The Gift of Tongues
Chapter 4: 1 Cor. 14 Examined
Many Pentecostals, neo-Pentecostals and other charismatics who believe in and advocate present-day tongues-speaking, including unintelligible, so-called "ecstatic utterances," as opposed to genuine foreign languages, rely heavily on 1 Cor. 14, where the Apostle Paul says much on the subject of tongues-speaking, especially in vs. 2, 4, 14 and 28. They claim that these verses prove that the Corinthian brethren spoke in tongues with unintelligible utterances. We will now examine this chapter in considerable detail:
V. 1: Paul here exhorts the Corinthian church as a whole first, or chiefly, to pursue diligently their development in charity (unselfish, disinterested love, the chief abiding character grace, as he had just pointed out—1 Cor. 13:13), and secondarily (subordinately) to "desire" (Greek, zeloute, desire earnestly—see ASV, NASB, RSV, Diaglott, etc.; compare 1 Cor. 12:31; 14:39, where zeloute is translated "covet") the spiritual "gifts" (the temporary spiritual powers or "gifts," e.g., working miracles, healing diseases, discerning of spirits, speaking with other tongues and interpreting tongues by the superhuman power of God's holy Spirit—which "gifts" were helpful to the early Church, capable of edifying and otherwise assisting them, if rightly used); "but rather [especially, NASB, Beck, NIV, Fenton, Goodspeed]" they should desire earnestly, esteem more highly than all the other "gifts," the exercise of the "gift" of prophecy in the church—the miraculous power not only to forecast future events, but especially to teach and publicly expound portions of God's Word, pertaining to the past, present and future. Such a "gift" of prophecy, rightly used, would lead to the edification of the whole assembly, so the Apostle stresses that if the Corinthian brethren were to desire earnestly the exercise in the church of any "gift," they should desire earnestly this one especially. The superiority of the "gift" of prophecy to that of tongues is further emphasized by the connecting word at the beginning of v. 2:
V. 2: "For he that speaketh in a tongue [the word unknown should not be used with the word tongue(s), according to the Greek text, for it has no corresponding word there; this is shown by its being italicized in the KJV Bible] speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man [present] understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries." This verse does not prove that the tongues referred to were unintelligible utterances. It is evident that it refers to one who spoke in a tongue, a foreign language, without its being interpreted or any who understood the pertinent language being present. This, says the Apostle, was not profitable for the hearers, because no one understood what was being said—not because what they heard was an unintelligible utterance, but because it was a foreign language with which they were not acquainted. We are not to think that tongues-speaking was mainly for personal edification. The Apostle negates this thought completely in v. 22, when he says that tongues were for a sign for them "that believe not."
"Howbeit in [by] the spirit he speaketh mysteries." This simply means that, as far as the hearers—who did not understand what was being said—were concerned, the tongue-speaker was uttering something mysterious to them. If and when the utterance was interpreted, it was mysterious no longer.
V. 3: Prophesying helped to edify, exhort and comfort the church (compare v. 31). Thus the "gift" of prophecy was more valuable to the church than the "gift" of tongues, especially if the tongues were not interpreted, just as the knowledge of God is better than sacrifice without such knowledge (Hosea 6:6).
V. 4: "He that speaketh in a tongue [a foreign tongue, without its being understood] edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth [gives a message in a language that can readily be understood] edifieth the church." Nothing is said here pro or con about an unintelligible utterance, but since Paul was discussing the "gifts" of the Spirit (1 Cor. 12:10), the prophetic "gift," not public speaking merely, is meant.
V. 5: Paul here (as in v. 2) shows that tongues-speaking (which was in languages foreign to the hearers) especially if it was uninterpreted, was decidedly inferior in results and value to the exercise of the "gift" of prophecy, for prophesying could readily be understood by the brethren, and so it could edify them.
MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS AN ILLUSTRATION
Vs. 6-8 make it very plain that uninterpreted tongues were of little profit in edifying or teaching the church. Illustrating this by instruments, Paul says, "… whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped? For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?" Who would be properly edified, strengthened and instructed for the Christian warfare if he heard nothing but unintelligible sounds—foreign tongues which were not interpreted? Note what Paul adds:
V. 9: "So likewise ye, except ye utter by [Greek, dia — through] the [literal] tongue words easy to be understood [significant, margin—they were not to speak with the "gift" of tongues unless someone present could interpret; it would be better for them to 'keep silence' (v. 28) and let others prophesy, so that all could understand and be benefited (vs. 19, 24-26, 31)], how shall it be known [without interpretation] what is spoken? for ye shall speak into the air [sounds spoken into the air are meaningless sounds, not profitable to the hearers; it was not that they were uttering by the tongue sounds which were not true speech, but rather that what they were saying was in a language foreign to the hearers]."
V. 10: Paul here says that there are many kinds of voices in the world and adds that "none of them is without signification." As already mentioned, this denotes that the many kinds of languages in the earth all have significance, or meaning; and so did the tongues of which Paul speaks in this chapter. This thought is further borne out by his words in v. 11. Obviously, unintelligible utterances are not meant, for such have no meaning, or signification, but are merely muddled sounds (gibberish) spoken into the air—into space or emptiness.
V. 11: "Therefore if I know not the meaning of the voice, I shall be unto him that speaketh a barbarian, and he that speaketh shall be a barbarian unto me." If one does not understand the "meaning of the voice" it does not mean that what is being said is totally unintelligible to any human ear, or that it is a so-called "ecstatic utterance," but rather that the words spoken are in a language foreign to the ear of the listener.
The Greeks viewed mankind as consisting of Greeks and barbarians. A barbarian was a foreigner speaking a foreign language. The word "barbarian" is onomatopoetic, expressing the idea of unintelligible speech, i.e., the one speaking in a foreign language sounds like he is saying "bar, bar," etc., to the one who does not understand his speech. Thus, we see that throughout 1 Cor. 14 Paul is treating the "gift" of tongues in the context of real languages.
V. 12: Recognizing that the Corinthian brethren were zealous of having spiritual powers (spirits—see margin—in the sense of powers, i.e., the powers, or "gifts," of miracles, tongues, etc.), Paul encouraged them to seek that they may abound for the building up of the ecclesia. Thus they should seek above all to grow in grace (agape love and all of its beautiful qualities—see The New Creation, p. 406), and then subordinately to have and exercise the temporary "gifts," helpful to the early Church, especially the "gift" of prophecy, the most helpful "gift" for the edification of the brethren (compare vs. 1, 5).
V. 13: "Wherefore [i.e., if you really desire to edify the church] let him that speaketh in a tongue [he who has this 'gift' of speaking in a foreign language] pray that one [not the tongue-speaker himself] may interpret [compare 'let one interpret' (v. 27) and v. 5 (which should read 'except one interpret'—Rotherham, margin, Young, RSV, Fenton)]."
Paul did not mean that the tongue-speaker was to supplicate God that he might directly be given the "gift" of interpretation—for, as already seen, the Bible shows that the "gifts" of the Spirit could be bestowed only through the laying on of the hands of an Apostle. Moreover, the "gift" of interpretation of tongues was an entirely different "gift" than tongues-speaking; and there is no record that God ever gave the "gift" of tongues-speaking and the "gift" of interpretation of tongues both to the same individual except in the case of the Apostles (1 Cor. 12:7-11; compare Rom. 12:6-8; note how in the context of these passages Paul emphasizes the body figure, in which each "member" has its own special function.
Accordingly, it seems that in v. 13 Paul was emphasizing that if anyone with the "gift" of tongues-speaking were praying publicly in a foreign language and no one (another person, an interpreter, v. 27) were present who was able to interpret his prayer, he was to "be silent in the congregation" (v. 28, Diaglott).
UNINTERPRETED TONGUES UNPROFITABLE
Vs. 14-17 show why the tongue-speaker in praying publicly should so employ his "gift" as to edify the church. Paul puts himself into the place of the tongue-speaker and says: "For if I pray in a tongue [offer prayer in a church meeting in a foreign language], my spirit prayeth [my disposition in its graces of piety, reverence and adoration, operating through my 'gift' of tongues-speaking, is indeed effective in speaking to God—compare v. 2], but my [God-given] understanding [my revelation, being uninterpreted] is unfruitful [is not effective as far as edifying the rest of the church is concerned]. What is it then [what should be done, then]? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also."
