counsel vs. add-vice
Much can be said about counsel and the desperate need that exists as it pertains to direction as we travel this road of life. One can obtain instruction from a multitude of sources; some good, some not so good, but for the most part all well meaning.
No matter the issue or the direction one may be seeking there is only one source that is fail-safe, the WORD OF THE LIVING GOD!
Jeremiah 10:23 “O LORD, I know the way of man [is] not in himself; [It is] not in man who walks to direct his own steps.”
Why is it that man knows not his own way?
Psalms 100:3 “Know ye that the LORD he [is] God: [it is] he [that] hath made us, and not we ourselves; [we are] his people, and the sheep of his pasture.”
The giver and sustainer of life has made us and knows us even better than we know ourselves. Which of us can tell the number of hairs in our head? Yet, God knows the total number as well as the number of each. He is our “Jehovah Rohi” our Shepherd and is intimately involved in and concerned about every detail and issue of our lives.
Since it is God who made us and knows us better than even we do, why would we seek counsel from any other source? Especially in light of the following scriptures:
Psalms 32:8 (NIV) “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.”
Proverbs 2:6 “For the LORD grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.”
Proverbs 2:7 “He grants a treasure of good sense to the godly. He is their shield, protecting those who walk with integrity.”
Proverbs 2:8 “He guards the paths of justice and protects those who are faithful to him.”
Proverbs 2:9 “Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will know how to find the right course of action every time.”
Can you imagine knowing the right course of action every time? To most that concept is almost unfathomable. But, with God, “all things are possible.”
Truly God and His Word are a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. With God and His Word we can know that each step is sure and the direction is right.
Concerning counsel God's Word states:
Proverbs 15:22 “Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counselors they are established.”
Proverbs 11:14 “Where no counsel [is], the people fall: but in the multitude of counselors [there is] safety.”
Proverbs 20:18 “[Every] purpose is established by counsel: and with good advice make war.”
We all are in need of daily, even moment-by-moment counsel. There are many but only one true and accurate source of counsel.
Many well-intended individuals offer what they consider to be counsel. Yet, it is nothing more than advice; better termed add-vice. You see, much of what we receive from others only adds vice to our situation. A vice is a moral weakness. Therefore much of what we obtain from other sources only proves to weaken rather than strengthen the challenges we face.
In the book of Judges the Israelites ask a priest to seek counsel of God to see if their way would be prosperous: Judges 18:5 “And they said unto him, Ask counsel, we pray thee, of God, that we may know whether our way which we go shall be prosperous.”
May we not only acknowledge but also inquire of the Lord our God, shunning add-vice and seeking counsel.