I had a discussion with a christian who was arguing that water baptism is necessary for salvation—he cannot see what is physical and what is spiritual, and what the correlations are between the two. He doesn’t realize that there are some words used in scripture that have two different meanings—foreshadow and real substance, and that those two things are not the same.
Now, when pressing on a little further into the conversation, he revealed the reason for his lack of spiritual sight—he made the argument that “the only way the Holy Spirit speaks to us now is through the scriptures.” What that reveals is that he has never received any instruction from the Holy Spirit regarding His scriptures. It also reveals that he thinks the Holy Spirit has changed since scripture was written, which is absurd.
Scripture itself is clear that, apart from the Holy Spirit’s direct illumination, the meanings of scripture will not be comprehended—that, without the Holy Spirit’s leading, the words of scripture are just words, nothing else (Luke 24:45, 1 Corinthians 2:14). They might as well be a phone book. It is the Holy Spirit who reveals the meanings and purposes of the scriptures.
So, having admitted that he has never actually received any communication from the Holy Spirit, he actually reveals another problem he has: those who are adopted as children of the Most High are told by the Holy Spirit, directly and personally, that they are Yah’s children.
This fellow exposed exactly why he believes such false things like water baptism being necessary for salvation—he has never received the covenant, so he does not possess the Spirit of Truth, and is thus led by his own false ideas that are actually contrary to the truths of the Holy Spirit. Sad.
For more information: Christianity’s Holy Spirit–Some Water and a Book