Spiritual gifts and church order
1Pursue love, and use your ambition to try to get spiritual gifts but especially so that you might prophesy. 2This is because those who speak in a tongue don’t speak to people but to God; no one understands it—they speak mysteries by the Spirit. 3Those who prophesy speak to people, building them up, and giving them encouragement and comfort. 4People who speak in a tongue build up themselves; those who prophesy build up the church. 5I wish that all of you spoke in tongues, but I’d rather you could prophesy. Those who prophesy are more important than those who speak in tongues, unless they are able to interpret them so that the church might be built up. 6After all, brothers and sisters, if I come to you speaking in tongues, how will I help you unless I speak to you with a revelation, some knowledge, a prophecy, or a teaching? 7Likewise, things that aren’t alive like a harp or a lyre can make a sound, but if there aren’t different notes in the sounds they make, how will the tune from the harp or the lyre be recognized? 8And if a trumpet call is unrecognizable, then who will prepare for battle? 9It’s the same way with you: If you don’t use language that is easy to understand when you speak in a tongue, then how will anyone understand what is said? 10It will be as if you are speaking into the air! There are probably many language families in the world, and none of them are without meaning. 11So if I don’t know the meaning of the language, then I will be like a foreigner to those who speak it, and they will be like foreigners to me. 12The same holds true for you: since you are ambitious for spiritual gifts, use your ambition to try to work toward being the best at building up the church.
13Therefore, those who speak in a tongue should pray to be able to interpret. 14If I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays but my mind isn’t productive. 15What should I do? I’ll pray in the Spirit, but I’ll pray with my mind too; I’ll sing a psalm in the Spirit, but I’ll sing the psalm with my mind too. 16After all, if you praise God in the Spirit, how will the people who aren’t trained in that language say "Amen!" to your thanksgiving, when they don’t know what you are saying? 17You may offer a beautiful prayer of thanksgiving, but the other person is not being built up. 18I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. 19But in the church I’d rather speak five words in my right mind than speak thousands of words in a tongue so that I can teach others.
20Brothers and sisters, don’t be like children in the way you think. Well, be babies when it comes to evil, but be adults in your thinking. 21In the Law it is written: I will speak to this people with foreign languages and foreigners’ lips, but they will not even listen to me this way,#Isa 28:11-12 says the Lord. 22So then, tongues are a sign for those who don’t believe, not for those who believe. But prophecy is a sign for believers, not for those who don’t believe. 23So suppose that the whole church is meeting and everyone is speaking in tongues. If people come in who are outsiders or unbelievers, won’t they say that you are out of your minds? 24But if everyone is prophesying when an unbeliever or outsider comes in, they are tested by all and called to account by all. 25The secrets of their hearts are brought to light. When that happens, they will fall on their faces and worship God, proclaiming out loud that truly God is among you!
26What is the outcome of this, brothers and sisters? When you meet together, each one has a psalm, a teaching, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. All these things must be done to build up the church. 27If some speak in a tongue, then let two or at most three speak, one at a time, and someone must interpret. 28However, if there is no interpreter, then they should keep quiet in the meeting. They should speak privately to themselves and to God. 29In the case of prophets, let two or three speak and have the rest evaluate what is said. 30And if some revelation comes to someone else who is sitting down, the first one should be quiet. 31You can all prophesy one at a time so that everyone can learn and be encouraged. 32The spirits of prophets are under the control of the prophets. 33God isn’t a God of disorder but of peace. Like in all the churches of God’s people, 34the women should be quiet during the meeting. They are not allowed to talk. Instead, they need to get under control, just as the Law says. 35If they want to learn something, they should ask their husbands at home. It is disgraceful for a woman to talk during the meeting.
36Did the word of God originate with you? Has it come only to you? 37If anyone thinks that they are prophets or "spiritual people," then let them recognize that what I’m writing to you is the Lord’s command. 38If someone doesn’t recognize this, they aren’t recognized. 39So then, brothers and sisters, use your ambition to try to get the gift of prophecy, but don’t prevent speaking in tongues. 40Everything should be done with dignity and in proper order.
Loading reference in secondary version...
2011 Common English Bible. All rights reserved.