I have been reading some Lutheran Scholasticism as of late, and the following snippet jumped out at me. I thought it was a good summation of the dialectic of Nestorianism/Eutychianism between Calvinists and the Lutherans in terms of of Biblical inspiration. It will be helpful to keep in mind that the author uses “Orthodox” to refer to the orthodox Lutheran theologians.
“Some divergence of interpretation concerning Scriptural inspiration may be observed between the Orthodox theologians of the Lutheran and those of the Reformed Confessions. Although the later stressed that Scripture was verbally inspired, they differed from the Lutheran writers in ascribing to it a merely instrumental function. They stoutly maintained that the Holy Scriptures has no power in itself; instead, it resembles some inanimate tool, a saw or a hammer, which becomes effective only when the master-workman especially deigns to take it into his hands and operate with it. Thus the Holy Writings cannot work except through some special decision and operation of the Holy Spirit, who in this case ‘exalts’ the intrument and works with it upon the listener or reader.
Lutheran Orthodox theologians did not countenance such a restriction upon the efficacy of the Holy Scriptures. In their polemical writings they emphasized the organic character of the content, desitgnating it as a ‘thing which is alive (res animata) . They preferred to compare the Scriptures to the ‘living incorruptible seed’ (1 Peter 1:23), a seed that grows by itself (Mark 4:26-29), penetrating fire (Jeremiah 23:29), oil and wine (Luke 10:34), bread and food, rain that refreshes the earth, shining light, and healing medicine. Here the intrinsic value of Scripture was strongly maintained. The understanding was that the divine revelation and its expression in the Scriptures are so completely united that to divorce them would create a serious distortion. This view inspires greater confidence in the holy will of our Father in heaven than a view which leaves the inspiration of Scripture in suspense.”
Edmund Smits, The Doctrine of Man in Classical Lutheran Theology, xiii-xiv
Here I think the Nestorianism of the Reformed in the locus of biblical inspiration is obvious. That which is human relates to God in instrumental or extrinsic terms. The Bible is a tool because man is a tool. The work of the Spirit is external to humanity and so one can see how the monergism of Reformed soteriology structures their view of Biblical inspiration. Humanity becomes effective when used by God so that in say the Reformed notion of the Covenant of Works, humanity could merit God’s favor. In and of itself, humanity is worthless, impotent, etc. This is why it takes the Spirit’s work, rather than the work of the Son in the Incarnation to accomplish anything relative to our humanity in Reformed theology. Humanity is never united to God except extrinsically.
But the instrumental relation is also discernable in the Lutheran reading. Humanity is so much a tool of the divine that it is indistinguishable from the divine. God simply absorbs it. The worry is that any distinction amounts to a “divorce” or separation. There can only be one nature and one person because for Eutychians, person and nature are the same thing. This is why the language of “organic” comes into play. In order for the union to be genuine, it has to be glossed in terms of essences, rather than that of persons. This is because for both the Lutherans and the Reformed a personal or hypostatic union amounts to a union of will.