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Comparing the Five Views Christians Take to Psychology

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Comparing the Five Views Christians Take to Psychology By Eric L. Johnson Southern Baptist Theological Seminary Levels-of-Explanation Model Major representatives ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Comparing the Five Views Christians Take to Psychology


1
Comparing the Five Views Christians Take to
Psychology
  • By Eric L. Johnson
  • Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

2
Levels-of-Explanation Model
  • Major representatives
  • David Myers

Malcolm Jeeves
  • Most common Christian position among Christian
    college psychology faculty

3
Levels-of-Explanation Model
  • Humans are best understand in terms of a
    hierarchy of levels or disciplines of relative
    complexity that should not be confused

Theology Psychology Biology Chemistry
  • Therefore, ones faith should not affect the
    other levels or disciplines

4
Levels-of-Explanation Model
  • Strengths

1. Takes science and research very seriously
2. Allows all scientists to contribute to their
discipline, regardless of worldview differences
3. Avoids problems with misinterpreting the
Bible, like what happened regarding the earths
position in the solar system
4. Has shaped contemporary psychology in areas
like psych. of religion, forgiveness, and values
in therapy
5
Levels-of-Explanation Model
  • Weaknesses

1. Prevents worldviews from exercising
influence, except for secularist worldview!
2. Secularism is unfair to Christians. Forbids
Christians to work within their
worldview/prevents use of Christian values in
public mental health facilities
3. Excludes Bible from contributing to psychology
4. Can easily lead to syncretism and the
importation of modern values regarding topics
like homosexuality (D. Myers)
6
Integration Model
  • Major representatives

Bruce Narramore
Mark McMinn
Everett Worthington
Stan Jones
Dominant approach at Christian graduate schools
7
Integration Model
  • Major Orientations

1. Interdisciplinary Integration (majority
position)
Goal is the integration of psychology and theology
2. Worldview Integration (Jones Butman, 1991)
Goal is the proper interpretation of modern
psychology according to a Christian worldview
3. Ethical Integration (popular among
postmoderns)
Goal is to live Christianly in ones personal and
professional life
8
Integration Model
  • Common Slogan

All Truth is Gods Truth
Key Insight
God is glorified when Christians make use of his
truth
Limitation
The way the slogan is often used seems to imply
that all secular psychology is true
9
Integration Model
  • Comparing Quality of Integration

1. Strong Integration
Christian thought makes a real impact
Examples Jones Butman, McMinn, Tan, Sandage
2. Weak Integration
Christianity makes no substantial impact
Examples Carter Narramore, and many who use
the term
10
Integration Model
  • Strengths

1. Takes science and research seriously
2. Allows Christian faith to reinterpret
psychology
3. Recognizes the role of Gods creation grace
in culture and science
4. Seeks to engage the culture and impact
contemporary psychology
11
Integration Model
  • Weaknesses

1. Assumes a dualistic separation between
biblical research and research on human beings
2. Assumes that modern psychology is the real
legitimate version of psychology/Allows
secularism to set the agenda for psychology
3. Minimizes the distorting effects of sin on our
understanding the Antithesis
4. Poor integration undermines the lordship of
Christ and the impact of redemption (esp. in
counseling)
12
Modern Pastoral Care Model
  • Major representatives

Howard Clinebell
Don Browning
Anton Boisen
Integration with Liberal Theology
13
Modern Pastoral Care Model
  • Strengths

1. Demonstrates more rigorous thinking than most
evangelical counseling books
2. Evidences significant familiarity with modern/
postmodern psychology
3. Demonstrates considerable psychological
sophistication
14
Modern Pastoral Care Model
  • Weaknesses

1. Integrates modern/postmodern psychology with
liberal theology
2. Insufficiently critical of modern/postmodern
psychology. Like liberal theology, it basically
embraces contemporary thought, and jettisons
historic Christian beliefs and values
15
Biblical Counseling Model
  • Major representatives

Jay Adams
David Powlison
Ed Welch
Wayne Mack
16
Biblical Counseling Model
  • Counseling that is based exclusively on the
    Bible (and theology)
  • Concern about the influence of secularism on
    modern psychology So, skeptical about integration
  • Sin is the primary focus of counsel So gospel
    is the primary solution

17
Biblical Counseling Model
  • Common Slogan

The Sufficiency of Scripture
Key Insight
Scripture is authoritative and necessary for
Christian counseling bec/ it is Gods soul care
guidebook
Limitation
The way the slogan is often used seems to imply
that the Bible is scientifically sufficient and
its content directly addresses all counseling
matters comprehensively
18
Biblical Counseling Model
  • Major Orientations

1. Traditional Biblical Counseling (Adams, Mack)
a. Anti-psychology, anti-licensure,
anti-medication
b. Assumes a dualistic separation between
biblical research and research on human beings
c. Negativistic, judgmental tone towards others
d. Superficial understanding of sin
Focus on behavior
Repent and all will be well
Lack of awareness of subtle, remaining sin
19
Biblical Counseling Model
  • Major Orientations

2. Progressive Biblical Counseling (CCEF, SEBTS,
CBS)
a. Very cautious about modern psychology, but
more open to learn from extrabiblical sources
b. Greater willingness to dialogue with others
c. More sophisticated understanding of sin
Focus on the heart
Focus on idols Willingness to develop
relationship and take as long as necessary
20
Biblical Counseling Model
  • Strengths

