Who is responsible to counsel in the church? The Pastor does have the responsibility but often cannot counsel with everyone! Who is able to help fellow believers or unbelievers in the pew? Church members need to be able to know how to use the Scriptures to minister to one another and need instruction on how to minister using the Scriptures depending on the Holy Spirit to do the work in the heart.
The Pastor (or some of his helpers) need to equip the saints or perfect them. Ephesians 4:11, 12, “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:” The pastor teaches and perfects the saints. Paul was an example. He stated in Act 20:19, 20, “Serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews: And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house,”
The pastor and his helpers used the Scriptures to minister, to teach, and to counsel. Just as Paul was faithful, so the pastor is faithful. Acts 20:31, “Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.” His goal was teaching and admonishing.
Paul used the Scriptures just as the faithful pastor today uses the Scriptures. He did not use secular sources, but he relied on God’s Word. I Thessalonians 2:9-20 expresses the true heart of the faithful pastor. His goal is to restore or gain his brother or sister.
Those who assist him need to study to be approved unto God to do the work of ministering to others as well. It does take a measure of diligence and study. If there are situations which are beyond the capabilities of an individual, he needs to study more and go with the individual to someone who can give the Truth from his experiences in dealing with others. This way the believer can grow as he seeks help for the individual.
Fulfilling the great commission is winning the lost and then teaching them to observe all the things the Lord has commanded us to teach. Coming alongside the new convert and showing him the skills he needs to learn to grow and serve is a great blessing and responsibility.