In 1 Cor. 13:8, we are told that Tongues, Prophecy and Knowledge will cease at some point in time and, after they cease, 1 Cor 13:13 says that Faith, Hope and Love will remain. We know that Love is eternal but our Faith and Hope are both fulfilled and come to their conclusion when Jesus returns as the following shows –
Regarding Faith, Heb. 11:1 tells us that Faith is “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” and 2 Cor. 5:7 says, “we live by faith, not by sight”, so when we see Jesus our Faith will give way to sight. 1 Pet. 1:9 says, “you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls”. Thayer’s dictionary defines “goal” as the “termination, the limit at which a thing ceases to be” so, when Jesus returns to bring our salvation (Heb. 9:28), our Faith will have reached its goal and terminate. The AMP says, “you receive the result, the outcome, the consummation of your faith” and the KJV says, “receiving the end of our faith” so it’s clear that our faith reaches its conclusion when Jesus returns.
Regarding Hope, Tit. 2:13 tells us that we are waiting for Jesus, our Blessed Hope, and Rom. 8:24 says, “hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has?” So, when we see Jesus, our Hope will be realised and come to its conclusion.
From this we can see that Faith and Hope will only remain until Jesus returns but Love will continue eternally, as 1 Cor. 13:8 says.
So, Tongues, Prophesy and Knowledge are the first to cease, leaving Faith and Hope remaining and they will both conclude when Jesus returns. This shows that Tongues, Prophesy and Knowledge cease before Jesus returns and brings Faith and Hope to their conclusion.
It’s not possible for Tongues, Prophecy, Knowledge to remain alongside Faith and Hope as this would contradict Scripture which says that Faith and Hope remain after Tongues, Prophecy and Knowledge have ceased. (The word “now”, beginning 1 Cor. 13:13, is not the “now” of time but the “now” of logic or argument and is better translated as “but” – see this in the VWS and JFB commentaries. This means that the passage is saying that Tongues, Prophecy and Knowledge would cease at some point in time “but” Faith, Hope and Love would remain.)
Some say that Faith and Hope will continue eternally but their Biblical descriptions, as shown above, make it abundantly clear that they will both be consummated and terminate when Jesus returns.
A simplified explanation is –
First, Tongues, Prophesy and Knowledge cease, leaving Faith, Hope and Love remaining.
Next, Faith and Hope cease when Jesus returns.
Therefore Tongues, Prophesy and Knowledge cease before Jesus returns.
The aim of this article is simply to show that tongues, prophecy and knowledge were targeted to cease before Jesus returns. To keep things short, the timing of cessation has not been examined. However, I believe that a close look at 1 Cor. 13:8-13 shows that they ceased in the first century. An in-depth look at this can be found in the following links to free books on the subject. Amen.
The following books on the cessation of Tongues, Prophecy and Knowledge are free to download –
All About Speaking In Tongues by an ex-Pentecostal Pastor –
Sola Scriptura – very good, author unknown –
The Doctrine Of Tongues written by a New Zealand Barrister in the 1960s –
Other free books and articles –
This article can be downloaded as a PDF or an MP3 from –
The video of “Speaking In Tongues – Ceasing and Remaining” can be seen on YouTube at-
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