Summary: Saints do not let anyone tell you that you are a second class Christian because you do not speak in tongues or walk on fire or survive snake bites. Such testing and qualifying today is not of the Spirit but is of men not God. Without love I am nothing.
Holy Spirit Love for All
Have you ever noticed that this Christian life does not always go according to the script that you and I think it should follow?
Just like when you go to a live theater performance people forget their lines.
Sometimes we as Christians also forget our lines and even our places on stage. We can find ourselves in some of the most unusual places as Christians.
The problem is that when we are seen to be forgetting our lines or forgetting our place Non-Christians are quick to make assumptions.
Why are those Christians in a bar?
Why are those Christians with that group of people or person?
Shouldn’t Christians leave that kind of talk in church where it belongs?
The problem for Peter in today’s scripture from Acts 10:44-48 is not with the Non-Christians the problem is with the Jewish Christians.
Just when they thought they had this whole Gospel Message and Disciple thing figured out the Holy Spirit showed up like a prompter at a theatrical production and gave everyone on stage their next line.
This was something the original cast members never figured on. It threw them for a loop.
The people they saw and heard speaking in tongues weren’t even Jewish!
This gift of the Holy Spirit seemed to be far more inclusive than anyone had thought.
To Peter’s credit he got the point of this dramatic event and realized that God was not making a distinction between Jewish people or non-Jewish people.
God’s salvation, forgiveness, love and indwelling of His Holy Spirit was something meant for all believers.
God had in mind to love the entire world and to save the entire world and to forgive the entire world if they would come to faith in Jesus Christ.
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
The pouring out of the Holy Spirit on everyone who believed through the gift of tongues was proof.
Sadly there are Christians today who hold to this same tongue test as a proof test against other Christians in the body of Christ.
They are making the same mistake that the original Jewish Disciples made by using the physical manifestation of inclusion as spiritual proof against whether the Holy Spirit is alive in someone or not.
I do not speak in tongues that I’m aware of but I know that God’s Holy Spirit is alive and well in me, for I have taken Jesus as my Savior.
I once had a well-meaning Christian friend try to teach me to speak in tongues. He wanted to be sure I met His spiritual standard by a physical manifestation of a spiritual gift.
I tried to tell him as gently as possible that I thought his test was absurd.
Jesus told Satan in the desert “Do not put the Lord your God to the test” Luke 4:12
The test of whether someone is a Christian or not is whether they love and serve Jesus. Not if they speak in tongues or not.
Your life evidences that the Holy Spirit of God is alive within you because you have overcome this world. You see it for what it is and know that God our Father has chosen you to be a part of His world – not this one.
The Holy Spirit in you speaks to your soul and your conscience so that you know the distinction between this fallen world all around us and the promised world to come through Christ Jesus.
Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well.
2 This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands.
3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome,
4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.
5 Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
6 This is the one who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ. He did not come by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth.
Saints do not let anyone tell you that you are a second class Christian because you do not speak in tongues or walk on fire or survive snake bites. Such testing and qualifying today is not of the Spirit but is of men not God.