033: Psychology Vs. The Bible: An Introduction


What You'll Discover in this Episode:

Psychology and Christianity do not offer offer the same answers to our problems. A square peg cannot fit into a round hole. In our society today people want to take the square peg of psychology and fit it into the round hole of Christianity. The problem is they are competing not complimentary. Psychology is a dealing with the social and mental capacities of an individual, not the scientific aspect of an individual. It is built on a foundation of feeling and emotions. Psychological theories and practices go against what the Bible teaches. The Christian should be fully dependent on God. The moment we turn away from God and turn to human reasoning, we lose our life source and turn away from the truth. 


As champions of the faith we are called to be fully dependent upon the Word of God. We are not called to carry the Bible and the teachings of someone else. The Bible alone is sufficient. Somewhere along the way man deceived themselves into thinking that they know better than God. Satan has found a foothold in human thoughts and reasoning. Demonic activity has found it's way into humanity by deceiving us into believing we have all the answers to man's questions through psychology. Anything that is not of God is from Satan. Philosophers that teach enlightenment can be found in the teachings of man and that man holds the answers, have turned their back on God. 


The church today is struggling. We have bought into the lie that psychology can be used within church to make it whole. The problem is we have exchanged the truth for a lie. When we allow psychology into our churches we push Christ out. In this episode Pastor Jeff addresses the large issue of psychology vs. The Bible. It is an unpopular topic, but it is one that must be addressed. 

  


Scroll down and leave your comment below!



Highlights from Pastor Jeff and Dr. Justin Alfred

  • Philosophy is creeping into the church and we must discern what is from Christ.   
  • Do not trust in human reasoning, but trust fully on the Word of God. 
  • Do not depend on the teachings of man, but the teachings of Gods Word. 
  • As a church we must wake up and turn away from the demonic teachings of some men.
  • We need to turn away from human reasoning and trust in God.
  •  There is a difference in medical sciences and philosophical reasoning.  
  • In the next few weeks we will look at; Religion Vs. Faith, Soul Vs. The Spirit, Sub-conscious Min Vs. The Mind of Christ, and  Theories Vs. Truth. Stay tuned for more teaching. 

Resources:

  • 1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons 
  • 1 Timothy 4:6 If you instruct the brethren in these things, you will be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished in the words of faith and of the good doctrine which you have carefully followed.
  • Jeremiah 17:9 “The heart is deceitful above all things,
                            And desperately wicked;
                            Who can know it?  
  • Jude 1:3-4 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.  4 For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.  
  • 1 Timothy 6:20-21 20 O Timothy! Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and [f]idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge— 21 by professing it some have strayed concerning the faith.Grace be with you. Amen.
  •  Colossians 2:9-10 For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; 10 and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power. 

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  • Tom Zimbelman says:

    This is a great introduction of Psychology vs. the Bible – these world views which are in conflict with one another. I am excited about this series and look forward to learning about: Religion vs. the faith, Soul vs. the spirit ,Subconscious mind vs. the mind of Christ, and the “professionals” vs. the people of God.

    I absolutely have seen the growth of psychological theory infiltrating the church. My own mother became enraptured by various theories in the 1970’s and I found it to be very harmful for her and, in some ways, our family. Jeff used the word “subtle” to describe the lie that’s creeping every-so-strongly into Christian circles. On the surface these seem wonderful: love languages, personality tests, etc. I admit I’ve taken certain tests as mentioned without giving it much though, although I admit feeling a sense of, “is this right? Maybe not.”

    This growth of Psychology in the church very much concerns me because I see very little benefit for those who partake. In contrast, I’ve seen lives radically changed by submitting to Christ and His Word. There are no empty love buckets in Jesus.

    I’m glad Jeff touched on the scientific aspects of Psychology that might address certain ailments like Autism, Asperger’s, schizophrenia, etc. But again and very important, that’s a sliver of the psychology field, most is based in humanistic philosophy. As Jeff quoted in the book he referenced, “The most seductively dangerous area of psychology is the part which seeks to explain why people are the way they are and how they change. The theories and techniques of psychological counseling fall into this category.”

