40 Days of Discipline

40 Days of Discipline: Day 27 – Counsel


Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance (Proverbs 1:5)

For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through many advisers. (Proverbs 11:14)

The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice. (Proverbs 12:15)

Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed. (Proverbs 15:22)

Listen to advice and accept discipline, and at the end you will be counted among the wise. (Proverbs 19:20)

Our Feature Friday Discipline is the Discipline of Counsel.  In today’s society, the person who dispenses counsel is often considered wise.  The Bible offers another perspective though, by linking listening and seeking counsel with wisdom.   The Holy Spirit can directly provide us with all the counsel we need but He elects to sometimes provide this counsel through others.   Of course, not all counsel provided is wise, even in the church.   For some, the fact that this is a “risky” Discipline is ample reason not to pursue it.   However, viewed through the lens of love that is not a recommended path.

Please prayerfully read the passages above and answer today’s questions.

Today’s Questions for comments:

  • Do you have a network of believers who can provide you with godly advice on a variety of matters?
  • How do you guard against using bad counsel?

10 thoughts on “40 Days of Discipline: Day 27 – Counsel

  1. Do you have a network of believers who can provide you with godly advice on a variety of matters?
    I do but now that today’s material makes me consider it, I don’t seek their counsel near often enough. Certainly room for more wisdom there.

    How do you guard against using bad counsel?
    Well first I would say by electing the right people from whom to seek counsel, brothers/sisters in Christ who we respect given their walk and their fruit. Then I would say that everything needs to be tested against the Word. As Henry Blackaby says, in his book Experiencing God, counsel is one of the four ways we hear from God when we seek His guidance. The others are prayer, the Word, and circumstances. These will align when God is really speaking to us. So if the counsel I receive contradicts these others then that would be more reason for caution and careful reflection.

    • Thanks Lester, I too agree that counsel should be tested against the Word, and as Blackaby suggests we can be led by God through Godly counsel. Even when we think time is limited and we feel constrained to act quickly we must still embrace prayer, seek His Word and if necessary compare circumstances.
      My prayer is that I will always be wise enough to leave room for the guidance of the Holy Spirit through Godly counsel.

  2. While I know that God’s word Is the ultimate guide to good counsel, there are a few individuals that come to mind when I think that I may need some human interaction with an ” issue”. The awesome thing is that these individuals guide me based on God’s word anyway, which is what I need.

    Turning to these godly individuals is my sure fire way of avoiding bad counsel.

  3. My family is my greatest source for godly advice. They know me the best, I trust them to have my best interests in mind, but most importantly I see their walks with the Lord and how much they love Him.

    I guard against using bad counsel by observing how the giver of advice leads their life, by using intuition, and as I mentioned before, whether I fully trust them.

  4. Do you have a network of believers who can provide you with godly advice on a variety of matters?
    Thankfully, God has placed very godly people in my life to give wise counsel and correction.
    How do you guard against using bad counsel?
    I pray! Sometimes the Holy Spirit intervenes to let me know this isn’t His plan.

  5. I am blessed to be surrounded by a group of men who provide wise council on many issues. I am comfortable in bouncing off ideas on them and giving attention to their response. I am thankful for their support given, not agreement with me on everything. Seeking wise counsel is not only for when things go bad, but can be utilized for future planning, as a preventive measure.

    How do i guard against using bad counsel?

    I am guided by a verse in the Bible Proverbs 25: 19 which says ” Confidence in an unfaithful man, in time of trouble is like a broken tooth, and a foot out of joint”.

    I personally do not seek advice on certain matters from non-believers, and others who are grounded in the word.

    I am alert to counsel involving personal relationships from external persons that focuses on:

    1. Telling the person what he or she wants to hear.
    2. Furthering the belief that the other persons are wrong.
    3. Where the Counselor has the potential to benefit personally from the situation.
    4. Better yet, if the person never experienced a similar problem.

  6. Correction to 4th statement.

    I personally do not seek advice on certain matters from non-believers, and others who are NOT grounded in the word.

  7. I am blessed to have a small network of believers I can seek advice from. I also seek advice from non believers but not on matters of morality. Being a new believer (3 years) this discipline is new to me. I only opened my eyes to it as a result of last year’s 40daysofdiscipline. But so far it has been very rewarding in terms of better decision making and a clearer head.

    I guard against bad counsel by comparing what I receive to the Word. I also only seek advice from people I trust. I use
    judgment. I do not discuss problems with people who cannot help me. I also ask for God’s guidance. I read books written by Godly people so that I learn from the experience of others.

  8. Interestingly, we have practiced the Discipline of Counsel through the very insightful comments today. Thank you commentators!

    There is no doubt that even our most trusted counselors should not be placed ahead of the Bible and the Holy Spirit. However, God has elected to guide us to each other for counsel and obviously meaningful fellowship feeds this process.

    I have found Acts chapter 15 an interesting read as I considered the Discipline of Counsel. It’s worth a read.

  9. Do you have a network of believers who can provide you with godly advice on a variety of matters?
    I looked at this question this AM (Friday) and realized i needed to give this question more thought than i had time then. This question exposed one of my weaknesses. I believe i have folks that I can use as excellent sources of godly advice, but clearly don’t use them enywhere close to the way I should. I have much work to do here.
    How do you guard against using bad counsel?
    As much as I am able to, I use the scripture to assess the quality of counsel that I do receive and consider the pros & cons of what’s presented. Of course in light of giving the consideration to this subject, I now am considering how much of the counsel I have been assessing, is counsel from within me.
    Thanks. I needed this.
    “He is still working on me. To make me what I ought to be…..”.

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