Ever been in a room where everyone else is speaking a different language--a language you can't understand? How does it make you feel? Accepted, loved, warmly welcomed as part of the group? That's why the Apostle Paul who could make the claim that he spoke in tongues more than anyone else in the Corinthian church said that he would rather speak five words that folks could understand when believers gather than ten thousand words in a language they don't understand. In fact, Paul tells us the truth. In a situation where everyone is speaking at once and they are all speaking in a language that an outside does not understand, they will think it all just barbarian or foreign behavior. And when they feel this rejection, our opportunity to share the truth and love of Christ with them disappears. This happened in the first century Corinthian church when they all broke out in tongues. I'm concerned that this same thing happens when today we all break out with our "Christianese" jargon. Is the way we talk about God's Word, our relationship with Jesus, and the Gospel intelligible to an unbeliever? The only way to find out is to spend time with them, enough time that we can have some honest conversations about what they actually are hearing when it comes to Jesus and those who claim to believe in Him.

 

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