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Featured Speaking in tongues! Whats the argument for and against?

Discussion in 'Comparative Religion' started by firedragon, Jan 22, 2021.

  1. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    One day I saw one Christian preacher guy discussing with an Atheist in a street on the existence of God. Honestly, this Atheist guy knew the Bible quite well. I mean he is obviously no scholar but seemed to know better than this Christian preacher, though in his thirties and part of a church movement.

    Anyway, suddenly this guy suddenly started saying things in a strange language. "Kadooshkma" was what I picked up. He said that several times, then said something absolutely strange to my ears. It was the Holy Spirit, and he claims "he was speaking in tongues".

    This belief in "speaking in tongues" comes from a well known verse in the Gospel of Mark and comes from what we call "the long ending of Mark".

    He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”

    The above verses and the surrounding story of Jesus going to his 11 disciples were human innovations not contained in the old manuscripts (Mark, chapter 16, verses 9-20). To put it crudely, its a forged verse.

    Now whats the argument?

    1. Is he pretending?
    2. Does he really believe he is speaking in tongues?
    3. Is it the placebo effect?
    4. Is it the "also ran" syndrome? Crowd mentality?

    Anyother explanation?
     
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  2. Altfish

    Altfish Veteran Member

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    There's an argument FOR????
     
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  3. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue The gentle embrace of twilight has become my guide

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    Gobblygook. Thats all it is.
     
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  4. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue The gentle embrace of twilight has become my guide

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    Time to call a divine interpretation.

    (Answers may vary)
     
  5. stvdv

    stvdv Veteran Member

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    I know that the Wise convey the Truth by "Speaking in Silence"
    Hence I doubt that the Truth is conveyed by "Speaking in Tongues"

    But it might be that people learn something from "Speaking in Tongues"
    I have no experience of "Speaking in Tongues", so this I don't know
     
  6. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    There are some people who argue "for" this. I have heard some of them, but sometimes members of this forum bring very interesting and new perspectives.

    I would like to see them.
     
  7. Israel Khan

    Israel Khan Well-Known Member

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    There are many layers to this, as I have discussed this with Christians a lot.

    Firstly, what tongues are:

    Tongues mean languages. Christians gained the ability to speak in tongues at the beginning of acts, when they started speaking the languages of different nations.

    Acts 2:"
    2 When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

    5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6 When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. 7 Utterly amazed, they asked: “Aren’t all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” 12 Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?”

    Later on there was a qualification for people to speak in tongues. This is pretty detailed.

    1 Corinthians 14:
    14 Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy. 2 For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit. 3 But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort. 4 Anyone who speaks in a tongue edifies themselves, but the one who prophesies edifies the church. 5 I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. The one who prophesies is greater than the one who speaks in tongues, unless someone interprets, so that the church may be edified.

    6 Now, brothers and sisters, if I come to you and speak in tongues, what good will I be to you, unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or word of instruction? 7 Even in the case of lifeless things that make sounds, such as the pipe or harp, how will anyone know what tune is being played unless there is a distinction in the notes? 8 Again, if the trumpet does not sound a clear call, who will get ready for battle? 9 So it is with you. Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air. 10 Undoubtedly there are all sorts of languages in the world, yet none of them is without meaning. 11 If then I do not grasp the meaning of what someone is saying, I am a foreigner to the speaker, and the speaker is a foreigner to me. 12 So it is with you. Since you are eager for gifts of the Spirit, try to excel in those that build up the church.

    13 For this reason the one who speaks in a tongue should pray that they may interpret what they say. 14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful. 15 So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my understanding; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my understanding. 16 Otherwise when you are praising God in the Spirit, how can someone else, who is now put in the position of an inquirer, say “Amen” to your thanksgiving, since they do not know what you are saying? 17 You are giving thanks well enough, but no one else is edified.

    18 I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. 19 But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.

    20 Brothers and sisters, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults. 21 In the Law it is written:

    “With other tongues
    and through the lips of foreigners
    I will speak to this people,
    but even then they will not listen to me,
    says the Lord.”

