BIBLICAL COUNSELING

Pillars of the Biblical Counseling Ministry at HPBC

The pillars discussed below are meant to be building blocks that uphold and sustain the counseling ministry at HPBC over the long haul. There are at least eight pillars the will support BC at HPBC.*

THE GLORY OF GOD

The main point of the Bible must be the focus of our counseling and, simply put, the Bible is about God’s glory (Isaiah 43:6-7; 1 Corinthians 10:31). Therefore, all counseling that takes place at HPBC must be about God’s glory. The goal of biblical counseling is to help people make choices that bring God greater glory, not less.

THE WORD OF GOD

There are three aspects of the role of scripture in the counseling performed at HPBC: First, the authority of the word: the scriptures have authority over all aspects of a believer’s life (Psalm 119:144, 165). Second, the necessity of the Word: God’s self-revelation in the bible was necessary because the eternal truths about himself were unattainable elsewhere (Romans 10:13-17). Third, the sufficiency of the Word: in counseling ministry the bible is sufficient as our guide to salvation and a life of godliness (2 Peter 1:3-4).

THE CENTRALITY OF THE GOSPEL

Gospel centrality means that Christ-likeness is the goal of counseling. It also implies that the gospel is not just offered as hope for salvation, but also as empowerment for sanctification (Romans 1:15-16). Therefore, in the counseling room, it is our desire to apply the gospel to any situation that may arise and train the counselee(s) to do the same.

THE PROBLEM OF SIN

The chief human problem is sin. Everyone is affected by sin (Romans 3:10). We are corrupted to such an extent that every part of our humanity (thoughts, emotions, actions) has been tainted by sin. Therefore, the counselor will seek to lovingly, graciously, boldly, and honestly confront sin in all its forms.

THE PURPOSE OF SUFFERING

In the counseling performed at HPBC, counselors want to keep both sin AND suffering in balance. Recognizing we live in a sin-cursed world that produces suffering for which we may not be responsible, the counselor’s role is to help the counselee to respond to suffering in godliness.

THE CONTEXT OF THE LOCAL CHURCH

There are several benefits to having the local church BE the counseling center, rather than opening up a separate counseling center which is affiliated with the local church. First, church-based counseling means submitting to leaders who already have watch over your soul (Hebrews 13:17). Second, church-based counseling is a natural extension of our covenant commitment to one another as members of the same church. Third, church-based counseling has a potential for greater accountability of shared problems. In other words the counselee will see that he or she is not; there are others in the church family who are dealing with the same kinds of things.

THE NECESSITY OF DISCIPLESHIP

The front line is not the counseling room, but the conversations that take place every day in homes, over lunch meetings, in Bible study, in conversations after church, over the phone, and even through texts and emails! All of life involves counseling and each of these opportunities gives us a chance to counsel the Word.

THE ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COMMON GRACE

We can make use of the knowledge, skills, and talents of people in many fields of study, as Scripture guides us. However scripture remains the final authority in the counseling setting.
* This section is drawn heavily from Deepak Reju's, “A Vision for Biblical Counseling at CHBC: Pillars One to Five” and “A Vision for Biblical Counseling at CHBC: Pillars Six to Nine”

Biblical Counseling Training

Our desire to cultivate and perpetuate a culture of Biblical Counseling (BC) at High Point Baptist Church is advanced through cognition – teaching and training our members in the concepts in BC; what BC is, what differentiates BC from other counseling theory and practice, the dynamics of biblical change, and the methods of biblical change. However, our primary objective is not simply cognitive but is volitional as well. Why do I do the things I do? Why do I want the things I want? And finally, we want to explore our emotions. For example, when we become angry, what is behind our anger. Is there something we want that we are denied? Is there something that we have that we are afraid of losing? Does our anger become a response to getting what we want or protecting what we already have? For out of the abundance of the heart the Mouth speaks (Luke 6:43-45). Our desire is to train up a church of biblical counselors, equipping our members to speak the truth in love more regularly and more effectively. Toward that end we will offer two classes in the 2020 – 2021 school year.

