1 Corinthians 14:31-40
1 Cor 14:31 (KJV)
For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted.

Here Paul is telling those with the gift of prophecy that each will have a turn to speak, so each one in the congregation, along with those who are prophesying may learn from the one speaking and may also be comforted. The word “comforted” may also be understood as “Exhorted.” There is no need for simultaneous speaking as that would engender confusion in the congregation.

1 Cor 14:32 (KJV)
And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.

This means that not only are the prophets in control of their own spirits, it also means that the message, the teachings, the doctrines, are all subject to the scrutiny of the other prophets. Since the spirit of the prophet is subject to the prophet, it indicates that the prophet may choose to speak or not, depending upon the situation. The false prophet is not subject to anyone and normally has a message which is out of control, simply because they are not accountable to anyone, whereas the true prophet of God is accountable.

1 Cor 14:33 (KJV)
For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

God requires order in the churches because He does not author confusion. The word “confusion” may also be rendered “disorder, tumult, or unrest.” When the entire church service is done in an orderly fashion, it creates a peaceful atmosphere. When you are in church and something goes accidentally wrong in the service, doesn’t it sometimes give a moment of anxiety? When all is going smoothly, it is a peaceful experience. God never commands his people to act in any uncivil manner in the assembly. There are many churches today which hold services which seem like you are in a sports stadium. This type of assembly is definitely not of the Lord. Wherever order is lacking, a careful look must be given and you will probably find that the whole church is not of the Lord.

1 Cor 14:34 (KJV)
Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.

Here Paul is commanding the women to be silent in the churches. This does not only apply to the married women, which we see in the next verse that they are to ask their husbands but also to single women which would be under the authority of the elders in the church and their fathers until such a time they become married. This verse also comes in the context of prophesying publicly and Paul is stating that women are not to prophesy or speak in tongues in addressing the church with some type of teaching. The women are to be subject to their husbands and also to the elders. This means that they are under their authority. If a woman speaks publicly in the church then she is causing men to be under her authority and this is expressly forbidden.
(1 Tim 2:12 KJV) But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. This is part of the order that God has ordained in the church. In the modern church many women become pastors but that places the whole congregation under her spiritual authority. If her husband is a member of that church, then if she is the authority, it places her husband under her authority, which violates the marriage since the wife is to be under the husbands authority.

1 Cor 14:35 (KJV)
And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

Now Paul is speaking to the married women. Since they are under their husbands authority, they are to ask the husband at home if there is anything that they do not understand. They are not permitted to speak in the church. This is a command to keep order in the church. Speaking in church would be a shame. The word “shame” carries with it the idea of “disgraceful or dishonorable.” This is how serious God is about keeping order in the church. The women are to be meek and humble and not have a spirit of usurpation. Many feel that this command was only for the contemporary times that Paul lived in, but have you noticed in our day that since women have been placed in leadership roles in the church, confusion and false gospels reign in every church they lead.

1 Cor 14:36 (KJV)
What? came the word of God out from you? or came it unto you only?

Paul now asks a rhetorical question of the Corinthians. Are they the originators of God’s Word or are they the only ones that the Word of God came to? He was asking in this manner to get them to think. The Word of God came to them but they are not the only ones it came to. He wants them to understand that as others are required to obey the Scriptures, so are they. They are not an exclusive church. The word of God comes to all the churches and all must obey in the same manner. This verse tells us that the same rules which apply here, also apply in every other church. There is no one who God saves that doesn’t have to obey the guidelines He gives us, this applies to the individual as well as the local assemblies. So Paul is emphasizing that God is not being any more strict with this church than He is with the other churches.

1 Cor 14:37 (KJV)
If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.

Paul now appeals to those in the church who have the gift of Prophecy or those who can understand spiritual things, that the words he is writing is truly of the Lord. The prophets in this church should confirm his words as being legitimate commandments from the Lord. When these prophets confirm the words, then they are to put them into practice in the church assembly. By the prophets confirming the words of Paul, they are also confirming his authority in these matters. In the modern church today, those who are spiritual will understand the spiritual nature of true teachings of the Word of God, and will bear witness when the truth is spoken. Those who do not understand the Bible, will no doubt, disbelieve, and will bring confusion into the church.

1 Cor 14:38 (KJV)
But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.

Here Paul is beginning his summation that if someone is ignorant, not understanding the word of the Lord, then let him remain that way. The church must never change the rules for those who do not wish to grow in the faith. The word “ignorant” means “not understanding.” If a person wants to understand and grow, then the elders should teach them, but if they choose to remain ignorant, as many do today, then let them remain that way to their own shame.

1 Cor 14:39 (KJV)
Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues.

Paul says to these Corinthians that they should desire to prophesy which would edify the congregation but he also says that they should not forbid the speaking of tongues, since at this time it was still a legitimate gift of the Holy Spirit. Paul wanted to make sure that none of the spiritual gifts were quashed in the church but that all had a proper chance to be exercised.

1 Cor 14:40 (KJV)
Let all things be done decently and in order.

Here was the final command, that all the spiritual gifts are to be done in a fashion which is appropriate for the church of Christ. That means, everything was to be done in an orderly manner. I have visited charismatic churches and they all seem to be very disorderly and these are the very ones who claim they are following the dictates of 1 Corinthians 14.   I trow not!