Some find it hard to believe that Word is powerful enough to convict people. This is WHY some of our brethren have gone away from the preached Word as was our earmark of the past century. When God brought in the foreign language, He recognized this kind of people did not believe His words. They were immature Paul laid out some rules that was to permeate the assembly. In 1 Corinthians 14:26-33, Paul develops some orderly regulations for worship. In context, that means by understandable language and in an orderly fashion (4, 11, 12, 13-19, 40). Orderly procedures as well as understandable language would and did aid the edifying process, random speaking in foreign languages would destroy it.
The procedures for the use of the gift of language were (1) no more than three people could use it during any public assembly; (2) each user had to speak in turn; (3) there must be a translator. If there were no translators the gifted ones were to keep silent. Does this not indicate that the speaker in a foreign language must know in advance a translator WAS present?? One would have violated the scriptural protocol IF he spoke publicly with only the HOPE that a translator was present!! In Pentecostal gatherings often is heard the cry; “does someone have a word”? This is opposite to what the Holy Spirit had directed the early church!! The Pentecostals tell us those who CAN produce some garbling on impulse are said to be the “spiritual” ones. The Holy Spirit told the Corinthians the really SPIRITUAL were those who would reign in the disorderly REGARDLESS of manifestations they displayed, verse 28 (also see Matthew 7:21-24. The Corinthian Church was commanded to PREACH. However, this did not mean the gift of tongues, but in context, the admonition “forbid not to speak” had restrictions attached to it. Paul had already outlined WHEN the gifts were not too used in public in verse 28!! Only IF the qualifications of this chapter were met could the speaking in a foreign language practiced in that day!!
But how about, today? Can the speaking in foreign languages be allowed? Speaking in foreign languages DID come from God!!, so the question is not can God provide it among us? One of the unique destructions of Biblical study today is the taking out of context verses that “say” what they want to hear EVEN IF they do not relate to the study! To take the position that God COULD NOT do such a thing is NEVER in the discussion, what is discussed is WOULD HE? They then come along and quote; “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever”, Hebrews 13:8. This violates the God of history we read about in the Old and New Testaments. His ways DO change!! For instance, it isn’t recorded that in the Old Testament or during the lifetime of Jesus, He gave anyone the gift of tongues!! IF the doctrine were allowed about tongues would mean that what happened in Acts 2 could not have happened BECAUSE it had never happened before, which would have to be the conclusion, GOD DID CHANGE His method of instruction on that glorious day!!
The NEED FOR THE SENSATIONAL to validate the love of God opens the door to dependency for more and more sensationalism. It can become easy to stand upon personal sensational experiences RATHER THAN God writings. One can easily begin, without it being his plan, to evaluate the Bible by an experience rather than a “thus saith the Lord”. The logical end is that if God does this among us today, we do not need His Word of 2000 years ago!! I had a Pentecostal preacher tell Ray Taylor and I this after a discussion we had with him!! THEY DID NOT NEED GOD’S WORD!!