Paul (impersonating the tongue-speaker) could be praying or singing ever so earnestly in a tongue, or foreign language, but if no one were present with the power to interpret there would be no understanding among the hearers, no edifying of the church—the object to be kept in view. The tongue-speaker should speak only through an interpreter, so that the intellect, understanding, of his hearers could give consent, and benefit from the tongues message. This thought is forcefully brought out by Paul's words immediately following:
Vs. 16, 17: "Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit [the 'gift' of tongues, without any interpreter and without any understanding on the part of the hearers], how shall he that occupieth the room [or, fills the place] of the unlearned [i.e., as far as understanding the foreign language spoken is concerned] say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest? For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified [because he does not understand the language spoken]."
If one gave thanks in a tongue and the hearers, not knowing the language, did not understand, then the tongue-speaker's understanding (his God-given revelation, being uninterpreted) was unfruitful (v. 14)—that is, it did not bear fruit in the sense of edifying the hearers. But if one gave thanks in a tongue with the understanding (which would imply the presence of an interpreter) he would be speaking in a way that the hearers could understand what was said and thus receive the understanding, the meaning of the God-given message. In such a case the tongue-speaker's God-given understanding was fruitful. Why? Because he thus edified the hearers, the church (v. 12).
V. 18: "I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all." Surely Paul did not mean by this that he spoke more in irrational, unintelligible babblings than they all! Note also that he equates the nature of the tongues that he spoke with the nature of the tongues that they spoke; accordingly, it is easily demonstrated that the Corinthian brethren in exercising the "gift" of tongues spoke in foreign languages—not in unintelligible words, "ecstatic utterances," irrational babblings, which Paul certainly never would have sanctioned.
V. 19: Paul emphasizes that he would much rather speak five words that the church could understand and be edified by, than speak 10,000 words in a language not understood nor interpreted.
A CAUTION AGAINST CHILDISHNESS
V. 20: Paul cautions the brethren not childishly and selfishly to misuse the "gifts" of the Spirit, as though their value were only in their use. Instead, they were to take a spiritually mature attitude and conduct themselves accordingly, seeking earnestly in the church meetings to assist and upbuild one another in the most holy faith by a charitable use of their "gifts" (compare v. 26).
V. 23: In addition to the explanation already given on vs. 21, 22, please note the connective "If therefore," between vs. 22 and 23. In v. 22 Paul had clearly stated that "tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not." "If therefore the whole church be come together into one place," why should all having the tongues-speaking "gift" speak in tongues, since there were no unbelievers present? And if an unlearned one or an unbeliever would come into such a church meeting, he might well think that they all were insane, or drunken (as was thought at Pentecost—Acts 2:12, 13), seeing that they would be speaking in foreign languages among themselves!
That tongues, as a sign to unbelievers, were, with possible exceptions, out of place in a congregation consisting entirely of believers, is brought out by several statements in the context: "Brethren, if I come unto you speaking with tongues …" (v. 6); "Yet in the church I had rather speak … " (v. 19); "How is it then [or, How then should it be], brethren? When ye come together …" (v. 26).
Vs. 24, 25: Here we see the perspective that Paul puts on this matter: It would be far better for the church to concentrate on prophesying than on speaking with tongues, especially if uninterpreted. Then if an unbeliever or an unlearned one were to come into their midst, he would be instructed and helped spiritually by hearing in his own language what was spoken. Thus, he would the more likely be convinced and converted, and testify that God was in their midst, because of the wonderful truths he had heard declared.
But why then did Paul (v. 22) say that tongues, rather than prophecies, were for a sign to them that believe not? Obviously he was speaking of tongues when interpreted, even as he emphasizes it throughout this chapter. Otherwise the tongue-speaker was to be silent in the church (vs. 27, 28). It would be better to say five words for others' understanding than 10,000 words in an uninterpreted tongue (v. 19). For how would an unbeliever be persuaded that God was in the church by what to him was a series of meaningless sounds? How, for instance, would he know the difference between an unfamiliar foreign language and a so-called "ecstatic utterance," since both would be without any meaning whatever to him? For all he would know, the congregation could be perpetrating a fraud, and only pretending to speak in other languages. How would he know the difference, without the "gift" of interpretation, which he as an unbeliever could not have?
