For many years, the Shepherd’s Bible College has taught a class called Christian Living. We’ve recently renamed this class to “Introduction to Biblical Counselling” in order to clarify what you will learn in this course.
What is biblical counselling?
Biblical counselling is the application of the word of God to the sin and suffering of people in order to help them understand their circumstances, responses and responsibilities before the Lord. Simply put, since “all scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction for training in righteousness,” biblical counselling simply applies scripture to the specific details of the individual.
Is biblical counselling up to the task of helping people?
Can biblical counselling help people suffering from schizophrenia? Depression? Phobias? Sexual Abuse? While the Shepherd’s Bible College agrees that psychology can be helpful in many ways, when it comes to helping people with their problems, our ability to help people is dependent on our ability to accurately diagnose the problem and apply an appropriate solution. While the Bible doesn’t contain the modern psychological terms, the symptoms these labels describe are often described very accurately in scripture, along with principles to diagnose and resolve these issues.
By rightly understanding the Bible, we can understand the symptoms, the problems and prescribe solutions to people’s problems. This doesn’t mean that biblical counselling is a magic bullet, nor that the counselling process will be easy. Today’s psychotherapy oriented society tends to prefer to take a pill to alleviate the symptoms of suffering (and even sin), but to actually solve the problem, often much more work is required. Yet, real change can come, and can come permanently and in many cases after just a few weeks.
If I learn biblical counselling can I get a counselling job?
Most Bible training institutions train counselors so they can go directly into the secular workforce. This means the principles of counselling they teach are largely consistent with those found in secular training institutions, and so the principles of counselling the students learn are acceptable in a secular vocation, primarily because they lack explicit (and sometimes implicit) reference to God, His word and what He says about our problems.
Since we are all sinners, made in the image of God and suffering from the effects of the fall, the principles of biblical counselling apply to all people equally. However, biblical counselling brings hope and admonition to those who need it directly from the word of God. Those who reject God and His word will generally reject the counsel He gives, and those who give it. This means that those seeking to employ biblical counselling in a secular environment are likely to be met with resistance.
For this reason, the primary focus of the Shepherd’s Bible College is to train people for ministry in the church, so that God’s people reflect the image of Christ through living more consistently with His revealed will. Biblical counsellors can provide great help and counsel to both the saved and unsaved, but it generally requires that the person being counselled is willing to wrestle with what God says.
We want our graduates to know the word of God well enough to be able to apply it broadly and effectively. Students need to have a high view of God and His word, to know how and why God saves and sanctifies, a realistic understanding of our state as sinners and the nature of sin, its effect on creation and man, as well as how the human heart interacts with the world, people ourselves and God.
It take time to learn the Bible to be able to help people, but unless you’ve allowed Christ to work through His word in your own heart, your ability to help others will be restrained by your own sin and unbiblical responses to suffering. Training at The Shepherd’s Bible College is intended to transform your life so that God can use you to transform the lives of others around you.
In some cases students can cross credit classes, and even experience to reduce the number of classes required. So if you’re interested in biblical counselling, begin by enrolling for next year, and if you have questions, or would like to cross credit courses or experience, send us an email. We look forward to talking with you!