Classical Pentecostals typically affirm that “the initial evidence

Posted by Andrew Gabriel in Facebook's Pentecostal Theology Group View the Original Post

https://andrewgabriel.wordpress.com/2017/01/24/misunderstanding-tongues-as-initial-evidence-of-spirit-baptism/

Classical Pentecostals typically affirm that “the initial evidence of the baptism in the Holy Spirit is speaking in other tongues as the Spirit gives utterance.”[1] I frequently encounter Christian…

49 Comments

  • Reply January 24, 2017

    David McLaughlin

    Gabriel leaves out a word used by classical Pentecostals. They believe tongues to be the initial “physical” evidence of the baptism into the Holy Spirit.

  • Reply January 24, 2017

    Dan Irving

    I must disagree with your article asserting “Speaking in tongues is not the only sign of Spirit baptism.” While there are certainly many effects of the baptism, the only evidence provided by scripture is tongues. (Acts 2:4, Acts 10:46, Acts 19:6.) Therefore, I believe it is dangerous to reassure people with evidence that is not expressly provided them by scripture, which might cause them to cease asking God for the Holy Spirit. Believers need to ask until they receive. As to your specific points, I will say that:
    1. “Speaking the word of God boldly,” may be an effect of the Holy Spirit’s baptism, but it is not “evidence.” Consider we are expressly told that Apollos was a bold preacher of the Gospel before he was even aware of the Holy Spirit’s baptism.
    2. Signs and wonders are not expressly nor impliedly provided as evidence of the baptism. Even False Prophets are said to do this.
    3. “Receiving guidance” may be an effect, but it is no evidence. False spirits attempt to guide us as well, making this a dangerous assertion.
    4. “Dreams and visions,” “Unity,”, “Fruits,” may be an effects of the baptism, but they are never presented as evidence. Tongues is.
    But consider the practical effect of your teaching. How would you counsel someone seeking after the baptism? Should they quit seeking upon having a “dream?” Upon “speaking boldly?” Upon “working a miracle?” The early Pentecostals exhorted men to continue seeking God for the Spirit until they had the evidence. But you would exhort men to quit based upon ambiguous allusions that even New Agers would assert.

  • Reply January 24, 2017

    Vlad Stepanov

    #3 will upset some, but it’s true.

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    I will refrain from commenting at this time. The article is intentionally provocative and with very little theology to back it up. Only one verse cited which is actually from opposing argument. As rightly asserted under the posters previous publication this is exactly what new-Charismatic churches are attempting to change in the Pentecostal teaching. It will not work. The bible says “tongues” [period]

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Thank you Andrew Gabriel for posting this. I’m glad you point out that tongues speech is not the ONLY evidence, but is the INITIAL (first) evidence. It is such an important distinction for a vital doctrine.

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    Well Tim if you read carefully that’s not what was said but let the author defend his point after all

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    The grammar is clear to me, and I would qualify as an average reader. You seem to bent on reading more than what is there.

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    Could be but I am pretty certain “2. The initial evidence doctrine does NOT mean that baptism in the Holy Spirit is only about gaining the ability to speak in tongues.” does not mean “tongues speech is not the ONLY evidence, but is the INITIAL” Let’s ask the author himself Andrew Gabriel to clarify his position plainly

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Correct.. that was point 1

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    How could there be INITIAL evidences? Such claim proposes a major theological oxymoron

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    No such thing as initial evidences… many evidences, 1 initial evidence (tongues).

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Nowhere does he use the term “initial evidences.” His article needs to be read in the context of what “initial evidence does not mean.”

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Further… point 2 speaks more about purpose than it does function. To say it even more plainly than he does… 2. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit isn’t about tongues even though tongues will happen.

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    Pentecostal minus speaking in tongues = bapticostal

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Andrew isn’t arguing against speaking in tongues.

  • Reply January 25, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Maybe I should bring this article up with our High School students tonight and see if they can grasp the meaning….

  • Reply January 26, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    I have to agree with Dan Irving and many others in the group to disagree with your article asserting “Speaking in tongues is not the only sign of Spirit baptism.”

    Here we go from the article “2. The initial evidence doctrine does NOT mean that baptism in the Holy Spirit is only about gaining the ability to speak in tongues.” It is not very clear grammatically but the phrase “only about gaining” hardly means “tongues speech is not the ONLY evidence, but is the INITIAL”. Would you agree it’s a far fetch for the average reader?

