WHAT HAPPENED ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST? —3
THE TOWER OF BABEL
The New Testament miracle of tongues on the day of Pentecost is the counterpart of the Old Testament miracle of
tongues at the Tower of Babel (6enesis 11); and it sounded the end of the curse and confusion which came upon
the men who wanted to make a name and fame for themselves, and did not want to give God the glory. But sad to
say, we are rather slow to learn this lesson properly, and we serve the Lord with imperfect service unconsciously
seeking some glory for ourselves. Even servants of God seek name and fame for themselves, and say, "Otherwise
how will people know to which group or denomination we belong? How will they know that this work is our work, and
these converts are our converts?" Some are very bold and frankly say, "This work is my work and I am the Founder
- President", Others do not like to brazenly take glory to themselves personally, and prefer to do so for their "group"
or "church" or "denomination"; and to make it sound good and honourable take the name of some great man like
Paul, Peter, Apollos, Martin Luther or John Wesley (1 Cor .1: 13). Some theorise like this, "We know all about 1
Cor.1 :12 and 13. But there are many wrong doctrines; therefore we must have a name to identify our group in order
that people may know what we stand for. So what harm is there in saying, I am of Paul?" Thus they make the Word
of God of none effect (Matt.15:6). Thank God there are some who in spite of everything are satisfied to be called
"Christians" according to Acts 11 :26. But let such also be watchful lest Satan tempt them and they become the
proudest of all, like the fourth group in1 Cor:1 :12!
The Holy Spirit of God has come to teach us how to give all the glory to Christ. Who alone is worthy. and be
completely delivered from all the confusion of Babel and Babylon, the synonyms of self-glory. "Howbeit when he,
the Spirit of truth. Is come...He shall glorify me" (John 16:13, 14).
At the Tower of Babel God wrought a miracle and made the people to speak in different tongues so that they could
not understand one another's speech, and they were scattered abroad upon the face of all the earth (Gen.11 :8).
That very thing happened to them which they had wanted to avoid. Their unity could not keep them united.
On the Day of Pentecost exactly the opposite phenomenon happened. Every man heard the disciples speaking in
his own language, describing the wonderful works of God and giving all the glory not to man but to God. Although
they spoke various languages they realized that they were one family in Christ. Soon after. there arose great
persecution because of which they were scattered physically but were united in their love for the Lord (Acts 8:4).
Three kinds of "Tongues"
There are three kinds of tongues mentioned in the Word of God.
(1) "Other tongues" which did not need any interpretation as every one present heard the message in his own
language in a miraculous way (Acts 2:4).
(2) "A tongue" (1 Cor .14:27) which needed interpretation as it was not understood by those present. Of this the
Apostle Paul has laid down by the Holy Spirit as follows: "If there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the
church" (1 Cor.14:28).
(3) "A tongue spoken not to man but to 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". For such cases
also it is laid down, "let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God" (1 Cor.14:2,28). If
you go against what is clearly laid down in the Word of God, you disobey at your peril! One peril is this, you will fall
an easy prey to deceiving spirits who come in the form of an angel of light. Beware of those who speak in "a
tongue" in a manner which does not fall under any known Scriptural category, but show marks of confusion and
disorder such as:
1. More than two or three speaking in tongues at a gathering (1Cor.14:27);
2. Many speaking in tongues at the same time (1 Cor.14:27);
3. Speaking in tongues without interpretation (1Cor.14:27);
4. Saying, "Our spirit cannot be controlled, and we cannot control ourselves from speaking even though it is in a
disorderly way" (1Cor. 14:32);
5. Causing confusion in the assembly even to the knowledge of unbelievers (1 Cor.14:33); and
6. Women speaking in tongues in the church, which is unscriptural whether with or without interpretation. (1
Finally in this connection, "If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things
that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord. But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant" (1
(iv) ''...as the spirit gave them utterance..." There was no effort on the part of the disciples to speak in "other
tongues"; apparently they had no previous conception of it, and never expected it, nor did they seek it; it was a
sovereign act of God and the Spirit Himself gave them utterance. The Word of God never exhorts us anywhere to
expected it or seek it. On the other hand we are exhorted not to speak in tongues, because even though we speak
with the tongues of men and angels and have not love, we would only be like a sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal;
and so we should seek not to speak in "a tongue", but rather to love and to prophesy (1Cor.14:1-3). How sad and
how dangerous it is to seek those things which God does not want us to seek! Let us beware of committing this
When the 120 disciples spoke with "other tongues" on the Day of Pentecost it was with a meaning and a purpose,
and it was in the perfect plan of God, Who is always wonderful in counsel and excellent in working (lsa.28:29). Of all
that happened at that time there was nothing irrelevant, extra or unnecessary .The more enlightenment we receive,
the more intelligently we will be able to say that as always, so also on the Day of Pentecost "He hath done all things
well" (Mark 7:37).
HAVE OVERCOME THE WORLD—5
When the disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ went out to buy food, the Samaritan woman came to the well and our
Lord began to speak to her. He spoke to her of wonderful truths in a very short time, truths which cannot be easily
understood even by the most learned scholars. In John 4:14 He said, "But whosoever drinketh of the water that I
shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into
everlasting life". Then in John 4:24 He said, "God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit
and in truth". These two verses contain the most wonderful truths about salvation, and our Lord was revealing the
same truths to this woman. In John 3 our Lord spoke to Nicodemus, who was a great man in the whole Jewish
nation. He was a member of the Sanhedrin, which had 70 members. To him the Lord spoke as unto a child. He
spoke to him about new birth. But to this woman the Lord revealed great truths. Then slowly and very lovingly He
began to uncover her sin. Even though He knew all about her life, He never told her anything in the beginning. He
spoke to her how to worship God in Spirit and in truth (v.24) and He also told her, that He is the Messiah (v.26).
Then He told her about her condition. The way He spoke to her with love and kindness, straightway she was
delivered from her sinful life and straightway she left her pot and went away (vs.27,28). She did not forget her water
pot; she left it purposely.
In the whole of Sychar, people knew that she had six husbands. She was known as the woman with six husbands.
That is why she came at midday to draw water. She had to come again and again to draw water for the man with
whom she was living in sin. When you live in sin, you have to do many shameful things to hide and cover your sinYou have to do many deceitful things, and use many devices. That woman was tired of her sinful life. She was tired
of drawing water and carrying it for that wicked man. That pot was a symbol of her slavery .She left her water pot
not because she forgot it, but because she was so happy that she left it behind. "The woman then left her water pot,
and went her way into the city" (John 4:28). She left the pot for a purpose as though she was saying, "Pot, you stay
here itself; from today I don't want your service or be in slavery .I am not going to carry you any longer. You remain
there". She left it as a sign of true repentance. Now that power to overcome sin had come into her. Our Lord never
told her, "Leave that man, I know who you are. I know everything. Do not live with him any longer". He -only spoke
to her about worship, and the message began to work in her and brought conviction of sin and change. She brought
the whole of Sychar to the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ. Now she could say joyfully, "Come, see a man, which told
me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?" (John 4:29). That will happen to you also. The Lord will remove
every water pot of sin from your life. He will make you free from your sinful life.