Foreign languages (1 Cor. 14:11)

“But if I do not know

The meaning of a language,

I will be a foreigner

To the speaker.

The speaker will be

A foreigner to me also.”

ἐὰν οὖν μὴ εἰδῶ τὴν δύναμιν τῆς φωνῆς, ἔσομαι τῷ λαλοῦντι βάρβαρος καὶ ὁ λαλῶν ἐν ἐμοὶ βάρβαρος.

Paul said that if he did not know the meaning of a language (ἐὰν οὖν μὴ εἰδῶ τὴν δύναμιν τῆς φωνῆς), he would be a foreigner to the speaker (ἔσομαι τῷ λαλοῦντι βάρβαρος).  The speaker would be a foreigner to him (καὶ ὁ λαλῶν ἐν ἐμοὶ βάρβαρος), also.  Thus, Paul pointed out that anyone who did not speak Greek in Corinth would be considered a foreigner or a barbarian.  Anyone who does not speak your language is considered a foreigner by you.  The same is true of the other person.  They consider you a foreigner or a barbarian because you do not speak their language.  Any language you do not know is a foreign language to you or anyone who does not speak that language.  Thus, we have our natural native ethnic language that is foreign to other people, and vice versa.  Have you ever been to a country where you were the foreigner who could not speak the language of that country?

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