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Should We Counsel or Not?

Should We Counsel or Not?

Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man's wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 1Corinthians 2:12-14 (NKJV)

Have you ever had a conversation with someone and had him or her look back at you with a blank stare on their face?  It's as if you were speaking a foreign language.  Well, if you were giving biblical advice based on God's word to a non-believer in an attempt to counsel them, then chances are, you were.

The fact is that we are taught in scripture that to give Spirit led biblical counsel to one who doesn't know the Lord, will probably end up being looked upon as foolish.  According to the scriptures above, these people who don't know the Lord, are not able to totally understand Gods Word.  

I have seen some people who have tried really hard to give good biblical advice to another non-believer only to become frustrated because they didn't understand it or even want to try to see it from God's perspective.  On other occasions, I have seen non-believers try to follow this advice because they respected the person who was giving it, but it ultimately didn't work.  

Why does this happen?

Well there are a couple of reasons.  As 2 Corinthians tells us, they cannot truly receive the things of God because they are not of the spirit themselves (Their not born again believers).  God has promised to all believers that they will understand His Word as the Holy Spirit helps us to understand it.

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. John 14:26 (NKJV)

Another reason that attempting Biblical counseling doesn't work is because when we give this counsel to unbelievers, we are merely addressing the symptom and not the actual source of the problem.  Can you imagine going into the doctor's office to find out what is wrong, and the doctor says, We need to get some salve on that bump and abrasion that you have on your chest.  That would be fine unless the real problem is that you have cancer.  By him treating the symptom and not the real issue does no real good.

So to give good solid Spirit led Biblical counseling to someone for their problem is only treating that one symptom, and not the real issue.  It might correct the issue that they are fighting with, but it will not reconcile them to God, nor will it bring them eternal life.  Again, it would do no good to cure the temporary problem without helping with the deadly disease of spiritual death.

Q:    So what do we do in this case?
A:    We give good solid Spirit led Biblical pre-counsel.

Pre-counsel is getting to the real issue that is causing the problem in the first place, and that is their sinful nature.   Pre-counsel is our explaining to the person that they are in need of a real solution to their dilemma; they need to receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and be forgiven of their sin.  In short, pre-counsel is evangelism.  

It is our responsibility as Christian believers to pre-counsel those who are in need of help, and to let them know that we cannot counsel them until we have successfully completed pre-counseling.

Q:    What if the person doesn't want to receive what we are saying in pre-counsel?

A:    At this point, it is our responsibility to let them know that there is nothing we can say to them to help them.  All of our advice is biblically based, and to accept biblical advice and not accept the one who created us is in complete contrast with each other.  I believe the best thing to do at this point is to give them one last piece of scripture for them to remember.  And this peace of scripture will plant a seed for the future.

The way of the unfaithful is hard. Proverbs 13:15(b) (NKJV)

 That's as straightforward as you can be, and it is telling it like it is, because the way of the unfaithful is hard, plain and simple.  If you are not walking in faith with the Lord, your road in life is going to be hard.  Chances are, it won't take long for the person to put that piece of scripture together with their life and when they do, they just might come back and agree with you and say, You know what, you're right, the way of the unfaithful is hard, and I want to change.  I want to know Jesus.

Hey Christian, we've all been called to counsel others.  Let's give good counsel, and let's work first and foremost on reconciling others unto God.  Only then will they be able to truly change.

STUDY QUESTION: What does 1 Corinthians 2:12-14 tell us about those who don't have God in their life?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Have you found yourself trying to give Christian counseling to a non-believer only to see them not understand or be able to implement it into their lives?

APPLICATION: Seek first to reconcile others unto the Lord, and then begin to give good biblical counsel based solely on God's Word.

Father, Thank You for Your Word and the wisdom contained within it.  Help me today to reconcile others unto You Lord.  Help me to give good biblical counsel to those who know You, and to give good biblical pre-counsel to those who don't know You yet.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000