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Chapter 14

1Follow after love, and earnestly desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. 2For he who speaks in another language speaks not to men, but to God; for no one understands; but in the Spirit he speaks mysteries. 3But he who prophesies speaks to men for their edification, exhortation, and consolation. 4He who speaks in another language edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the assembly. 5Now I desire to have you all speak with other languages, but rather that you would prophesy. For he is greater who prophesies than he who speaks with other languages, unless he interprets, that the assembly may be built up.

6But now, brothers,286286The word for “brothers” here and where context allows may also be correctly translated “brothers and sisters” or “siblings.” if I come to you speaking with other languages, what would I profit you, unless I speak to you either by way of revelation, or of knowledge, or of prophesying, or of teaching? 7Even things without life, giving a voice, whether pipe or harp, if they didn’t give a distinction in the sounds, how would it be known what is piped or harped? 8For if the trumpet gave an uncertain sound, who would prepare himself for war? 9So also you, unless you uttered by the tongue words easy to understand, how would it be known what is spoken? For you would be speaking into the air. 10There are, it may be, so many kinds of sounds in the world, and none of them is without meaning. 11If then I don’t know the meaning of the sound, I would be to him who speaks a foreigner, and he who speaks would be a foreigner to me. 12So also you, since you are zealous for spiritual gifts, seek that you may abound to the building up of the assembly. 13Therefore let him who speaks in another language pray that he may interpret. 14For if I pray in another language, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.

15What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also. I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also. 16Otherwise if you bless with the spirit, how will he who fills the place of the unlearned say the “Amen” at your giving of thanks, seeing he doesn’t know what you say? 17For you most assuredly give thanks well, but the other person is not built up. 18I thank my God, I speak with other languages more than you all. 19However in the assembly I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I might instruct others also, than ten thousand words in another language.

20Brothers, don’t be children in thoughts, yet in malice be babies, but in thoughts be mature. 21In the law it is written, “By men of strange languages and by the lips of strangers I will speak to this people. Not even thus will they hear me, says the Lord.” 22Therefore other languages are for a sign, not to those who believe, but to the unbelieving; but prophesying is for a sign, not to the unbelieving, but to those who believe. 23If therefore the whole assembly is assembled together and all speak with other languages, and unlearned or unbelieving people come in, won’t they say that you are crazy? 24But if all prophesy, and someone unbelieving or unlearned comes in, he is reproved by all, and he is judged by all. 25And thus the secrets of his heart are revealed. So he will fall down on his face and worship God, declaring that God is among you indeed.

26What is it then, brothers? When you come together, each one of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a revelation, has another language, has an interpretation. Let all things be done to build each other up. 27If any man speaks in another language, let it be two, or at the most three, and in turn; and let one interpret. 28But if there is no interpreter, let him keep silent in the assembly, and let him speak to himself, and to God. 29Let the prophets speak, two or three, and let the others discern. 30But if a revelation is made to another sitting by, let the first keep silent. 31For you all can prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be exhorted. 32The spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets, 33for God is not a God of confusion, but of peace.

As in all the assemblies of the saints, 34let your wives keep silent in the assemblies, for it has not been permitted for them to speak; but let them be in subjection, as the law also says. 35If they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home, for it is shameful for a woman to chatter in the assembly. 36What? Was it from you that the word of God went out? Or did it come to you alone? 37If any man thinks himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him recognize the things which I write to you, that they are the commandment of the Lord. 38But if anyone is ignorant, let him be ignorant. 39Therefore, brothers, desire earnestly to prophesy, and don’t forbid speaking with other languages. 40Let all things be done decently and in order.


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