the full counsel of God

June 5, 2016

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Well I’m not sure how often I’ll do this but on Saturday mornings I teach a college course to pastors that want their master degrees in Biblical Counseling Psychology. Once in a while I will post my outline here for your benefit.

God bless

 

THE FULL COUNSEL OF GOD
PROBLEM Few Christians ever progress in their life in Christ to any degree of spiritual maturity. But when Jesus said, “The thief’s purpose is to steal, kill, and destroy. My purpose is to give life in all its fullness” (John 10:10), he was expressing God’s desire that we should become all that we can be in Christ Jesus.

BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE The counselee can have an overcoming, victorious life because of the shed blood of Jesus and because of what he can become in Christ (Rev. 12:10, 11). The Bible says that as one thinks in his heart, so has one become (Luke 6:45). The counselee will think in a godly way as he receives the full counsel of God. As he grows in spiritual knowledge and experience, he will gain spiritual maturity and the abundant life that God promised.

COUNSEL Advise and assist the counselee through the following steps:

  1. Becoming born again. Death reigns over us from our birth (Rom. 5:12) because of our sinful nature of pride versus submission to God. (1 John 2:16). We think and behave after the lusts (appetites) of our flesh and our eyes, and after the dictates of the pride of life (Gal. 5:19-21). Show the counselee that Jesus came to change his relationship with God (John 3:16). Encourage him to pray, to confess and repent of his sins. Tell him that God will give him power (authority) to become a son of God (Rom. 10:13; 1 John 1:9; John 1:12).

  1. Being baptized in the Holy Spirit. After the counselee has been saved (or “born again,” “adopted,” “redeemed,” “converted” – all terms describing the experience of salvation) he will find he needs power to live the Christian life. This power is available when one is baptized with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will comfort, guide, help, and empower the counselee (Luke 11:13; Joel 2:28-32; John 14 and 16; Acts 1:8; Mark 16:16-20). Through the Holy Spirit, his experiences will be similar to those of the first disciples. He can pray alone and receive the baptism with the Holy Spirit (Luke 11:13), or a Christ centered friend or pastor can pray with him and help him in his understanding of the Holy Spirit.

  1. The fruit of the Spirit. As the Holy Spirit edifies the counselee’s spirit, he can begin replacing his worldly, fleshly nature with God’s nature (Gal. 5:22, 23). Receiving the character traits of God is perhaps the most important need a Christian has. The Holy Spirit will work in every experience and detail of one’s life to produce the fullness of the nature of God (the fruit of the Spirit).

  1. Ministries of the Spirit. God has set in the Church five gifted ministries: apostles (missionaries who are sent to preach the gospel and establish churches); prophets (who proclaim God’s written or newly revealed, prophetic word to the church); evangelists (who proclaim his righteousness, holiness, mercy, love, etc. and who call people to turn from sinfulness to repentance); and pastors and teachers (providing spiritual aid and nurture). For one to be spiritually built up in the Lord (Eph. 4:11-13,) it is important to attend a church fellowship regularly where these ministries are present.

  1. God’s armor. God’s armor is: truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith, salvation, and God’s Word (the sword or weapon). It is received, put on, and put to use as a result of knowing God’s Word. Then, like a soldier, the Christian must maintain his equipment (spiritual armor and arms) through Bible study, the ministry of the church, and diligent prayer (Eph. 6:11-18).

With God’s armor, the counselee will be able to stand against spiritual wickedness in all its forms, whether in the physical or spiritual realm.

  1. Gifts of the Spirit. Every Christian has a spiritual gift (not necessarily supernatural) of some kind, depending on his faith (1 Pet. 4:10; Rom, 12:3-9, “motivational gifts”). The baptism with the Holy Spirit makes the counselee eligible for the supernatural gifts of the Spirit to be manifested through him as he carries out the works of Christ (John 14:12). This includes overcoming sin, sickness, and evil, and ministering to others (2 Cor. 10:4, 5). Every Spirit-filled Christian can minister through the supernatural gifts (1 Cor. 12:7-10, 27-31). 7. Kingdom principles. In practicing the principles of God’s Kingdom, one can receive the fulfillment of God’s promises.

One or more of the following principles will apply to most or all problems that are encountered. Advise the counselee to become thoroughly familiar with the following kingdom principles; encourage him to practice them for victory and growth in his life.

  1. Praise to God. He honors those who honor him (1 Sam. 2:30). the counselee needs to honor God, the Problem Solver, rather than honoring a problem, sin, temptation, illness, etc.

  1. Submission to God (his Word). The place of obedience is the place of power (Matt. 18:19). Disobedience brings only defeat.

  1. Reciprocity. As he gives, it will be given in return, in even greater measure (Luke 6:38). As he does for others and for God, it will be done for him.

  1. Favor. God favors a just man. He honors those who serve him (John 12:26). The counsel must learn to serve God and walk in his favor.

  1. Fasting. He should desire to hear from God more than he desires food to eat (Job 23:12). If he fasts on behalf of another, or for his own need, God’s reward to him will include healing, personal recognition, protection, favor, and his sure guidance (Isa. 58:6-12).

  1. Intercession. To intercede means to stand up for those in need, as a friend or defender (Isa. 59:16). God acts in response to the prayers of a Christian. In summary, show the counselee that he should be satisfied with nothing less than God’s full counsel for him. As a maturing, equipped Christian, he will be an overcomer in the world and able to teach others as well.

PRAYER Encourage the counselee to thank and praise God daily as he learns, meditates, and grows in the basic areas of God’s full counsel. Advise him to pray for others he know who need God’s fullness in their lives.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

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