Lately, some folks have been totally taken over by frenzy. They put down their Bibles and want to reach out to God in another way. These guys criticize others who preach from the Bible, saying that we’re “just following the dead letter of the law.” Here’s what I want to ask them: where do they get this Spirit that shows so much contempt for biblical teaching as being so low and childish? If they want to tell me that it’s the Spirit of Christ, I’d tell them they’re being ridiculous!
None of the apostles or early church-goers were ever taught to hold the Bible in such contempt…not by the Holy Spirit. Instead, they had great respect for it…dare I even use the very old-fashioned word ‘reverence’? The Holy Spirit taught of His ruling over His people when he spoke through Isaiah, after all: “My Spirit is upon you, and my words that I have put in your mouth, shall not depart out of your mouth, or out of the mouth of your offspring…forevermore” (59:21). This is the way the Church is happy: by being ruled over by the Spirit of God in his Word!
Instead, these rascals tear up what Isaiah has put together for us. Even Paul who went up to the third heaven (2 Cor. 12:2) didn’t despise the Word in this way…he urged Timothy to give himself to the reading of the Word (1 Timothy 4:13). Why on earth would these people treat Scripture which leads us to the final goal as something which is only temporary?
Have they drunk from another Spirit? I mean, Jesus told us other spirits would come, testifying about this or that. But what did He say His Spirit would be like? He said His Spirit would suggest to the apostles’ minds, implanting them with what He’d already told them in His Word (1 John 16:13).
My point is this: The Spirit Jesus promised to us doesn’t have the task of inventing new doctrines or revelations, leading us away from what Jesus has already said in His Word. Instead, He sent His Spirit to stamp on our minds the doctrines already given…the stuff commended to us by the Gospel itself.
–Based on John Calvin’s Institutes, I.IX.I (pg. 93-94, WJK 1960 ed.) My paraphrase. You’re welcome.