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Equipping the Saints to Counsel - Lesson 2

by Dr. Ray Self



The Christian Counselor

Click the play button to begin video lesson and follow along with the class notes below the video window. When you complete this video, click the "Lesson Assignment" button at the bottom of this page to open the lesson assignment.

The Christian Counselor

The two primary commitments for every counselor are to believe in Jesus. . .

  • The Greek word for "believe" also means to "obey."
  • Faith is obedience.

. . . And to love one another - 1 John 3:23 - This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us.

  • Until we are fully motivated by love we cannot trust our intentions.
  • If we are not motivated by love we will be governed by a self-centered agenda.
  • Love is able to see the wrong and still find good.
  • Love can point out a weakness and still find strength.
  • Love is not offended by sin and still loves the sinner.
  • Love listens without judgment.
  • Love qualifies you to remove the splinter when the other person is ready and when you are invited.
  • Love says the best thing you can do for others is to pull the log out of your own eye first.
  • Love is a command, but it is also a gift. It is okay to ask God to anoint you with His love.

The attitude of the Christian counselor should be the attitude of a servant. Matthew 20:26-28 says, "It is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."

The counselor is not to fix, manipulate, control, or force an opinion.

The Christian counselor is not an enabler and not a savior.

The mature Christian counselor will speak and impart first the love of God and then the wisdom of God.

A counselor with wisdom and truth, but without love can fall into the trap of legalism.

Enforcing a set of rules does not cause change. Telling a person just to stop without teaching them about the power to overcome is futile.

2 Corinthians 3:6 - . . . who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

Facilitating the power and love of the Holy Spirit to the counselee will affect a change.

God’s goal is not to change what we do but change who we are, which in turn will change what we do.

Trying to force a behavioral change will only be a short term solution at best.

God changes the heart which destroys the root of any life controlling issue.

Counseling behavior without searching for the root cause is like picking off the top half of a weed and expecting it never to grow back.

If a counselee is only trying to abstain from destructive behavior without a change of heart then success will only be temporary.

When a person is abstaining without a change of heart, then the desires probably have not changed.

When the desire for sin is still prevalent, abstinence is difficult and many times only temporary. This is why so many people continually fall back into the same sin. They have been abstaining but have not been delivered.

When God changes who a person is by changing his or her heart then the old person and old behaviors will give way to a new person and godly behaviors.

2 Corinthians 5:17 - Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.

We may think we are not new because of behavior problems.

Behavioral problems result from not understanding we are a new creation.

Behavior is only a symptom. A lack of knowledge concerning our new creation is the real problem!

2 Peter 1:3 - . . .seeing that his divine power hath granted unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that called us by his own glory and virtue;

Facilitating the love and power of God and using His wisdom is what makes a Christian counselor effective.


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