Jesus told us, as recorded in John, that the Holy Spirit would be our Comforter, Guide, and Teacher. Now if you have ever been in sorrow, have you ever had a friend who came to comfort you? Have you ever had a friend who seemed to need comforting and they told you, “I have the Holy Spirit for my Comforter; thanks just the same, but I don’t need your comfort, because I have the Holy Spirit.” Probably not, I know at least that I never have. But suppose someone told you the Bible says so-and-so, and maybe you don’t quite agree and start to suggest that you see it differently. Have you heard someone say, “I don’t need to hear what anyone else thinks, I have the Holy Spirit to tell me,” or simply, “I don’t want to hear it,” or something similar? I have.
Once the Lord through His Spirit told Phillip to go somewhere. When Phillip got there, he saw a man in a chariot. The Lord told him to go to that man. The man was reading from Isaiah and not understanding. The man asks Phillip to help him understand.
Acts 8:29 And the Spirit says to Philippos, Go near, and join yourself to this chariot. 30 And Philippos runs, and hears him read the prophet Yesha Yah, and says, Yet indeed, know you then what you read? 31 And he says, Indeed, how can I, unless someone guides me? - and he beseeches Philippos to ascend and sit with him. (ECB)
Now some may say that the reason the Holy Spirit didn’t just answer this man’s curiosity Himself was because this man had not yet become a Christian. Even so, the Holy Spirit did answer this man by sending Phillip.
When you need someone to comfort you, the Holy Spirit may send someone to you. If you need more understanding in the Scriptures, the Holy Spirit may send someone to help you understand. If someone says I don’t need anyone else because I have the Holy Spirit, then are they saying that the Holy Spirit will not send them anyone?
The Scriptures teach that we are to study the Scriptures and that the Holy Spirit will help us in understanding. One thing we need to understand is that first, the Holy Spirit has to see that we are truly in our hearts seeking to understand. We may read a verse we don’t understand, and meditate on it and in that meditation we may begin to better understand its implications, but not necessarily. As we study, we are to do more than just read. We are to seek to understand what we are reading. In this seeking understanding, we may meditate on it, but also, if we have resources available (i.e. a concordance, a Bible dictionary, perhaps a Lexicon, or even a commentary) we may use those resources to look up more about it.
Even if we read, meditate, use resources, and genuinely desire to understand, this doesn’t necessarily mean understanding will fall on us. There may be some things that the Lord isn’t ready for us to understand. Maybe it seems that some people seem to understand something, but we are not quite grasping it. It could be that the Lord wants us to learn something else before we grasp what it is we’re looking for. It could be that the Lord wants to test our patience and perseverance. I’m not saying that I have the answers, but that the answer may have different implications or applications. You don’t study calculus until after you’ve learned arithmetic.
Anyway, it would be silly to say, “I don’t need a teacher, because the Holy Spirit is my teacher,” because the Scriptures teach that even Christians are to learn from other Christians who have been given the gift of teaching by the Holy Spirit. So if we didn’t need another teacher, then why would the Holy Spirit give that gift of teaching? Still, the Holy Spirit is a Comforter, Guide, and Teacher to all as He uses us to share and support one another, each according to the gift he is given. So if the Holy Spirit has given you a gift of comforting others, then the Holy Spirit is comforting others through you. If the Holy Spirit has given you the gift of wisdom to guide others, then the Holy Spirit is guiding others through you. If the Holy Spirit has given you the gift of teaching, then the Holy Spirit is teaching others through you.
Ah, we humans are a vain and prideful lot. We love to say, “Hey, look what I did!” We truly need to be more humble and think what the Lord has done for us, and be thankful if the Lord might use us to do for others. If we can be of any service (worth or whatever) to others, it is only because of what service (or worth) the Lord has given us. So beware of people who love to boast about how much they are worth, because they are not giving the glory to the Lord. I’m not saying that such people are not saved, but if they are, then they are still immature and have some growing to do.