Friday, May 15, 2015

Southern Baptists to open their ranks to missionaries who speak in tongues

After decade-long resistance, the Southern Baptist Convention will admit missionary candidates who speak in tongues, a practice associated with Pentecostal and charismatic churches.

The new policy, approved by the denomination’s International Mission Board on Wednesday (May 13), reverses a policy that was put in place 10 years ago.

Speaking in tongues is an ancient Christian practice recorded in the New Testament in which people pray in a language they do not know, understand or control. The practice died out until Pentecostalism emerged around the turn of the 20th century. In Pentecostal churches it is considered one of many “gifts” of the Holy Spirit, including healing and the ability to prophesize.

Allowing Southern Baptist missionaries to speak in tongues, or have what some SBC leaders call a “private prayer language,” speaks to the growing strength of Pentecostal churches in Africa, Asia and South America, where Southern Baptists are competing for converts and where energized new Christians are enthusiastically embracing the practice. Keep reading

Also see
Southern Baptists lift ban on missionaries speaking in tongues
International Mission Board Drops Ban on Speaking in Tongues
IMB & churches: 'limitless missionary teams'
TRUSTEES: IMB opens new pathways for service
The Christianity Today article, "International Mission Board Drops Ban on Speaking in Tongues" is classified as "registered/limited access." You may have to register with Christianity Today to read the article.
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