“And He will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” - Isaiah 9:6
When you think of a counselor, what is the image it conjures up in your head? Someone who is understanding, compassionate, and wise? One who asks good questions? One who understands man’s soul? One who is discerning and can identify the deeper root issues of the heart? One who cares to help those who are emotionally and mentally suffering? God tells us in Isaiah 9:6 that one of Christ’s names is Counselor. All of the above descriptions depict Jesus’ character and ministry. However, John 16 opens another window to enable us to grasp a more complete view of our wonderful Counselor. Before Christ was crucified, He told the disciples that the Holy Spirit would come and guide them “into all Truth.” It is the Spirit of Christ who now counsels us and fills us with wisdom and Truth.
When we are facing difficult decisions or behaviors, or are filled with emotional pain, the Lord tells us to open our hearts to Him for He compassionately listens to our struggles. “The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are attentive to their cry” (Psalm 34:15). John 16:5 - 16 helps us understand an even deeper work that our Counselor desires to do in our heart. “When the Counselor comes, He will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment” (verse 8). If we are willing to open our heart to God and allow Him to counsel us, He searches deep inside to unravel the past wounds, our protective behaviors, our motives, and our sins that flow out of these (Psalm 139:23-24).
He counsels us to see the connection between our painful emotions, our past hurts, and our current sinful behavior. He reveals how our present situations are triggering pain and responses in us that influence our physical, spiritual, and emotional health. These in turn impact those around us. As our Counselor, He gives us hope that He is righteous and as we cry out to Him in repentance and dependence, He fills us with His pure thoughts and behaviors.
Finally, verse 11 shows us that our Counselor opens our eyes to see that we are in a spiritual battle with “the prince of this world” (Satan). Christ is our Wonderful Counselor. Come to Him with your problems. He is willing for us to approach Him over and over again with the same struggles. Lay the heaviness of your heart, the confusion of your circumstances, and the longings of your soul before God. For our Perfect Counselor says, “Come to Me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:28-29)