Are tongues a sign of the Holy Spirit?
05-28-2011, 04:20 PM
RE: Are tongues a sign of the Holy Spirit?
(05-26-2011 10:47 PM)Deborah446 Wrote: Quote
Tongues always were known languages. I am going to paste in a compilation of something I was working on to answer Rick in another thread, but got taken away from it...so it's quite lengthy but addresses who the apostles were and their unique role and the issue of sign gifts and drinking poison etc...
Jesus was commissioning the apostles---who were to lay the foundation of the Gospel and sound doctrine for the church, which we see in the written record of the NT.
The apostles as the God-called eyewitnesses of Christ were given great power and signs and wonders to confirm them as belonging to God.
Act 10:39 And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:
Act 10:40 Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly;
Act 10:41 Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before of God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead.
Act 10:42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
Luke 24:44-49 And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. 45. Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, 46. And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: 47. And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48. And ye are witnesses of these things. 49. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.
Act 13:30 But God raised him from the dead:
Act 13:31 And he was seen many days of them which came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, who are his witnesses unto the people.
Act 13:32 And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers,
Rev 21:14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
Act 2:43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.
Acts 5:12-14 And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon's porch. 13. And of the rest durst no man join himself to them: but the people magnified them. 14. And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.)
Act 4:33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.
2 Corinthians 12:11-12 I am become a fool in glorying; ye have compelled me: for I ought to have been commended of you: for in nothing am I behind the very chiefest apostles, though I be nothing. 12. Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds.
Hebrews 2:3-4 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; 4. God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?
What made the apostles different and unique in the Body of Christ?
1Co 4:9 For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.
Jud 1:17 But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;
Act 8:1 And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles
Eph 2:20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
Eph 3:4 Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)
Eph 3:5 Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
Eph 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
1 Thessalonians 2:3-6 For our exhortation was not of deceit, nor of uncleanness, nor in guile: 4. But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts. 5. For neither at any time used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloke of covetousness; God is witness: 6. Nor of men sought we glory, neither of you, nor yet of others, when we might have been burdensome, as the apostles of Christ.
2 Peter 3:1-2 This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance: 2. That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour:
2 Peter 3:15-16 And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; 16. As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
It was their words -which He gave them to speak, which became written for us. It was what they taught as His chosen witnesses that was to be taught to other faithful men to teach to others when the apostles could no longer be there. No one else was to present doctrine, unless they followed what had been proclaimed by the apostles as they taught because they were given that call by Christ Himself.
2Ti 2:2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.
1Ti 1:3 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine,
Act 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers
Jesus prayed for the apostles in John 17 (as well as all believers) but He said:
Joh 17:11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.
Joh 17:12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
...Joh 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
The concept of false apostles is mentioned by Paul:
2 Corinthians 11:3-4 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.
2 Corinthians 11:12-13 But what I do, that I will do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion; that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we. 13. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.
14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
2Co 11:15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
Rom 16:16 Salute one another with an holy kiss. The churches of Christ salute you.
Rom 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. 18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.
I firmly believe the apostles were those mentioned by Christ Himself and chosen by Him as His witnesses while on this earth, needed in order to proclaim the Gospel and be able to say--We were His witnesses and saw all these things firsthand. There is not one person today that can say they physically saw Christ crucified or saw the miracles He performed or sat down to eat with Him, as they did. That was a unique God-given role as declared in the Scriptures themselves. Anyone claiming to be an apostle today fails right from the first qualification unless they are about 2000 years old. But that doesn't stop the desire of some to be called that or viewed on a pedestal so they can teach their own brand of truth and present another gospel and another Jesus, new revelation, new writings that do not uphold the Word of God. That's also warned of. And I believe that is what Jesus is talking about in Revelation when He says, " and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: " because there are many claiming to be apostles today and they are not.
Based on the Scriptures, there can be no other apostles than those original ones. There can be teachers who have been faithful to proclaim the very things we see in the Scriptures, but that isn't an apostle.
