Those who criticise the use of theological books in favour of reading only the Word are, under a false aura of humility, demonstrating their arrogance and ignoring the work of the Holy Spirit who they ‘seek’ to honour.
People have been criticised for reading theological books on top of the Bible. This occurs under the guise of honouring the Word of God given the available illumination of the Holy Spirit. However, in trying to honour the Holy Spirit, whether falsely or genuinely, this argument actually denies the work of the Holy Spirit in the lives of individuals. Certainly, the Word of God takes precedence over theological texts. However, if one maintains that the Holy Spirit illuminates the understanding of those who read and study Scripture, and then if this illuminated understanding is written down, it is necessary therefore, to realise that we can benefit from that illumination. The difference being, the book is not to be valued as Scripture but recognised for what it is – potential truths, given by the Holy Spirit, that have been graciously revealed to help us understand His Word. In other words, we are merely standing on the shoulders of those who have gone before. However, Scripture alone remains inspired, inerrant and infallible – theological Works are not, even when their content may help us to understand the truth better.