    • Esther Ambie-Barango says:

      Thanks for your post Tom, especially in the concerns for the ‘growth of psychology in the Church’. In fact, it’s such a pain to recall an incident that involved a Christian youth that tried to deny the existence of God because he felt he was sick of Asthma for a long time without cure, even though his parents, by the grace of God, prayed him back to his Savior. Some psychologists are also committed to integrating the Word of God & the psychological theories of man. Pastor Jeff clearly discussed that the Bible is sufficient and answers life’s problems.
      As Christians, we are to contend earnestly for the faith (1 Timothy 6:20-21, Jude 1:3).

  • Autumn Duncan says:

    Thank you Pastor Jeff for a great message and taking a bold stance on defending the sufficiency in scriptures. I really enjoyed this message as I studies the humanistic theories in college and even in my early years as a teacher. I appreciate the difference Pastor Jeff articulates between the humanist philosophical theories in comparison with someone who may have a physiological issue that may need medication. It’s not a norm for people to seek a Biblical Counselor as people seek the psychologist and medication. I know that when I saw psychologist, I never felt better or had an understanding. However, two sessions with a Biblical Counselor, I understood what I needed to do to allow myself to work through healing after my accident. I look forward to this new series and the wisdom Pastor Jeff has to share!

    • Esther Ambie-Barango says:

      Thanks for your post Autumn, as I was also blessed with Pastor Jeff’s articulate teachings in today’s Podcast, contrasting between humanist philosophical theories and the Scriptures. The part that ministered to me most is that as Christians, we are called to be willing to do battle, stand on the Word of God and deal with anything that raises its ugly head up against the Word of God, to contradict or undermine or under-value or to water-down the Word of God; we should stand against such a thing, contending with such a thing (1 Timothy 6:20-21, Jude 1:3-4).

    • Alejandro Anchondo says:

      It’s so good to hear someone share their own experience on these comments. You seem to have a great viewpoint on this having been through psychological assistance, biblical counseling, and having studied them both. I haven’t studied Psychology at depth but I am interested in becoming more aware of its origins, teachings, and methods. Still, it is very easy to see its contrasting position and conflict with Scripture. When I look at what the APA puts out as general and practical standards I am grieved. They are blatantly unbiblical in their views on gender, sexuality, and much more. This is a quick view into the world of psychology.

      • Autumn Duncan says:

        Thank you for the comment. When I was in college (1994-1999) the DSM-IV spoke very clearly on issues that we now consider an illness full of excuses, not being insensitive to those hurting but it pains me that they are not taking responsibility in their healing as that is more powerful than staying where they are in their mental prison. Also, it really grieves me as what used to be called a mental illness regarding gender confusion is now accepted and pushed even on children. This is so hard to see happening as they are hurting and need clear direction on their situation. We can only find this from the Lord

    • Alyssa says:

      I appreciate you shared your personal experience in seeking counsel. The fact that biblical counseling worked in your life gives me comfort because I feel I am living on faith hoping and expecting it to work in the lives of those around me. (It sounds pitiful, but I am still new to this biblical counseling thing) I think an unfortunate thing is many Christians go to counselors just because they want someone to listen to them. I have people who will go to me, then to a pastor, then to someone else, then their friend, and so forth just so they can be heard rather then going to the God who has the actual answer to their problem.

      • Autumn Duncan says:

        I am also new to Biblical Counseling. One thing that I hope will encourage you is what was shared with me from a hospital chaplain. (I currently work in the ER and am looking at working/volunteering as a chaplain.) Sometimes to build a connection with people, we need to listen and be there. I have always wanted to offer counsel right away but being in their shoes, it can be powerful to build that relationship by listening. Then, sharing something from God’s Word as lead by the Holy Spirit. I see this powerful example fro Christ and how He loved people. Hope that encourages you 🙂

    • David Guzik says:

      Autumn, your sharing of your personal experience is an inspiration to all of us! Thanks for letting us know, and I’m so happy to hear about how God is working healing in your life.

  • Hannah Somerville says:

    I think you are so right Jeff! We are to set our dependence and hope in the lord alone and what he has written. He gives us everything and anything we might need for this life, right in His word.

    I had this thought in the midst of listening to this. I wonder if these theories are more to puff up the human fleshly mind. To make us feel like we know more, and that is why they are so latched on to, or seem so insightful.

    I struggle with this a bit, because I have found personality tests or love languages helpful, to better get to know people more fully and how to bless them.