1. Bible is Gods word for soul care BCM takes
the Bible seriously
2. Wary of the implicit worldview influences of
secularism on modern psychology Want to avoid
syncretism
3. Strive for a theocentric approach to soul care
that sees sin as our worst problem and
Christs work as the cure for the sin-sick soul
21
Biblical Counseling Model
  • Weaknesses

1. Has not given enough thought to relation
between creation and redemption
2. Has not given even thought to relation
between Gods word in creation and Gods word in
Scripture
3. Overemphasizes the Antithesis and its
effects and underemphasizes Creation Grace
effects
4. So typically not theocentric enough
22
Christian Psychology Model
  • Major representatives Classical

Apostle Paul
Julian of Norwich
Soren Kierkegaard
John Bunyan
Augustine
23
Christian Psychology Model
  • Major representatives Contemporary

Paul J. Watson
Robert Roberts
Paul Vitz
Diane Langberg
Larry Crabb
24
Christian Psychology Model
  • Relation to Integration and Biblical Counseling

1. A middle way between both models that seeks to
build on the strengths of each and avoid their
historic weaknesses
2. Yet, rightly interpreted, there is no
fundamental incompatibility between all three
modelsjust difference in focus and location in
culture
Integration Doing research and professional
counseling in the public square
Biblical Counseling Work in the Church,
Bible-based
Christian psychology Doing research and
professional counseling in Christian contexts
(churches, counseling centers, colleges and
universities)
25
Christian Psychology Model
  • The agenda of a Christian Psychology

The ongoing development of distinctly Christian
psychological theory, research programs, and
soul care practice.
26
Christian Psychology Model
  • The agenda of a Christian Psychology

A Christian psychology will be shaped primarily
by the Christian Scriptures, as well as
Christianitys intellectual and ecclesial
traditions.
However, a Christian psychology will also be
critically informed by other relevant sources of
psychological truth, particularly its own
reflection, research, and practice, but also the
psychological work of other traditions (e.g.,
secular psychology), philosophy, human
experience, and the other human sciences.
While Gods understanding of human nature is the
goal of a Christian psychology, given human
finitude and the existence of distinct Christian
traditions, a Christian psychology will actually
consist of many different perspectives found
within the historic Christian Church.
27
Christian Psychology Model
  • The agenda of a Christian Psychology

A Christian psychology will not differ noticeably
in every respect from modern or postmodern
psychology.
Only where the psychological feature is worldview
dependent
28
Christian Psychology Model
  • What areas of psychology are not so worldview
    dependent?

1. Biological mechanics genetics and
neuropsychology, drive motivation
2. Psychological mechanics animal learning,
memory, reasoning, intelligence, language,
emotion, school learning, action
3. Social processes family influences, group
dynamics, social skills, social influence
29
Christian Psychology Model
  • What areas of psychology are more worldview
    dependent?

Those that are
the most subject to sociocultural influence
the most complex
the most existential
and the understanding of which is the most
value-laden
30
Christian Psychology Model
  • What areas of psychology are more worldview
    dependent?

1. Higher human motivation/uniquely human
2. Personality structures and processes
3. Psychopathology
4. Definitions of human maturity and flourishing
5. Healing of the soul/Psychotherapy, counseling
6. Interpretation of complex social phenomena
like attribution, love, relations between
motives, and ethical and spiritual dynamics
31
Christian Psychology Model
  • What major distinctives will characterize a
    Christian psychology?

1. God is the center of human life
2. Humans are situated within a grand theo-drama
in which the triune God is gradually and
increasingly manifesting himself and his glory.
This theo-drama can be summarized as creation,
fall, redemption, and consummation
32
Christian Psychology Model
  • What major distinctives will characterize a
    Christian psychology?

3. Creation Humans are made in Gods image
4. Fall Humans are sinners and primordially
alienated from God and neighbor
5. Redemption The appropriation by faith of
Christs work of redemption is necessary for
proper human maturity, coping, healing, and
strengtheningof great importance for counseling
33
Christian Psychology Model
  • What major distinctives will characterize a
    Christian psychology?

6. Consummation Human life is eschatological ori
ented to an eternal future with God
7. A four dimensional relational model of human
life
34
(In contrast to the one- or two-dimensional
models of secular psychology)
35
Christian Psychology Model
  • What major distinctives will characterize a
    Christian psychology?

8. A multi-level, hierarchical, holistic model of
human nature
36
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37
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38
Christian Psychology Model
  • A Strategic Vision for Christian Psychology

1. We need contributors from multiple vocations
psychologists (researchers are especially
important), counselors, philosophers,
theologians, pastors, spiritual directors,
educators, public policy specialists.
2. We need contributors from multiple historic
Christian traditions.
39
Christian Psychology Model
  • A Strategic Vision for Christian Psychology

3. We need Christian theory-building, research
programs, and specific clinical strategies and
detailed treatment protocols and paradigms that
flow from a Christian understanding of human
beings.
4. We need a two-track approach a. To and for
the Christian community/the Church
40
Christian Psychology Model
  • A Strategic Vision for Christian Psychology

4. We need a two-track approach b. To and
within the larger Western psychological
community
Contributions to mainstream journals/books
In areas where there is less worldview dependence
In areas where there is more worldview dependence
Involvement in public mental health Towards
pluralistic centers, no longer secular
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