The Christian Counselor’s Commentary, I Timothy, II Timothy, Titus,
by Jay E. Adams
(Timeless Texts, 1994)
I was very intrigued with this book when I saw it advertised. I am no expert on Jay Adams, but I know that he has stressed a reliance on the Bible in addressing the issues of life and the place of the church in life transformation. With those themes I resonate, so I was interested to discover what he was doing in this book.
This book is part of a series in which Adams is commenting on the entire New Testament. The goal is not to produce a standard commentary but to comment on the text as it relates directly to the work of counseling believers. It is necessary to understand what Adams means by “counseling.” He means something quite different from what many of us might think. In essence, I think he means discipleship. He envisions individual pastoral work where one helps a believer face sin and change. This is the regular work of the pastor. Coming to the Bible with the question of how we do this sort of work is a very important task. Simply as an example, this is a helpful book. It is too easy to simply find things to ‘preach’ about or to remain at an ethereal level, but we must also consider how we get our hands dirty in the helping address the messiness of lives.
I would recommend this book. There are places where I would differ with the exegesis (smaller issues) or where the discussion is unaware of more recent scholarship, etc., but the book does a good job in accomplishing its stated goal. I think this would be a helpful book for pastors both in helping us think through how we do our “house to house teaching” and simply in thinking about application to make as we preach these texts.