Psychology vs Faith

Word of the Day – Psychology vs Faith: The word ‘psychology’ is derived from two Greek words, ‘psyche’, meaning the mind, soul or spirit and ‘logos’, meaning discourse or to study. These words combined produce the ‘Study of the mind’. In general, the study of how our minds work is not bad in itself, for where would we be if we never learned that people in Northern climates would have a much greater struggle with depression without the addition of Vitamin D to their diets. The problem we run into with psychology is when it enters into the realm of spiritual things as it tries to bring understanding through the scientific process. Whenever psychology makes a claim on spiritual things, we have to realize that those results are based on pseudoscience. Basically, that means they are guessing. And guessing is never science.

In contrast, faith is by default trusting in God’s sovereignty that what He says about the spiritual realm is true (John 14:26). It is letting go of what we think in regards to the spiritual side of humanity to embrace His Truth since the Creator of the universe should be a trustworthy source on peace and joy. Let this sink in for a minute. The early Christian church was bathed in horrendous persecution. Many in the faith had to endure the loss of a relative to torture and they lived in constant fear of their lives. Many were taken to jail, many stoned, many lost their homes and jobs (Heb. 11:35-38). Yet one thing was clear. Through all of it, the early church was filled with peace and joy. They were content with their situation and they continued to love and serve others.

We live in a day where psychology (in all of it’s wisdom) can’t understand and grasp how such a broken people could have functioned in such spiritual health. In contrast, today we live in a culture that is not persecuted nor have we lost our homes. In fact, we may be living in one of the most luxurious times in all of history. We have access to any food we want; we live in homes that in many other cultures are the size of hospitals that house 60 people. And we have the freedom to do whatever we want with our free time. We are rich! And yet at the same time, we may be the most depressed generation of all time. Even in the church, the joy in many hearts has been replaced with a whitewashed loneliness where we look happy on the outside yet are dying spiritually within.

The truth is, you can’t serve God and man (Mat. 6:24). If God shows us a way to joy and happiness and the world provides us with their solution, where should we place our faith? Do we embrace the world’s understanding or do we embrace the creator of the world? I think that we have forgotten that the world’s wisdom is foolishness to God (1 Cor. 3:19). Oh, how smart we have become. Paul knew how enticing the world’s wisdom could be when he wrote, 8 See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ (Col. 2:8).

I tell you the truth, Christianity has been taken captive by philosophy and psychology. And what is the result? People inside and outside the faith now have the same lack of true spiritual joy and peace. Woe to the church for thinking that they could control or somehow benefit from merging and accepting the world’s wisdom with God’s. What we forgot is that they are incompatible (1 John 1:5). In many ways, the proclamation of God’s wisdom has been replaced with a self-help pseudoscience that leaves the hears in bondage as they (in their own power) strive to fix what only God can heal.

The church has become an institution (a business). And in this business, those who hold the most current knowledge are in charge. I remember where the pastor was considered the most qualified to deal with matters of the soul. Today, the counselor, therapist, and psychologist have taken that mantle in the church. Think about it. Who are the most sought-after new pastors being placed in our churches? Is it not the pastor who also has a degree in psychology? In reality, the traditional pastor who prays and seeks God for a living Word has been replaced by those who take on the world’s wisdom and then try to merge it with scripture into a sermon.

Revival and reform are coming to the Bride of Christ. The time has come to set the captives free. The time has come to weigh and measure the effectiveness of the world’s wisdom that has entered the church. How are we feeling? Are we filled with joy? Are we at peace? Or, do we feel lonely and depressed even though we go to church? The world’s definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while anticipating a different result. Look at our pastors, look at the music that is being touted as worship? Self-help psychology will never bring us joy.

So what is the answer? There is a growing movement to leave the business of Christianity and regroup into fellowships that rely on God’s wisdom once again. #Neodenominationalism The lights of performance are being replaced by the brightness of God’s glory radiating through His people. The confident wisdom of man is being replaced by humble men who preach only what God reveals to them as they seek Him in faith. And the problems and tribulations of our situations are being replaced with the peace and joy that is beyond understanding as we fully surrender our lives to the author and perfecter of our faith, Jesus Christ. True joy has been found within Christianity for centuries even in times of great persecution. If it has worked then, it will work for us today.

With all hope, I pray that God’s people will begin to see the prison that is taking over the established church. It is time to push back against psychology in the Bride of Christ. It is time to rebuke the pastors who are pushing Freud over the Apostle Paul. For it is better to be counted naïve to the world than to stand against the living God. And no matter how smart we think we are; Jesus is still the answer ~ especially on matters of the soul.