Counseling Is Discipleship

Jim Berg has given us a very helpful book on biblical discipleship entitled Changed Into His Image. If you are looking for a basic, solid introduction to the doctrine of sanctification, I recommend this book. Here are a just a few quick takeaways w/corresponding quotations that will give you a taste of Berg’s view of discipleship. It makes a very good small group study too.

Discipleship is about relationships, not programs:

“Biblical discipleship is not primarily a program. It is a certain kind of relationship between two believers with a very specific spiritual goal in mind. Discipleship is helping another believer make biblical change toward Christlikeness—helping others in the sanctification process.”

Change is the work of the Holy Spirit:

“Change into Christlikeness, likewise, is not something we do to ourselves. It is something that happens supernaturally through the agency of the Holy Spirit when we expose ourselves to God’s Word and He reveals to us His glory.”

Rebuking another believer must be done in love:

“The rebuke must be done in such a way that the loving heart of the rebuker is evident. A believer who is allowing the Word of God to convict his own conscience about his relationship with God and with his neighbor will not be mean-spirited as he deals with others. He knows all too well the sinfulness of man as he has seen it exposed within his own heart and will desire to help others be rescued from the storms of the flesh as well. Many problems that arise from the manner in which believers confront one another will be eliminated if the ‘teacher’ himself is Word-filled. If he is not, the issues of concern will most likely be wrong and so will the manner of confrontation.”

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