Speaking in Tongues, Pt. 5

Scripture: Matthew 24:4-5, Matthew 24:24, Revelation 13:14
Some of the gifts listed in the New Testament are miraculous. Can Satan create a counterfeit of these unusual gifts? Does the Bible give us any warning about this? Clear warnings are given to not be deceived because Satan will seek to entice people with truth and error mixed.
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Announcer: It's time now for Bible Talk. Join our hosts, Gary Gibbs and John Bradshaw, speakers for the Amazing Facts ministry, as they now open the Bible and discuss themes that affect your life today. Stay tuned because the next 15 minutes will deepen your understanding of God's word.

John Bradshaw: Hi friends and welcome again to Bible Talk, where we talk about what the Bible has to say to us today. I'm John Bradshaw and with me again is Gary Gibbs. Hi Gary.

Gary Gibbs: Hi John. Boy today is a beautiful day and we have a fantastic topic to talk about.

John: I really have been enjoying our last few discussions, as we've been talking about the gifts of the Holy Spirit. We've discussed speaking in tongues and some other things as well.

Gary: Tongues especially because so many Churches and so many of my friends, John, and I'm sure so many of your friends, do have the gift of tongues as they understand it, and yet, everything has to be tested by the Bible, doesn't it?

John: Yeah, that's right. This is a gift that crosses denominational barriers. It is something that you and I have both had experience being around, or near, or in the midst of. But you're right, this is so spectacular, so powerful, some people love this thing so much. You've got to come back to the Bible and say, "Is this really biblical?"

Gary: Now, John, you've mentioned something last time that made me perk up, and I'm sure our listener's did as well, you indicated that not every supernatural gift that somebody demonstrates is necessarily from God. Now listen, God is love, God is supernatural. Where else would something like gifts of healing or gifts of tongue or prophesying, come from? I know there's a devil out there but God wouldn't allow that, would he?

John: The Bible makes very, very clear that the devil is an effective miracle worker. That might come as a surprise to a lot of people, but it's clear and it's in the Bible.

Gary: But John, he's a miracle worker through the new age, through the spiritualism and mediums.

John: You mean it wouldn't happen in the Church?

Gary: Not in the Church John.

John: Let me read from Matthew chapter 24. Jesus said - this is in the all of it discourse - they came to him and they said, "Tell us what shall be thy sign of coming of all of this?"

Gary: So he's talking about the last days?

John: Sure and Jesus answered and said, "First thing, be careful that no one deceives you." Isn't that interesting? He didn't say, "OK here are the signs." First off, be careful that nobody pulls the wall over your eyes, and he's talking to his followers, Churchgoers. See?

Gary: So that must mean in the last days, there's going to be a lot of...

John: Deception.

Gary: Yes.

John: If you believe it, verse five, "Many will come saying I am Christ, and they shall deceive many." Verse 11 in Matthew 24, Gary why don't you read that?

Gary: "Many false prophets shall rise and shall deceive many."

John: That's right. The Bible says, "They will show great signs and wonders so that if it were possible, they would deceive the very elect." Matthew 24 verse 24.

Gary: Now I thought the very elect could not be deceived? They're the elect. They're the chosen of God. How could they be possibly deceived?

John: I tell you what, whenever you put your senses before the Bible, what you see before what the word of God says. Whenever you let anything override the plain word of God, you're opening yourself up to be deceived and let astray. It's that simple.

Gary: Now how does the devil deceive? Now I've had people deceive me by just telling me lies and tricking me. They didn't have to use anything supernatural, but how does the devil deceive people?

John: Many people have got the idea that when the devil comes along, what is he going to look like? He's going to have a red suit?

Gary: He's got a red body suit on. He has two horns on his head. He has a barb tail and a pitchfork in his hand.

John: That's right. The devil knows better than that. In that last days, if he set himself up at the mall with a little booth, probably booth number 666, and he said, "Come on and get the mark of the beast from me. I want to give it to you. Step right up." I don't think too many people are going to be deceived by that.

