Safety? In the Multitude of Counselors

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In Proverbs 11:14, 15:22, and 24:6, the Bible speaks of there being safety in the multitude of counselors.  Many Christians use these verses to give them the right to speak into a person’s life.  They say, “The Bible says there is safety in the multitude of counselors.  Now, let’s gather together and reason your situation.  We will find the best solution.” or “What’s God telling you? Let’s talk about that.”  

Men and women will say, “I’m older.  I’m wiser.  I have lived longer; therefore, I am more spiritually mature.  Listen to my counsel.” And sometimes that’s what gets us into trouble.

14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

1 Corinthians 2:14 King James Version (KJV)

This “natural man” is talking about the unsaved man, but it could just as easily be talking about the carnally minded man. Sometimes when we talk to people about what God is saying we get a rational response.  The problem is that sometimes what God is telling us to do doesn’t seem rational. 

Today,  I want to look at where true safety can be found when listening to counsel.  Who is a truly safe guide?  

Let’s start by opening our Bibles to Proverbs 11:14.

14 Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.

Proverbs 11:14 King James Version (KJV)

In the English this word counsellors means “Advice”.  Many people knowingly or unknowingly take this to mean that in the “multitude of [people’s advice] there is safety”.  

They start to hear God telling them to do something.  Maybe it’s something they want to do or maybe it’s something they don’t want to do.  Regardless, they start talking to their friends about it.  They talk to the neighbors.  

Pretty soon they get so much “advice” that NOTHING feels safe.  

People will say, “Well I just don’t know what’s going on.  I thought I was hearing God…”  They start to get confused because they allow everyone one to give their opinion on their situation.  “Well I feel like God would want you to …”

But that’s the problem.  That phrase, “I feel like..” will get you in trouble every time. 

But that word counsellors in Proverbs 11:14 is really the word “Yaats” in the Hebrew.  

Yaats

someone who has done the work, and is helping you to see the direction of which way to go.

The original Hebrew word makes it pretty clear what parameters rest on who needs to be giving advice.  The one who has done the work and is helping to see the direction to go.  

BUT we can’t stop there.  This isn’t simply talking about someone who is an electrician giving you advice on how to become an electrician.  

Move past those things you see with your eyes.  God is calling each of us to something greater than just a job.  You are not called to be an electrician.  You are an electrician called to preach the gospel in your life.  

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Every song is written with scripture in mind and comes directly from the Word of God.

 

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This “someone” who has done the work is talking about Jesus.  He is the only one who has truly been through what we are going through and is also helping you see the proper way to go.  

The psalmist says this.

24 Thy testimonies also are my delight and my counselors.

Psalm 119:24 King James Version (KJV)

That word “counselors” in Psalm 119:24 comes from the same root word that Yaats comes from but it is the word “etsah”.

Etsah

Seeing a path, And pointing it out to reveal it. 

God will always show you the next step.  

When God begins to talk to you and you turn around and attempt to get counsel from a multitude of people about what God is telling you.  

YOU. WILL. FAIL.

Confusion will set in as you listen to a bunch of men giving you their own opinions.  Jesus puts it this way when he tells us not to cast what is holy to dogs.  

6 “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.

Matthew 7:6 New King James Version (NKJV)

When you bring the word God spoke to you before men.  They will turn and tear you to pieces because God wasn’t talking to them he was talking to you.  

14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

1 Corinthians 2:14 King James Version (KJV)

A Story of Joseph

There are many more scriptures in Psalms, Proverbs, and Isaiah that talk about the council of the Lord, but the best way to illustrate this comes from the story about Joseph.  

I want to look at chapter 37 of the book of Genesis.  This is the story of Joseph as he was sold into slavery.  

Joseph is a perfect example of the Christian believer who loves the Lord.  Joseph loved his father.  He was blessed above and beyond all the other children and was highly favored.  

That is like the believer who gets in God’s face, uses his faith, and sees blessing upon blessing poured out in his life.  

But here is the problem …

4 And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably unto him.

Genesis 37:4 King James Version (KJV)

Just like that jealousy set in.  God can be blessing you and you can turn around pretty soon and find that others just can’t stand you.  They just don’t realize that they could have the same blessings if they used their faith too.  If they would just get in God’s face, but instead they get jealous.  

Pretty soon they can’t seem to have a conversation with you, they’re so mad.  

Then what comes next?  Joseph opens his mouth and starts talking about his dreams.  

5 And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more.

Genesis 37:5 King James Version (KJV)

God starts talking to you about His plans for you.  He starts outlining what you need to do.  He starts giving you that counsel that He said He would in James 1:5 and Psalms 119:24.  

And if you bring that to your multitude of christian brothers if you aren’t careful what will happen?  

“And they hated him yet the more.” (Gen. 37:5)

Watch who you talk to about the visions God has placed in your life.  

What happened to Joseph?  

When Joseph spoke the dreams and went out to do what his father told him to do, he ended up being sold into slavery.  He opened his mouth when he should have kept quiet.  

When God starts speaking to you giving you visions and dreams, what are you going to do?  If you take the multitude of opinions from men and women around you, you will cast your pearls before swine and end up sold into bondage. 

Because that thing that is impossible without God, will look impossible to your “counsel” also.  You’ll hear people saying, 

  • “You can’t do that” 
  • “That’s impossible.”
  • “Who do you think YOU are?” 

Pretty soon you’ll be in bondage to self doubt and unbelief.  Why? Because you didn’t need counsel in the first place.  You needed to keep your mouth shut and get in the secret place and pray out the mysteries over the vision God gave you. 

105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Psalm 119:105 King James Version (KJV)

Naturally we understand if we are walking on a path we can’t see what’s around a turn until we take a few steps forward.  That verse DOESN’T say he is a light to our map.  You and I don’t have the luxury of seeing the whole route planned out in advance where we are given the option of choosing if we want to participate in God’s plan or do our own thing.  

We have to walk by faith and not by sight.  

So where is the safety in the multitude of counsel?  The counsel of God’s word brings safety.  He is the only one who has truly gone this way before.  (Remember the word “Etsah” is the word for counsellors in Psalm 119:24.)

Let God Lead

I will end with this verse.  As Joshua was preparing to go to battle looking ahead to the promise land that God spoke to him to take he said this, 

3 And they commanded the people, saying, When ye see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it.

4 Yet there shall be a space between you and it, about two thousand cubits by measure: come not near unto it, that ye may know the way by which ye must go: for ye have not passed this way heretofore.

Joshua 3:3-4 King James Version (KJV)

Regardless of where you are in life, you have not traveled this road before.  Let God go before you to light your path and take the first step in faith.  Leave room for God to show you the way and trust in Him – NOT in the multitude of opinions man will give about what God is telling you.

There are doers and those who want to give opinions about what you are doing.  Ignore them both and get in God’s face for yourself.  It’s not more Bible school training or more mentorship.  It is prayer and time with God which will promote anyone. 

If you want to read more content like this post, check out our Fresh Bread page.

References

https://allocatedanswers.wordpress.com/tag/etsah/

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