The fallacy of Christian Psychology

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by evangelist6589, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    Was listening to a "christian psychologist" on the radio tonight and this man made me angry. He always tried to shift blame on psyco this, psycho that, and he NEVER referred to the Bible, the Holy Spirit or anything. Folks the scripture and the Holy Spirit are the power and we must turn to them and not to psychology to solve our problems. So many so called Christian psychologists can sell lots of books, and become a greta success, but they are filled with garbage from the dumpster. Man can't solve his own sinfulness, for thats why we need God!!! These type make me mad.

    MacArthur wrote a book fully showing why the Word of God is the power for life and its called Our sufficiency in Christ. Another good one focusing on the Holy Spirits power for daily living is called The Spirit Filled life by Charles Stanley.
     
  2. MorseOp

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    Psychology that utilizes Freudian or Jungian methods, et. al, certainly is not biblical. However, some psychological problems are the result of genuine mental illness. Some mental illness is the result of sin. Some mental illness is physiological in nature. Some sin-caused psychological problems result in physiological conditions, complicating treatment. Substance abuse is one such example. Substance abusers can become paranoid and neurotic. Biblically based counseling may address the core sin issue but it it may not be equipped to deal with the immediate physiological issues. Christian counseling organizations often have to treat the immediate physical condition before they can begin peeling back the layers of sin, and eventually treat the root cause. There are other psychological problems that are not sin based. A person may be born with limited cognitive faculties that place great stress upon them in a world that can be very unkind.

    Ultimately, in the macro, all psychological problems are the result of the fall. In the micro that is not always the case. Pastors and elders are not always equipped to deal with the complexities of mental illness. Professionals are often needed, although I would agree that modern psychological methods are unbiblical and dangerous.
     
  3. annsni

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    Much of what is wrong with man is sin but there are also things that our outside our control that must be addressed. Some have physical issues that manifest as psychological issues and a medical doctor can help with those issues. I believe a GOOD Christian psychologist is a great, but rare thing. To deny psychology is ignorant. To blame everything on psychological issues is also ignorant. A good Christian psychologist will understand how to deal with the whole picture and bring the person to a point of healing and/or management.
     
  4. preachinjesus

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    Not all psychological problems are spiritual problems.

    Not all people who suffer from delusions or bipolar disease have a demon living in them. The failure of nouthetic counseling is that it makes the Bible do something it is neither intended nor equipped to do. I'm all for sufficiency, but we also need to recognize that the Bible has limitations. It isn't divine.

    We have a counseling center as part of our larger ministry and there is a tug and pull about the nature of this nouthetic counseling. Its a mixed bag. On the one hand it is vital to use a biblically based approach that opens the text of Scripture to discuss problems and issues. On the other hand, it isn't equipped to handle chemical and neurological issues. We have a policy that our counseling staff must be trained in multiple disciplines.

    The difficulty with MacArthur's text is that he is making a fallacious link. Not all psychology is Freudian. Also, MacArthur sets up a poor argument by over-extending the sufficiency of Scripture to realms it simply cannot go. When I had two psychology professionals, who I trust and know they are devout believers, read MacArthur's book and engage they both were upset with its implications and ramifications for believers. They both also pointed out that while MacArthur's general intention is good, that is re-engaging using the Bible in counseling, he overextends his point and renders his final conclusions invalid.

    I would offer a word of caution for anyone considering adopting a nouthetic approach. It is limited and might very well do more harm than good. While we as pastoral counselors should be reminded that the Bible is a vital part of any counseling experience, there are some problems that go beyond our ability and require more professional involvement.
     
  5. Zenas

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    This discussion reminds me of an old parable I heard somewhere long ago.

    Flood waters had risen around a man's house. He and his family were marooned in their home. An amphibious vehicle came by and offered them a ride. The man said, "No, God will take care of us."

    The waters continued to rise and the family had to retreat to the second floor of the house. A boat came by and its operator told them to get in. The man answered, "No, God will take care of us."

    The waters got higher and the man retreated to the roof with his family. A helicoptor came by, hovered overhead and dropped a rope ladder. The man shouted to the pilot, "God will take care of us."

    Finally, the waters covered the roof of the house and the family was swept away and drowned. When he entered Heaven the man said, "God, I had absolute faith that you would save us. Why didn't you?"

    God answered, "Sir, I sent you an amphibious vehicle, a boat and a heliciptor. Why didn't you use them?"

    Not many psychologists are Christian and those who are often don't seem so to us. Nevertheless, these people are usually well trained in their disciplines and we should avail ourselves of their services when needed.
     
  6. MorseOp

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    The problem with modern psychology and psychiatry is that it often uses methods that are antithetical to a biblical worldview. Psycho-therapy is one such method.
     
  7. Mexdeaf

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    I am working on a Master's degree in Rehabilitation Counseling so I am familiar with most of the "secular" counseling theories, as well as the Christian ones (nouthetic, integration, etc.) Although the "secular" ones all vary in usefulness to a Christian counselor, and most (if not all of them) have humanistic roots, I have discovered that every theory has some element of truth to it.

    I would not throw out psychology with the bath water. It is a science, based on observable facts, and as such has a great deal of truth to it.

    Here is a very well-balanced Christian article that will be profitable for you to read on the subject-

    http://bit.ly/Os8ihF
     
  8. Mexdeaf

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  9. Yeshua1

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    the main problem with it is that even "Christian" users of it have to wade thru and digest MUCH of what is secular and from the mindset that we are basically evolved animals, and that there is no spiritual aspect to us!

    basically, can use techniques to help people focus and discover their real problems, but also need to keep the focus on applying the principles of Bible and the Spriit at work, not the disciples derived from a humanistic world view!
    Prefer erm Christian counseling....
     
  10. Mexdeaf

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    I have yet to hear this from any of my secular counseling professors. There are several strong Christians in my degree program. Psychology is not the devil some would like to make it out to be.
     
  11. Yeshua1

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    They view humans as bilogogical machines, they have no need/desire for a spiritual component to deal with!
     
  12. Mexdeaf

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    You might be surprised to find out that you are wrong. I have not done a survey but most of my teachers believe man has a spiritual component- although they do not recognize the Almighty as being the One who can fulfill that need.
     
  13. preachinjesus

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    You're mischaracterizing a whole field of people (which I'm not surprised by.)

    I know plenty of professionals in this field who don't view people like this. You're reaching.

    So how many psychology or psychiatry classes have you sat through?
     
  14. SovereignMercy

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    Christian psychology is an oxymoron.

    Now this I say lest anyone should deceive you with persuasive words. For though I am absent in the flesh, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ. As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.
    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.

    For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power.
     
  15. SovereignMercy

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    I had to sit through at least two psychology classes at the university. Quite a waste of time.
     
  16. Mexdeaf

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    I am truly sorry that you viewed a class on an aspect of the marvel of God's highest creation as a waste of your time.
     
  17. Salty

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    What university?
     
  18. Yeshua1

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    the field is based upon humanistic theories, as they deny man is a sinner in the biblical concept/model. and fail to realise that until the sin problem is dealth with by the Cross, anything else is window dressing, short term fix!
     
  19. Yeshua1

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    false spirituality denies the Cross of christ, so they would try to fix the sinners problem with a bandage, not the dressing God supplied by the Cross!
     
  20. jaigner

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    These are good examples of complete, self-imposed ignorance. All truth is God's truth. If psychology can lead us to recognize truth, which it absolutely does, it is a tremendous blessing.
     

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