I was recently asked why ConnectPoint places so much emphasis on people speaking in tongues, when Paul wrote that tongues weren’t the greatest gift to have (I Corinthians 14:5). I was glad for some bible conversation, and happily answered the question.
In our services we are passionate about connecting people to the Holy Spirit. The gift of the Holy Ghost is available to everyone and is initially evidenced by speaking in other tongues (Acts 2:4; Isaiah 28:11-12; Acts 10:46; Acts 19:6). This differs from the gifts of the Spirit that Paul was talking about. The gift of the Holy Ghost is dorea in the Greek: whereas the gifts of the Spirit come from the Greek word charisma.
You cannot have the gifts of the Spirit without the gift of the Holy Ghost. The gifts flow from the gift. Dorea comes before Charisma.
The gifts of the Spirit listed in 1 Corinthians 12 include divers kinds of tongues, as well as many others. These gifts are not given to everybody. Paul doesn’t say that everybody will receive these gifts. He uses terminology like, “to one”, “to another”, while the initial gift of the Holy Ghost is for everybody. These two experiences are not the same, even though they both include the same Spirit (I Corinthians 12:6-7,11).
We are not pushing for the gift of tongues ‘charisma’ at our altars. We are praying for people to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost evidenced by speaking in other tongues. After they receive this, then they are candidates for the nine gifts of the Spirit. This may include divers kinds of tongues, or it may be the gift of faith, etc. The charisma gift will come after the dorea gift. You cannot get the 2nd without the 1st.
We generally try to place priority where Jesus placed priority. His final words to His disciples were directed at receiving the gift (dorea) of the Holy Ghost. That is our priority as well.