Category Archives: General

Counseling Under the Cross by Bob Kellemen

I have read books about Martin Luther but this one I just finished is exceptional. What he has done as researched the letters and table talks of Luther and have discovered his counseling care for souls.Although he  wrote these 500 years ago because he was a student of the Word discovering scriptural principles based on the work of Christ on the cross is grace-saturated  and gospel focused.

This must read book  for pastors and biblical counselors is 246 pages and published in 2017 by New Growth Press.


Ministers of Mercy by Alex Strauch

This book stresses [the New Testament Deacon] written in 1992.  I have read and taught this book in 1996/7 to Bible Baptist Church in Shiremanstown, PA that resulted in the church acceptance of the system.  I know of other churches that have developed this system and moved the leadership from a deacon controlled to a elder controlled set up.

I highly recommend the book as the companion book to the larger work Biblical Eldership [An urgent call to Restore Biblical Church Leadership] by Alex Strauch 1995.


The Puritans & Counseling

I recommend:
1. The Valley of Vision [A collection of Puritan [Prayers [Devotions] Banner of Truth Trust, editor Arthur Bennett 2007, 223 pages. I read in 2008.

2.The Christian in Complete Armour 3 volumes, William Gurnall, 1655, 1658, 1662. All   I read and completed in 1909 1025 pages. Great set that started me on the armor of God.

2. Helpful Truth in Past Places [The Puritan Practice of Biblical Counseling] by Mark Deckard Mentor, publisher, 2010 reprint 2016, 208 pages. finished 2//5/18.

3. God’s Battle Plan for the Mind [The Puritan Practice of Biblical Meditation]. David      Saxton, Reformation Heritage Books, 2015, 143 pages. I finished  on 2/16/18.

One quote sums up the point of this very unusual book.  “Mediation  [it]”is God’s ordained plan for biblical thinking, renewing the mind, overcoming sin, and thus growing in greater Christlikeness.” [page 133.]

Note: Find this book, read and practice biblical meditation.  I will change your perspective and life as a believer.

4. The works of John Owen, ed. William Goold, Vol VI on the mortification of sin, On Temptation, On indwelling sin in Believers, and an exposition of Psalm 130 written in 1850–53; 648 pages.

5. Man’s Guiltiness before God.  Volume 10 by Thomas Goodwin,  1600-1679. 567 pages.

6. Psalm 119, Charles Bridges, 1827, 481 pages. I read in 1985 in preparation for my doctorate “Help for Hungry Hearts, A Counseling View of Psalm 119 [unpublished, 1987].


Devotions for 2018

Last year I read John MacArthur Study Bible [ESV]. This was my last reading through the Bible at the age of 82.
This year I have decided to concentrate on Proverbs and Counseling.

I have chosen two books as the basis of this study.
1. A Exposition of Proverbs by Charles Bridges, N.F.C.E., 1846. 632 pages. Started on 1/18/18
2. The Christian Counselor’s Commentary on Proverbs, by Jay Adams, Timeless Texts, 231 pages started 1/18/18.


Martin Luther: The Man Who Rediscovered God and Changed the world

I have been reading this large book by Eric Metaxas. He has done it again!
I finished reading His “Bonhoeffer” and “7 Men.”
What I have discovered is that he has a great ability tell their story in such a way that you want to keep reading and along the way learn facts as well an insights about these men.
So I recommend his writings; especially Luther on the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation


Parenting by Paul David Tripp

This book was published in 2016 by Crossway. Paul states on page 12 …”I have to be honest here, I wrote a parenting book [Age of Opportunity}…I decided to write [not-my word] the typical kind..but a reorienting book”

I have finished the book and can honestly say it is the best parent book I have ever read!. It has 14 gospel principles that can radically change your family.

I am now counseling a family going through the book and decided to develop study questions on each chapter.

A must read for parents, soon to be parents and even grandparents to help their grown kids.


The Spiritual Warfare, by Dr David Jeremiah published in 2016 by Thomas Nelson, 212 pages with additional notes by Dr Don MacKenzie

I just bought this book and, since I put my armor on each morning, I was interested and found it a value tool for any believer.  He calls it his answer book and it certainly fulfills that title.  It is a small book in size but very well done and can help you in your personal spiritual pursuit.
The more I read this book the more I believe every believer should get a copy and practice its truths.

