How does Nouthetic Counselling differ from others

Much counselling purports to be Christian. However, most of the counselling that is done by Christians is a mixture of unbelieving counselling systems which have been “sanitized” to sound Christian. I am not saying that everyone who uses such¬†counselling systems eclectically does so in bad faith, but it is perfectly clear that even among the best, the Bible is “brought in” after the theory and the practice have been adopted in order to somehow make what is done “Christian.” Worse still, in other cases the Bible is interspersed to make it appear Christian. Even those who honestly think that sprinkling a few Bible verses throughout somehow sanctifies the counselling, in many cases must have an uneasy conscience about the procedure. In some situations, nevertheless, there may be those who simply know so little of the Bible, how to interpret and apply it, that they sincerely believe this process legitimizes the name “Christian Counselling.”

Truly Christian counselling (Nouthetic Counselling, or that which is in line with Nouthetic Counselling, but does not use the name) is Bible based from start to finish. See the answer to the previous question for more details. What makes the difference, fundamentally, is whether or not a system is grounded on the promise that the Bible has all the answers for life and godliness. The Bible teaches this in such passages as 2 Peter 1:3 where the promises of God are said to provide just such help. And, in addition, in 2 Timothy 3:17, from three distinct perspectives, Paul says the Scriptures are sufficient for every task an elder is called to do. What makes the difference between those systems that call themselves Christian and truly are, then, is whether it includes extraneous materials as well. Christian counselling, to warrant the name, must assert (and in actual practice demonstrate) the sufficiency of the Scriptures for counselling.

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