Introduction to Biblical Counseling I. What is counseling?
Introduction to Biblical Counseling I. What is counseling? A. The dictionary defines counsel as: 1. The act of exchanging opinions and ideas; consultation 2. Advice or guidance, especially as solicited from a
knowledgeable person 3. A plan of action 4. Synonyms include: advice, direction, guidance, consultation, recommendation B. There are many definitions given from various sources for the process of counseling. A
few of them include the following: 1. Counseling is something that provides direction or advice as to a decision or course of action. 2. Counseling is the process by which a professional counselor helps a person cope with mental or emotional distress,
and understand and solve personal problems. American Cancer Society 3. Counseling is the application of mental health, psychological or human development principles, through cognitive, affective, behavioral or systematic intervention strategies, that address
wellness, personal growth, or career development, as well as pathology. American Counseling Association Do you see anything questionable about these above definitions? C. A good working definition for
our purposes is: Counseling is a form of guidance in which a trained or knowledgeable person offers advice or education about specific life problems or issues of living. II. What are the various types of counseling? Note: A fuller understanding of
these methods is discussed in The Christian Counselors Manual by Jay Adams. A. There is the Rogerian method popularized by Carl Rogers. The Rogerian model is characterized by some of the following: 1. It presupposes that man has truth within himself and through
guided introspection can come to a solution. 2. It usually avoids any direct advice, confrontation and references to moral absolutes. 3. The counselors primary function is to help the counselee unlock the inner secrets within and realize his or her inner potential. He does this my
mirroring the patients thoughts and restating what has been said. B. There is the Freudian method popularized by Sigmund Freud. The Freudian model is characterized by some of the following: 1. It presupposes that man is basically a clean slate when he
is born and that any problems he may have are due to the fact that he has been wrongly socialized by someone or something else (e.g. parents, environment). 2. Most Freudians believe that guilt is an artificial and harmful activity that is the result of parental and societal mores.
3. The primary method is to dig deep into the persons soul (psyche) and past to try to analyze why they are the way they are. Balance is often achieved by being able to blame others or offer an excuse for ones behavior. C. There is the Skinnerian method popularized by B.F. Skinner.
The Skinnerian model is characterized by some of the following: 1. It presupposes that man is like any other animal and can be trained or behaviorally controlled by manipulating his environment or biology. 2. The primary method is to employ various behavior
modification techniques that include stimulus and response. It may include behavior modification by the use of various drug related treatments. D. There is the biblical method popularized by Jesus and the Apostles. This, of course, is the method
that we will be pursuing in this course of which we will give fuller definition and expression as we continue on. III. What is biblical counseling? A. Biblical counseling is to be distinguished from other forms of counseling in several ways: 1. Biblical counseling begins from the premise that man is created
by God and did not evolve from lower life forms. 2. Biblical counseling, therefore, sees man as the crown of Gods creation completely distinguished from the other animals, having a spirit, soul and a body. 3. Biblical counseling acknowledges that the God who
created man understands man better than man understands himself. 4. Biblical counseling accepts the fact that the God of the universe has an opinion about most of the issues that affect mankind. 5. Biblical counseling acknowledges that the Bible is
Gods word to man and represents His opinion relative to every area that it addresses. 6. Biblical counseling assumes that God has given to man everything that man needs to make right decisions and solve all of lifes problems (II Pet. 1:2-4). 7. Biblical counseling assumes
that man will never be able to function properly unless he is in right relationship with God and His word. B. Biblical counseling has been compromised in many ways. 1. It has been compromised by the teaching of humanistic psychology that is taught in most institutions of learning.