    Even if it was useful, we us as sinful natured humans, tend to twist what could be somewhat supportive, to try to make it a wellspring that it cannot be. But like you said there is no harm throwing out the baby with the bathwater on this one. Since all we need is the word of God.

    I think it is so important to answer all of the questions we have, such as the meaning of life, with the bible. We should take into consideration that we are mind body and spirit, but the Bible has all the answers for all of that. I agree that it is potentially harmful to depend on any of these other theories. It is just better to focus on the lord and what he says.

    I was talking to a friend the other day, who is a naturopathic doctor. She is a christian and is struggling, because she knows natural remedies can help, but she is weary because so many people in her profession make that the ultimate healer, which it is not. I am wondering if some research in the field of psychology can be useful, if it does not contradict the Bible, like loving one another. I am starting to see more and more though, the damage this can bring. So thank you for sharing this.

    I fully agree with what you are saying. Just working out some final thoughts and struggles on it.

    • Esther Ambie-Barango says:

      Thanks Hannah for your post on this great Podcast by Pastor Jeff on ‘Psychology vs the Bible’. I agree with you that we are to ‘set our dependence and hope in the Lord alone and what He has written’ according to the Scripture below:
      Psalms 121:1-2 I lift up my eyes to the hills—from whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth
      Jeremiah 3:23 Truly, in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains; Truly, in the Lord our God Is the salvation of Israel.
      As Christians, we should fully depend on the Lord and believe His Word for every situation, knowing that the Bible has solution to every challenge, and we are expected to prayerfully dig deep into the Scriptures to get the desired solutions.

    • Alejandro Anchondo says:

      Hey Hannah, I think we are all going through that same process of taking the time to think this all through for ourselves. I have to be honest that I hadn’t really thought about any of this stuff until taking these courses. But, now that I know that there are several different stances and viewpoints I have to put in the effort to know what I am convinced of. It is like any theological debate: research, conversation, and prayer are whats most needed.
      I have become convinced that the Word is all we need and that psychological theories are at best indirectly trustworthy. However, it wasn’t a decision I came to overnight.

    • Neil says:

      Hi Hannah, thanks for your post. I resonate with your comment, “I struggle with this a bit, because I have found personality tests or love languages helpful, to better get to know people more fully and how to bless them.” I’ve seen these types of things as very helpful in the lives of ppl I connect with. I think the most important thing is to see them as tools not masters. They’re very helpful, but they aren’t the Bible, and they are not the final authority.

    • Autumn Duncan says:

      I love your beginning statement about how we should be dependent and have our hope in the Lord. Its the opposite of our human nature and the theories of psychology. I also appreciate you sharing about your friend who is a naturopathic doctor. I went to one 7 years ago and have taken my daughter. Although the supplements have helped, we need to evaluate even our health and choices against the Word of God. I am with you growing in all that we are learning. I enjoy reading your comments. 🙂

    • jeffchristianson says:

      Hi Hannah! I am really glad that you wrote. You comments are thoughtful and important. Let me address some of them here. We are simply growing together in these arenas.
      1) Personality tests. They can be helpful in the hands of a biblically literate person, right? We can filter the results through the grid of scripture. The issue is, most Christians are not biblically literate in 2019 – and it is getting worse. Maybe you run around with on-fire Jesus people, but I find a lot are simply tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine. So, with that said, I am carful in recommending their use. I have had success with Strength Finders for employment screening, etc. Some of the latest Enneagram results are just a distraction. I notice some are “enneagram literate” and they are enamored with it.
      2) If psychology is useful, it will have to agree with the Bible, right? If we never looked at psychology, would we lose anything? If e spent those hours upon hours that it take to study psychology and rather learned theology, would it be more profitable? If there is a theory that “oh wow!” this sound biblical! It’s already declared and described in the bible.

      • Tabitha Lee says:

        I have read portions of your response before but really enjoyed reading your re-irritation of the psychology vs. Bible statement. If psychology that agrees with the Bible is the only parts accepted by Christian counselors, then what is the need for psychology? As servants of the Lord we must be aware of the statements / question we will receive from people and how to answer them. I am still working on giving an answer when I hear someone say, I need to see a psychologist! Or like this morning as I was counseling a team member before service, and she told me her boyfriend needed to see a psychologist and get medication! wow! This is my chance to give Biblical advice in love and grace. It is difficult to change the minds of people who have heard this false teaching most of their lives.Many Christians believe that Psychology and medication has the answers! We are failing in the church to make the truth known.

