The subject has been controversial for only the past hundred years. Prior to that, the heresy which exists today about the works of the Spirit was not so evident and popular as in these Last Days. But, we have been warned in God’s Word what to expect.
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,” 2 Timothy 3:1-3
The self-centered characteristic which desires to please ‘self’ before the Lord is what has made the Last Days a fertile time for the devil to unleash many false self-pleasing doctrines upon the Church.
In the following lessons, you should look up EVERY noted Scripture. You should read the CONTEXT, and study other relevant Scriptures related to the ones noted. Without the Word of God, we have only human experience to base our faith upon, and that is so very, very frail, often leading to false conclusions. So, be faithful to study these verses.
The references to the “unknown tongues movement” usually relate to information from American churches. However, because of the fervor in which these churches have desired to propagate their doctrines, it also can be seen in the same movement throughout the world. Most of the notations regarding their doctrines are so commonly known, we have omitted making footnotes for them.
You will note that there is a distinct and clear difference made in this study between “unknown tongues,” and “tongues.” You should be careful to make that distinction in your own mind, or the facts could become confusing. The Bible carefully tells us the origin of both.
You are not required to agree with the conclusions of this course (although I suspect that after seeing what the Word says, you will agree). However, you will be required to know the Scriptures and reasons behind the conclusions.
The subject matter is obviously controversial, and there have been many pastors and Believers who have been taught incompletely their entire lives, so it is difficult for them to see anything other than what they have already accepted as truth. However, by laying out a good foundation from God’s Word, pastors and Bible teachers should be able to see the Spirit of God work in the hearts of the most stubborn in their congregations to bring them to a more Christ-exalting—and less self-exalting—form of worship and service.
Dr. Ed J MacWilliams