Testing The Spirits: A Call to Discernment
Learn the Importance of Discernment
The Concern (Vs. 1b)
The Command (Vs. 1a)
The Concern. Vs 1b
the truth is that without the good sense we receive from the Spirit, it helps us little or nothing to have the Word of God in our hands; for its meaning is bound to escape us. For instance, gold is tested with fire or touchstone; but only by those who know how to do it. What use is fire or touchstone to the ignorant? In the same way, we are fit to judge only when we receive discretion from the Spirit and are guided by him. Since we could not follow the apostle’s precept, unless the power of judging were added to it, certainly the godly shall not be left without the Spirit of sound judgment, provided they seek him from the Lord. But it is also true that the Spirit will lead us to true discretion only when we bring all our thoughts under subjection to the Word of God; for, as we said above, it is, so to speak, our touchstone, which should be most precious to us, since it is the only source of sound teaching.
But now Satan interferes. He not only places false teachers among the people, so as to corrupt the Word of God, but he also calls them prophets, so that the people fall [into error] all the more easily. These arrogant pseudoprophetic windbags are in the habit of snatching an honor which God bestowed upon his own servants.