I have added my personal material notes:

This pursuit started when I read  in 2009 the 3 volume set by William Gurnall [approximately 1000 pages] The Christian in Complete Armour begun in 1655 the result was my sermon “Independance Day” [a copy is available on request to this web site]
Here is my article “Putting on your Armor ‘Quickly'” revised.

Belt: Lord, help me to be prepared and committed to put the belt of biblical truth and read in my daily devotions so that can as a believer claim this truth during temptation [Ephesian 6:14].

Breastplate:  Lord help me by your Holy Spirit’s power and prayer help  who[Eph 3:14-21; Romans 8:26] because when Jesus died for my sins he became sin for me so that I might be made the righteousness of God [2 Cor 5:21] so that I can put off this temptation and do what is right.

Shoes: Lord may your peace made available because Christ died for my sins help me to be confident and calm so that I an overcome whatever circumstance I face on my path of life today [Eph 6:14-15].

Shield:  Lord today I claim your shield of faith to be protected from Satan’s flaming missiles aimed to tempt me to sin [Ps. 18:30].

Helmet:  Jesus died for my sinful thoughts sent to defeat, discourage and tempt me. Lord, help me to focus my mind on  the thoughts of Phil. 4:8  to protection on wisdom of God. [Proverbs 2:10-11].

Sword:  Lord, help me to hide your word in my heart and use it as Jesus did when tempted in the wilderness [Eph. 6:17; Matt. 4].

Personal Note.  At this point in my prayer I have chosen to use my Peace sermon every morning with the acrostic P -Protection, E -Entrance into Holy Spirit prayer help, Rom 8:26], A-Accepted in the beloved [Eph 1:6], C – contentment in all circumstances [Phil.4:12] and E- exalted position of 33 things received at Salvation [a bookmark and explanation is available].

My foundational premise of all my ministry is “the Christian way of life is impossible to live.  Many have tried in the flesh to live the CWL and all have failed.  Only those those who seek the aid of the Holy Spirit can live it”


Counseling Issues: Slanders Psalm 56

What can man [woman] do to me? A lot!

I am sure you have, as I have had, been slandered by someone in your life. The person or persons have oppressed, slandered, hurt, even hated you.

King David’s answer to the question is Nothing! That is if God is for me and stands against those who oppress us.

David reminds us “When I am afraid. O will trust in you. In God whose word I praise, in God I trust: I will not be afraid what can mortal man can do to me ? ” [vv. 3-4]

For Homework: Read about his desperate situation he found himself in
the city of Gath. ]1 Samuel 21-22]
Find the Hope David’s describes in this Psalm and look up similar verses in the New Testament [like Romans 8:31]


Counseling Issues: Forgiveness Psalm 51

When reading James Montgomery Boice’s commentary Psalm 42-106, I found a profound comment related to forgiveness. “The only reason we dare come to God and dare hope for a solution to our sin problem is his mercy” If you have wronged your spouse you need to understand this as you begin to gain reconciliation.
Note : this a big topic and there is more to come…..
For example Brad Hambrick has a two-part series in http://biblicalcounselingcoalition.org entitled The Journey to restore broken Trust part one & two.


Counseling Issues: Fear Psalm 34

Continuing in the Psalm series this one deals with our fears.
King David is in one of the lowest points of his life so far. In 1 Samuel 21:10-15 he goes to his enemies, the Philistines, for help, and has to pretend he is a madman to escape.

At this point David is alone. Notice the sequence:
1. Troubles “many fears” [v. 4] and “troubles” [v.6]
2. Prayer “I sought the Lord” [v.4] “I called upon him”[ 6]
3. Deliverance “heard me and save me out of all my troubles:” Lord answered me; he delivered me “out
of my “troubles.”

Important point: David circumstances did not immediately change. He was still a fugitive, in danger and alone, But he was preserved for the future work he was to do and people began to gather to help.

So God may not change your situation but He will transform them by his presence and peace.

Added note 7/18 look up on the internet “Fear of God Test” by Lucy Moll.