Updated: Jul 23, 2020
Speaking in Tongues was first introduced by the early church on the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit poured out on the 128 disciples waiting to receive Him in the upper room. The disciples began to speak in tongues - an unknown language – as the Holy Spirit gave them utterance. This out pouring of the Holy Spirit was in fulfilment of Joel’s prophecy Joel 2: 28-32.
As demonstrated in Act, speaking in tongues is the evidence of the infilling of the Holy Spirit. This is not to be confused with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit received by new believers at the new birth. The infilling is additional, separate and only for those that have already experienced the new birth.
Speaking in tongues is a powerful weapon, which believers need to be able to utilise on a daily basis.
In 1 Corinthians 14:2-4, Paul explains the uniqueness of praying in tongues:
For if you have the ability to speak in tongues, you will be talking only to God, since people won’t be able to understand you. You will be speaking by the power of the Spirit, but it will all be mysterious.
However, it’s important to address some of the controversy and confusion surrounding this. First of all, when an individual speaks in tongues, they are in full and totally control of their mouth and the Holy Spirit will never impose Himself upon anyone by taking control of anyone’s mouth. We partner with The Holy Spirit as He gives us utterance when we open our mouth to pray.
Believers can consciously pray in the language of the Holy Spirit and this is the norm. However, there are times when one feels a prompting to begin praying in the Holy Spirit. This usually occurs when the Lord prompts us to pray about a situation, someone, an event we have no idea or clue about but God does and is looking for us to intercede. We are therefore able to partner with the Holy Spirit who knows all things to intercede.
What are the benefits of praying in the Holy Spirit?
As explained by Paul in 1 Corinthians 14, when you pray in tongues, you are praying directly to God and no one can understand you except they have the gift of interpretation. This means that we are praying the perfect will of God free from selfish agendas. It’s important to note the Holy Spirit is the one interceding and it’s His Power behind our prayers.
When we pray in our understanding we are limited to what we know, can see and touch. When we pray in tongues, our prayers are far reaching, without limitations and comprehensive in its totality. For instance we could be praying for the whole body of Christ, for our own personal needs or for another Christian facing a difficult challenge in another continent.
Furthermore, not engaging our understanding when praying in tongues frees us from having to articular our prayer needs in a known language and allows us to pray without inhibition and more often.
Tongues is a powerful tool against spiritual warfare. If you are prone to negative emotions such as fear, anxiety and stress. Praying in tongues will lift and dispel these emotions and provide you with a rest and a refreshing. When one is experiencing pain, praying in tongues alleviates and even heals the body.
There have also been situations where praying in tongues have been effective in expelling demonic oppression because it is an effective fumigator. It is also effective in foiling the machinations of the enemy against you and your family. Most important of all, Satan and his cohorts cannot understand the prayer language
Praying in tongues before an interview or a work presentation will dispel nervousness and anxiety. Tongues can also be used to pray for wisdom insight and discernment before participating in a challenging conversation or situation.
There’s really no limitations to the benefits derived from praying in tongues. It should be a tool that used on a daily basis at all times.