  • Esther Ambie-Barango says:

    This is another great Podcast (Psychology vs the Bible) that is such a blessing to me, especially in knowing that Christian should be fully dependent on God.
    Pastor Jeff explained the problem of psychology as competing not complimentary to the Bible; and that psychology deals with the social and mental capacities of an individual, and it’s built on a foundation of feeling and emotions. Psychological theories and practices go against what the Bible teaches, and it has crept into the Church, being a subtle form of heresy and it seems like the Lord wants to wake us up.
    This awakening of the Church and God wanting to use us to bring a warning in a winsome manner that’s not caustic nor contentious, requires that we contend earnestly for the faith (Jude 1:3 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.).
    We are called to be willing to do battle, stand on the Word of God and deal with anything that raises its ugly head up against the Word of God, to contradict or undermine or under-value or to water-down the Word of God; we should contend/ stand against such a thing.
    1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.
    Pastor Jeff made a case from this Scripture, saying that this is what is happening: some are giving heed to doctrines of demons; and that some of the early founders of psychotherapy had demonic influence.
    This issue of ‘some departing from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons’ so rampant in my locality that Christians need to discern before belonging to ministries/ fellowships/ Churches.
    The reawakening of the Church in my opinion is not just applicable to the American Church but to the Church universal.

    • Neil says:

      Hi Esther, I really appreciated your statement “Jeff explained the problem of psychology as competing not complimentary to the Bible” … this really seems to be the central message that Jeff is focusing our attention on in this podcast. I love Jeff’s passion for this as psychology can be such a messy topic as some of it is physiological and some of it is philosophical. It’s vital for the church to know the Word to be able to discern what’s science and what’s opinion.

    • Autumn Dyncan says:

      Hi Esther. I completely agree with you about how psychology goes against the Bible. When we follow our emotions and feelings, we will be deceived as they are temporary but the Bible’s guidance is how we should living and referencing. I am thankful for the changes in my life since I became a believer as I was deceived for a long time with psychology. It never seemed to fully encompass the true issue. Its not surprising the founding fathers of psychology were atheist or influenced by demons.

  • Alejandro Anchondo says:

    It is unfortunate how prevalent the psychological worldview has become. It is everywhere just like Pastor Jeff was mentioning. You can’t even watch TV without the worldviews of the Psychological agenda being taught or highlighted. I can’t count how many shows I have seen recently that have a “therapist” or “psychologist” as a main character.
    The issue is that the Word is being replaced by the words and thoughts of man. What is worse is that the words and thoughts of man are often sourced from the schemes of the Enemy.
    The issue isn’t staying in the worlds arena though. The answer to filling an empty youth group or building stronger marriages in our churches is often thought to be psychology. Church’s aren’t looking deeper into the Word or getting down on their knees to pray as much as they are reading on worldly “tips and tricks” on how to reach people, help people and understand people. The bad thinking leads to bad ministering. It can even be in Calvary Chapel’s and other bible based churches when we begin to lose track of what is going on inside of our own churches.

  • April K Robbins says:

    This podcast was extremely insightful! It personally helped me understand a little better where we are going with this course. I am very excited to hear more about the contrasts as I had the secular studies years ago and it actually woke me up and challenged my faith. I did not agree with what the college was teaching, and it took me back to the word. I love how the Holy Spirit did not allow those teachings to take over me, and how He led me back to my faith!

    • Tabitha Lee says:

      Hi April!
      I am so glad that God has moved in your heart and mind! It is amazing how the conviction of the Holy Spirit can cause us to question and when we hear the truth of God’s Word it reveals any false teaching that we have been exposed to. With each class I have taken at Calvary Chapel University I have grown immensely in my Biblical understanding and knowledge of counseling. There is freedom in the truth!

  • Alyssa says:

    I wanted to say thank you for the clarification between philosophical psychology, verses scientific psychology. This is something I have been struggling with because I have a relative who has her degree in Psychology. She however studies Autism and although I do not know all that she does, hers is more related to the scientific approach. I think this clarification was needed because I do think the study of people scientifically can be interesting and helpful, however I completely agree that the Word of God is what we should be using to counsel people. Our human brains are so limited and so trying to solve our problems with our limited knowledge isn’t what is going to help people. It is only by seeking God and going to His scriptures that we will find answers. Thank you for the clarification between the two.

