1Cor. 14:22 ¶ Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophesying is not for unbelievers but for those who believe.
In Acts chapter 2 we see the first time people in the Bible prayed in tongues when they gathered together in the Upper Room. The people on the streets heard them and some were hearing their native languages being spoken. Acts 2:11 (NASB) says, “Cretans and Arabs – we hear them in our own tongues speaking of the mighty deeds of God.” Peter responds in Acts 2:15-16 (NASB): “For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only the third hour of the day [or nine o’clock in the morning]; but this is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel.” These non-Christians on the street were in essence asking, “What does this supernatural utterance mean?” Peter explains the baptism with the Holy Spirit to them. That day 3,000 people were born again. We see clearly in this passage of Scripture that praying in tongues drew the people to Christ. God was evident there. His presence is evident when we pray in the Holy Spirit. The world is looking for a supernatural experience. Over the last couple of decades, people have been interested in Ouija boards and fortune-telling. More and more, individuals have looked to psychics and to the occult, longing for the supernatural that they are not finding in many of their churches. People are tired of dead churches that have a form of godliness, yet are devoid of power. They want to experience God. When we pray in the Holy Spirit, we pray a supernatural utterance from God. Our mind is not praying, but our spirit, energized by the Holy Spirit, is praying. This makes Christians and non-Christians alike aware of the presence of God. It is one of God’s advertising tools. What a tragedy it is to invite someone to a prayer group or a church service and hope the people praying in tongues don’t pray too loudly, or that prophecy doesn’t come forth because of the fear that the person visiting might not accept God. The underlying thought is, “I hope there is no supernatural manifestation. I hope God is not here today. If God shows up, this person might not accept Him.” But realize, brothers and sisters, that praying in tongues is God praying! The Holy Spirit is praying through you in a supernatural utterance, and others will be drawn to Christ because they will sense God’s presence there! How vital is our prayer language! It is an outreach to the lost. The last portion of Isaiah 28:11-12 (NASB) tells us about this: “Indeed, He will speak to this people through stammering lips and a foreign tongue…” This is a prophecy written 700 years before Christ. It is a prophecy the apostle Paul quoted in First Corinthians 14:21 regarding our prayer language. Paul quotes Isaiah saying that God was going to speak to the world through the prayer language. Our churches need a new outpouring of this Pentecostal gift. What will the results be? Another harvest of souls.