Scripture For Today:
“Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the Gospel.”
Interpretation of Tongues pt 1
We’ve talked about the importance of a believer to interpret his or her own tongues during their private prayer time, however, the Bible discusses a GIFT of the interpretation of tongues that operates in a public setting.
First Corinthians 14:27-28 says, “If any man speaks in an unknown tongue, let it be by two or at the most three, and that by course; and let one interpret. But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; let him speak to himself and to God.”
Paul is referring to one who is called by God to interpret tongues in the public assembly, the local church service. But notice, Paul also said, if there is nobody there to do the interpreting, let him keep silence in the church. That infers there are those who are used to be PUBLIC interpreters.
There is a difference between interpreting you own prayer privately and doing so publicly. Remember, privately it is to edify yourself. Publicly, it is edify those in attendance. Here is where the rub comes into play. What I’m about to say will upset some people who are listening to me right now. But that’s just the way it is. Amen! When God shows me something, when He gets on my case – I get on yours. Amen!
There is a HUGE difference between interpreting privately and interpreting publicly. One famous preacher I know of explained it like this. You may drive your car. When you first started out driving, you were not that confident, but with practice you have gotten proficient. But it took time. I do not know of any 15 year old that got his permit and entered the Indy 500 the next day. Right?
Interpreting in a public setting may be like driving an 18 wheeler. Same principle. You’re still driving a motor vehicle. Same concept. Same traffic laws. Right?
But an entirely different level of responsibility. Even newly licensed over the road truckers are usually placed with a senior person to get some experience before a responsible trucking company will turn them loose on their own. Amen!
That’s how it should be with the interpretation of tongues. You start off interpreting your own prayer time for yourself. As you become more proficient at it, as things start to come to pass as you’ve interpreted, you gain more confidence. Over time, you may pick up on some things in the Spirit. You can share them with your pastor or other senior advisor.
Over time, sharing with others and they see your gift is accurate, you may be called upon to give an interpretation publicly. It may be something quickly in a service. But as you develop this gift and the ability to translate into a known tongue quickly and accurately (without a lot of drama and drawn out prayers), you will become known for having the GIFT of interpretation of tongues.
Finally, let’s look again at what Paul said. He said, “let him pray that he may interpret.” He DID NOT SAY, “let him pray that he has the gift.” There is a difference. You are not to pray, “Lord, give me the Gift of publicly interpreting tongues.” NO – that would be pride speaking. You want to put on a show. Paul said to “pray for the interpretation.” Interpretation of what?
Interpreting HIS OWN praying in tongues. Amen!
Interpreting your own prayers does not make you qualified to be a public interpreter. It only allows you to interpret you own prayers. Amen. Interpreting your own prayers does not mean you have the GIFT of interpreting tongues publicly.
Just like getting your driver’s license does not qualify you to drive an 18 wheeler or pull up to the INDY 500. You’re at the basic level. Stay there for awhile. If you are diligent and practice, you may, one day, receive the GIFT of interpreting tongues. But don’t seek it.
You don’t seek out gifts. They are usually given to you unexpectedly. That’s what makes them special, right? Same way here.
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