Adventist Online

Yesterday I discovered a Christian chat site that was the most welcoming site I have ever been to. The founder or one of the key people, who does programming all of the site etc. as well as admin work, came in voice directly to me with new technology he was testing.

At first when I heard this voice talking to me, I was surprised, He introduced himself as Mr. Troy. He helped me through everything, taking me into a beginner's chat room, spent time with me personally. The attitude was completely love of God and friendliness. Within minutes they had accepted me, it didn't take weeks like on this site. They had me fill out a form, verify email, informed me of the rules which are strict as regarding blocking people or other means of correcting violation of the rules and dealing with those that are abusive, unkind and just plain mean, unlike this site.

The Christianchat.com principle officer Mr. Troy was incredible in service, acting Christ-like and I praised him and thanked him for how he conducted himself. This was a great witness. When Mr. Troy took me to the chat rooms to show me how things work, everyone there was kind, friendly, non-combative, non-denominational, and accepting, the way God excepts people in their imperfections and sin into the body of Christ.

After I figured it out, I was in the Biblical Study chat room. People disagreed sometimes, but they remained civil, not attacking the individual, but stating their position without judging the individuals they disagreed with, unlike what happens on this site if someone has a view other than standard dogma.

Many people in the Biblical Study chat room did not know much Biblically, some knew from their mostly institutional church, and some were wise on some particular issue. There was no attacking there regardless, there was freedom to speak, with no one telling you to stop or shut up, unlike here.

I answered questions and made statements backed up with scriptures and people were accepting of me as a person and didn't question my spirituality or sincerity, in fact they respected me, as any man or woman of God should be respected, as a brother in Christ. There were disagreements, but mutual respect, unlike here.

I see on Facebook for this site that there are people that for months have not been accepted and no word has come from the admin here, unlike the Christianchat.com site. A friend of mine Bob wanted to join  Adventistonline. He made several applications, none were acceptable and he waited months, with no word. He gave up. This is apparently a closed and exclusive society for the most part on this site.

I don't want to disparage individuals who are kind on this site, there are many, I have made friends here though we disagree on a few topics, but agree on many, and I don't want to impugn the admins here, for it is a hard job I am sure. I am thankful that I am able to meet people that I can pray for and maybe help them in some way. But I think that this site could learn something from this wonderful chat site Christianchat.com, the way they operate, and the way people conduct themselves.

I am very critical of those that falsely accuse and attack the individual here and are mockers, but I have none of that trouble at this other site. The contrast was incredible. The atmosphere was completely different in a good sense. There wasn't that heavy you better believe our doctrines or else attitude.

It was open, free and yet decently and in order, and I saw no abuse. By the way, the other site has experienced bad situations where people took advantage, they have learned by experience how to correct those problems while maintaining a friendly, supportive and inclusive and excepting environment.

This unfortunately is a sad commentary of contrast. Look, there are wonderful people here, but some here are over the top in their accusatory attitudes and lack of tolerance of any thing they disagree with.

One should retain an open mind for the truth, as well as respecting divergent views, thats why the founding fathers of this country installed the First Amendment. Some of you would like to stop certain views that you don't like. The Freedom of Speech etc. allows for ideas to flourish, and hopefully the best ideas, learning and wisdom and knowledge will win out in the end. 

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People disagreed sometimes, but they remained civil,

Do you just call SDA mockers then and use capital letters screaming that you are a prophet for 40 years. 

James 

One should retain an open mind for the truth, as well as respecting divergent views,

So what do you want us to do? Not say one word in disagreement? One think you must remember you are the only one here with your charismatic views. Non surprisingly you will meet with some opposition, seems like you think we should all accept your view no question asked. 

Calm down gentlemen, I liked your post James....

A friend of mine Bob wanted to join  Adventistonline. He made several applications, none were acceptable and he waited months, with no word. He gave up. This is apparently a closed and exclusive society for the most part on this site." END`Quote

I thought signing up to Adventist Online was easy? I too have found Adventists clicky, they love their own social groups and circles, outsiders like myself because I was not born into Adventism, nor went through Avondale College, are treated differently, so I know the experience you mention....however some of us are kind here...

God bless us all here

Shalom

"...I thought signing up to Adventist Online was easy? #.."

Used to be easy and non confirmation etc required than a lot of spam happened at a given time and new members showed up thinking this to be a dating site (something which i feel is still common) so the easy process was eliminated.

