I don't know if my answer to your questions will make sense or not, depending on your own experience and perspective. Do I believe that the gifts have ceased? No. But there are certain ones that I can simply see no need for in the 21st century, such as tongues. There simply isn't a need for that gift. And I do not say that because I am one of those people who is a Pentecostal basher. I was a member of, and ministered within an Assemblies of God church for a decade. My wife and I did not know it was a Pentecostal church when we started going there. Too long a story to tell here. Charismatics are a Hot Mess. They do things based on emotion and "power" because they think that the only way that God could be working is because they have a Big Show every Sunday. That leads them to accept every single possible thing that could come along, no matter how ridiculous as being "of God." They abuse the system to death, just to make it look as if something is happening. If nothing "powerful" or dramatic is happening, God's is just not working. Pentecostals don't take it that far, but they still have misplaced goals. They want a message in tongues every Sunday simply because, kind of like Charismatics, to know God's really working, but also because they have an intense desire to be doing something for God. This leads to abuses, and an over-concentration on things like tongues. I never spoke in tongues, not one single time. But I was given the interpretation to a message a couple of times, but only gave the interpretation once, the second time, because, to me, saying you are speaking for God is not something that should be taken lightly, like you are going down to the store to buy a Big Gulp. I still worry about whether I actually got the message itself right or not. I have no doubt I had the message, but did I deliver it correctly? The first time it happened, and i didn't give the interpretation, my wife and I were at the Pastor's house that evening for a meeting and he looked at me, out of the blue and said "You had the interpretation of that message this morning. Why didn't you give it?" Now unless he was just fishing as to who actually had the interpretation, something was going on there. I simply doubt that things like that have to have the kind of frequency that Pentecostals require of them. God doesn't need a message in tongues every Sunday. He needs the Gospel preached. People who earnestly believe in the gifts tend to concentrate on them, and only them, and this leads to an imbalance, and not concentrating on other areas of ministry.
Tongues is a weird one. I see it as being useful IF there were no interpreter in a foreign land. I'm completely on the fence about what goes on in churches today. Based off my whole relationship with the Lord, it seems like the spirit is moving and other times I don't sense anything at all.
I have a mind that the Lord will sometimes "meet people where they are" so to speak which makes up for a lot of foolishness. It's like someone having a Jesus encounter at a bar. "God speaks through alcohol!" Uh, the spirit is not "limited" by alcohol you mean? No. That's how he speaks to me! Ok man.
I understand the "big show" christianity concept. I do think the Lord operates with panache on occasion but rarely. We don't have a birthday party for ourselves every day do we? That kind of idea. He set aside feasts for a reason I feel like.
Anyway, ty for the post