Wed. Apr 14th, 2021

Why do you insist that being filled with the Spirit includes speaking in tongues every time when Acts 8 shows believers did not speak in tongues EVERY time?  

Well, first remember the book of Acts is a whole. M\So, must an author of the same book mention the same thing in full detail every time in each succeeding paragraph to be consistent? Or can a writer summarize what’s already been told? Solid biblical hermeneutics acknowledges something called “the law of first mention”. Even someone like Dr. David L. Cooper (Th. M., Ph. D., Litt. D.) shows the typical approach to this understanding. “When we thus see the first appearance, which is usually in the simplest form, we can then examine the doctrine in other portions of the Word that were given later. We shall see that the fundamental concept in the first occurrence remains dominant as a rule, and colors all later additions to that doctrine. In view of this fact, it becomes imperative that we understand the law of first mention.”

Anyone qualified as an expert in biblical hermeneutics acknowledges this fact of literature. So even non-apostolic people trained in the science of biblical interpretation acknowledge this fact. This means That Acts 8 must be viewed in relation to Acts 2. That makes Acts 2 the pivotal event that sets what Luke writes about from then on in the rest of Acts.

You would not dismiss this would you? If you still question this, does it help to know the whole field of biblical hermeneutics backs this up?

Further, look at what already occurred at Samaria. They believed, were baptized, demons were cast out, miraculous healings were done, and there was great joy. But no one had received the Spirit yet. What was missing?

Is there a cue in the text?

Acts 8:18 shows that when the Apostles laid hands on them, they received the Spirit. The point is Simon saw something that was the visible sign which had not already occurred. It couldn’t be belief, baptism, demons cast out, miraculous healings, or great joy. According to the Law of First Mention, and coupled with this internal evidence, there is no reasonable answer except tongues. Even non-Apostolics like James Dunn agree. A British NT scholar for many years, with a MA and BD from the University of Glasgow and a PhD and DD from the University of Cambridge, says “…for Luke, the Samaritan ‘Pentecost,’ like the first Christian Pentecost, was marked by ecstatic glossolalia.” I must kindly point out here that the Scripture is clear on Acts 8 when looked at both from correct hermeneutics and careful contextual analysis. You love Scripture, as I do, and want to make sure you’re interpretation is biblical.