    22 Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is not for unbelievers but for believers. 23 So if the whole church comes together and everyone speaks in tongues, and inquirers or unbelievers come in, will they not say that you are out of your mind? 24 But if an unbeliever or an inquirer comes in while everyone is prophesying, they are convicted of sin and are brought under judgment by all, 25 as the secrets of their hearts are laid bare. So they will fall down and worship God, exclaiming, “God is really among you!”

    There are also tongues of angels that people speak.

    Now there are to lines of thought when it comes to gifts of the spirit, which are miraculous actions. There are Continuationists, those who believe that gifts still happen today and there are Cessationists who say that gifts of the spirit have ceased. This is where you might want to explore whether it should still happen or not.

    Cessationism versus continuationism - Wikipedia
     
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  8. Israel Khan

    Israel Khan Well-Known Member

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    Now people have many different reasons to speak in tongues.

    Some believe that it actually happens.

    Some have emotional highs in which they speak tongues, so it is a manifestation of their emotions rather than them speaking actual tongues.

    There is definitely the placebo affect at play.

    Some pretend to speak in tongues because they feel pressured to so that they can be in high esteem in the group.

    Some pretend to speak in tongues for self righteousness sake and to prove to others that they are the gateway to truth.
     
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  9. Nakosis

    Nakosis crystal soldier
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    I've spoken in "tongues" before. Here's the thing, it is not something that is consciously controlled. You are not thinking about the words/syllables/sounds coming from yourself. It is entirely a subconscious process meaning you have no conscious awareness of where this stuff is coming from. So since it is not you, consciously doing it, the conclusion is it is coming from a divine source.

    The subconscious mind is very powerful, very quick and good at patterns. So it can very easily create something that kind of/sort of sounds like a language.
    The real fun thing is when you have a translator which "translates" the "word" into English.

    Works on the same principle. Folks study the Bible, hear other translators. In the same way the subconscious mind creates these patterns of noises, it puts together parts of biblical passages, prayers, other translations heard to create a translation, all as a subconscious process.

    I do this when I give lectures. When I know a subject well enough, all the information is packed away in my subconscious. The speech I give is not a conscious process. I let my subconscious take over. "It" says all of the correct words, answer all the questions correctly. I believe meditation has allowed me to be aware of this. To consciously observe what my subconscious mind is doing on its own.

    Driving is similar. You don't consciously make all the choices of speeding-up, slowing down, hitting the brakes etc. At first yes, when you were learning but now it has all been taken over by subconscious processes.

    It's kind of cool to consciously sit back and watch your subconscious do all of the work for you. It really happens all of the time but it is something that most folks aren't consciously aware of.

    Speaking in tongues is accepted as proof of divine existence. It is really just a common everyday process of the subconscious mind.
     
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  10. Heyo

    Heyo Well-Known Member

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    It can be an inspiration:
     
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  11. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    What you must understand in this matter is the context. In acts it says "diamerizomenai" which means "distributed state of", and that means "other tongues". You are right.

    In Mark, it just says "they will speak in tongues" and does not say "other or distributed" to mean other languages than what you know.

    And was traditionally believed or propagated to be "speaking in tongues" by the church, especially charismatic and heavily prosperity gospel type of churches. And the fact remains that it is based on a forged verse.

    In your Corinthians references, please refer to the context. In one, it is the singular tongue but the plural is in the qualifier, which is "Myriad" so it means "Myriad number of words in one single tongue".

    In verse 20 its heterogluossois which is "hetero" which means different. Thus, it is saying "I will speak in different tongues", I will speak in their own languages to them, but still they will not listen. He does not claim that it is a sign of faith to speak in tongues like in Mark. Just like handling snakes and drinking poison and surviving.

    Strangely, none of this is similar to the Long Ending of Mark.

    Again, the base point being "it stems from a forgery".

    Jim Jones, the founder of a group called “Peoples Temple” and followers drank cyanide and perished due the belief in these verses. It was entered into the Guinness book of world records for the largest mass suicide with 909 people including 300 children dying in belief of a scriptural passage concocted, verses that never existed in the bible.
     
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  12. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    I understand. Thanks for that explanation.