I believe that when the apostles died, things changed. I believe what they were called to do, cannot be duplicated in the church. We are alive in Christ built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets. The prophets 'prophesied til John' (the Baptist) and then things changed also. The apostles were called last, to be eyewitnesses, and to proclaim the record and doctrine, just as the prophets of old were recorded. And once those things were proclaimed by them to others and in writing, then things changed again.
Eph 4:7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
God's grace is given to all according to what Christ has given each. The Grace being referred to is not defined as "the" gifts that people like to seek after, particularly the pentecostal and charismatic adherents. It is because of God's grace we have received the gift of salvation and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, who gives each everything we need to serve Him. At His good pleasure and will. It's so about Him, not about what we 'get' that many would like to distinguish themselves for having. If that makes sense.
The apostles received much grace and the role of apostle which accompanied very specific commissioning by Christ, for the "obedience to the faith" throughout the world in Jesus' name.
Quote:And, Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
What if the verse 11 means, Christ gave believers the apostles to be edified by, and some prophets, to be edified by, and some evangelists to learn of Christ by, and some He gave pastors and teachers, to be edified by?
WHY? For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Eph 4:13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ
Why? Eph 4:14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
Eph 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
Eph 4:16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
The purpose of those listed leadership was to teach the doctrine given by Christ and by Christ via the apostles...then as the apostles commissioned faithful men to teach what they had taught in order to exhort the new believers. That is Scriptural. And I think that is why the Scriptures, v14.
v13, to me means we all come into the understanding of the agreement or unity of the faith--the truth of Jesus Christ, the Gospel, the doctrine once delivered to the saints by Christ and the apostles and prophets who proclaimed Jesus Christ throughout the OT. So that knowledge gives the unity, the bond of love of every Christian to Christ and one another. Showing that we have matured in the faith, with dependence on Jesus Christ, and with the fulness of Christ. v15, says that by those speaking the truth in love, we may **grow up** into Him in all things.....v16, it's because of the body working to edify itself that it binds together, because of each being given the things necessary for that part and causes growth and increase because of love of one another, which starts with love of Christ, who gives us love for one another. That is the goal and role of the Body to each other. To edify and encourage one another to run the race. It is not finished until we die or Christ returns. So yes, that unity of the body is there. Edifying is taking place for the perfecting and equipping of believers. It has never ceased to take place, because the Body continues to grow and mature.
We will never be 'perfect' in this world because we will always have the flesh and sin to contend with in some way. But we can become of full age, and mature in Christ.
Heb 5:13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.
Heb 5:14 But strong meat **belongeth** to them that are of "full age", even those who *by reason of use* have their **senses exercised** to discern both good and evil.
full age >G5046
1) brought to its end, finished
2) wanting nothing necessary to completeness
4) that which is perfect
4a) consummate human integrity and virtue
4b) of men
4b1) full grown, adult, of full age, mature
5046 is the exact word used in Ephesians 4:13 "and of the knowledgeG1922 of the Son of God, unto a perfectG5046 man,
2Ti 3:15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
2Ti 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
2Ti 3:17 That the man of God may be **perfect,** throughly furnished unto all good works.
2) complete, perfect
2a) having reference apparently to “special aptitude for given uses”
Part of Speech: adjective
From G1537 and a derivative of G739; to finish out (time); figuratively to equip fully (a teacher): - accomplish, thoroughly furnish.
1) to complete, finish
1a) to furnish perfectly
1b) to finish, accomplish, (as it were, to render the days complete)
2Pe 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ,*** to them that have obtained like precious faith with us*** through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ:
2Pe 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,
2Pe 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
2Pe 1:4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
2Pe 1:5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;
2Pe 1:6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;
2Pe 1:7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.
2Pe 1:8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
2Pe 1:9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.
2Pe 1:10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:
The prophets were some of the few who were noted as having the indwelling Holy Spirit in the OT. In Christ, because of the fulfillment of prophecy and God's promises, every single believer is indwelt with the Holy Spirit. The apostles were proven mightily by God to have that witness in them. They were confirming the Joel prophecy and also showed that all mankind could belong to Jesus Christ and have the indwelling and promised Holy Spirit. Once the teachings and doctrines and eyewitness reports were done by the apostles, the believers needed to remain faithful, despite the warnings of false Christs, wolves entering in, false teachers, false prophets and in the end,
2Th 2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
2Th 2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
...and hence the need of the written testimony of those chosen men. That record was given as the Sword of the Spirit so we could always prove our doctrine to it. Or not.
