Summary: Tongues & Prophecy Part 1 - – sermon by Gordon Curley PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:

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(1). Tongues & Prophecy – Two Views:

• Cessationism

• Charismatic

(2). Some Introductory Remarks:

• We are studying 1st Corinthians, not just tongues and prophesy

• The main subject of chapters 12-14 is spiritual gifts

• Paul addresses chapter 14 to a local church, not an individual

• The apostle Paul is primarily writing to correct a problem

(3). Tongues and Prophecy a Definition:

• What do we mean by tongues?

• What do we mean by prophecy?



• Two local Churches of differing denominations;

• Were located only a few streets from each other in a small community.

• So they thought it might be better if they would merge;

• And this way become one united body, larger and more effective,

• Rather than two small struggling churches.

• Good idea ... but both were too petty to pull it off.

• The problem? They couldn't agree on how they would recite the Lord's Prayer.

• One group wanted "forgive us our trespasses"

• While the other group demanded "forgive us our debts."

• Sadly news of this failed merger reached the local newspaper;

• And the news­paper reported the story saying;

• That “one church went back to its trespasses while the other returned to its debts!”

• TRANSITION: Now as silly as this story seems,

• It's a classic case of majoring on the minors.

• There are certain truths which are essential,

• The fundamentals of the Christian faith;

• i.e. Jesus is the Son of God.

• i.e. The substitutionary death of Jesus on the cross.

• i.e. The physical resurrection of Jesus from the dead.

• With these truths there is no compromise, they are not for negotiation!

• Deny these truths and you cannot be a Christian;

• They are core to the Christian faith.

But there are other issues which are secondary:

• That means that Christians can and will disagree on certain issues;

• Their understanding and therefore practices will be different.

• i.e. Differences over forms and styles of church leadership.

• (Should you have Elders, a Vicar, a Pastor or a leadership Team?)

• i.e. Differences over patterns of worship?

• (Liturgical and ‘non-liturgical’; traditional and modern; restrained and extrovert)

• Into this secondary group I would add;

• Particular emphases about the gifts of the Holy Spirit including tongues and prophecy

• It is secondary because it does not affect your salvation and key beliefs:

• i.e. you can be a charismatic Christian or a cessationist Christian.

• And you will still be a Christian! And still be a godly Christian!

As with any of the different gifts mentioned in the New Testament:

• We noted in previous studies;

• There are at least 28 spiritual gifts which have their definition revealed to us in the Bible;

• And they fall into three natural categories:

• Support gifts (e.g. Evangelist, teacher, pastor)

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