Are you a visual learner like I am? Do you like to draw a picture to make your point. Do you have to see it to believe it? Me too. God knew we’d do that. He made us this way! And although He is invisible, God gives us visual clues, or signs of Himself.
The first visual thing, of course, is God’s Word, the Holy Bible.
Wow! What a source for our visual learning. David was also a visual learner. Look at some of the things he says about God.
“This is the LORD’S doing; it is marvellous in our eyes.” Psalms 118:23
“Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.” Psalms 119:18
Our eyes are a very important member of the five senses family. One of the visual promises God gave us was the rainbow. My son is learning about Noah in school this week and he is so fascinated by all the animals and the rainbow.
“I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth. And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.” Genesis 9: 11-16 from the New International Version.
Visual signs happened all the time in the Old Testament.
Remember when Moses was leading the Israelites, what did God set before them by day and by night? Pillars of smoke and fire, right. There were tons more too. Remember the parting Red Sea, the burning bush, the talking donkey, Jacob’s ladder, the chariots of fire, the army of angels surrounding Elijah. God did all kinds of things to “show” His people He was looking out for them. But what is He doing today? Why don’t we see things like this anymore. What kind of visual signs do we have?
“For I am the LORD, I change not;” Malachi 3:6
God is still the same now as forever. So He must still be giving us visual signs, but where can we see Him consistently?
As you know, if you’ve studied with me for long, Acts 2 changed the history of the world and introduced the Age of Grace Administration. During this phenomenal administration God gave us a personal gift by adopting us and He put His spiritual DNA in those who believe Roman’s 10:9-10. That difference alone is huge! We are a new creation with new spiritual signs, abilities and promises. Why don’t we see visual promises today? Like the pillar of smoke or fire? Because God wanted, not just one “holy” man to have the ability, but all His children to have it. Wow!
Okay, so what is our visual sign?
“What 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.” 1 Corinthians 14:15
God gave us a different way to pray than just with our understanding, like my son prays for dinner. He gave us a prayer that is just for Him. He gave us speaking in tongues. This verse shows us there are two ways to pray. Wow! That is sure different than the old testament. They only had one way to pray. What is this second praying in the spirit prayer for?
There are twelve benefits that I have linked here. But the big one I’d like to show you today is this one. Speaking in an unknown tongue is a sign to unbelievers. It helps any who are not a believing believer. Especially when done decently and in order as God commands.
“Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not:” 1 Cor. 14:22a
Wow! Look at that. It is for a sign, a visual clue, a visual promise of God’s work in your life and in your body. Is your faith shaky? Do you need to believe more? Speak in tongues. You can’t fake speaking in tongues, you can’t break it. If you can do it, you are born again of God’s spirit and you’re going to heaven. Wow! What a promise! When the Israelites looked at that pillar of smoke they knew they were going to the promise land. When we speak in tongues, we know we are going to meet the Lord Jesus in the air someday. Personally, if I was an Israelite I wouldn’t take my eyeballs off those pillars. I would stare and stare and stare.
Look what Paul said about speaking in tongues.
“I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all:” 1 Corinthians 14:18
Why would he thank God he speaks with tongues more? Because they are a sign, and Paul was also a visual learner. More importantly he knew the twelve benefits and that they meant this world wasn’t his end. What comfort! What hope that must have given him! It can do the same for us.
We have another sign. Yup. God didn’t just give us speaking in tongues. He gave us prophecy too.
“but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe.” 1 Corinthians 14:22
Prophecy is just as easy and fun to do as speaking in tongues. It is done in the language of the people present and it, like tongues, is God energizing the words in you. When you watch someone prophecy correctly, those words melt your soul with their comfort and edification.
Someone who speaks in tongues regularly, and interprets and prophecies too, walk with a different, more confident, air. There’s a big reason for why Moses had the confidence he had. He knew in the depth of his soul that he served the one true God, because he had seen it work. God didn’t leave us without that same visual comfort. If anything, now we have it in a much bigger more personal way. You don’t just see it, you feel it, say it and hear it. We haven’t even talked about miracles, gifts of healing or any of the other abilities you have right now. (Don’t worry, we will talk about them though.)
Embrace this visual promise.
Make it your own like God wants you to. Challenge yourself to speak in tongues more than you’ve ever done before. You’ll see things change for the better in ways you never imagined.
God bless you today!
Also, if you would like to learn how to speak in tongues from the Bible, here is a handout for you and your friends that clearly and simply explains it. Make it fun and see God work big time in your life.