Prophecy and Tongues
Pursue love, and desire the spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. For he who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men, but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries. But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men. He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church. Now I wish that you all spoke in tongues, but even more that you should prophesy; for he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may be edified.
Tongues Must Be Interpreted
But now, brothers, if I come to you speaking in tongues, what shall I profit you unless I speak to you either in a revelation, or in knowledge, or in a prophecy, or in doctrine? Likewise the lifeless things, when they make a sound, whether flute or harp, unless they make a distinction in the tones, how will it be known what is being played on the flute, or what is being played on the harp? For if the trumpet gives an indistinct sound, who will prepare for battle? So also you, if you do not give a clear word by the tongue, how will it be known what is being spoken? For you will be speaking into the air. 10 There are, perhaps, so many kinds of languages in the world, and none of them without meaning. 11 Therefore, if I do not know the meaning of the language, I shall be as a foreigner to the one speaking, and the one speaking shall be as a foreigner to me. 12 So also you, since you are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that you may abound to the edification of the church.
13 Therefore let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret. 14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful. 15 What is the outcome then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the mind. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the mind. 16 Otherwise, if you bless with the spirit, how will he who occupies the place of the uninformed say “Amen” when you give thanks, since he does not know what you are saying? 17 For you indeed give thanks well, but the other is not edified.
18 I thank my God I speak with tongues more than you all; 19 but in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, in order that I may instruct others, rather than ten thousand words in a tongue.
Tongues a Sign to Unbelievers
20 Brothers, do not be children in your understanding; rather, in malice be children, but in understanding be men. 21 In the law it is written:
With men of other tongues and by strange lips I will speak to this people;
and yet not even in this way will they hear Me,”
says the Lord.
22 So then tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophesying is not for unbelievers but for those who believe. 23 If then the whole church comes together at the same place, and all speak in tongues, and there come in those that are unlearned or unbelievers, will they not say that you are mad? 24 But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an unlearned person comes in, he is reproved by all, he is discerned by all. 25 And so the secrets of his heart become clear; and so, falling down on his face, he will worship God, reporting that God is truly among you!
Order in Church Meetings
26 What is the outcome then, brothers? Whenever you come together, each of you has a song, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification. 27 If anyone speaks in an unknown tongue, let it be by two or at the most three, each in turn, and let one interpret. 28 But if there is no interpreter, let him be silent in church, and let him speak to himself and to God. 29 Let two or three prophets speak, and let others discriminate. 30 But if something is revealed to another who sits by, let the first be silent. 31 For you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged. 32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. 33 For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints. 34 Let your women be silent in the churches, for it is not permitted for them to speak, but to be in subjection, just as the law also says. 35 And if they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is shameful for women to speak in church.
36 Or did the word of God go forth from you? Or did it come to you only? 37 If anyone thinks that he is a prophet, or is spiritual, let him recognize that the things which I am writing to you are the commandments of the Lord. 38 But if anyone is ignorant, let him be ignorant.
39 Therefore, brothers, seek to prophesy, and do not forbid to speak in tongues. 40 Let all things be done properly and according to order.