BT15 – Tongues & Interpretation
BT15: Reflection about Cessationism
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Why would you believe in Cessationism Sola Scriptura “Bible-only” that says the miraculous grace-gifts of the Spirit have ceased when there is so much evidence against it? The New Testament writers “optimally-desire for us ALL to speak in tongues,” particularly to “conversationally-pray and psalm to God from out heart,” and knowing this “builds us up in our most Holy Faith in order to ‘carefully watch/observe to keep guarded’ ourselves in the Unconditional-Love of God.” Don’t you want to be built up in holiness and trusting-relying-faith in order to experience more of God’s no-strings-attached love? If tongues express “High Praise” and “eulogizing thanksgiving to God” perfectly “interceding by the will of God” from “the depths of God” why wouldn’t you want to do this? Why wouldn’t you want to play music with or without words spontaneously composed by the Holy Spirit, even singing in tongues, to create a “completely-different-in-kind, superior New Song” or “Joyful Noise” or “Spirit-kind of ode” from your heart to the Lord, especially requested “to bring in order to speak reciprocally to one another” in church-assemblies? The writers never indicated this would end!
The New Testament writers say that “even better than” personal tongues is “to zealously-desire to prophecy” as a “proving-sign to believers” because it “more valuable to build up others” unless “the tongues are interpreted,” exactly because such tongues can bring a message of “revelation, gnosis info-knowledge, prophecy, teaching.” We are warned “not to forbid tongues” and “not to despise prophecy.” The Writers don’t indicate that any of this is no longer needed!
The Writers don’t indicate that “tongues as a proving-sign to unbelievers” to authenticate and “confirm the gospel logos message” is no longer needed to God to “work together with us” by “accompanying the gospel with signs, wonders, miracles, and grace-gifts.” There is no indication that any of the grace-gifts are no longer needed to carry out Body-Ministry to “build us up into the mature stature of Jesus Christ.” Ceasing any would be like going to the gym and only working out certain body parts – you will end up grossly disproportionate! All arms with skinny legs and a fat belly! A freak. That’s what so much of the Church looks like today, until you realize that just like “All Israel is not true Israel for a remnant shall be saved” applies to the institutional Church also!
I don’t see that The Great Commission requirements of the Church Age to preach/witness the gospel logos message to “the ends of the age or earth” have ever been fulfilled and Jesus said He won’t return until they are. I don’t see Peter’s restatement of Christ’s “promised gift of the Father to enduringly-wait” in conversational-prayer as they did in the upper-room 2 weeks for, which Peter said was form “all those far off that the Lord will call to Himself” has ‘ceased’ because we have a bible! “The Perfect Coming” is not the completion of the bible but the return of Jesus Christ, the Perfect, Sinless, Holy, and Righteous One. The Bible isn’t that we will be “face to face” with when the grace-gifts “pass away” because they are no longer needed in the battle! What will remain forever is our trusting-relying-faith and hope (future faith) and unconditional-love because this the basis of our relationship with the Lord and actually the very nature of God, for faith/hope are ‘flavors’ of the singular fruit/nature of the Spirit/God that is singularly Unconditional-Love that should thus be the basis of all our actions, even the use of grace-gifts whether “to benefit God” or “to benefit others!”
Since the Writers say that “signs, wonders, miracles, and grace-gifts” were given as “weapons of our warfare” that are “of the Spirit and not of our flesh” to get ‘the marching order’ done, why would the Lord take any of those weapons away from us until He returns? Cessationists are using pea-shooters when they could be using Big Guns!
Only our doubt and fear keep the enabling-power of the Holy Spirit from flowing “into us, thru us to others, and effectively working in others.” Mark made it clear that “these signs shall actually follow those who have trusting-relying-faith” and we know even from Christ’s ministry in some places: “He absolutely-in-fact-NOT did-to-make many [plural] dunamis ‘supernatural enabling-powers’ there because of their apistia NOT-having-of-trusting-relying-faith.”
Missionaries on the ‘front-lines’ of the gospel all around the world will tell you that unless you use all the grace-gifts in the battle for The Truth, you are going to lose! But Paul says that Spiritual warfare is something we all have to fight with “the whole armor of God to take our stand against the schemes of the devil” and the “sword of the Spirit is the directly-spoken/heard rhema Word of God” and directly associates this with “routinely conversationally-praying in/by/with ALL-SEASONS by-the-means-of the Spirit” that Paul has already defined as “by-the-means-of tongues.” This is why Jude says that this “builds us up in our most Holy Faith in order to ‘carefully watch/observe to keep guarded’ ourselves in the Unconditional-Love of God.”
