OF THE HOLY GHOST (Part 2)
Why did God choose tongues?
AN EXTERNAL EVIDENCE
There is a second vital and important reason why God chose other tongues
as the evidence of one's receiving the Holy Ghost. It is an external,
outward evidence. There are many evidences of the operation of the
Spirit of God in one's life. With some, it is a matter of time before
they are manifest; that is, the fruits mentioned in Gal. 5:22, 23.
These follow in the wake of the spiritual infilling and are results
of it. Peter and the six who went with him to Caesarea knew that the
Gentiles had received the Holy Ghost, not because of longsuffering,
gentleness, meekness or temperance but because they heard them speak
with tongues and magnify God. He definitely and specifically pointed
to the speaking in tongues as his evidence of knowing (Acts 10:46-47).
Such is an outward, external evidence, instantly observable and heard.
Peace, joy, righteousness and the fruits of the Spirit are the internal,
inward action, and the result of the infilling.
A UNIFORM EVIDENCE
A third reason why God chose other tongues as the evidence is that
it is a uniform evidence. Many who oppose this statement will quote
I Cor. 12:30 as the basis of their opposition, "Do all speak
with tongues?" However, this is speaking of the gift of tongues,
which one may receive at the time of, or subsequent to, the infilling
of the Spirit. Though both the speaking in tongues as the evidence
of the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and as a gift, are the same in essence,
they are different in administration and operation. This might seem
hair-splitting, but the same thing is also true of faith. To be saved,
everyone must have a certain degree of faith (Eph. 2:8; John 3:16;
Romans 10:9), yet in I Cor. 12:9 we are instructed that there is a
special gift of faith, operational over and beyond that which is necessary
for salvation. They are the same in essence but different in administration
In speaking about being born of the Spirit, Jesus states in John 3:8,
". . .so is everyone that is born of the Spirit." Certainly
this is uniformity. By carefully analyzing this verse, you will see
that Jesus places emphasis upon the word "sound." You hear
the sound of the wind blowing, and this is evidence of its presence.
It is not seeing nor feeling that is important, though these evidences
may be present, but hearing the sound. Some may conclude that this
means the experience at Pentecost where they heard the sound as of
a rushing mighty wind. However, this rushing mighty wind was not spoken
of in Acts 10:46 or in 19:6, but speaking in tongues was. Hence, we
must conclude that the important phase of the Spirit's evidence at
Pentecost was the speaking in other tongues. The WIND WAS IMPERSONAL;
the SPEAKING WAS PERSONAL.
At Caesarea all who heard the Word were filled (Acts 10:44-48), and
all who heard the Word spoke in tongues. The "them" in verse
46 is the same "them" in verse 44. All twelve men mentioned
in Acts 19:6 had a uniform experience. Do you think that if ten of
the twelve had spoken in tongues, and the other two had not, Paul
would have believed the two had received the Holy Ghost the same as
the ten? Certainly not! Paul would never have accepted the credence
of their experience if they had failed to exhibit this same uniform