Dont know how it is handled at the moment but i guess from your reporting it seems that an Administrator has to confirm every new member manually.

Not to sure where you get your information from Manuela but as far as I have seen there has not been one new member being accepted here for nearly a year now.

There is also no moderation.

"Not to sure where you get your information from Manuela but as far as I have seen there has not been one new member being accepted here for nearly a year now."

Huh?

Where did you lose me exactly?

I do not understand what you are trying to critizice about what i said or is it just a reply to put something into my post which is not there to attack / discredit / disagree with me?

Maybe it is my english skills which are lacking but i have absolutely no idea what you are trying to get at with this... Enlighten me.

As always rob, you are reasonable and you are friendly and not automatically hostile. You also do research which is good. Many SDA followers take what they are taught, never do their own research, many don't know how to research the Bible. I have seen it in SDA church myself, some are very ignorant of scriptures. But this is true for many Christians, unfortunately throughout the body of Christ.

You make too many assumptions about people that you never met and know nothing about.

Again you make ignorant remarks and have no respect for our church, its standards nor its teachings.

And you wonder why you are met with such hostility.

You never answered my question on a previous thread: "Do you do this with other denominations as well?"

You need to remove the log, oh wait the forest from your eye before you remove the speck off another.

The reason why I refute what you say is because I clearly recognize the charismatic behaviour in you as I have family that belong to that sect of Christianity and like you they do not tolerate divergent views. Its never about the Bible or God but always about people, pastors , apostles and the like so much so that they place all these above God.

You propagate similar beliefs and behaviour. Its cultic to say the least. You seem to go out of your way to belittle the SDA church and its members, behaviour which I have seen time and again by those that do not understand the Bible or sound doctrine.

Natural tendency of humans is to destroy and discredit what they do not understand and you sir are devoid of understanding period!

But I know this will not stop you because you will go on with your baseless and hateful ranting's about God's church and His people.

Hope you have a blessed day further brother James. Remember I will be praying for you.

Mr. Umraw: Does your remarks to me also include Rob, above who agreed with me both about the clickish-clanish culture of the SDA and inability to take any even valid criticisms? He was also in agreement on listening to God to which all of you mockers made such vehement attacks upon, including Pastor Norcross, as well as myslef, whom you do not know, yet you accuse me of making judgments against people I do not know.

Or does your charactor assasination include my many SDA friends whom I have contact with on a regular basis, both by phone and in person. They don't agree with me on everything, but they do agree on many issues including some doctrinal and spiritual problems within not only the SDA, but in fact all of Christianity.

My criticism and comparison of the online services and the treatment and behavior I and Leon have endured is based on facts. That people are left hanging for months and are never allowed in, Individuals when I first came here were generally friendly. But the administration's inability to timely grant people entrance is a fact.

In World War II, bomber squadrons knew they were over the target when they got a lot of FLAK, as anti-aircraft artillery was called. I must be right on target to get so much FLAK from you mockers.

You accuse me of not liking divergent views, well some people here have no tolerance for such including you, even as regards the Great Commission, about what signs follow them that believe, which includes according to your doctrine, the accursed "speaking in tongues," which Paul encouraged, Jesus had the disciples operate, and to which the church (any church) is supposed to allow (Paul again, forbid not to speak in tongues) as long as it is interpreted which is a message from God for the people for edification, exhortation and comfort. But you don't want to hear from God by inspiration of the holy spirit, whether by revelation, as you so vehemently don't want the still small voice of The Lord, don't want speaking in tongues for personal prayer life which also tends to facilitate the other manifestations of the holy spirit, nor do you want divine healing, miracles, faith, or prophesy for that matter, which the church is supposed to covet to prophesy.

NO Wonder you have not had a prophet for over 100 years. God gave some apostles, prophets, evengelists, pastors, and teachers. Where are the prophets?

You don't encourage spiritual matters or things (pneumaticos), what you call "gifts," even though that is in your creed of beliefs.

You discourage anything other than the written Word of God. I have complete respect for the Word of God, but without it being mixed with believing, and living inside of a believer in a relationship of hearing the voice of The Lord, and operating the nine manifestations of holy spirit, it is a dead letter, because its promises, power, love, and miracles are not being carried out, mostly because of unbelief in those areas, though you may believe other parts of the Bible promises.

