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Friday, May 21, 2010

Gifts Manifest

Dear beloved: In chapter 11:1 of Genesis we read, Now the whole earth used the same language and the same words v2 and it came about as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in Shinar and settled there. v3 And they said to one another, "Come let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly." And they used brick for stone, and tar for mortar. v4 And they said," Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name; lest we be scattered over the face of the earth." v5 And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower that the sons of men had built. v6 And the Lord said, "Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they propose to do will be impossible for them." v7 "Come, let Us go down and there and confuse their language, that they may not understand one another's speech. v8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of the whole earth....And so ends the futile attempt by man to build a tower into heaven and again take over the throne of God; God dispersed them and foiled their plans by confusing their language.

When the Holy Spirit was poured out on the apostles in the Acts 2, God gave His children back the language that would unite all believers: the language of the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance. This language is common to all Spirit baptized beleivers anywhere in the world, no matter what tribe, tongue, or nation. To most it seems like a silly thing, a language that the speaker himself does not understand, yet it can be interpreted by activating another of the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit, the gift of interpretation. In fact, it sounded so silly on that day of Pentecost that some of the bystanders accused the apostles of being drunk! v13 But others were mocking and saying, "They are full of sweet wine." v14 But Peter, taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and declared to them: "Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you and give heed to my words, v15 for these men are not drunk as you suppose, for it only the third hour of the day; v16 but this is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel;... then Peter goes on to recite the prophecy of Joel concerning the pouring out of the Holy Spirit on all mankind, and he explained that it was happening right now!

The gift of tongues is the evidence of the receiving of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the language that ties us all together. Paul explains it all in 1 Corinthians 1:27 but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the strong v28 and the base things of the world and the despised, God has chosen, the things that are not, that He might nullify the things that are, v29 that no man should boast before God....Isn't that amazing, God gave us a language that we cannot learn to speak, it is a supernatural gift, whose meaning can only be interpreted by another supernatural gift also from God. Talk about confounding the wisdom of the wise, God sure did know how to do that.

Just recently the world's tallest building opened for business in Dubai, not far from the land of Shinar where the oringinal Tower of Babel was built. This new tower, whose name is Burj Khalifa, stands 2625 feet tall, over 160 stories, and cost 1.5 billion dollars to build. Needless to say, it is a great engineering feat and will be a source of great boasting for Dubai and the Arab world. It seems that man never tires of boasting about his own accomplishments, and he never seems to tire of trying to build a tower into heaven, to take over the throne of God. I'm sure there is already on the drawing board a building that will surpass this one in height and magnificence. You might be interested to know what Burj Khalifa means: Successor to the messenger of God, or another way to say it would be Steward of Prophet Muhammed. So you see the devil is still trying to take over the throne room, building his building up into heaven. Beloved, do not boast of your own accomplishments or understanding, but seek God's, the One who created you. His language will edify you, for it is not of man's intellect or wisdom, but it is from the One who created your tongue to begin with. Tomorrow we'll talk more about this amazing gift from God. God bless you, in Christ, Jim

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