    Further more, the Holy Spirit baptism is absolutely NOT gaining an ability. Far from us such heretical teaching that we are able or controlling the tongues of the Spirit. The believer does not have such ability – the ability belongs to the Spirit. The believer is only given a gift from God to be able to operate in the ability of the Spirit to speak in tongues. Hence, Paul says it is not us praying but the Spirit through us. His ability – not ours. The rest is heresy…

  • Reply January 26, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Heresy is a word that gets thrown around way too freely and often.

  • Reply January 27, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    Please show anywhere in history since the day of Pentecost any orthodox theology that claims Holy Ghost baptism without speaking in tongues. The opposite exclusion defines heresy. Yet, this is not what the article asks – pls reread carefully. There is a good number of deviating words there allowing for back door claims. Not true theology. Major theological fail!

  • Reply January 27, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    Sorry, I’m not arrogant enough to write off the majority of Christian church as heretics. As important as Spirit Baptism is, cessationists aren’t heretics. Theological error, yes, but not heresy.

  • Reply January 27, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    In Andrew’s defense (and he doesn’t need me to defend him), he holds to the classical pentecostal doctrine of initial evidence. His blog is neither a defence nor an assault on that doctrine.

  • Reply January 27, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    Please show anywhere in history since the day of Pentecost any orthodox theology that claims Holy Ghost baptism without speaking in tongues. The article is indirectly making precisely such claims. I am quite not sure what do you feel is “the classical Pentecostal doctrine” but Baptism with the Holy Spirit without speaking in tongues is not “classical Pentecostal doctrine ” Wouldnt you agree?

  • Reply January 27, 2017

    Tim Renneberg

    If you read clearly, I used the qualifier “initial evidence” so, yes, I agree. I see no reason to continue this as you fail to read the article clearly and persist in making claims not present in it.

  • Reply January 27, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    I respectfully disagree. The article clearly states:

    “1. The initial evidence doctrine does NOT mean that tongues are the only evidence of baptism in the Holy Spirit. Rather, the “initial” statement indicates that there could, and indeed should, be subsequent evidence such as those listed above. If tongues are the only evidence then the “initial” qualifier would be unnecessary.”

    I would like to poll the group on this one. Let’s start with Brody Pope who is an active young Pentecostal evangelist. Could there be baptism with the Holy Spirit without speaking in tongues? Should there be “other evidences” apart from the sufficient initial evidence?

  • Reply January 27, 2017

    Brody Pope

    There are other evidences besides speaking on tongues that show a person have been filled with the Holy Ghost. But speaking in tongues is the initial evidence. When you are filled, the first thing you will do is speak in tongues as the Spirit gives the utterance. For reference I would suggest reading the Bible.

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Varnel Watson

    Melvin Dan The difference somewhat clearly explained here. Dan Irving has made remarks in some of his videos on the subject as well

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Melvin Shomo

    I have never heard Dan Irving speak.
    I have never even heard of him till now.
    Do I believe that one has to have tongues to have the infilling of the Holy Spirit?
    No I do not.

    When I became a Christian it was outside the four walls of a Church.
    I spent the first three to four years away from a church, because I didn’t trust any body.
    I had read my Bible like a Novel.
    I had heard tongues being mentioned on the PTL program. And thought that they weren’t for me.
    I had never heard anyone pray in tongues, because I wasn’t in a Church yet.
    So I had asked the Lord if they were his will for me, then I wanted all that he had for me.
    I knew nothing of the GIFTS of the Holy Spirit, but yet I could feel other people’s emotions.
    I was coming home from work and a fella was hitchhiking. The Lord had spoken within me telling me to pick him up.
    But I kept on going thinking that it was just me.
    I passed the hitchhiker and I heard it again to turn around and pick him up.
    The Lord said I want you to spend the day with him.
    So I picked him up and had told him what the Lord had told me.
    Here he was a backslidden Christian. He took me to this elderly lady’s house that was a Christian.
    She asked me if I was ever baptized in the Holy Spirit.
    I said, “as far as I am concerned I have been. How else would I have known to pick this hitchhiker up if I couldn’t hear the Lord’s voice.
    She said, “let me say it another way, do you have your prayer language yet?
    All I could think of was the front door, but I knew what I had prayed to the Lord concerning tongues. And I stayed put, seeing what would happen next.
    I spoke to the Lord inside myself, I am not going to do this in front of people, but if she asks me to go too a backroom, I will go.
    The Lady spoke up and said, “Would you like to go too a backroom?
    To my relief, I said yes, and off we went.
    She helped me to release my prayer language, and in the process I received what I had prayed in tongues. It was a prayer for my mother.
    The Lord had reassured me that my mother would become a Christian.
    My mother did a few weeks later. I took my mother to see this same Lady.
    I had asked this lady, “How did you get started praying for people to release their prayer language?
    She said that one of her friends had sought the baptism for years and the Church was no help.
    She had told her friend to come to her place, and they both would not stop until she received her prayer language.
    She had told me it didn’t happen instantly but when it did happen she now had the faith to help others release their faith..