If on the Day of Pentecost, the 12 had not "began to speak" as the spirit gave them utterance and believe what Jesus had instructed them, that they were to wait for the promise of The Father, that John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the holy spirit not many days hence, then the grace and power of the first century and the fulfillment of prophesies would not have happened.

Your religion, which you place above Jesus Christ's admonitions, whether by himself or by The Apostle Paul, is a stumbling block and idolatry, if anything is placed above God and His commandments as you always like to quote commandments. The Apostle Paul stated in 1 Corinthians 12:  37If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.  38But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.  39 Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues.  40Let all things be done decently and in order."

I didn't write the above, Paul did by inspiration of holy spirit as an Apostle of Jesus Christ, by receiving revelation from Jesus Christ directly. Now you criticize me for listening to the Voice of The Lord, for obeying the written word above, which are commandments, which you disobey. Peter wrote, another Apostle by the way, inspired by God, 2 Peter chapter 3: "         And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you;  16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.  17 Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness."

You need to look at and repent of your unbelief and spirit of bondage and religion which keeps you from living in the spirit of God and walking therein, as you are yet carnal, though saved, being born again, but decieved, denying the very Christ that is in you, that is trying to manifest in your life, but you refuse, and lies dorment for the most part, and you remain ignorant, never having experienced the greatness and confirmation of both God and His Word by His spirit, of the miraculous life of walking by the spirit with signs, miracles, and wonders following. If we are born of the spirit, we ought to be led by the spirit.

I do not want to appear before Jesus Christ and explain why I didn't do what I was supposed to do, do you? If you want to do the law, you are required to perform all of the law, as you are a debtor to the whole law as Paul said, but the love, power and authority of the holy spirit is given and operated by grace, which I do understand. I will pray for you mockers and despisers of the manifestations of holy spirit, which you refuse to even desire to see manifest in your life so far.

Brother James, what, according to you, is the purpose of speaking in tongues? While both the fruit and the gifts of the spirit are important, we should dwell more on the fruits because the gifts can be counterfeited by Satan. If one has the Spirit he will manifest the fruit of the Spirit. 

What is the purpose of speaking in tongues:

Spiritual edification: I Cor. 14:4 and Jude 20, Speaketh divine mysteries (secrets) I Cor. 14:2, Magnify God: Acts 10:46, Praying according to the will of God: Romans 8:26-27, Giving Thanks well: I Cor. 14:17, Strengthening the inner man: Ephesians 3:16, Sign to unbelievers I Cor. 14:27, Mark 16:17, Bless with the spirit: I Cor. 14:16, Pray without ceasing: I Thessalonians 5:17, God speaks to the people (tongues with interpretation), gives rest and refreshing: Isaiah 28:

9 ¶ Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.d  10For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:  11For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people.f, g  12To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.  13But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken."

From Spirit and Truth Fellowship International:

http://www.truthortradition.com/articles/what-is-speaking-in-tongue...

"What is Speaking in Tongues and why does God say in 1 Corinthians 14:5 that He would like each Christian to do it?

No doubt that is a question that has been asked by millions of Christians throughout the centuries, and we believe that knowing the answer is vital for maximizing the quality of one’s life as a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ. Why? The primary reason, as a study of Scripture will clearly show, is: speaking in tongues is the only absolute proof a Christian has that he is born again and guaranteed a parking place in Paradise, i.e., everlasting life (2 Cor. 1:21, 22; Eph. 1:13, 14; 1 John 3:24). Speaking in tongues is the only valid external, tangible evidence in the senses realm that the internal, intangible gift of holy spirit was shed abroad in one’s heart at the moment of his new birth.

Please do not hear me saying that you must speak in tongues in order to be born again. No, anyone who adheres to Romans 10:9 is saved, permanently. Why? Because at that moment he is “born again of incorruptible seed” (1 Pet. 1:23). But, as we will see, speaking in tongues is the vitally important proof that you are forever a child of God.

The second most important thing about speaking in tongues is that it vividly illustrates to the believer the most basic principle of the Christian walk, which is trusting the Word of our heavenly Father.

Beyond that, speaking in tongues is a beautiful way to circumvent the limited vocabulary of our native tongue and tell our Father that we love Him. It is a way to perfectly worship (Phil. 3:3) and praise (1 Cor. 14:16) the Creator, to give thanks well (1 Cor. 14:17), to speak the wonderful works of God (Acts 2:11), to magnify Him (Acts 10:46), to edify yourself (1 Cor. 14:4) and to build yourself up in faith (Jude 20). And if you have never done it, I will help you do so via this article and the video at the end of this article.

