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Why We All Should Care More About Speaking in Tongues

When considering the significance of tongues throughout the pages of Scripture, one may begin to wonder why God desires to hear His praise in every language. Why not just teach everyone Korean, the language of Heaven? Instead, He seems to desire strongly both an array of languages and praising lips from each one. In Revelation 7, readers discover that in eternity, it is not merely one voice that lifts its praise to Almighty God. In eternity, it is one voice in many languages.

As believers, we look forward to the day when people from every nation cry out with a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!” Until then, let us be reminded that God is passionate about tongues. Because God Himself created tongues and desires praise from all languages, missional and linguistic contextualization becomes even more important.

I know that many will say, “But, but, but, what about … ?” That’s fine. And more needs to be discussed—but this aspect must not be missed.

Christians must be concerned with reaching all ethno-linguistic people groups with the Gospel that Jesus’ mission can be fulfilled: God’s praises in many languages. Speaking in tongues illuminates a piece of Heaven here on Earth.

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Ed Stetzer, Ph.D., holds the Billy Graham Chair of Church, Mission, and Evangelism at Wheaton College and serves as Executive Director of the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism. He has planted, revitalized, and pastored churches, trained pastors and church planters on six continents, holds two masters degrees and two doctorates, and has written dozens of articles and books.