    • jeffchristianson says:

      There are multiple Biblical helps for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Here is one example. https://www.biblicalcounselingcoalition.org/category/autism/

    • Tom Zimbelman says:

      Hi Alyssa,

      I admittedly have struggled if or where there is some sort of area of agreement between Biblical counseling and psychology. This counseling area of CCU’s curriculum has been very helpful for me to better and more convincingly understand the Word’s primary place in all of life, and the very few areas in Psychology where science can Possibly help – where not in opposition to Scripture – Such as Asperger’s, Autism, etc.

    • Sherra Krabbenhoft says:

      I have had several required psychology courses throughout my education and always thought it fascinating when a “discovery” was made by man, which was clearly outline in the Word. Just as we can see the archaeological evidence uncovered of what we already know occurred, thanks to the Word, I think we can sometimes see the same in psychology. However, just as archaeologists are known for coming up with inaccurate theories to explain what they observe, psychologists do the same. I think you are right on when you say we must seek our answers in God and the Scripture.

  • Neil says:

    Psychology is having a heavy impact upon the culture of the American church. This began in the 60’s and it has a strong foothold in the church, today. Jeff shares that this kind of psychology is really religious in nature, and it in conflict with what the Bible teaches. One of the challenges of today is that the proliferation of content that is accessible through social media and online searches, has increased this integration of humanism into Christianity.

    In 1 Timothy 4, the Apostle Paul shares that in the last days there will be teachings that come into the life of the church that are demonically instigated, influenced, and inspired. The challenge of some of the dynamics of psychology is that it is not all grounded in pathology or sound science, but by a philosophical system. The Bible is not in competition or in conflict with genuine science, however there are a plethora of philosophies that are in conflict with the Word of God.

    As Jeff talks about in the podcast, much of the genesis of modern day psychology with Freud is rooted in philosophical systems not scientific fact that is supported by observable pathology. When you look at the lifestyles and beliefs of the five of the men who are behind much of modern day psychology they are completely Godless.

    Jeff is extremely passionate about believers having the word of God being the final authority and sufficient for all Christians as many individuals he’s worked with have been negatively impacted by being boxed in by things like “love languages” or their “enneagram number” or their physiological make up. There is good wisdom for a biblical counselor to be connected to a good medical doctor to assist with extreme psychological issues, yet the biggest challenge is the psychological counseling that seeks to navigate the way they are and how they are to change.

    I appreciate Jeff’s passion for Christians to remain confident in sufficiency of the Scripture and assisting Christians navigate these sketchy waters of modern day psychology.

    • jeffchristianson says:

      Thanks for your reply, Neil! Your commented about the “sketchy waters of modern day psychology” was helpful because that’s mostly what I am trying to sort out. I like to say, I am not against psychology, I am just FOR the Bible.

    • Steve G says:

      I like what you said. Many churches are using Assessments and personally charts, Myers Brigg Personality Types. Strength finders test or Strengths Finder Assessments. Discover What You Do Best‎? Many churches are getting sweep into these concepts? Take the Complete 34 Strengths Assessment to Unlock Your Potential Power. Empower Yourself? These are not sourced in the Word of God. They are sourced in Psychology, Man’s wisdom? Can some of this be useful? Bad questions we need the truth and we need to measure the message against the Word of God? What does the Word says and what does the Philosophical test say? Is Gods Word sufficient, or the theories of man?
      Philosophical infused theories do not provide Gods true remedy. Jeff gives the example you are a 9 and I am a 3 so that is why we just can’t get along. So they rely on these systems that can’t hold water to guide them, instead of Gods Word. As counselors we can see how many are being counseled it this error? 1 Timothy 6:20-21 O Timothy! Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge, (v21) by professing it some have strayed concerning the faith. Grace be with you. Amen. Col 2:8 Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.