V. 26: "How is it then, brethren? When ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying." Paul here sets forth the ideal situation—how it should be in an assembly of believers. They should not stress one "gift" (tongues [v. 23] or prophecy [v. 24]) to the exclusion of the others; for this would prevent some members of the church from having a chance to edify the brethren with their own particular "gift," since all were not given the same "gift" (1 Cor. 12:4-11, 28-31; note that in Rom. 12:3-8, where Paul deals with the "gifts" of the Spirit, and in Eph. 4:11-13, where he mentions the gifted men that the Lord had given to the early Church, the "gift" of tongues is not mentioned at all!).
Each member of the assembly was to be given an opportunity to serve other Body members, since he was a part of that Body (1 Cor. 12:12-27), and thus he would fulfill his part in edifying his fellow members. The various "gifts" which existed in any one church should be made use of, the Apostle says, with due regard to the edification of the brethren.
CONDITIONS WHEN 1 COR. WAS WRITTEN
Paul wrote this epistle probably not later than 57 A.D., toward the end of his three-year ministry in Ephesus (Acts 20:31; 1 Cor. 16:5-8). It is one of the earliest of his letters. At that time the Christians had very few manuscripts, even of Old Testament writings, for they were outcasts and aliens from Jewry. Thus they were in special need of the temporary "gifts" of the Spirit like knowledge, prophecy, tongues, interpretation of tongues, etc. But as more Old Testament manuscripts became available (Acts 17:11) and more New Testament books were completed, there was correspondingly less need for the "gifts." Accordingly, less and less emphasis was placed on the "gifts," including the "gift" of tongues, as the New Testament revelations progressed. The "gift" of tongues is mentioned (and that not emphatically—see 1 Cor. 12:8-10, 28) only in the earlier epistles, and is not mentioned at all in the later ones, such as Paul's epistles to the Romans (Rom. 12:3-8), Ephesians (Eph. 4:11-13), etc., and Peter's, Jude's and John's epistles.
Vs. 27, 28: Here Paul lays down guidelines for orderly, edifying church meetings (compare v. 40). Those with the "gift" of tongues were not all to speak at the same time, but in turn, and then no more than two or three. In each case the tongue was to be interpreted by someone other than the tongue-speaker (v. 27). But if no interpreter were present, the tongue-speaker was to keep silence in the church (though he could use his "gift" privately, if he so desired—v. 28). How many of our "tongues-speaking" friends observe this rule today and keep silent in the congregation, speaking only to themselves and to God, when no interpreter is present? Not many, it seems. They frequently violate this rule.
Some claim that there are two types of speaking in tongues; one they call "devotional" tongues and the other, the "gift of tongues," or glossolalia. Devotional tongues, they say, are used for communion with God only and for personal edification. They create such a distinction in order to evade the force of the arguments in favor of the tongues-speaking in the New Testament being a speaking in genuine foreign languages. However, in vs. 27, 28 Paul clearly identifies the kind of tongues that was to be spoken in the church (v. 28) with the kind of tongues that was to be used to "speak to himself, and to God."
In other words, if one contemplated speaking in a tongue in the church, but learned that no interpreter was present, he was to refrain from such speaking in the church; however, he could, if he wished, use that same "tongue" to "speak to himself, and to God," in private. There is no indication anywhere in this chapter that Paul was referring to two different kinds of tongues-speaking. He was showing that the "gift" of tongues without interpretation was not to be used publicly, for such unintelligible utterances would not edify, but would divert the attention of and confuse the congregation and interrupt the proceedings, which were to be conducted in an orderly and edifying manner.
Vs. 29-31: Those with the "gift" of prophecy were also to speak in turn, but no more than two or three in succession, and the brethren (Greek, the others; ASV) were to consider (discern, discriminate, judge) what they had heard. And if to a brother, seated and listening to the speaker, a further, perhaps supplementary, revelation was given, the first prophetic speaker was in an orderly manner to give way and listen in silence (v. 30). How orderly and edifying (v. 31)!
