Teaching Notes are Bible studies we taught before GraceLife Ministries began publishing articles online in 1995. Some were presented as sermons, others as group studies.

Our hope is that these older studies will be a blessing to you in your life and ministry. Please use them in any way God leads you.

These teaching notes are from a sermon about counseling.

[These notes are from a sermon series taught more than 40 years ago. Click here to read Part 1 and Part 2 ]


Let me share with you another secret of success in Christian counseling from the ministry of Ezra.

Turn to Ezra 7 and let’s read verses 9 and 10 together –

“For upon the first day of the first month began he to go up from Babylon, and on the first day of the fifth month came he to Jerusalem, according to the good hand of his God upon him. For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.” Ezra 7:9-10

Secret #2

Ezra sought out the Word of God.

Only through a deep understanding of the doctrines and principles of the Bible can we give spiritual advice of any value and worth. Though secular forms of counseling make their claims to success, only biblical counseling (reality therapy) has results of lasting (now and forever) effectiveness.

Our degree of success in Christian counseling is directly proportionate, I believe, to our knowledge and understanding of God’s Word (plus what shared in the last part of our study ).

How can we counsel people to be saved? Through God’s Word!

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” Romans 1:16

“But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.” Romans 10:8-11

How can we see hard hearts broken before the Lord? Through God’s Word!

“Is not my word like as a fire? saith the Lord; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?” Jeremiah 23:29

How can we teach Christians to defend themselves against supernatural powers of evil? Through the Word of God!

“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Ephesians 6:11-17

How can we probe beneath the surface problems of God’s people to the underlying root causes? Through God’s Word!

“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12

The supreme desire of the Christian counselor should be spiritual wisdom. Solomon, one of God’s greatest counselors, wrote this –

“Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” Proverbs 4:7

Next Time

We will look at the third ‘secret’ of success in Christian counseling when our special series continues.

[Thank you for reading these teaching notes from more than 40 years ago. My prayer is they will be a blessing to you and your ministry.]