First Semester

INTRODUCTION TO BIBLICAL COUNSELING:
“Introduction to Biblical Counseling” is a basic introduction to biblical counseling; what is biblical counseling and what are the theories and methods of biblical counseling? If we want to have a biblical understanding of people and their problems, we need to have a foundational understanding of the Scripture and the theology that flows from Scripture. We will explore the biblical concepts for understanding people (who we are) and their problems (why do I do the things I do). And we will explore biblical methods of change – heart change verses behavioral change. The Bible teaches that all lasting change goes through the heart. There is also a strong emphasis on understanding basic theological concepts such as justification, sanctification, adoption, the authority, inerrancy, and sufficiency of Scripture, union with Christ, the doctrine of man, the role of the church, etc.

This class may be taken in two ways. One, simply as a means of enlarging your biblical toolbox to help in your own personal growth and sanctification and to become better equipped to come alongside others in their struggles. Or two, as a pre-requisite to the 2nd semester class “Typical Problems in Biblical Counseling”, a class that is an entry door for the Biblical Counseling ministry here at High Pointe. The difference between the two is the amount of time required outside of class. The first requires about an hour per week spent outside of class reading various assignments. The second requires about four hours of homework a week including reading and some small writing assignments.

Second Semester

TYPICAL PROBLEMS IN BIBLICAL COUNSELING:
“Typical Problems in Biblical Counseling” is for those who want to go a step further that what the intro class offers. This training is designed to apply the principles taught in the intro class to a range of specific counseling problems including fear and anxiety, anger, decision making, dealing with the past, depression, sexual sin, fear of man, and forgiveness to name a few.

Counseling Observations and Practicum

After completing the two semester curriculum there will be opportunities for counseling observation and practice; observing a trained counselor throughout the entire counseling process and then opportunities to counsel under the supervision of a trained counselor. The Counseling Observations and Practicum seeks to apply the principles taught in the two semester classes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does High Pointe offer biblical counseling to non-members?

We are happy to meet in limited scope with any person—Christian or not—who wants light from the Bible shed on their path; however, we reserve ongoing counseling for the members of High Pointe Baptist Church.

How often do we meet?

An initial meeting with one of our Biblical Counselors will help determine if on-going meetings are necessary and helpful. Most often, our counselors will ask for a 6-7 meeting commitment, then re-assess and adjust meeting frequency and length of commitment based on progress and ongoing need. 

Will I be meeting with a pastor?

Sometimes, but not always. High Pointe is very blessed to have many gifted men who aren’t pastors as well as women who serve as Biblical counselors.

Are the biblical counselors at High Pointe certified by any specific counseling organization?

What counseling do you normally do?

How do I know if I should reach out?

No. We do not require certificates or degrees to serve as a Biblical Counselor. We do thoroughly investigate the person’s life and doctrine and believe they are mature, godly, able to counsel, and gifted to serve as counselors.
Alongside pre-engagement and premarital counseling, we are eager to listen and strive to serve no matter what a person faces. Typical problems our counselors face include depression, sexual immorality, understanding God’s providence, anger, discerning calling, marriage and family issues, and more. 
Have you stalled in making progress against your sins? Are you going backwards instead of forwards in your obedience to the Lord? Do you genuinely not know how to grow from where you are presently? If so, we would love to meet and help.

Do you report abuse?

Will I be meeting alone with the counselor, or will someone else be included?

Is there a cost?

Yes. We always report abuse. It is required by the State of Texas, and it is wise for every church to involve civil authorities to deal with criminal activity.
In most cases, we do have another person (an advocate) join in the counseling with you. The advocate is being trained in Biblical counseling as well as contributing to your counsel by adding their wisdom and praying for you.
No. We are very happy to provide this service free of charge.

Counseling Request or
Questions about this Ministry?

We'd love to hear from you. Fill out the form below and our one of our pastors will reach out to you soon.