This is in perfect harmony with what Paul had said earlier (vs. 23, 24). He did not approve of those having the "gift" either of tongues-speaking or of prophecy monopolizing the meeting; but if he had to choose between the two, he would choose the latter, since prophesying—expounding—was more profitable (edifying) to all than was tongues-speaking. However, the ideal, as we have seen, was what he indicated in v. 26.
Nor are we to think that because Paul discussed in this chapter only those with the "gift" of tongues or the "gift" of prophecy as serving the church and did not emphasize the use of other "gifts" (1 Cor. 12:8-10), therefore a church meeting was to center around the tongues-speakers and prophets. Paul discussed these two particularly, because these were those he had been emphasizing all through the chapter, and he was trying, by comparing the "gift" of tongues with the "gift" of prophecy, to help the Corinthian brethren to see that they were overemphasizing and misusing the "gift" of tongues.
V. 32: "And [besides, additionally] the spirits [powers inherent in their 'gift'] of the prophets are subject to the prophets." Here Paul makes another strong argument to show the superiority of the "gift" of prophecy over that of speaking in tongues. To prophets their own spirits (powers) were under control, for in receiving Divine revelations in the church meetings they needed no interpreter, but could speak with understanding; whereas the tongues-speakers were to keep silence before the congregation and to speak only to themselves, and to God, unless there was an interpreter present.
The word and connects v. 32 with the preceding verses and gives an additional reason why the prophesying speaker should find no difficulty in holding his peace; for prophets, having their spirits (powers) in full subjection and the communications between spirit and mind and between speech and tongue unimpaired, could choose either to speak or not to speak.
V. 33 gives a crowning reason why decorum and orderly procedure should be observed in the exercise of "gifts" in the church assemblies—for God is not a God of confusion, disorder or tumult, but of peace. He is not in harmony with anything contrary to "the spirit of a sound mind" (2 Tim. 1:7) and "holiness with sobriety" (1 Tim. 2:15). He must therefore disapprove of the emotional frenzies of delusion that becloud sober Christian judgment, the vociferous clamors, the hubbubs in prayer and the emotional jabberings in unintelligible "tongues" that turn professed meeting-places of the Lord with His people into babble-houses of confusion, that call to mind the confusion of tongues at the Tower of Babel and the agonized and prolonged cries of the prophets of Baal and the groves in their contest with Elijah.
Vs. 34, 35: Here Paul gives instruction regarding the proper course for women in the church meetings where doctrinal presentations were given by interpretations of tongues or by prophesying in the sense of preaching and teaching from God's Word, as just described in vs. 27-32. In such church meetings for preaching and teaching instruction in the Word, the women were to take a subordinate part and not attempt to be the teachers. They were to abstain from teaching in such meetings, for it would be "a shame for women to speak in the church."
In doctrinal meetings in the church, women could, however, participate and receive many blessings, joining in the prayers and in "the psalms and hymns and spiritual songs" (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16; see The New Creation, pp. 268, 269). In study meetings they could with propriety ask questions and answer questions asked by the teacher, but they were not to usurp the teaching office. Under Divine inspiration (Matt. 18:18) and in harmony with the Divine order (Eph. 5:23, 24), Paul says, "Let the woman learn in silence [in the preaching and teaching meetings in the church] with all subjection. But I suffer [permit] not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence" (1 Tim. 2:11, 12).
If women were uninformed or unclear on some matters, especially those set forth in the preaching and teaching meetings of the church, they could afterward ask their husbands at home (v. 35), or the one or ones who had prophesied, or one of the other brethren. Also, they could bring up such matters when appropriate and when there was an opportunity in the study meetings or in private discussions and conversations with the brethren, rather than to interrupt the proceedings of the general preaching and teaching assemblies of the church for their own or others' personal instruction.
This restriction did not, however, apply to the non-doctrinal meetings—praise services, testimony meetings, prayer meetings, etc.—where consecrated Christian women could pray and prophesy (testify, but not teach), with their heads covered (1 Cor. 11:5, 6). Outside the preaching and teaching meetings in the church they had full liberty to minister to others—they could teach other women, children and also men—especially unbelievers (Acts 18:24-26; Rom. 16:1-6, 12; Phil. 4:3; 1 Tim. 5:9, 10; 2 Tim. 1:5; 3:15).
