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James Bright wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • Is salvation:
    • a free will decision
    • prompted by the Holy Spirit
    • or both?

I think I read a verse somewhere that said salvation had to be prompted by the Holy Spirit.



  { Is salvation a free will decision, prompted by the Holy Spirit or both? }

Paul replied:

Dear James,

There is no salvation without the Holy Spirit and His grace. In addition, there is no salvation without cooperating with the Holy spirit and His grace so you are correct in proposing that both are needed.

The Holy Spirit being released to the world on Pentecost after Christ's resurrection (in Acts 2) signifies that Christ's sacrifice won for us the Holy Spirit for our salvation. Our "yes" as free-willed creatures is needed for union with God and our persevering "yes" is needed for Holy Spirit to lead us to eternal salvation.


James replied:


Where does the Church stand on the gift of tongues:

  • the one with prophesy and interpolation and
  • the one as a prayer language for edification?


John replied:

Hi, James —

The Church recognizes all the spiritual gifts or charisms including the "phenomenal" ones. (for lack of a better term.)

For the most part, these gifts are manifested by folks in the Charismatic Renewal. Nevertheless, they are seen elsewhere in the Church. Prophecy, for instance, is very common in the Marian movement; so is healing.

Hopefully you haven't been taught a prayer language. Rather, the Holy Spirit gave you one when the gifts given to you began to be manifested. Tongues is not something we learn, it's something we receive. It is a gift that we use and it edifies us as we practice it. The best way t I can describe it, is when we pray in tongues, that which we have learned with our minds, becomes internalized in our heart. Head knowledge becomes heart knowledge. Put another way, the Logos (logical word or written word) becomes Rhema (Revealed word). It is this reveal word (Rhema in the Greek) that St. Paul refers to in Romans, when he writes faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word (Rhema, revelation) of God.

That said, Tongues is an important gift which the Church has always recognized, even if it didn't always embrace it. Unfortunately, in some circles, it becomes the be all and end all, and in other circles, it is rejected because people keep trying to wrap their minds around it, instead of embracing it as a gift.


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