Do I think gifting has ended like the apostles, meaning have the gifts of prophecy, signs and wonders, gifts of healing etc also ended?
I already posted the Scriptures relating to the apostles, and that there were only the 12 plus Paul, who were called to be the eyewitnesses of Christ, and to provide the doctrine which is the foundation of our faith, with Christ the cornerstone. In Matthew 28:18-20, we see Jesus commissioning them to go into the world and preach the gospel, and teach all the things He commanded them. We know He gave them all the words to speak and spoke of all those who would come to Him because of their words.[Romans 10:14-21;16:25-26; Mark 16:15; Titus 1:3; Ephesians 3:5-8; Coil 1:6-7; 1 Peter 1:23-25, etc]And all are called to study to show themselves approved and earnestly contend for the faith once delivered to the saints--by those very eyewitnesses. God also gave them the signs and wonders, miracles, healings, great power and literally all the gifts we see listed rolled into them. They even raised the dead a few times.
If the 'gifting' of apostle ceased, what else ceased? If their specific witness including the confirmations by God of all those miraculous things, as well as being given the words to present the doctrine we are all to follow, what else ceased, once it was recorded? Because simply in this statement, we know something listed in the gifts ceased. If the argument is that 'office' of apostles didn't cease, therefore their gifts didn't--we have already Scripturally proven that to be false. The Apostles ceased. So...what ceased with them? What specific things were they given that other believers were not?
We know that the spiritual gifts of miracles, gifts of healings, prophecy and tongues ie varieties of languages, were all used as signs to authenticate the fulfillment of prophecy that the Messiah had come, or confirm the apostles ministries to be of God. The Jews required a sign, and hence the need to confirm.
In John 2:11, the beginning of Jesus' miracles confirmed to the disciples who He was, although right from the beginning they recognised who He was
Joh 1:40 One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother.
Joh 1:41 He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ.
Joh 1:42 And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone.
Joh 1:43 The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow me.
Joh 1:44 Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter.
Joh 1:45 Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.
We know the signs and wonders Jesus did, confirmed to the Jews, that Jesus was of God.
Joh 3:2 The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.
and Joh 2:22 When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.
Joh 2:23 Now when he was in Jerusalem at the passover, in the feast day, many believed in his name, when they saw the miracles which he did.
So we can possibly conclude that the same witness authenticated the apostles and confirmed they were men of God.
Jesus said> Joh 4:48 Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe.
Not only did the Jews need that confirmation that the apostles witness was of God, but in order to believe the Scriptures about the new thing God had promised, which was the new covenant and the mystery of salvation was not to the Jews only, but to the Gentiles.
When Jesus spoke to the woman from Samaria, at the well, many of Samaritans later believed , v42 "for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world. "
In that passage, Jesus showed that while salvation and knowledge of it was through the Jews, meaning the lineage and the prophecies, and while they worshipped in Jerusalem, and the Samaratan's in the mountain, Jesus said that all would need to instead worship in Spirit and truth. He was showing then that salvation was for all mankind and it would involve the same parameters of belief and worship.
Joh 4:22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.
Joh 4:23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
Joh 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
And that was why the need of the signs and wonders, not just by Jesus, but the apostles.
In researching this, I found many take Mark 16:17-18 as applying to all believers. But if one looks at the passage, Jesus, having risen from the dead, is commissioning the apostles, the ones already chosen directly by Christ and the two more to come. That is, Matthias and Paul. Look at verse:
v14 >>>Jesus was speaking specifically to the eleven apostles, and the following is His commission of them>>>>
Mar 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. >>confirmed by verse 20, Romans 10, etc>>
Mar 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
Mar 16:17 And these signs shall follow them **that believe;** In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; >>See Acts, etc>>
Mar 16:18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
Mar 16:19 So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.