Gary: They wouldn't be. In fact, I read story, a true story. It didn't even come from a preacher. It came from a man in the financial world and he was telling about a bill, one of our recent presidents was considering, to stop terrorism and drug smuggling and that kind of thing, where everybody would be given a chip. One of these verachips or microchips implanted in them.

John: I'd go for it if they were going to give me a corn chip.

Gary: [laughs] They were all seated around the table, the President's cabinet, and the President suggested this as a way to control people coming in and out of our country. And it got really quiet, John.

John: No kidding.

Gary: And somebody chuckled nervously and said, "Huh, sounds like the mark of the beast doesn't it?" And they got off the topic.

John: You know, that is another deception. We've talked about the mark of the beast on Bible Talk before, and that's going to be tremendous deception in the last days. But just to pick up on that, see.

Gary: But you're saying, the devil is not going there... have a placard saying come receive 666.

John: Oh, no.

Gary: So how does he deceive people and how does this tie into the gifts of the spirit and the counterfeits that you're talking about?

John: Now, he slides things in another way. Like the mark of the beast, this will be offered to the world as a solution to problems, as a great thing, as a good thing. He wants you to think that what he's offering is desirable and necessary. In fact, in 2 Corinthians, the Bible says that the devil works as an angel of light.

Gary: Now what does that mean, he works as an angel of light?

John: It means, don't expect him to come along with horns, and a pitchfork and snarl. Maybe, you could expect him to come along being a preacher, wearing a fine suit speaking eloquently.

John: A Rolex watch.

Gary: Hey, speaking eloquently, maybe with a TV ministry with an entourage, a poise.

Gary: Hey, hey. Be careful. A good friend of mine has a TV ministry and you and I work for a TV and radio ministry.

John: And I would say even when it comes to amazing facts test it by the word of God.

Gary: And Bible Talk. Test it by the word of God.

John: Absolutely. Revelation chapter 13, it talks about fire coming down from heaven. "He doeth great wonders in the sight of man and deceives them." Get ready for this because a lot of people see the TV preachers, and they say, "He apparently healed someone. This man must of God." But look at verse 14, "He deceives them that dwell on the Earth, by the means of the miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast." Now I know, I'm not saying that miracles are bad things.

Gary: No because we read that there's going to be true miracles.

John: I'm all for the true working of God, but understand there are going to be false miracles as well.

Gary: And that's what makes it deceptive is because it looks like they're true.

John: That's right.

Gary: If I were to give you a $3 bill...I don't think I've ever seen a bona fide $3 bill.

John: I'm not going to go for that, Gary.

Gary: You're not going to take it.

John: That's right.

Gary: But if I give you a counterfeit $20, unless you know how to spot the counterfeit...

John: I'm off to the mall.

Gary: You're off to the penitentiary, my friend. [laughter]

John: Yeah, I guess that could happen. I'm saying I'm off to the mall in my ignorance, if I don't know the difference.

Gary: So you need to know how to spot the counterfeit.

John: That's right.

Gary: And how do we spot the counterfeit of the gifts of the Spirit?

John: By knowing the true gifts of the Spirit and how they work truthfully.

Gary: Is there a book that I can read? Is there a manual that says, "These are the true gifts of the Spirit"?

John: Yes, there is. It's called the Holy Bible, and as you read the Word of God and you read those passages that deal with that, God will lead you. Now, you've got to have an open heart. You've got to be teachable. You've got to be leadable. What does it say in one John, Chapter 4, Verse 1? A little passage that speaks to that directly. How about it, Gary, you read that verse. This is an important verse.

Gary: Very good. It's the small Book of John, right before the book of Revelation. "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits, whether they are of God, because many false prophets are gone out into the world."

John: Now there's a clear warning there, isn't there? "Try the spirits." Just because it looks good, just because it's impressive, just because he or she takes the name of Jesus, doesn't mean it's necessarily from God. In Revelation Chapter 16, you read about three unclean spirits like frogs. They came out of the mouth of the dragon beast, false prophets. Verse 14 says...this makes it very clear, "They are the spirits of devils working miracles." So it says the devil works miracles right there.

