Biblical Counseling: A Discipline -- By: Keith A. Evans

Journal: Reformed Presbyterian Theological Journal
Volume: RPTJ 05:2 (Spring 2019)
Article: Biblical Counseling: A Discipline
Author: Keith A. Evans

Biblical Counseling: A Discipline1

Keith A. Evans

Professor of Biblical Counseling
Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary

The training of a generation of future pastors, missionaries, and laborers in Christ’s Church, to counsel the flock of God, that they might disciple the nations, is an overwhelmingly awesome calling!

The primary affection that I am experiencing upon receiving this holy calling is: thankfulness. I am so thoroughly thankful that Christ, by his Church, has deemed it fitting and acceptable to entrust to me this sacred study. I am simply so very thankful to receive the position of Biblical Counseling Professor from Christ, and it is my sincere hope and prayer that I may faithfully honor Him and be a loyal servant to His dear sheep. Thus, to those of you who have supported me, prayed for me, encouraged me, counseled me, endured with me, and sacrificed so much, that we might be having this conversation tonight, namely, my wife, Melissa, and my children, as well as my parents: thank you.

Biblical Theology And Biblical Counseling

As we consider “Biblical Counseling: A Discipline,” our minds should go back to the memorable year of 1894, when the Reverend Geerhardus Vos, of Princeton Theological Seminary, was inaugurated as its Professor of Biblical Theology. At this point, you may be wondering: what do Biblical Theology, and Biblical Counseling have to do with one another. Apart from the fact that they, of course, are both “Biblical,” we can at the very least, assume that they both aim to be Biblical.

The title of this inaugural address, “Biblical Counseling: A Discipline”, is actually an homage to Dr. Vos’ Inaugural Address, where he spoke on the then new, theological discipline of Biblical Theology.2 Of course, Biblical Theology was not new then, in the same way that Biblical Counseling is not new now as a theological discipline — and yet there was and is an element of “newness” to each of them, respectively. At this juncture, if we are not careful, we will begin sounding like the Apostle John, who speaks of an old commandment, which is also a new commandment — but I digress.

Biblical Counseling, like Biblical Theology in 1894, is relatively new, in the history of Christendom. After all, Biblical Counseling is only about fifty years old as a discipline. She is but now coming into her third generation of practitioners and professors. And here at the Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary, the one taking up the discipline is quite a young professor —

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