A Biblical Approach to Counseling in the Church

Carry Out the "One Anothers"


Depending on the person, the term "counseling" conjures up a variety of images. However, most would agree that a certain degree of counseling has an important place in the life of a local church. What are the tools available for leaders in a congregation? When should pastors refer individuals to outside professional care? in this post created in cooperation with the Association of Biblical Counselors, JR Vassar, Senior Pastor of Church at the Cross in Grapevine, Texas addresses those questions and more as he explains the importance of discipleship throughout the process of counseling.


When you think about counseling, what comes to mind? What are some of its essential components? Who would you consider qualified to carry it out?
Log In to Continue

JR referred to the "one anothers" of Scripture as basic forms of counseling that can be carried out in a small group context. How did you react to his broader understanding of counseling? In what ways do disciplines like exhortation, confession, and prayer serve to counsel people in the context of community?
Log In to Continue

JR mentioned the "layers" of counseling that exist in his church from small groups to pastoral care to a professional referral. What layers are in place at your church? Could you stand to have a more thorough approach to counseling? If so, what changes need to be made?
Log In to Continue

A church can only do so much and inevitably situations will arise beyond its ability to treat. In such situations, professional care is appropriate. What steps does your church have in place for referring individuals to a trained counselor? Have you been able to identify and partner with counseling organizations who share your philosophy? If not, what steps will you take to begin get started? What adjustments should you make to your overall process?
Log In to Continue


Every follower of Christ plays a part in counseling other believers towards maturity in their faith. Certainly, some issues require professional care, but in large part the local church has a significant role in the lives of its people. Consider the process and perspective of your church towards the subject of counseling. Take steps towards stronger partnerships with professional organizations while at the same time encouraging your people to embrace their role in counseling one another. 


To find out more about the Association of Biblical Counselors, click here.