Throughout the New Testament history, the Church Fathers up until 430 AD, and in every revival since, ALL of the grace-gifts are present and flourishing to accomplish The Great Commission. The Old Testament wasn’t even finished until 90 AD as political reaction to Christianity. The New Testament wasn’t even finished until 325 AD also because of political pressures, though many segments of the Church to this day don’t agree. The more you look into Bible Info, the more you realize there is NO WAY that could be “The Perfect that is coming” in order to justify Cessationism! The New Testament writers say that “gramma writings are the palaiotes ‘old, antiquated, worn-out, useless, obsolete’ ministry but the ‘completely-different-in-kind, superior’ NEW way is by-the-means-of the Spirit.”
All the promises of the Old Testament about use being “taught by God” directly are fulfilled in the New Testament by The Promise of the “One is Your Teacher” Holy Spirit! The Writers would scream: “You have the Anointing of the Holy & Righteous One, so you have absolutely-in-fact-NO need of anybody else teaching you. Remain in Him” but “I am writing this to warn you about teachers that are deceiving you!” It’s time to get back to “The One Teacher!” It’s time for “Wisdom and Understanding and Knowledge thru Revelation by-the-means-of The Spirit.” The Writers tell us this is the “true Milk of the Spirit” and “solid food to become mature on,” not the OLD “milk” of learning writings of the Law that is 97.4% or even prophetic oracles of 2.6% of the Old Testament. Now we “learn about God’s Will through the gymnasium-like practice of discernment” – it’s no longer spelled out for us like we were still in kindergarten!
This means we must be Christ’s “Sheep who actually listen/hear-to-understand/know My Voice” by His “directly-spoken/heard rhema words that are Spirit and zoe genuine-life” that “come out of the mouth of God that we can zoa genuinely-live by” than “never come back void but accomplish exactly what I send them out to do!” The New Covenant Way is NO LONGER “reading, writing, and arithmetic” – no longer relying on the “might and power” of reading, analyzing, comprehending, memorizing, and debating gramma writings collected 100s to 1000s of years later into books, even called graphe scripture by religious men, but instead “The Way” of “By-the-means-of My Spirit” says the Lord! The grace-gifts are that!
And you can’t ‘cherry-pick’ which of them you still are applicable. It’s ALL or nothing, because when you say NO, you say NO to the Person of the Holy Spirit and that “quenches the Holy Spirit.” You are saying, “Get out of my house!” But God “opposes the proud/arrogant but give His grace to the humble/teachable.” We see Church Fathers realizing this all thru history – if you say NO to any grace-gifts, you kick the Spirit out, you don’t end up with the fruit of the Spirit either! The flip-side is that if you flourish in grace-gifts, you flourish in the fruit! It’s because you are saying YES to the Spirit controlling your life. It’s all about surrendering control and having trusting-relying-faith.
We have been freed or released from the “abolished” old way! The writers would scream: “But now that you have come to experientially, relationally ginosko know God, rather however having been experientially, relationally ginosko known by God, how do you presently/ongoingly turn-back AGAIN to these asthenes ‘weak, impotent, worthless, beggarly-poor’ and/coupled ptochos ‘deeply destitute and helpless like a crouching or cowering beggar’ stoicheion ‘elementary or rudimentary ‘abc’ fundamental principles of the world, even its religions, even Judaism’, whose slaves you want to be once more?”
Watch out for the diabolical doctrine of Cessationism! It’s in a slew of bibles and churches. It will rob you of God’s promised genuine-life by-the-means-of the Spirit because these words come directly from the mouth of Christ, not from dusty old letters. “Living water” must be “fresh, running, and flowing” to be “life-giving.” Once it sits for very long, it can actually be deadly! You have to drink from the “living and active Logos Word of God” that is “Jesus Christ, the Logos of God,” but we do this by “listening/hearing His rhema directly-spoken/heard Word of God” that alone “produces trusting-relying-faith.” We still must be “all taught by God.”
Then we can be like the apostles and prophets who preach/witness the gospel logos message effectively with demonstrable-proofs of signs, wonders, miracles, and grace-gifts that confirm the message,” proving that “God really is among you!” Otherwise we are NOT “fully preaching/witnessing the gospel” but on your own with a powerless, “form or appearance of godliness but denying its power” message. Then you will resort to dogma, doctrine, creeds, theology, and apologetics to try to “defend the faith” and convince people into the kingdom. But the Catholic Church failed because assimilation is NOT conversion and defense is NOT offense, and you can’t win a game with just defense, no matter how strong you try to make it.
Christian water-baptism originally included the expectation that you would be Spirit-Baptized so that you would be “filled to overflowing” with the “grace-gifts of the Holy Spirit” for personal enabling-power but also for Body-Ministry and witness to the end of the ages. We still have a huge Spiritual battle so why are we refusing to be properly equipped? Once you close the door on the Holy Spirit, you start trying to manufacture the results with your own “might and power” and then you are right back to the religion of the Old Testament. That is much of Church history after about 200 AD except for revivals. If we don’t learn from history we are bound to repeat their mistakes. Just look at our government!
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