Sermon Notes

January 20th: “Tongues, Prophecy, etc

What is the Gift of Prophecy?

Prophecy:  The gift of prophecy is the special ability that God gives to certain people to receive and communicate a message of God to His people through a work of God’s Spirit.

Can be foretelling, but also forth telling, speaking a “now Word” that reveals Gods heart or action in a current situation

Types of Prophecy.

There are three main modes by which prophecy comes; Dreams, Visions, and through Spontaneous Speaking.


Num. 12:6   he said, “Listen to my words: “When a prophet of the LORD is among you, I reveal myself to him in visions, I speak to him in dreams.

The Bible has many other passages showing prophets receiving their instruction through dreams and visions.


 Luke 12:11  “When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say,  12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.


Acts 2:17   “`In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.


The Old Testament Prophet VS New Testament Prophet.


Deut. 18:18   I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brothers; I will put my words in his mouth, and he will tell them everything I command him.   19 If anyone does not listen to my words that the prophet speaks in my name, I myself will call him to account.   20 But a prophet who presumes to speak in my name anything I have not commanded him to say, or a prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, must be put to death.


In the OT the prophet was the spokesperson for God, he or she had the Spirit of God on them and the others were to listen to them without objection for they did not have the Spirit indwelling them.


In the NT we all have the Spirit of God and the word of prophecy is not to be taken without question, nor are we told to look for any person, prophet or not, to give us direction. The word of the prophet should be confirmed by what the Spirit is speaking to us personally, or in a group setting where others in the group are also hearing.


John 14:26But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.


John 16:13 When he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.


1 John 2:27   As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit –just as it has taught you, remain in him.


1 Corinthians 14:29Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said.


Often NT prophecy confirms what God is already speaking in a person’s heart or spirit.


Test the Spirits

1John 4:1   Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.



Definitions Tongues & Interpretation

Tongues:  The gift of tongues is the special ability that God gives to certain people (a) to speak to God in a language they have never learned and/or (b to receive and communicate an immediate message of God in a language they have never learned.


Interpretation:  The gift of interpretation is the special ability that God gives to spontaneously recognize the message which has been given in a tongue and then proclaim it to the assembly for the strengthening of the church. This person may be the person who proclaimed the message in a tongue or it may be another person who has this gift.


Tongues, Message to Church or Praise to God?

Acts 2:4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them… —we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!”


Why speak in tongues?


1 Corinthians 14:4-5 Those who speak in a tongue edify themselves, but those who prophesy edify the church.


I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. Those who prophesy are greater than those who speak in tongues, unless they interpret, so that the church may be edified.


1 Corinthians 14:14-15 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful.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.


1 Corinthians 14:18-19 I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.


Romans 8:26-27 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.


Video – Science behind Speaking in Tongues



Life Stories


Pastor Jenn:

her freshman year in college alone in her apartment after a weekend of heavy college life.


The heaviness came over me, felt like I was dying, could hardly breathe, heaviness on my chest. From the depths of my heart I felt question “are you done?” I knew it was referring to everything in my life, and how I was pursuing fulfillment. I answered “yes” and immediately I just began to weep. It was a moment of powerful release.


When I woke the next morning everything was truly different. For the first time there was not constant thoughts of needing to be accepted, especially by “a guy” there was a break in craving what others thought about me. The only way to express it… I felt free.


My friend Kylie, a coworker, who I knew had a real relationship with Christ helps me find a ladies Bible study, and supported me as I began to walk out this new relationship with Christ. Even through all of my questions, and the issues and controversies raised through my days at Vanderbilt, I could never deny the experience of God’s life- transforming power, that in a moment everything in my life became new.


Pastor JD:

At the age of 14 the Evangelist James Roberson came to my high school and invited us to an event at the Oklahoma City Fairgrounds Arena. I just felt compelled to go. And that night I responded to the altar call, and prayed what is commonly known as the sinners prayer.


That night in my bed, I was wrestling with the question “is this really real” suddenly,  I was overcome with the power that left me paralyzed. I saw a vision of Jesus coming toward me in my bed, surrounded in what looked like rays of sunlight. He actually entered into my body as I lay there. It was powerful and overwhelming. But immediately after experience subsided there was what I would consider the voice of the enemy.


The voice said you can’t tell anyone what you just experienced, they will think you’re crazy! My mind was filled with all the images of Christians being hypocrites around me. I remember thinking you’re smarter than all that. It would be years before I would fully grasp what happened to me that evening.


From the age of 15 to 32 by life was filled with sex drugs and rock ’n’ roll, and per my personality there was excess in all three from time to time. About the same time while in a relationship with a married woman… Her parents showed me the love of God. It was powerful, I knew in my mind they should have nothing but judgment for me, and yet they were still showing me the love of God. At this time I was also reconnecting with Tamie, my current wife, who’d began attending a church called the Vineyard. It was church that embraced all the gifts of the spirit. Tamie invited me to attend with her and to her surprise I said yes. The love of the other family, just a searching in my own soul, for the first time I was open to explore. The conversation with my dad was also pivotal as I shared what was stirring in my life he said “you’ll never know unless you’re willing to open yourself to faith.”


In the opening two songs of worship at the vineyard I was completely overcome with the presence of God’s love. In my mind I’m thinking “the music’s okay, musicianship is average, the songs are repetitive, and yet… Something was awakening within me. Before long tears were streaming down my face. The feeling that God actually loved me, in spite of the chaos of my life, overwhelmed me. It was the most powerful experience I’ve ever had in my life, no drug, no relationship, had ever impacted me in the way that I was experiencing it in that moment. Tamie recognized what was going on when she turned and looked at me. And then she started praying in her mind God please don’t let anyone speak in tongues and ruin this moment for him. But the girl on the other side of her who had never spoken in tongues before began speaking out loud in tongues. JD said in that moment I felt a voice deep inside me say, This is me also. His life was never the same.


Pastor Adam:

raised in the church, and in Pentecostal settings were the gifts of the spirit were a familiar occurrence, Adam in his own mind had many questions. If the age of 14 praying at the altar, wondering if this is all real, two separate people approached him asking if they could pray, they just sensed he was searching and asking questions.


Adam said, having seen a lot of the actions, and emotional responses a people of the church. Honestly, I had some great concerns. I did not want to be out of control, or weird. But suddenly I was overwhelmed by the presence of God that was so full of joy, and sensed the love that I had never experienced, all fear melted away, and I never wanted to walk away from that feeling, the power I was experiencing in that moment. As I begin to pray, also begin to pray in tongues, words I did not understand, it seemed to flow from a deep place within myself.


The experience was life transforming, but it did not stop my critical mind, or my searching heart. There was much about Christians, the church, the emotion in humanness of my fellow church members, and it caused me to continue to deeply question. But at every step, even through the challenging in soul-searching questions regarding Scripture that I faced through many skeptics in my education at Vanderbilt, I could never deny the reality of that moment… In many other similar moments… When the presence of God was so real, I could not deny what I knew to be true.

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