In this relatively brief piece, I cannot set forth the biblical background for every statement I make about the new birth, the gift of holy spirit, speaking in tongues, but we do just that in a number of relevant books and teaching tapes. My goal is to arrest your attention (or at least skirmish with it) to the end that you choose to dig deeper into our work on this critical subject. Although the phrase is over used, this is one subject that just might “change your life.”

As with many important biblical issues, an understanding of speaking in tongues relates specifically to an understanding of the administrations in Scripture. Unless we understand what parts of God’s Word are written to Jews, what parts are written to Gentiles, and what parts are written to Christians, we can neither understand nor apply its truths in our daily lives. For an overview of which parts of the Bible are written to you, click here!

We are currently living in what the Bible calls the Administration of the Sacred Secret (Eph. 3:9), which began on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1ff) and will conclude with the gathering together of the Church (all living and dead Christians) to meet the Lord in the air (1 Thess. 4:13-18). Unique to this administration is the salvation a person attains by adhering to Romans 10:9—confessing with his mouth “Jesus is Lord” and believing in his heart that God raised him from the dead. At that moment he is “born again of incorruptible seed” (1 Pet. 1:23) and baptized/filled with the gift of holy spirit (Acts 1:5; 2:38). As the Word says of each Christian, God has “anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come” (2 Cor. 1:22). Amen!

And you may say: “Great! Uh, how do we know?”

Some would reply: “Well, because God says so.”

“Yes, but I didn’t feel anything happen when I got saved, and the next day I smoked, drank whiskey, cursed, and cheated at miniature golf. So how do I know for sure that the holy spirit of God is permanently within me? Are there any evidences in the senses realm, the realm where I’ve lived from birth and to which I am almost completely attuned?”

And I say: “Evidences? You mean like something you can see, hear, touch, taste or smell?”

“Yep.”

You’re in luck, because speaking in tongues is one of the nine “manifestations” (1 Cor. 12:7) of the gift of holy spirit. The word “manifestation” comes from two Latin words, manus, meaning “hand,” and festare, meaning “to touch.” It refers to something concrete and tangible. The gift of holy spirit each person receives when he gets born again is not tangible, because it is spirit, something not in the realm of the five senses. That’s why Scripture does not promise that one will feel anything when he gets born again. And that is why God has provided indisputable proof that something did happen, something so indescribably miraculous that there can be “no ifs, ands, or buts about it!”

This principle of tangible evidence in the senses realm is clearly illustrated in Matthew 9:1-8, which I will paraphrase: Some people brought to Jesus a paralyzed man, and Jesus said to him, “Cheer up, your sins are forgiven.”

Some grumpy Pharisees who were hanging around said to themselves, “Who does this guy think he is to forgive sins?”

It was risky to think things like that around Jesus, and he nailed them: “Now why do you have to rain on this guy’s parade? I’ve got a question: which is easier to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or, how about ‘Pick up your mat and take a walk’?”

“Well, uh, er…”

“To show you that I have the authority to forgive sins—watch this: Pick up your mat and go home.” And the paralyzed man was healed!

What’s the point? When Jesus told the man that his sins were forgiven, no one could see anything happen. The Pharisees saw no change in the man, so they said that Jesus’ words were bogus—the man’s sins were not forgiven. Jesus said, “Really? OK, let me try saying something else and see if that happens…Well, what d’ya know? Look at that.” He gave them indisputable proof in the senses realm that something had happened inside the man. Ditto for the new birth and speaking in tongues.

NOTE: Many Christians mistakenly refer to speaking in tongues, prophecy, etc., as “gifts” of the spirit, but Scripture never does (except in modern translations that add words to the Greek text but do not italicize them like the KJV does so the reader knows this). The (one) gift is holy spirit, the divine nature of God, who is called “the Holy Spirit,” the Giver. The gift He gives is holy spirit, His divine nature.

If someone gives you a Swiss Army knife or a Leatherman tool, you get one gift, but within that gift are many ways to use it—many “manifestations.” Likewise, anyone who is born again of God’s spirit has the ability to utilize all nine manifestations of the spirit. Most need only a little instruction. Every Christian can speak in tongues whenever he decides to do it. And if you do not speak in tongues, that includes you. Stay tuned for instructions on exactly how to do it.