Mar 16:20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.
The issue is verse 17, where many believe that it means all who belong to Jesus Christ will do all those things. Jesus was commissioning the apostles, the eleven that were present . According to some, the tense for the Greek word believe, is aorist, which means it is saying, 'those who *have already* believed', meaning the eleven apostles, and the ones to come, Matthias and Paul, in due time. Their Unbelief was shown in prior verses of 11,13-14. We know the apostles spoke new languages in Acts, and that Paul was bitten by a viper and survived.[Acts 28:3-6] But we know that believers as a whole are not bitten by poisonous snakes nor drink poison unharmed, nor is that found as a sign of believers throughout history. Instead the list of signs in Mark, are reiterated by Paul as signs of an apostle in 2 Corinthians 2:12
2Co 12:11 I am become a fool in glorying; ye have compelled me: for I ought to have been commended of you: for in nothing am I behind the very chiefest apostles, though I be nothing.
2Co 12:12 Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds.
The signs of an apostle are found listed in many Scriptures:
>gifts of healings of sicknesses and diseases, raising the dead, casting out demons, tongues-speaking, etc [Matthew 10:1,8; Mark 3:14-15, 16:17-18, Acts 2:4-18 ];
>working miracles [Romans 15:19, 2 Cor. 12:12, Acts 5:12,15-16; Acts 19:11-12]
>prophecy [Mt.10:40-41; Acts 5:3-9; 13:6-12; 14:8-10]
>they were given the unique ability to distribute these revelation and sign gifts to others according to Hebrews 2:4
Heb 2:4 God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and **gifts of the Holy Ghost**, according to his own will?
Please notice too, that that the gifts of healings was plural---it wasn't a gift of healing like some claim as having, but rather, there were explicit moments when God performed a healing to proclaim Christ and confirm the authority of the apostles. That would explain why some are recorded as being healed in the NT, but not all; [ex. 2 Timothy 4:20] and why people who didn't know Christ were healed and came to Christ and glorified God.
God used the apostles for distributing the ‘revelation’ or ‘sign’ gifts to others in the New Testament times. These gifts and workings, meaning tongues, prophecy, the casting out demons, healing and miracle-working - , and some receiving the Holy Spirit to begin with, were imparted to believers by the laying on of hands of the apostles. Notice that the apostles, while laying hands on others to disperse the gifts and the receiving of the Holy Spirit as a sign, they did not do that for all believers. Otherwise there would be note of that. And they would not have asked, have you received the Holy Spirit. Many were receiving the Holy Spirit upon belief of Christ. But when it was needed as proof of prophecy and scripture, the apostles layed their hands on the recipient for a sign.
In saying that, there is no account in Scripture of anyone specifically receiving a ‘revelation’ or ‘sign’ gift other than through the distribution of an apostle. Cornelius, was a distinct case - although the apostle Peter was present, having been specially sent to preach the Gospel to him. [Acts 10] It was while Peter preached the gospel to Cornelius and the other Gentiles, that the Holy Spirit fell on them and they spoke in tongues, which was a witness/sign also to the Jews who were present, that salvation was for the Gentiles too. [Acts 10:42-46]
Some suggest Timothy is an exception and use 1 Timothy 4:14. However, this refers to Timothy receiving a spiritual gift which was conferred upon him by the laying on of hands of Paul and was revealed to him that would take place, according to a prophecy about him which was given by the laying on of hands of the leadership at a prior time. [1 Timothy 4:10-16]
2Ti 1:6 Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee **by the putting on of my hands. **
Paul enouraged Timothy to, "2Ti 4:5 ... do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry. " So we can conclude that by the laying of hands by the apostle Paul, Timothy was given the gift of the Holy Spirit of being an evangelist.
A number of people are spoken of as having received the sign gifts through the apostles unique ministry. The apostles laid hands on Stephen and Philip [of the seven] and they were given the gift of miracle-working [Acts 6:5-8; 8:5-7]. Notice in ch 8 with regards to Philip, that when he went to Samaria to the Gentiles, he preached Christ and did miracles and healings, but those who received Christ, did not receive the Holy Spirit. The apostles came from Jerusalem and prayed and then laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit at that time. [Acts 8:15-18] It was confirmation and the sign that the Gentiles were given redemption and salvation too, not just the Jews, who needed that sign of authenticity that it was of God.
