1 Corinthians 14:26…
What would happen if everyone in the church had a teaching or a psalm or a tongue or a revelation or an interpretation?
Would the church be more spiritual or less?
On the surface, it may seem if EVERYONE participated in the church service the church must obviously be more spiritual.
On the other hand – why this need to participate in the service? What / who is driving that need? Is it really spirituality – or is it carnality?
Fortunately, (for us,) considering this is taking place in the church at Corinth, (and what we already know about the church there,) we don’t have to wonder. We already know this church is carnal in its practice, and so we can deduce this great need they all seem to have to participate in the service is not driven by the Spirit of God, but the flesh.
Can the flesh appear to be spiritual – when in reality it is as carnal as ever?
Again, because of the behavior of this church, we have the answer. All the ministries of the church, and all the gifts of the Spirit can have a carnal basis.
This is the warning Paul issues: Stop it. Stop competing with each other in appearing Spiritual when you are not. Stop pretending to give evidence of gifts you do not possess.
The gift of tongues, for example, can appear to be VERY Spiritual when it is in operation in complete submission to the Holy Spirit – but when it is not it lends itself to an appearance of chaos and creepiness. One of the very gifts God provided to draw men to Himself – as we saw at Pentecost in Acts 2 – had been improperly employed by those seeking to draw attention to themselves resulting in people being turned off and running away.
It really isn’t hard to tell when someone in the Body of Christ is attempting to draw attention to themselves. To Paul the wrongdoings of the church at Corinth are very obvious and he confronts them head on. He does not do so in anger but in love, and the Book of 2ndCorinthians is proof his rebukes were successful in driving out the haughtiness and hypocrisy in that church.
Here’s a question: If you bore witness to someone falsely practicing a gift of the Spirit in the church, would you call them on it?