The Lord is clear in His Word how the church is to function with evangelists, pastors and teachers equipping the saints “for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ” (Eph. 4:11-13). Those in leadership could not possibly accomplish all the work of the ministry to bring every believer “unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.”
Those who are maturing in the faith are called and equipped to come alongside and serve one another. In addition to Galatians 6:1-2, there are other verses that direct believers to comfort, edify, admonish, teach, and exhort one another, all as expressions of love and care for one another’s spiritual well-being and growth (e.g., 1 Thes. 5:11; Heb. 3:13; 10:24).
1 Peter not only says to minister to one another, but tells how to speak “as the oracles of God,” meaning according to the Word of God, not according to the prevailing wisdom of men:
As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen (1 Peter 4:10-11).
Speaking forth the “oracles of God” would be Christ-centered, rather than problem-centered. The conversations would involve much of the Word rather than complaints about other people.
We urge all believers to grow in grace, in faith, and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ and to be ready to minister to one another as the Lord provides opportunities and wisdom. New believers can certainly testify of the Lord’s work in them, which can be a great encouragement to others. As believers talk with one another they will find opportunities to give a word of comfort, encouragement, and exhortation. They may have opportunities to remind one another of essential truths of Scripture that need to be emphasized. They may be sought out for personal ministry by those who are enduring trials and various problems of living.
Those who are trusting the Lord and His Word are ready vessels for the Holy Spirit to work through them. As they have been walking daily with the Lord through both sunny and stormy days, they are equipped to minister in some of the most difficult situations that fellow believers may be experiencing.
We thank God for those individuals who, without counseling certificates, degrees, manuals, books or programs, are not intimidated by any lack of counseling education or training and who thereby depend fully on the Lord as they minister to others, just as believers were doing prior to the rise of the psychological and biblical counseling movements. We say to all who have been prepared by the Lord and are dependent on Him rather than on the wisdom of men: Go forth and minister by grace through faith.
Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen (Heb. 13:20-21).
PsychoHeresy Awareness Letter, March-April 2019, Vol. 27, No.2)