careful there. God didn't call the church to save America. He called the church save Americans is the way I put it.
We deliver the gospel.
Individuals and acts 1035 says that in every nation. There may be someone who fears God and that's very possible and wonderful. So keep that in mind when you see the Bible referencing a nation that's really important Stephen because that that reminder to us as a church is that no matter what's happening in our culture and our society. It's just all the more opportunity for us to shine as lights.
That's right. Our mission never changes depending on whatever nation were in at whatever generation were living well, let's go back into Genesis chapter 6 so there's this this reference from Genesis 6 about God no longer striving with man in what's happening back in this context, this passage well Kevin I appreciate you calling in you. You mentioned it's a scary verse one of the scariest versus in a sense it is. But I want to encourage you. That is one of the most reassuring versus that you'll find is released to the judgment of God and the reason I say that is because of this we have what we would call a near-term fulfillment of that text and a long term or a final fulfillment of that text. I think it's a near-term fulfillment and it may very well be a reference to the flood which is coming in a little over hundred years.
It may be a reference to the average lifespan of an individual that's very rarely over 120 years after the flood. I think the world record, I don't know Scott. It's hundred 22 by a lady who recently died in modern history in modern entry.
That's right, but the near-term fulfillment is simply managing to live forever and using it to live very long time and so he needs to take into account the coming judgment of God and that is the long term, or what we call the final fulfillment and that is the fact that it is as we know from the New Testament, Hebrews 927 regularly says it is appointed on demand once to die, and then the judgment so there is a judgment. There is a time when the mercy of God comes to an end, but the reassuring part of this Kevin is for anyone who still has breath in their lungs. They haven't died yet the judgment isn't gonna come that final judgment until after they died. And when they die. There gonna wait that we call the great white throne given to us specifically by John the apostle and the latter chapters of Revelation. That judgment is not confirmed until a person is dead, so is there is there is breath in the lungs of any individual. They can believe the gospel.
So this verse then becomes a wonderful testimony to the mercy and the patients and the long-suffering of God where he says the Lord said, my spirit shall not strive with man forever, because that is in his going.
He has made a flash. It is using a live forever in his days will be 120 years using a little long but while he lives, then you can understand the text to mean that judgment is put off the judgment will eventually come the latter's life and breath the mercy of God is available in the grace of God to anyone who will believe the gospel, Stephen, that strikes me is a really helpful way to approach all prophecy that you know whoever's reading the prophecy at that moment has the opportunity to respond correctly to what they see their that's right, you will thank you Steven and thank you so much Kevin friends.
Let me give you that number that Kevin used one more time so that you can call in with your Bible question. It's 910-808-9384.
We don't answer that number if you need to speak with us, please dial our office number. That number is only set up to record your question. It's 910-808-9384 and you can call it today or anytime 24 hours a day. Will Steven and friends. That is all the time that we have for today so were not going to be able to get to another question.
It's our prayer that these question-and-answer times are helpful for you.
I mentioned a moment ago, our Bible question number and you can call that but I also want to give you our office number if you'd like to speak with us.
Here's the number that you should use its 864824253 now an easy way to remember that is to simply dial 86648 Bible were here in Cary, North Carolina were in the Eastern time zone in our office is open from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM Monday through Friday.
If we can help you in any way. Just dial that number. I'll remind you of something that I mentioned earlier the series entitled holy confusion. Our website is wisdom online.org and you'll find a search box where you can just type in holy confusion and find that series would also love to hear from you, and learn how God is using the teaching you here to bless and encourage you. You can communicate with us through our website was a way for you to send us a note there you can interact with us on our Facebook page you can like that page and leave us a comment or you can write to us at wisdom for the hearts PO Box 37297 Raleigh, NC 27627 would love to get a card or letter from you when we come back Monday were going to continue through our current series. I hope that you will make plans to join us at this same time next week right here on wisdom