Operations, or purposes, of tongues is not taught much within the church world today. The reason being is that not much is known of spiritual things by the church. This isn’t to mean that many don’t understand spiritual things, but as a whole, the church doesn’t understand too much on these things. Many in the church are caught up too much in the natural world rather than the spiritual world and so they don’t really have an understanding of these things.
But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. – 1 Corinthians 2:14
However, there are four different purposes for the gift of speaking in tongues that come along with the baptism of the Holy Ghost for the believer. It is a benefit for every believer to understand this because some believe that speaking in tongues is only for one or two reasons and some even use these operations or purposes to try and prove that what some spirit-filled believers are doing is wrong. But it is not wrong, just for different purposes.
Tongues As A Sign For Unbelievers
Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not: but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe. – 1 Corinthians 14:2
One operation or purpose of tongues is for the benefit of unbelievers as a sign. This was what first happened on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2. All those who were gathered together in the upper room started speaking in tongues and those who heard were amazed because they spoke in their own language. This gave Peter the opportunity to preach the Gospel and about three thousand were saved.
Tongues And Interpretation
I would that ye all spake with tongues but rather that ye prophesied: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying. – 1 Corinthians 14:5
Speaking in tongues with the interpretation is meant to build up and edify the body of Christ. That is the purpose of tongues in this operation.
Tongues To Pray Out The Mysteries Of God
For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries. – 1 Corinthians 14:2
Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. – Romans 8:26
Tongues for the purpose of praying out the mysteries of God is for individual or corporate prayer. It is for the purpose of praying out what God wants to do for a specific person or place. We do not know what we are praying for unless God reveals it to us, even though we can still have that note of victory when we pray. When tongues is being used for this purpose, individuals and groups can literally pray out the future of individuals, ministries, or areas, bringing God’s plans from the spiritual realm into the natural realm.
Tongues For Spiritual Edification
He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church. – 1 Corinthians 14:4
But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost… – Jude 20
The purpose of tongues for this operation is to build up the Christian in his or her spirit, edifying that which is already there. The Word of God, the revelation you have received is built up within you as you pray in tongues.
No matter the purpose of the tongues you are praying, know that just doing so will benefit you as you grow in God.