22 December 2007

Why don't the Fathers say much about tongues?

"As we know it (the gift of tongues) was abused; but this from its nature was, when once given, possessed as an ordinary talent, and needed no fresh divine influence for subsequent exercise of it. It may besides be viewed as a medium of conveying the message, as well as being the seal of its divinity, and as such needed not in every instance to be marked out as a supernatural gift."

~Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman, Two Essays on Biblical and on Ecclesiastical Miracles (1890)
How often I hear the comment that the gift of tongues must have ceased in the Church because it is not mentioned explicitly after Apostolic times. We hear of healing and deliverance wrought at the hands of the saints throughout the centuries. They experienced visions, "raptures", and apparitions. But what of tongues?

In the quote above, the blessed Cardinal explains that tongues was so common that it ceased to be considered miraculous, thus wasn't mentioned. It was an ordinary talent.
Think about it... if it weren't for the abuse of tongues in Corinth, we might not know much more than what is in the Acts of the Apostles.

Something else to ponder... miracles aren't really a big deal. Christians should expect them and thank God when they happen. Our lives should be naturally supernatural.

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