The Witness of Speaking With Other Tongues
"And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as
many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also
was poured out the gift of the
holy Ghost. For they heard
them speak with tongues, and magnify God." (Acts 10:44-46)
The overall evidence throughout the Scriptures, with regard to speaking with other tongues being the initial evidence of someone
the baptism of the
holy Ghost, is really irrefutable. But of all the scriptural evidence that is available to us, this passage has increasingly become the most powerful witness to me over the years. It is so very clear by this passage that the elders and
the early believers fully understood that speaking with other tongues was and is THE witness furnished by God, to confirm every person whose faith and repentance is found acceptable to HIM!
It had been some time since Pentecost, by the time Peter was sent to Cornelius and his household. A great number of Jews had been converted. The Samaritans also had received the baptism of the
holy Ghost. And Peter, as well as the men who accompanied him to the house of Cornelius, had certainly been in the middle of the action; and by this time they knew that God was not leaving it in the hands of men to decide who was really repenting and believing on Jesus with all their heart. They understood that God had appointed a sign of His own choosing to accompany the conversion, or new birth of everyone that He accepts into His fold. This is made even more clear by Peter's words in Acts 15:7-9: "... And God, which knoweth the hearts, BARE THEM WITNESS, giving them the
holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; And put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith." He was speaking here about Cornelius and his people receiving the baptism of the
holy Ghost in Acts 10, saying that God alone knows the hearts of men; and He alone can bare witness to someone's heart being purified from sin by His Spirit, through faith in Jesus (I Cor. 6:11). And at the same time, he was also declaring that speaking with other tongues IS that witness from God. Amen and amen!!
As the Scripture clearly states, Peter and the brethren with him knew, ONLY after hearing the Gentiles speaking with other tongues, that indeed God had poured out the
holy Ghost on them. They would not have accepted testimony from men (i.e. in this case, Cornelius & household). Like Jesus, they knew better (Jn. 2:24,25). They fully realized that no man is able to judge his own heart as being acceptable, in regard to faith and repentance toward God
(Jer. 17:9,10). They also understood, as seen by Peter's testimony from Acts 15:7-9 (mentioned above), that they (Peter, etc.) could not make that determination themselves. That belongs to God alone. This is what they understood, and this is what we need to understand.
The doctrines that have been invented by men, which seem to provide another way for an individual to get right with God, are all based on
someone judging themselves to be acceptable to God, and/or someone
else doing it for them; both of which are totally unscriptural, and actually nonsensical in the sight of God. These popular traditions are known as "getting saved," "accepting the Lord," "repeating the sinner's prayer," and "confessing Jesus with your mouth." None of these man made "new birth" doctrines require the witness furnished by God, which was recognized by wise men in the early
days of the body of Christ; but rather they rely totally on the witness of men, which neither Jesus nor the apostles and elders would have accepted.
The common defence of these unscriptural doctrines is that someone "just has to know in their heart" that their sins have been forgiven. But the Bible says that "He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool:" (Prov. 28:26). What we need to do is abide by what GOD has established, which is scripturally confirmed; and forsake what man has
tried to establish, which is contrary to God's way. Then we can achieve the latter part of the afore mentioned proverb: "...but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered" (Prov.28:26 also). Amen. See our gospel tract on
for yet a fuller explanation of this all important bible truth.