1 Hotly pursue this love, yet seek earnestly spiritual gifts, and chiefly that you may prophesy. 2 For he who speaks in a "tongue" speaks not to man but to God, for no one understands him, but in the Spirit he utters secret truths. 3 But he who prophesies addresses words to men that build up, encourage, and console. 4 He who speaks in a tongue upbuilds himself; but he who prophesies upbuilds the church. 5 Now I should like you all to speak with "tongues"; but I should rather that you prophesied, For he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks with tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may be built up.
6 Now brothers, if I should come to you speaking with tongues, what should I benefit you, unless I speak to you some revelation, or knowledge, or prophecy, or teaching? 7 For if lifeless instruments such as the flute or the harp give no distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is fluted or harped? 8 Or, for example, if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, what soldier will be prepared for battle? 9 In the same way with you, if you utter unintelligible words with your tongue, how can what you say be understood? You will be speaking to the winds! 10 There are, let us say, so many languages in the world, and none without its meaning. 11 If then I do not know the force of expression, I shall seem a barbarian to the one who uses it, and he will seem a barbarian to me. 12 So also in your case, since you are ambitious for spiritual gifts, seek to excel in them for the upbuilding of the church.
13 So let him who speaks with tongues pray that he may interpret. 14 For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is barren. 15 What then? I will pray with my spirit, and I will pray also with my mind. I will praise God with my spirit, but I will praise him with my mind, also. 16 For if you in your spirit bless God, how shall he who fills the place of the unlearned say the Amen to your thanksgiving, when he does not know what you are talking about? 17 You on the one hand offer a good thanksgiving, but the other is not built up. 18 Thank God I speak with tongues more than you all, 19 but in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, so as to instruct others, than ten thousand in an unknown tongue.
20 Brothers, do not become children in understanding; be babes in malice, but in understanding become mature men. 21 In the Law it is written. With men of other tongues, and by the lips of strangers, will I speak to this people, and even then they will not listen to me, says the Lord. 22 So then the gift of tongues is for a sign, not to believers, but to unbelievers; but prophecy is not for unbelievers, but for those who believe. 23 Accordingly, when the whole church assemblies, and everybody is speaking "with tongues," if there enter men unlearned or unbelieving, will they not say that you are mad? 24 But if all are prophesying when an unlearned or unbelieving man enters, he is convicted in conscience by your speaker, he feels himself judged by all, 25 and the secret depths of his heart are laid open. So he will fall upon his face and worship God, saying, "Of a truth, God is with you."
26 What follows, then, brothers? Whenever you meet together, each contributes something; a psalm, a sermon, a revelation, a tongue, an interpretation. Let all be done for edification. 27 If any one speaks in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that in turn, and let some one interpret. 28 But if there is no one to interpret, let them keep silence in the church, and speak to themselves and to God. 29 Let the prophets speak by two or three, and let the others exercise their judgment. 30 But if to one as he sits there some revelation is made, let the first be silent. 31 For you can all prophesy one by one; so that all may be learning, and all may be encouraged. 32 The spirits of prophets are subject to prophets, 33 for God is not a God of confusion, but of peace. This custom prevails in all the churches of the saints. 34 "In your congregation" you write, "as in all the churches of the saints, let the women keep silence in the churches, for they are not permitted to speak. On the contrary let them be subordinate, as also says the law. 35 And if they want to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home, for it is shameful for a women to speak in church." 36 What, was it from you that the word of God went forth, or to you only did it come?
37 If any one thinks himself a prophet or spiritual, let him recognize that what I am now writing you is a command of the Lord. 38 But if any one disregard it he will be disregarded. 39 So, my brothers, be ambitious for the gift of prophecy, and speak not against the gifts of tongues. 40 Let everything be done decently and in order.