Questions from Counselees

Often counselees ask me questions that they ought to be asking their elders. But, clearly, some pastors* have not thought through many of these matters so, though regrettable, it is important to help their people by providing a few answers. One difficulty is that too few pastors know how to counsel; consequently, people do not go to them for counseling. They don't expect them to counsel (or answer their questions about counseling), and find them unprepared if and when they do attempt to do so. Since they do not think of their pastors as counselors, they reach out to others. Usually, those with whom they consult do not have a truly biblical orientation. To do what I can to correct this serious failure on the part of people and pastors is one of the main reasons why I write; but, above all, I have been attempting in every way to remedy this situation by encouraging elders to become competent counselors.

At the outset, Christian counselee, you ought to see your pastor whenever you need counseling information or help. If he doesn't have answers, you can give him this book. If he doesn't know how to counsel, perhaps you can help pay his way to a counseling training program recommended by the National Association of Nouthetic Counselors. At any rate, pray that God will give your elders a heart to counsel biblically. The church desperately needs elders all over the country (and the world) who are trained to counsel nouthetically.** Take this matter to heart.

* All elders are pastors by job description (I Peter 5: 1-4) whether or not they realize it.

** See under general questions and answers the meaning and use of the term Nouthetic.

Jay E Adams

Institute for Nouthetic Studies

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Simpsonville, SC 29681

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