  • Kristie Gallagher says:

    It is so important to know the truth from the lies. Psychology has pushed its way into the church. It is so important for us as believers to compare and contrast the psychological view with the Bible. The question to know Is, is it truly scientific or is it philosophical? When It is philosophical that’s when it crosses the line and becomes a false religion. When it asks the questions, What is life all about, what is man, how does he change? It tries to answer life’s questions without God. This is a humanistic philosophy and has crept into the church. We as believers need to know the word of God and believe that it has the power to answer these questions and to work And change people’s lives. We are able to see the affect psychology has had on the lives of people, it has not solved man’s greatest problem or greatest need. Only Jesus is able to do that. As a Biblical counseled I need to be reminded that the worlds ways are not God’s answers. God’s ways are so much higher and better.

    • jeffchristianson says:

      Hi Kristie! You write, “God’s ways are God’s ways are so much higher and better. Exactly. The older I get, the more convinced I am to get back to the Bible. I have taken some detours in my studies, but God’s ways always prove to be “so much higher and better.”
      Jeff

    • David Guzik says:

      Kristie, I really appreciated what you wrote: “It has not solved man’s greatest problems or greatest need.” We aren’t judging things ONLY pragmatically, by what works – but there is certainly some place for pointing out the obvious: “This isn’t working!” Great observation.

  • Gregory Nelson says:

    This podcast was very informative! I have been learning through this university, that in the beginning of different trends or fads or whatever, have been created by the enemy. The enemy primes the hearts and minds of unbelievers to believe anything except God’s Word. Unfortunately, the church as a whole has grown more and more complacent, and we see the world affecting the church, more than the church affecting the world. When it comes to psychology, we can see that the enemy of our souls has been priming the hearts and minds of millions of people for years and years. He has been doing this by using the same tactics he has been using since the start of his deceiving. Satan has been using our pride as a trap since the beginning. He deceived Adam and Eve, but then he tried to do the same to or Lord, and failed miserably. This verse is the tactic that Satan has been using. (1 John 2:16 New King James Version) (NKJV)
    16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.

    • jeffchristianson says:

      Thanks for writing Greg. I think that you are right about this. A tactic of the enemy of our souls is to get our minds off Christ and onto self.

      • Rev.Dr.Rick says:

        Hey Pastor Jeff love and enjoy every night tuning in
        on the Bible Counseling IPOD mini courses. I understand that the Bible said Satan is the father of lies and The Bible says that a day is coming when we will all stand before the judgement Seat of an account for what we’ve done His Word and plan for our lives (Rom.14:10 )(2Cor.5:10) says,”For we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done whether it be good or bad.”

        Since a day is coming when the truth will be revealed, wouldn’t it be better for you and me to take and honest look at ourselves right now so we can get things completely right in our heart before that great day when we stand before Christ?

    • Sherra Krabbenhoft says:

      That is well put. I think we are facing an epidemic of complacency in the Western Church. The less we look to the Word for our standard, the easier it is to place everything in the category of “personal truth” vs. the absolute truth of God’s Word.

    • Alyssa says:

      I think that you are right how sad it is that the church is trying to become like the world, rather than it being the opposite. God uses pride, selfishness, and so many other things to draw us away from the Lord and to our own earthly, and limited wisdom.

  • Steve G says:

    Counseling with Psychology. There is a small amount of scientific proven principles that can be retested, like Pathology, When the definitions moves away from Pathological change (which can be tested) to theories and opinions with no accurate testing, they become Philosophical.
    Psychology is having a large negative impact on the church. Jeff says a lot of it heretical. So much of Psychology is religious in nature so it is a competing with faith, they have different world views. The church has excepted this error and now it is entrenched and approved, how sad.
    Jeff says approximately more then 75% of the American church is committed to Integrating Psychology Theory, thinking, World view, humanism, and the false religion into counseling. It is heresy, I Jeff believes the Lord wants to wake us up to this heresy and the truth!
    I like to say! I am not against Psychology but I am for the Bible. These are world views in conflict! Jude 1:3 (reminds us) Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.
    If anything comes against the Word to undermine, water down or contradict we need to speak up? We do not trust in human reasoning, but trust fully on the Word of God.

    • jeffchristianson says:

      Steve! This topic is very provocative (causing discussion, thought, even argument). Many Christians are so committed to psychological theory that I am hesitant to discuss it anywhere but the classroom. Students expect to be challenged in an academic setting. I am not Podcasting to stir thinking back toward God and His Word. But, it will stir emotions (and likely arguments). People get offended because they LOVE LOVE LOVE psychology. Just saying.

