Everything You Wanted to Know About Tongues but Were Afraid to Ask
by Dr. Reve' M. Pete
Holy Ghost Baptism and Speaking in Tongues
Holy Ghost baptism is the immersion of a Christianís spirit into the Holy Ghost. The purpose of Holy Ghost baptism is empowered Christian service. (Acts 1:8) Just as water has the effect on the Christianís body when it is immersed in it at water baptism, the Holy Ghost has an effect on the Christianís spirit when it is immersed in Him at Holy Ghost baptism. That effect is the phenomenon of glossolalia or speaking in tongues.
Speaking in tongues is the supernatural ability of a Christian to speak directly to God in a language he or she has never learned and does not know (intellectually). The Christian speaks in tongues by the aid of the Holy Ghost. Speaking in tongues is the initial sign of Holy Ghost baptism. (Acts 2:4; 10:44-46; 29:6) Holy ghost baptism is available to every Christian. Therefore, the gift of speaking in tongues is available to every Christian.
Two Uses of Tongues
There are two uses of glossolalia. They are 1) personal use (1 Corinthians 14:2,4,14,18) 2) ministry use. (Acts 2:8,11; 1 Corinthians 12:10,28,30; 14:6,13) When a Christian speaks in tongues, that Christian speaks directly to God and edifies himself. (1 Corinthians 14:2,4) This is the personal use of tongues (called by some, ďpraying in the SpiritĒ). When a Christian ministers to others through the use of tongues, that Christians speaks in a language the hearer can understand (Acts 2:8,11) or gives the interpretation of what is said in tongues. (1 Corinthians 12:11,30) Speaking in tongues and the corresponding interpretation of tongues are the same as prophecy. (1 Corinthians 12:10; 14:5)
All Christians have the ability to speak in tongues for personal use. (Mark 16:17) All Christians are not used by the Holy Ghost to minister to others through the use of tongues. (1 Corinthians 12:11,30) The ability to minister to others through the use of tongues is manifested at the discretion of the Holy Ghost. (1 Corinthians 12:7,11)