Gifts of the Spirit in General
- Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho 82.1; 88.1
- Irenaeus of Lyons, Against Heresies 2.32.4
- Tertullian of Carthage, On Baptism 20
- Novatian of Rome, On the Trinity 29
- Apostolic Constitutions 8.1-2
Speaking in Tongues and Prophecy
- Didache 11.7-12
- Irenaeus of Lyons, Against Heresies 5.6.1
- Tertullian of Carthage, Against Marcion 5.8; On the Soul 9
- Hilary of Poitiers, On the Trinity 8.33
- 165 - Montanus began speaking in tongues and prophesying, initiating a movement called the New Prophecy2
- Sayings of Montanus
- “Behold, man is like a lyre and I fly to him like a plectrum. Man sleeps and I stay awake. Behold, the Lord is the one who throws human hearts into ecstasy and gives a heart to men.” (Panarion 48.5.1)3
- “I am the Lord God, the Almighty, who abide in man.” (Panarion 48.11.1)
- “Neither angel nor envoy, but I the Lord God, the Father, have come.” (Panarion 48.11.9)
- Maximilla and Priscilla became prophetesses.
- The New Prophecy people emphasized obedience to God, asceticism, fasting, celibacy, and spiritual experiences.
- They rejected remarriage and any serious sin after baptism.
- They survived until the mid-sixth century when Justinian initiated a persecution in Pepuza.
- Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho 30.3; 76.6; 85.2-3
- Tertullian of Carthage, On the Shows 29
- Origen of Alexandria, Against Celsus 7.4
- Hippolytus, Apostolic Tradition 20-214
Healing and Miracles
- Irenaeus of Lyons, Against Heresies 2.31.2
- Origen of Alexandria, Against Celsus 1.46, 67
- Cyprian, Letters 16.4.1; 39.1.2
- Hippolytus, Apostolic Tradition 14
- Apostolic Constitutions 8.26
Disappearance with Time
- Causes for diminishment
- Reaction to Montanists’ emphasis on the spirit
- Constantinian shift watered down Christianity, resulting in the gifts mainly finding expression among the desert fathers and mothers.
- Rigidity of church services and authority solely among bishops and councils quenched the spirit.
- John Chrysostom, Homilies on 1 Corinthians 29
- Augustine of Hippo, Homilies on 1 John 6
- Christians throughout the first five centuries believed that gifts or charisms of the spirit were available to Christians.
- We have several reports of speaking in tongues as well as prophecy from the Didache, Irenaeus, Tertullian, and Hilary.
- In the second century, Montanus began a movement called the New Prophecy that emphasized the gifts of the spirit.
- New Prophecy leaders included female prophets such as Maximilla and Priscilla as well as a male theologian named Tertullian.
- Though excommunicated by many churches and persecuted by the government from Constantine onward, The New Prophecy movement endured for four centuries.
- Christians associated demons with the gods the pagans worshiped and confidently believed they had the power to drive them out.
- Casting out demons was standard operating procedure in churches both for first-time visitors and at baptisms.
- Miraculous healing, including raising the dead, was well-known to early Christians.
- Church orders said someone with the gift of healing would be obvious to all in the church.
- Over time, possibly due to a reaction against the Montanists, the Constantinian shift, or the rigidifying of church services, the gifts of the spirit diminished.
- By the fourth century, John Chrysostom said speaking in tongues and prophecy had ceased. By the fifth century, Augustine thought it silly to expect tongues.