I Corinthians 14:1-19

Superiority of Edification


Edification is the hallmark of Christianity. We are edifying our brother and sister in Christ when we are engaged in offering a word of encouragement from the Scriptures. Yes, the root word means, “to build up in order to become stable.” Dr.Richard Ganz tells a story when he was growing up how he desired to play an instrument but had no money to buy one; so he rented a trumpet and played over and over again, “Three Blind Mice” over and over again until the neighbors threaten to kill him. The tunes he played were indistinguishable!

So in the Christian life our faith must always be distinguishable. When Christians stand for and teach the truth they are being loving. I Cor. 13:6 “Love rejoices in the truth”

  1. Superiority of Prophecy – v. 1-8

  1. Prophecy preferred over tongues

  1. What exactly is prophecy? Ans. It is something like preaching but not identical to it because in Paul’s day it had a revelatory aspect to it…

  2. Why is Prophecy superior to Tongues?

Ans. Because prophecy is edifying, exhorting and comforting

  1. Distinction between Acts 2:8-11 and I Cor. 14,

  1. The meaning of Edification

  1. The whole church benefits from it – v.4 cf. v.18

  2. Exhortation and Comfort

  3. Profitable preaching – v.6 cf. I Pet. 1:23

  1. Lifeless things – v. 7-8 ( music and military bugle calls)

  1. Inferiority of Tongues – v. 9-19

  1. Confusion – I Cor. 14:33

  1. Language – Genesis 11:1-9

  2. Strange language – “barbarian” It makes no sense.

  1. Full Circle – v.12

  1. The imperative to seek edification

  2. The absence of edification cannot possibly edify.

  1. Rules For Tongues Speaking – v.13

  1. The person speaking in tongues must not be content with his gift because it’s limited.

  2. The person speaking in tongues must have an interpreter.

  1. The Mind – v.14,15

  1. In public worship – Eph. 5:19

  2. Visitors – v.16 cf. v.23

  3. Not sour grapes – v. 18-19


  1. If you are not a Christian the plain teaching of the gospel may be indistinguishable to you. It only becomes distinguishable when the Holy Spirit opens your heart and mind like the Prodigal Son.

  2. Dear Christian: Let us encourage our brother and sister in Christ. We must all work on edifying them, building up for their own advancement in the faith and for the glory of God. Eph. 4:11-13

Pastor Nick Iamaio

Reformed Presbyterian Church, 207 South First Street, Fulton, NY 13069

Web Site fultonprc.org