V. 36: With a sudden flash of irony, Paul in effect asks the church at Corinth: What? was it from you that the Word of God (and its proper pertinent exposition) originated? or unto you alone (and not to God's chosen Apostles) did it come? Proper methods, order and decorum should be observed in your assemblies, with no irregularities, such as tongues-speaking in the church without an interpreter, two or three prophets declaiming at once and women presuming to teach in the doctrinal meetings of the church. All these anomalies must cease, or (the only possible alternative) are you Corinthians grasping for the power of being the special teachers of the churches? Are you really the model and exemplar of all the churches, the first and last word on correct doctrine and practice in these matters?
Vs. 37, 38: After the irony, Paul speaks with gravity, and asserts his Apostolic authority seriously: Let anyone who thinks that he is Spirit-gifted as a prophet or otherwise recognize, that what I am writing is Divinely inspired instruction from the Lord; but if anyone ignores (the Divine source of what I write) let him ignore—let him persist in refusing to recognize that I speak the Lord's mind; let him be content with his own stupidity and its consequences before the Lord.
Vs. 39, 40: Paul now summarizes the relationship between the "gift" of tongues with attendant interpretations and the "gift" of prophecy in understandingly expounding God's Word, and with Christian tenderness he calls them brethren. He tells them to desire earnestly the "gift" of prophecy, but not to forbid the less profitable "gift" of speaking with tongues within the prescribed limits; only let all things be done in a becoming manner and in proper order.
The above review of 1 Cor. 14 shows that this chapter in no way supports the unreasonable thought that the Corinthian brethren or any others in the early Church spoke in unintelligible tongues—so-called "ecstatic utterances"—or that it is right and proper to do so today. It shows clearly also that the "gift" of tongues was the miraculous power to speak in genuine foreign languages. Consistent with this is the fact that in 1 Cor. 14 wherever the word "tongue(s)" occurs we can substitute "foreign language(s)" without changing the true meaning.
EPH. 5:18-20; COL. 3:16 CONSIDERED
Eph. 5:18-20 and Col. 3:16 are claimed by some to teach that Christians today should practice glossolalia for mutual edification. However, these passages make no allusion whatever to the "gift" of speaking in tongues or any other miraculous "gift" of the Spirit. In them Paul merely exhorts the Christian believers to use—in proper decorum, of course, in the spirit of a sound mind—the beautiful psalms, hymns and spiritual songs available, to encourage and upbuild one another in Christian doctrine, practice and fellowship (Heb. 10:25).
In Col. 3:16 we read: "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in [or, by] psalms [from the inspired Psalter; see 1 Cor. 14:26] and hymns [especially of praise to God; compare Matt. 26:30; Acts 16:25] and spiritual songs [the plural of the Greek word ode; compare Rev. 15:3; the general word for a song, whether of praise or on any other subject; the early Church apparently had odes in the form of lyric poems suitable for singing or chanting]." Eph. 5:18-20 teaches similarly.
Accordingly, Eph 5:18-20 and Col. 3:16 cannot reasonably be understood to refer to the "gift" of speaking in tongues, and most certainly not to teaching that this "gift" is for our day.
DANCING "BEFORE THE LORD"
Many Pentecostals and other charismatics claim that in Christian church meetings it is proper to have dancing "before the Lord," with much shouting, etc. They appeal to such Scriptures as Ex. 15:20, 21 (describing Miriam and the other women of Israel "with timbrels and with dances" joining in the song of victory), 2 Sam. 6:14, 15 (telling how David "danced before the Lord with all his might," and all Israel "brought up the ark of the Lord with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet") and Psa. 149:3 (which exhorted God's people to praise Him in the dance).
There is nothing wrong in these methods of praising God, when done in the proper place and with proper decorum; but there is nothing in these or other Scriptures or early Church history that shows that our Lord and His Apostles taught that these practices should be followed in New Testament church meetings.
Praise to Him, by whose kind favor
Heavenly Truth has reached our ears;
May its sweet, reviving savor
Fill our hearts and calm our fears.
Truth, how sacred is the treasure!
Teach us, Lord, its worth to know,
Vain the hope, and short the pleasure,
Which from other sources flow.
The Gift of Tongues:
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