Barnabas, who had been renamed by the apostles [Acts 4:36] and likely had hands laid on him when he was sent to Antioch [Acts 11:22-24], was given the gift of prophecy [Acts 13:1-4]. Paul spent eighteen months establishing the Corinthian church [Acts 18:11], during which his being an apostle was confirmed with signs and wonders [1 Cor.2:4-5; 2 Cor.12:11-12], and as an apostle, he distributed gifts to others there. [1 Cor.1:6-7].
When Paul proved his role as an apostle to the Corinthians, he appealed to his ‘signs of an apostle' and 'signs and wonders and mighty deeds’ [2 Cor.12:12]. It seems logical to conclude that the Corinthian believers could not have received the sign gifts other than by the distribution of an apostle. Clearly, if they had the ability to prophesy, work miracles, do healings, or speak in new tongues, without intervention of an apostle to begin with, then it only stands to reason that the performance of such signs and wonders could not be the God given 'signs of an apostle'. Does that make sense?
Simon, the sorcerer had noticed that the Holy Spirit was distributed by the apostles, which was why he attempted to ‘buy’ the apostles ability to impart the Holy Spirit to others, rather than the mere ability to work miracles [Acts 8:9-13,17-24]. To be a false apostle would have provided far greater power and authority than being a false miracle worker, which he had already accomplished via sorcery. We know that God gave ways to testing whether a prophet was of God in the OT, and He also gave ways for the NT believers to prove whether an apostle was of God or not.
One of the signs of a true apostle was that aside from preaching the gospel throughout the world, what they spoke was the foundation of the Church, along with the prophets. They were called the apostles of Christ, or apostles of Jesus Christ, because He directly chose and commissioned them for those purposes. The gifts they were given were for the edification of the body of Christ. [Ephesians 2:20-21; 1 Cor 3:10-11; Rev 21:14] Their role was being the foundation upon which the Church was built, a one time event, and cannot be repeated no matter who tries to suggest they have a 'new' revelation. All believers are part of the spiritual building built upon their foundation which is Christ. Those who were part of that original beginning, were constantly reminded to follow the example of the apostles and keep their words. [1 Corinthians11:1-2; 2 Timothy1:13-14, 2:2; Titus1:9; 2 Thess, 2:14-15;] They were chosen as witnesses of our Lord and were given the proof their witness was true, by the signs and wonders[John 20:30-31; 21:24-25; Heb.2:3-4; Acts 2:43; 5:12].
Their role as apostles was that they laid the foundation for and eventual writing of the NT Scriptures which testified of all they were commanded by Christ to proclaim, then, and for all in future generations. [Ephesians 3:3-5] The Truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the fulfillment of prophecies, and how to live for Christ are found entrenched and confirmed in the NT.
False apostles are referred to in the NT, as those who transform themselves into the apostles of Christ. [2 Cor.11:13] and we must conclude we can discern the difference based on the Scriptures. As stated previously:
> the apostles were witnesses to our Lord as He walked the earth.
> the apostles were called to be witnesses to His ministry, crucifixion and resurrection and were chosen by Him. Matthias was later chosen through prayer and direction of the Holy Spirit and Paul through direct revelation of Christ.
>all they witnessed became recorded in the NT via revelation and prophecy, and it holds the very foundations of that witness and all God commanded them to teach which became the sound doctrine we are to abide.
> they were the founders of the Church, having laid the foundation as they were called to, and instructed others to teach the sound doctrine as they had.
> the apostles were commissioned to preach the gospel worldwide, which they did, and were given specific signs and wonders to confirm they were called by God.
3John 1:4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
|Messages In This Thread|
RE: Are tongues a sign of the Holy Spirit? - strefanash - 02-04-2009, 12:43 AM
RE: Are tongues a sign of the Holy Spirit? - Vic - 05-28-2011 04:20 PM
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