INTRODUCTION Church history has been filled with heated debates about speaking in tongues. This modern movement has been one of the most intriguing and apprehensive trends of the contemporary charismatic movement. Glossolalia (speaking in tongues) has been responsible for numerous divisions among Christians because advocates who observe and practice speaking in tongues take the matter seriously. The gap in this division is wide, ranging from accusations of mental instability and personal impairment to direct and holy communication with God. It is the purpose of this paper to show that biblical evidence demonstrates that glossolalia is irrelevant for today. We will first introduce a working definition of glossolalia, then look at
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If everyone present was hearing the message “in his own Language”, then it could not possibly be a heavenly language. Bock supports this argument when he said, “They hear the message ‘in their own language’ as the disciples speak to them in tongues”. Glossolalia is speaking in a language that is known by humans somewhere on the planet but is unknown to the presenter as is made clear in Acts 2:6. On the day of Pentecost, the apostles spoke what each one was anointed to speak by the Holy Spirit.
Today, glossolalia is practiced mainly by Pentecostal and charismatic Christians. But, glossolalia has recently resurfaced in Christianity since early in the church age. According to Acts 2:4, glossolalia occurred initially with the believers at Pentecost. “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them” (Acts 2:4). In chapters 12-14 of Acts, Paul saw it as a “spiritual gift” (1 Corinthians 12-14). And also declared that he possessed the gift: “I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you” (1 Corinthians 14:18). 1 Corinthians also leads one to believe that glossolalia transpired each time someone submitted to Christianity. “While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message…they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, ‘Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water? They have received