      The other thing is that we (as Biblical Counselors) only need to have the right world view. We don’t “fight” with people or anyone else that ask for our counsel. We simply ministry to them God’s way. I think there is the thought that we have to “correct” people about thier psychologized thinking. Maybe we do with theology students and ministry leaders, but it’s unnecessary to do so with our counselees. I think it important to know the audience. Is this a person that needs God’s help, God’s way? Then we help them just where they are at. We are not there to wrestle with the sufficiency of scripture. Now, if it’s a student, they place themselves in a position of leadership and will need to hear a strong warning (JUDE 3 style).

      • Steve G says:

        Yes Jeff I agree. Man and his sin nature is drawn to systems where man is the expert or in control seems to have a Psychological infinity to follow these anti biblical systems. Theory after therapy but God and His Biblical counseling and discipleship are left out. Man is okay with Mans systems some examples? Who is man? What is life? How does the mind work? How do we help people? Man is body, soul and spirit? Gal 5 the works of the flesh are evident. You don’t have to go to a Psychiatrist, we need to go to Gods word. The Word of God is being dismissed and replaced by Christian Psychologist who are using mans humanistic thinking. We need to be reminded of these truths. Rom 1:25 they exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. 1John 2:21 I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and that no lie is of the truth. 1John 1:6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

      • Dan says:

        Which theories specifically are you referring to and which psychologists? I’d be interested to do more research.

    • Tom Zimbelman says:

      Hi Steve-
      Thanks for your thoughts. I agree Psychology is having a negative effect on people in the church. I’ve noticed a softening, a pulling back of a strong commitment to the Word, in growing favor of books dealing philosophically with a variety topics that ail our society (drugs, immorality, suicide, etc). A lot of young believers yielding to this, but also long-timers who are softening their views. We need to be aware of the subtleties of Psychology

  • Pablo Valdez Acosta says:

    My take on this podcast is what I have been experiencing lately working at two churches, the assessment and personality tests as well as a psychology teacher coming to tell us how to widely conduct classes and form them into one. It all just seems and smells like man created and when I asked to be biblical explained or back with scripture they were amazed as to how dare I questioned someone with higher education. My point is basic, we had a girl at our class that wanted love and attention and after trying everything else she began to state she wanted to hurt herself,m reports were made and she is seeing a doctor but the behavior was still there and medicine was given and taken, Jesus touched my heart I began to speak to mom and ask if I can speak to her daughter and let her know how much we appreciate her and she is loved by God, I have been going at it with His power and she is much happier she . even began to help around the class. Yes sometimes medicine is needed but most times we need to get them closer to see the love He has for us.

  • David Guzik says:

    One thing I really appreciated about this podcast was the way that Professor Christianson detailed the strange and even occult origins of much of modern psychology, while at the same time not depending on that alone as a dismissal of modern psychotherapy and its many approaches. It’s good and important to know when things have such dark beginnings, but it is also important to know things also have to be judged not only by how they began, but what they actually are. So, I appreciate that there is explanation and exposure of these beginnings (especially with Carl Jung), but then also a thorough consideration of the thing itself.

  • JOsh Halan says:

    Psychology and Christianity do not mix, they are conflicting. Psychology places the focus on the individual. This goes against what the Bible teaches. The Christian should be fully focused on God. The moment we start focusing on ourselves we turn away from the truth and embrace the lie. We are called to be fully dependent upon the Word of God. Anything that is not of God is from Satan. The church, as a whole, has bought into the many lies of the enemy, thinking that psychology as a place within the church. We must be able to discern what is from God and what is from the enemy. We must never trust in own human reasoning but only on the Word of God.

    “Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ.”

  • Tabitha Lee says:

    Enjoyed this great overview of Psychology contrasted with the Bible.
    1 Timothy 4:1 “The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.” The Holy Spirit is speaking and giving warning. When the faith is being abandoned, or you are walking away from the truth of God’s Word, you are opening yourself up to the doctrine of demons. Be careful, we must recognize when it is humanistic, demonically inspired psychology and not the truth that is found only in the Word of God. We must know the Word of God so that we can recognize false teaching! I often see this false teaching in social media posts, disguised as “self-improvement” “self-help” or “feminism”. At first glance you may think what’s so wrong with the statement such as “I can do anything I put my mind to.” or, “You deserve to be happy.” But oh, when contrasted with God’s Word we see just how damaging and ungodly this type of thinking really is.

