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In this blog, there will be a variety of material: thoughts on Bible books, book reviews, historical characters, aspects of Scottish church history and other things.

Friday, 25 December 2015

Wonderful Counsellor

In Isaiah 9, the Messiah is given several names. One of them is that of Wonderful Counsellor. It was the custom in the ancient world for rulers to take into their service the wisest of their subjects to act as their counsellors. When the Messiah will come, says Isaiah, he will not adopt that method; in his kingdom there will never be a cabinet meeting where he accepts advice from others. This is not because their advice is wrong, rather it will be because he will always know the best decision to make and the best course to take. There will never be a time in his reign when he will be flummoxed by a new situation.
The reason why he is self-sufficient is because he is the fount of all wisdom. In him are found all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge; as God he permanently possesses all wisdom. It was by his wisdom that he made the heavens and it was by the same wisdom that he participated in the plan of salvation. In every other kingdom the rulers make mistakes or have to adjust their plans because of unanticipated circumstances. But this will never occur in the Saviour’s kingdom. Truly his wisdom is wonderful.
One function of a counsellor was to give advice and help to others as well as the king. People would line up to present their cases to him, and sometimes the line would be very long. But there are no queues outside the Wonderful Counsellor’s door. All can come to him simultaneously and repeatedly for advice.
We see his skill in dealing with people in the various interactions described in the Gospels. Jesus could assess situations accurately and diagnose problems in depth. For example, he realised that the paralysed man needed more than the power to walk, he also needed forgiveness of sins; he saw that the woman of Samaria needed more than marriage counselling, she needed her inner life sorted out. He also identified the needs of those who did not ask for help, such as the soldiers who crucified him.
Jesus knew that he was a Counsellor because he described the Holy Spirit as another Counsellor. Because he sent the Spirit, we can know the wisdom of Jesus. He is the Counsellor that each of us needs. In our lives he can reveal his wonderful ability to sort out our situations.

So we can seek his counsel today.

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