Do you know that all but two of the nine manifestations of the gift of holy spirit were operational in the Old Testament and the Gospels? Only speaking in tongues and its companion manifestation, interpretation of tongues, are conspicuously absent prior to the Day of Pentecost. The question then becomes: What is so unique about speaking in tongues that God reserved it just for us who are born again of His spirit?

It is not what is unique about speaking in tongues, it is what is unique about salvation in the Church Administration that necessitated speaking in tongues as the indisputable proof of that unconditional salvation. In no other administration was salvation equated with seed, birth, and therefore permanent sonship. At no other time was salvation permanent, and no one ever dreamed it would be. Talk about “the world’s biggest deal?!” This is it! And God came up with a proof that to the ignorant may seem absurd, but which is actually very ingenious and practical.

Remember 2 Corinthians 1:22? God put His spirit in each Christian as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. The Greek word for “deposit” is arrabon, and it means a token, a downpayment, a guarantee. In the KJV it is translated “earnest,” as in “earnest money” that is put down on a house. 1 John 3:24b says, “And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.”

But wait a minute—you can’t feel the holy spirit, so how is that spirit the guarantee? By the manifestation of the spirit known as speaking in tongues, which only Christians can do. Speaking in tongues is how “the spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are the sons of God” (Rom. 8:15) and, with the verse properly punctuated, it is what 1 John 5:11 refers to as “the witness that God has given us eternal life.” Hey, that fits perfectly with Acts 1:8, when Jesus told his disciples that when they received the holy spirit, they would be witnesses of him. Why? Because they would then have within them his witness to them that they were equipped with all they needed to go forth in his name!

To speak in tongues is to fluently speak a language of either men or angels, a language that does not come from your mind, but by way of God’s spirit within you. It is primarily designed for one’s internal use, but it is also to be utilized in a gathering of Christians by following it with its companion manifestation, interpretation of tongues, so that the Church is edified by one’s praise to God (1 Cor. 14:5b). “Tongues” is a language that God gives you, just as He first did on Pentecost when the Church was born. And that record in Acts 2:1-4 brings up the pattern God intended for every Christian, which is that each one speak in tongues right after he is born again.

Why? So that one immediately knows once and for all that (a) he has everlasting life, (b) the Word of God is true, (c) Jesus Christ is alive, (d) he is filled with the power of God and can utilize all the other manifestations. That is why God clearly says in 1 Corinthians 14:5 that He would like each Christian to speak in tongues. I think that for our Father, hearing a newborn Christian speak in tongues parallels how a mother feels when she hears her newborn baby make its first cry—it’s alive! The difference is that when God hears a child of His speak in tongues, He knows that life will be forever.

How tragic that countless Christians never take advantage of this marvelous ability. They don’t because they can’t—if they are taught that speaking in tongues ended with the first-century apostles, or that it is devilish, or that it is a gift for only some people, or if they are taught nothing at all about it. In the past 35 years, I have had the awesome privilege of helping to lead thousands of dear saints into speaking in tongues, some of whom were 60-80 years old and had longed for it for decades. With a few minutes of instruction, they easily did it, and many cried tears of great joy.

“OK, you said a few paragraphs ago that speaking in tongues is very practical. How so?”

Good question. The second vital truth about speaking in tongues, and also why God wants every Christian to start doing it immediately, is because it perfectly illustrates the “bottom line” principle of the Christian walk, which is trusting God and His Word.

How so? Think about it—God goes first, if you will, and gives His Son for us. Jesus takes his turn and goes to the Cross. God raises him and promises us salvation. Now it’s our turn. If we believe Romans 10:9, it’s God’s turn, and the Lord Jesus fills us with holy spirit (Acts 2:33).

God says, “I would like everyone of you to speak in tongues” (1 Cor. 14:5).

Our turn again: “Huh? You want me to fluently speak a language I’ve never learned?” The Lord Jesus Christ’s turn: “That’s right.”

You: “Seriously?”

The Lord: “Yes.”

You: “How?”

The Lord: “Good question. Remember Pentecost? What happened? They spoke in tongues as I gave them the words. So all you have to do is speak, but don’t speak a language you know.”

“Let me get this straight. You want me to open my mouth and employ the mechanics of speech, and you’re telling me I’ll be speaking a real language?”

“Absolutely.”

Does that require any faith, any trust in God, Jesus Christ, and the Word? It sure does, and isn’t that what being a Christian is all about? It always comes down to whether or not we really believe what God says.