    Personality Test: First, do not use these evaluations as an excuse. Can it be helpful? I believe so, when teaching children we often can use the understanding of God given personality to teach or guide a child in a way that helps them bring those natural abilities or tendencies in obedience to God’s Word. But we must be careful that we don’t allow this human reasoning to overtake the truth of God’s Word and permeate the church as a go to for information about people. God’s Word does not give us the excuse of “personality”, we are called to Christ-likeness. Paul says, “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.” 1 Cor. 11:1

  • Sherra Krabbenhoft says:

    I appreciate a balanced view of psychology and the Bible. I have seen the extreme on both sides of the discussion and seen the destruction of both. It has disheartened me to see physical illness blamed on lack of faith and also to see people offered unbiblical counsel from Pastors who have pulled from man’s theory and their own opinion rather than the Word. I think it wise to not only be cautious when reading blatantly psychologic material, but also even when reading authors who are Christian. We know that all men fall short, each of us are in a life long process of sanctification and prone to err. Although texts based on biblical principles are helpful, we must always be taking what we read and allow to influence our thinking and holding it up to the Word as our standard.

  • Rev. Rick says:

    Hey Pastor Jeff
    let me encourage you with a verse that I’ve spoken to myself over and over through the years. Especially in years when I struggled with my differences from others, I learned to lean on the truth of this verse. It is First Corinthians 15:10, where Paul says, “But by the grace of God I am what I am….”
    When Paul wrote this verse, he was writing about how different he was from all the other apostles. They had walked with Jesus; he had not. His knowledge of Christ came from direct revelation, whereas the other apostles had walked with Jesus, heard His voice, felt His tender touch, and witnessed His earthly ministry. Paul, however, had been called into apostolic min- istry by revelation, and this put him in a category that made him different from all the other apostles. They could all lay claim to an earthly experience with Christ that Paul could not claim.
    Is it possible that Paul was tempted to feel inferior because his experience was different from theirs? I think the answer may be yes, because in First Corinthians 15:8 and 9, he wrote, “And last of all, he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. For I am least of the apostles that am not meet to be called an apostle….” Yet he was one of the mightiest apostles; he wrote more of the New Testament than anyone else; and he traveled to more of the Gentile world than any other apostle of that time. His education, his travels, his love of languages — it all perfectly outfitted Paul for the ministry God had entrusted to him.
    When Paul wrote, “But by the grace of God I am what I am…,” it was his recognition that everything that made him who he was uniquely prepared him to fulfill his purpose by the grace of God. So rather than focus on the fact that he was different from others, Paul continued by saying, “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.”
    According to Paul, God’s grace was bestowed on him, and it was not in “vain.” The word “vain” is the Greek word kenos, and it describes something that is empty, wasted, or void. Paul declared that the grace of God, which poured mightily into his life, did not produce hollow results. Rather, he said, “I labored more abundantly than they all; yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.”
    The word “labored” is the Greek word kopiao, which describes labor and work of the most intense type. The word “abundantly” comes from a form of the word perissos, and it is comparative, which means Paul was essentially saying, “Compared to the other apostles, I worked harder than any of them.” But he went on to acknowledge that it was not he alone doing this strenuous, nonstop work; it was the grace of God that was at work within him. The word “grace” here is charis, which denotes the empowering presence of God.
    Paul was indeed different than the other apostles. But he was mightily anointed and perfectly gifted and fitted for the call God had given him to reach the Gentile world. And although Paul had no earthly experience with Jesus like the other apostles did, he was no less an apostle. On the contrary, he was a mighty, world-changing force for the Gospel. But Paul had to come to a place where he surrendered his inadequate feelings and accepted that fact that he was what he was by the grace of God.

  • Rev. Rick says:

    in 1 Corinthians say, “If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort” (emphasis added). Comfort and suffering are inextricably linked, and that isn’t a coincidence. Comfort cannot be present where pain has been absent. Where there is suffering, there can be soothing. Where there is soothing, there is a Savior. He is not only a God who brings comfort; He is the God of all comfort.

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