Gary: I picked up on something here. You said "False prophet comes out of the mouth of the false prophet." I've never seen a prophet advertise they're a false prophet.

John: No one ever does. You don't see signs outside a church. You know these churches that have those signs you can put messages on, and some of them are usually clever or cute or funny?

Gary: Yes.

John: No sign ever read, "Don't come here. We don't teach the truth."

Gary: No, the very nature of a false prophet is to entice people in by pretending like they're a true prophet, and then take advantage of that.

John: The whole thing is deception. Understand, Christian friend: in these days, there is gross deception going on, even in the name of Jesus Christ.

Gary: But John, I've met a lot of people, and they're listening to us right now and they're thinking, "This is too difficult. I'm not a Bible scholar. I'm a busy housewife. I've got a job. I have to clean the house and feed the kids. My husband, he is busy. I can't figure this all out. God's just going to have to trust my heart and I don't have time for this."

John: Every Christian needs to have time for the Bible. I would say that as the Holy Spirit leads you, remember Jesus said he would guide you into all...what?

Gary: All truth.

John: All truth. This is not a matter of rocket science. This isn't quantum physics, if you just take your Bible and read one Corinthians 12. Read 1 Corinthians 14. Read Acts Chapter two and find out what went on at Pentecost. Really, it's very clear. Read it and be prayerful about it and say, "God, I am willing to be undeceived."

Gary: But everybody has their own view, John, of what these things mean.

John: That's true, and everybody will, all the way until Jesus comes.

Gary: So you hear one preacher emphasizes one verse, another emphasizes another verse, and they're contradicting each other.

John: Listen, we all know that if you trust that preacher without checking for yourself, you are never going to be a healthy Christian. So read all the verses that pertain to this subject. Read them yourself and pray, "God, guide me."

Gary: That's a good point. When I first became a Christian, I was confused on some issues, and my sister introduced me to a concordance. Do you know what that is?

John: A concordance is a beautiful Bible study tool.

Gary: It has every word in the Bible in it. I was studying out topics like what happens when you die. I looked up every place the Bible said "die" or "death." As I looked at it, I got God's mind on death.

John: It just reads like a book, doesn't it?

Gary: It made it really clear then. So I guess people could do that on tongues and gifts and miracles and all that as well.

John: Sure, with some of these computer concordances you can get these days, it makes it pretty easy to do that sort of thing too.

Gary: So you're telling me I don't have to depend on someone else. God will use other preachers and teachers because those are gifts as well to help illuminate my mind, but then I need to go back to the Word of God myself and study it.

John: You'd be amazed how many people do not believe that. I had a friend saying, "No, we shouldn't read the Bible. We are faulty. Let the church interpret it for us." But that's not what the Bible says. You read, you pray, you come to Jesus and God will guide you personally.

Gary: How important is that in the last days that we go to Jesus personally?

John: It's so vital because I believe the Bible tells us there's a time of trouble coming such as never was. There'll be overwhelming deceptions and unless we are connected to Christ like a branch to a vine, we can't hope to be led by his spirit safely over to the other shore.

Gary: And we have to build our lives and our faith not on the teachings of men but on the Word of God.

John: Sure and I think a mature Christian would pray, "Lord, help me to know the truth. Undeceive me. Let me follow you and your Word. I'll change if it means standing where you want me to stand." [music]

Gary: And here at Bible Talk, we're hoping that's what people will do. They'll investigate what we have to say.

John: And stand on the Word, and the Word only. Friend, thanks for being with us again. Join Gary and me here next time for more on Bible Talk. [music]

Man 1: If you'd like more information on what we've been studying today, we have a comprehensive Bible study guide we'd love to share with you that's absolutely free. This study includes many of the texts we've just discussed and expands on the subject including information you will wanted to know. To receive this free informative Bible study guide, simply call, write or email and ask for BT 103 It's Still There. The toll free number is 866-BIBLESAYS. That's 866-242-5372. You can write to us at Bible Talk, PO Box 1058, Roseville, California 95678 or email us at bibletalk@amazingfacts.org. Bible Talk has been produced in association with Amazing Facts in the studios of A Life Talk Radio.

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