Want a biblical record that vividly illustrates exactly the same principle involved in speaking in tongues? Matthew 14:25 and following. The disciples are in their fishing boat amidst a great storm on the Sea of Galilee. Jesus strolls by—on the water. They freak out.

Jesus says, “Chill, it’s I.”

Peter piped up: “Yeah, well, if it’s really you, let me walk on the water too.”

“Come on.”

Now put yourself in Peter’s potentially soggy shoes. Does he have a promise? Yes. What is it? That he can walk on the water—Jesus wouldn’t ask him (or you) to do anything he couldn’t do. And with the promise comes a provision—“If you step out, I’ll help you.” Now it’s Peter’s turn. How will he find out if the promise is true? There’s only one way—step out of the boat! And he did! But it was not until the split second his foot touched the water that God “took His turn” and made it firm under his feet. Had Peter put his foot one inch from the water and said, “Oh, this won’t work,” he never would have experienced the power of God.

See the principle? It is exactly the same in regard to speaking in tongues. If you are born again (if you’re not sure, see Romans 10:9 for instructions), you can speak in tongues. How do you know? Because God would not ask you to do something you cannot do. And He clearly says, “I would like for you [each Christian] to speak in tongues” (1 Cor. 14:5). And, as we have set forth, He gives you plenty of incentive and motivation by laying out its benefits.

So whose turn is it now? Right—yours. What do you have to lose to give it a shot? OK, if you’re online during a break at work amidst a gaggle of co-workers, you better wait ‘til you get home.

Good, you’re home. So, how do you do it?

Simple — you just open your mouth and utilize the mechanics of speech, but do not speak English or any other language you know. What you will be speaking is whatever language God chooses to give you. If it is a language of men, someone somewhere on the earth (among the approximately 6000 or so dialects) could understand it. If it’s a language of angels, no one on earth would understand it.

Now hear this! When it comes to speaking in tongues, there is only one way to fail—and that is not to speak. Please hear me. If you open your mouth and speak (not a language you know), it cannot fail—you will speak in tongues. Now then, if you do move your lips, your throat, your tongue and formulate different words, and you fail to speak in tongues, do not call me—call the Guinness Book of Records, because you will be the first human being since the Day of Pentecost for whom it didn’t work. If it does work, I’d love to hear from you.

Through the years, I have shared these same truths with many people. Some have come back to me and said, “I tried it and it didn’t work.”

I always ask: “Did you open your mouth and project sounds? Did you speak?”

And they say, “Well, no.”

And I say, “Then you did not try.”

Just as with Peter’s foot touching the water, so God cannot give you the words until you speak. Do you see how this perfectly illustrates what the Christian life is all about? God makes many promises to us, but the only way they come to pass is when we act on them. Our heavenly Father makes wonderful promises to us because He adores us, and oh, how He longs to fulfill them to us for our benefit.

So why not relax, take a deep breath, let it out slowly, and focus your mind on the God and the Lord who love you immeasurably. Thank them for having filled you with the holy spirit, take another breath, and let it rip—speak forth words of praise, thanksgiving, and worship. And that is exactly what you will be speaking. And be BOLD—the words you are hearing are the proof that Jesus is alive and well—and that so will you be—forever! It cost him his life for you to be able to praise and worship God in this wonderful way, so get into it!

One more thing—not only will you hear the words you are speaking, like when you speak in your native tongue, but because you are not using your mind to speak in tongues, you can also listen to what you are saying—and that is why it may sound really strange at first. But so would any language you’ve never heard before.

If you decide to speak in tongues now, and it is your first time, keep doing it for a while so that you become convinced that it is real. The junk part of your mind may tell you: “That’s ridiculous, you’re just making it up.” Here are some appropriate replies (that are printable): “No way—I couldn’t make that up.” “Take a hike.” “Get lost.” “Put a sock in it.” “SHUT UP!” Just keep speaking in tongues, and eventually that part of your mind will get tired of telling that lie to you.

In closing, let me say how moved I am at the amazing privilege of sitting here at my computer (first at the Spirit & Truth Fellowship International office and now at the Ford dealer who is fixing my car) and writing something that dear people like you (from Alabama to Afghanistan, Bakersfield to Borneo, Cleveland to Calcutta, etc.) will read and then speak in tongues for the first time. My heart is with you. Go for it!"

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