An ACBC Counselor Encourages You to Write the Exams

Oct 28, 2016

By Doug Franchville



Writing this during the 2016 US presidential election madness, I couldn’t help but yearn for our politicians to:

  • State your stances clearly and precisely
  • Support all your answers with Scripture
  • Reference your material/concepts, but it must be cited and aligned with Scripture

Also, that they clearly understand the sufficiency, inspiration, inerrancy, and authority of Scripture.  That they know that there is no continuing revelation, there are differences with manhood and womanhood. Truly understand who the Holy Spirit is, how it should guide them vs. public opinion, the theories of psychology and ‘X’ step programs, cognitive-behavior therapy, psychotropic drugs, etc.

I want them to understand the Godly role of the Church (vs. government rule) and our call for progressive sanctification. How they should guide personal (vs. governmental) accountability, not just toward others, but ultimately to God. And finally, for each to realize that our enemies are not each other, but against Satan and the spiritual forces of evil.

This, my dear friends is a subset of the questions of the ACBC exam, and we as Counselors are to teach our counselees these concepts, hence they are critically important that we are able to communicate what we believe via the exams.

Examine Ourselves

A friend volunteered to lead a small group at his church which required filling out a questionnaire on what he believed to ensure that he would lead in a consistent manner with the beliefs of the church. He stated that scanning through them did not seem like a big deal until he tried to write it down. This was my experience on the exams. The questions fell into three areas for me:

  • Duh! – Questions that I was fairly confident in and could easily write about with Scripture backup. However, I found it extremely helpful to write this out and I still reference some of these questions today in sessions and have used them as homework in some cases.
  • Huh! – I found questions that I didn’t even know what the words meant. In studying them, I quickly (OK, not very quickly) dove into Scripture and theology that I had not considered before. These questions gave me a deeper understanding of where counselees (and counselors) get off track (stray from Scripture – Eph. 4:14)
  • Duh-Huh-Ah! – There were questions that I first thought I knew where I stood until I started putting it on paper and really dove into Scripture (think perseverance of the Saints here or our work in salvation).

Through this process, I cemented former beliefs, discovered and formed new theology and thoroughly examined myself (2 Cor. 13:5 – though I wasn’t concerned about my salvation, it shook me a little on how ‘fluffy’ {easily tossed} I was on serious concepts). It also convicted me on why I was going to a particular church. And this is why I recommend all pastors, elders, church leaders to write out the exams.

Stand Firm

The exam stage typically is where people decide if they will continue with the counseling training. I encourage you to continue on, finish the exams. I will assure you that it is worth it, and you will be blessed. I will leave you with three verses.

2 Timothy 4:7
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith (2 Timothy 4:7).

 1 Corinthians 9:24-25
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.

Philippians 3:14
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus