Spiritual Man, The (3 volume set), by Watchman Nee

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If we read the context of this portion of the Scriptures, we will see that the apostle spoke about many false teachings and antichrists. He was saying that since the believers have received the anointing from the Holy One, who abides in them, this anointing will spontaneously teach them what is the truth, what is a lie, who is for Christ, and who is antichrist. There is no need for man to teach or speak anything; the anointing that abides within will teach spontaneously. This spiritual discernment is greatly needed today. We do not need to reference many theological books, reason, compare, research, observe, and think with our intellect before we can understand what is a lie and what is the truth. If we have to do this, no one except knowledgeable and intellectual believers would be able to save themselves from deceptions. God has no respect for man’s old creation. Besides the spirit of the new creation, everything is dead in His eyes and should be done away with. Can the mental capacity, which God insists on abolishing, help man distinguish between right and wrong? No, absolutely not. Rather, God puts His Spirit in the spirit of every believer, regardless of how ignorant or foolish he may be, in order to teach him what is and is not of Him. Therefore, even though there are many times when we cannot find a reason to oppose a certain teaching, there is a sense of disapproving in the deepest part of our being. We do not know the reason, but our inner sense tells us that this is wrong. Sometimes we hear a teaching that is completely different from what we usually hold and which we do not wish to follow; yet within us there is a small voice persistently telling us that this is the right way and that we should walk in it. Although we may have many reasons to oppose it, and although our reasoning may win, this small voice of the intuition within is always speaking to us and always telling us that we are wrong.

These experiences show us that our intuition—the organ where the Holy Spirit works—is able to distinguish between right and wrong. It does not need any assistance from the observation and study of the mind. Regardless of a believer’s natural upbringing, he can always be taught by the anointing as long as he is sincere, desirous, and faithful to follow the Lord. In spiritual matters the most educated doctor and most unlearned villager are equally foolish. Many times the educated one makes more mistakes than the unlearned one. Today false teachings are quite prevalent. Many people use guileful words to disguise their lies as truths. Hence, there is the need of discernment in the spirit concerning what is right and wrong. The best teachings, the most clever mind, and the most experienced advisors are all unreliable; only those who follow the teaching of the Holy Spirit in the intuition will be saved from being deceived by today’s theological confusions and the many heresies, miracles, and wonders. We should continually ask the Lord to make our spirit more active and pure; we should also follow the small voice that comes from our intuition. We should not neglect its warning because some others have greater knowledge. Otherwise, we will either be trapped into heresy or become fanatical. If we do not calmly follow the teaching of the anointing which comes from this small voice, we will be distracted by a confused emotion and clamorous mind.

(Spiritual Man, The (3 volume set), Chapter 19, by Watchman Nee)