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Varnel Watson

    Well Melvin you are clearly a non-Pentecostal Charismatic

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Randal W Deese

    I absolutely affirm that the initial evidence of receiving the Gift of the Holy Spirit is speaking in tongues.

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Varnel Watson

    Randal that is so strange coming from you 🙂

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Varnel Watson

    Randal W Is Orthodox Pentecostal sabbatarian too?

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Melvin Shomo

    Troy the first church that I ended up going too after meeting my first Christians three to four years later after my conversion, was a Charismatic Church. I knew nothing of the Charismatic movement.
    I had shared some of the things that I was experiencing to two different members at different times.
    They were so clueless concerning the gifts of the Holy Spirit that they both had said to me, “are you sure this is of God, you better pray about it.

    I had found out that by me reading my Bible like a Novel in those first few years, that I knew more about those gifts then the members that claimed to have such gifts.
    Probably because I had worn two Bibles out in this short of time.
    The things that I had shared with those members I am still experiencing today.

    Jesus could feel other people’s emotions even down to know what they were thinking, by their emotions.
    My sister said to me one time that she couldn’t let her thoughts go because I could answer her according to her thoughts.
    I don’t will it to happen it only happens as the Spirit of God will it to happen.
    Jesus had said, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
    Anything that Jesus could do, the believer can do like wise

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Melvin Shomo

    Cell phones can be a trip ?

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Randal W Deese

    I do disagree with point three on the list.

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Louise Cummings

    Amen

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Varnel Watson

    Randal There is much to disagree with in the article by Andrew a Canadian Pentecostal. Never before have I met anyone who claimed to be Pentecostal but does not speak in tongues However do note the careful language in #3

    The initial evidence doctrine does NOT mean that Christians who have not spoken in tongues do not have the Holy Spirit dwelling within them.

    It says dwelling, not baptism. Terminology used by some proto Pentecostals who later our AoG laft behind for various errors. I am still uncertain if the baptism with the Holy Ghost is meant by that terminology.

    The Bible is pretty clear to me – they were ALL baptized and ALL spake tongues as the Holy Ghost gave them utterance

    • Reply March 2, 2018

      Andrew Gabriel

      Indeed, “dwelling” is language that Pentecostals have typically used to refer to all Christians who have received the Spirit at conversion, whereas they have tended to use “filled with the Spirit” or “baptized in the Spirit” to refer to those who have received the Spirit with the sign of speaking in tongues.

    • Reply March 2, 2018

      Andrew Gabriel

      Note that the latter language is from Luke (Acts especially) and the former language is used by Paul, NOT Luke (see for example, Rom 8:11 and 1 Cor 3:16). It seems pretty clear that Paul has all Christians in mind when he says that the Spirit “dwells” in them.

    • Reply March 2, 2018

      Randal W Deese

      Andrew Gabriel

      Although it is the typical view, it lacks hermeneutical strength. I believe the Oneness Pentecostals are more consistent (and I’m not one), but they took it too far. The middle position is what I hold to, which also and well with the Historical Church position.

    • Reply March 2, 2018

      Varnel Watson

      but it does sound as Oneness Pentecostals

    • Reply March 2, 2018

      Randal W Deese

      Troy Day

      My view is between the two views… and I believe fits better than either view that forces passages to be shoehorned into their positions…

    • Reply March 3, 2018

      Randal W Deese

      Andrew Gabriel

      Romans chapter 8 and first Corinthians chapter 3 do teach that believers are in dwelt by the Holy Spirit, indeed. However, what do these passages teach us about the timing of this indwelling?

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Randal W Deese

    I teach that the Gift of the Holy Spirit is what Jesus promised and that the term Baptism with the Holy Spirit was an idiom to express the reality of receiving the Gift Himself, thus, the Indwelling!

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Varnel Watson

    Can one teach others the gifts of the Spirit 🙂 http://www.pentecostaltheology.com/class-on-speaking-in-tongues/

  • Reply March 1, 2018

    Randal W Deese

    No, but one can give insights. For example, if one has just received the gift of serving, and another has the same gift, the one who just received the gift of serving can gain many valuable insights from the person who has been using the gift of serving for years.

  • Reply March 2, 2018

    Varnel Watson

    Andrew yes Luka/Acts Lukian, but not only Paul. We are discussing with Randal the Johanine implications of the Holy Ghost baptism exhortation in Jn 20:22 here https://www.facebook.com/groups/pentecostaltheologygroup/permalink/1632386786816330/

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