    But is it real? Is it not based on a forged verse?

    Could it be the placebo effect?
     
  13. Quintessence

    Quintessence Tale Weaver
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    This phenomena treads into the realm of occultism or mystical experiences (however you want to frame it, really) - and these are things that are poorly-understood by the mainstream because mystical aspects of religion has generally been suppressed by the dominant religions of the West. As such, I think the argument for or against something like speaking in tongues boils down to whether you are for or against mystical/occult experiences in general.
     
  14. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    Hmm. Okay. Thats actually quite a valuable insight. Thanks a load.

    In fact, I think based on your comment one could launch a whole sociological research to write a whole chapter or even a book on this topic on top of Sociology of Religion.

    Very very interesting.
     
  15. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    @Altfish

    Its insight like this I look for in these posts. I wonder if anyone would realise what kind of insight this guy (I dont know if Quintessence is male or female so pardon me) has provided. Sometimes, a simple statement made so simply could be so profound that very few would even realise how much. Most of the times, even the proponent doesnt.

    :)
     
  16. Altfish

    Altfish Veteran Member

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    I don't know what to say .. ", "poorly understood" Occultism" and " Mystical experiences" ... think I'll leave it now.
     
  17. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    You have not understood how important that insight was mate. :)

    I can tell you with confidence that a thesis can be written on it.

    Cheers.
     
  18. Israel Khan

    Israel Khan Well-Known Member

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    Sometimes I draw
    I do not read Koine Greek so I don't know the correct meaning of the original words. I read the English translations.

    What could the author of Mark have meant when mentioning "new tongues" other than languages? I don't see another way to interpret the meaning of the verse. I would say though that the charismatic churches you speak of might be focusing on the word "new", not interpreting it as new languages of nations, such as Afrikaans, but as whatever comes to mind. My problem with that is that languages exist to communicate, otherwise what you are saying isn't a language. So they should define the meaning of "tongue".

    I get your point OP point. People using a certain scripture to claim that speaking in tongues are a sign of faith and that verse is based on a forgery.

    In verse 12 of Corinthians, it says that the Spirit of God gives the gifts of the spirit. So then the question is: Why would God be giving the gifts of the spirit to those who don't have faith in him? Later on in the chapter it refers to the gifts being given to the body of Christ, which is the church, who are believers who have faith. But it also mentions that not everybody in the body receives the same gifts, so there would be those who can teach, those who can speak in tongues, those who can heal etc.

    So here we can see that speaking in tongues is a sign that a person has faith, but it isn't dependent on degrees of faith, and the chapter shows that speaking in tongues definitely ISN'T necessary as a sign to show that a person has faith, as not all those with faith will have it. It is just another part of the "body".

    A later verse that is a verse against speaking in tongues as a sign of faith, 1 Corinthians 13:8, shows that gifts of the spirit will cease at some point. But this seems to be when "that which is perfect has come" which scholars have either interpreted as the Second Coming of Christ or when the NT Canon was completed.

    I like your Jim Jones reference which points out the danger of the "signs" verse in Mark. Here in South Africa, where there are lots of independent churches run by pastors, people have used the belief to attempt to do ridiculous things to their grave detriment. One pastor said that he could walk in a Lion's den and then got mauled to death, another got his followers to drink poison and they either got sick or died. A very dangerous teaching actually.
     
  19. Altfish

    Altfish Veteran Member

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    I llok forward to reading it
     
  20. firedragon

    firedragon Well-Known Member

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    It doesnt say "new tongues". Just "tongues". Also you should note that it speaks of several things that pious believers would be capable of doing. Its like drinking poison and surviving. So it is basically a miracle.

    In other verses, it is not shown as a sign of piety, and miracle working faith like drinking poison with no effect. Please read the verses with their context, and the linguistics I have given you already.

    Yes. Jim Jones episode was world record. Just imagine 300 plus children dying in vain due to a belief in a forged verse!!

    Nevertheless, I dont think anyone has done a Sociological study done on the sociology behind the followers of something like this. And above, quintessence has actually given a path to take in this matter. I am gonna suggest to a friend of mine honestly.
     
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