2. It has been compromised by educators who themselves have been trained in humanistic psychology and tend to see what they have been taught as being superior to religious teaching or insight. 3. It has been compromised by the teaching of relative truth and situation ethics which see the
Bible as an antiquated, religious relic. 4. It has been compromised by evolutionary concepts that pervade many realms of society: a. That man is inherently good. b. That man is a product of his environment. c. That there is no absolute
authority (God). d. That morality is relative and culturally developed. 5. It has been compromised by Christian counselors that have blended biblical revelation with humanistic ideas. 6. It has been compromised by the attempt to reclassify sinful behavior as diseases or
disorder making it difficult at best to achieve biblical 7. solutions. It has been compromised by an exaltation of the process of counseling rather than the responsible actions of the one 8. It has been compromised as pastors and church leaders are intimidated by professional
counselor. IV. What are the main reasons why people seek counseling? Counseling is the interaction of people at the need level of life sharing insights toward the solutions of real problems. Charles H. Nichols A. Counseling is sought in many different realms of life and
living. 1. Career Counseling 2. Relationship Counseling 3. Marriage Counseling 4. Family Counseling 5. Financial Counseling 6. Grief Counseling 7. Behavioral Counseling (Addictions, Anger, Worry, Fear) 8. Crisis Counseling
B. Counseling is sought for many different reasons. 1. The counselee simply needs advice about a decision. 2. The counselee needs guidance concerning life goals. 3. The counselee needs support through an emotional season. 4. The counselee needs motivation for change.
5. The counselee needs assistance in resolving conflict. 6. The counselee needs to be free from bondage in an area. 7. The counselee needs insight into the expression of gifts and ministries. 8. The counselee needs to understand principles of cultivating and maintaining
healthy friendship and relationships. 9. The counselee needs instruction in some of the practical areas of life. 10. The counselee needs to deal with issues of bitterness and unforgiveness. 11. The counselee needs help in sorting out their priorities.
12. The counselee needs direction and inspiration relative to their personal spiritual growth. C. The counseling process may be initiated by the presence of certain symptoms in the counselee(s). Some of these include: Depression, loneliness, bitterness, resentment, stress,
guilt, conflict, fears, frustration, etc. V. Where is the ministry of counseling found in the Bible? A. There are not many times when the words counsel or counseling are found in the Bible. 1. The closest Old Testament word that is most often
translated counsel is the word yah-gatz. This word literally means to advise. a. Jethro gave counsel to Moses (Ex. 18:19, 23). b. Ahithophel was a counselor to David and Absolom (II Sam. 16:23). c. God is the source of counsel (Ps. 16:7-8). He is the
Wonderful Counselor (Is. 9:6; 11:1-4). d. Much of the time this word is used in a negative sense of wicked people taking counsel together to devise wicked 2. The closest New Testament word that is most often translated counsel is the word sumbouleo. This word
literally means to give or take advice jointly. It means to recommend, deliberate or a.determine. Most of the time it is used in a negative sense of the opponents of Jesus taking counsel how they might destroy Him (Mt. 26:4). b. The primary positive use of
this word reminds us that God does not need anyones counsel (Rom. 11:33-36). B. There are many words that are found in the Bible that enter into the counseling process. 1. Reprove (Elenko) a. Definition: To convict, to expose, by conviction to bring to light, to admonish, to
correct, to call to account, to show one his fault (demanding an explanation), to chasten, to punish b. Other references: Mt. 18:15; Luke 3:19; John 3:20; 8:9,46; 16:8; I Cor. 14:24; Eph. 5:11,13; I Tim. 5:20; II Tim. 3:16; Tit. 1:9,13; 2:15; Heb. 12:5; Jam. 2:9; Rev. 3:19
2. Rebuke (Epitimao) a. Definition: To tax with a fault, rate, chide, reprove, censure severely b. Other references: Mt. 12:16; 16:22; 17:18; Luke 9:55; 17:3; Jude 9 3. Admonish (Noutheteo) a. Definition: To admonish, warn
or exhort b. Other references: Acts 20:31; Rom. 15:14; I Cor. 4:14; 10:11; Eph. 6:4; Col. 1:28; 3:16; II Th. 3:15; Tit. 3:10 4. Correct (Epanorthosis) a. Definition: To correct, to restore to an upright or right state, to raise up again, to reform, to restore, to
reestablish b. See: II Timothy 3:16-17; James 5:19-20 5. Judge (Krino) a. Definition: To separate, put asunder, to select, to approve, to determine, decree, to judge, to pronounce an opinion concerning right and wrong, to rule, to govern, to preside over
with power of giving judicial b.decisions Other references: I Cor. 6:231; 14:29
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