Seven Major Flaws Of Secular Counseling

brown book pageI was listening to a Christian pastor discussing our current state of psychology and how secular psychology misses the mark in counseling.  He specifies important differences in the approaches of psychology from counseling from the biblical perspective.

As I’ve said here on this blog, I have several main issues for why I can’t return to secular counseling.  The lecture of the pastor I am listening to describes what I am unable to quite articulate and is very instructive. 

I am now leaning toward becoming proficient in Christian counseling and I think and believe that my role as a Christian would be to spend time teaching and counseling and having a website for these things.

Below are some of the notes I have taken from the pastor I recently listened to in indicating seven, major flaws of the secular counseling perspective of who man is.  It is astounding to hear about how mainstream secular counseling has become a smorgasbord of theories about how to make people well.

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Psychology has gone off the rails.  This field has gone literally crazy in it’s assumption that mankind were fishes that crawled out of the sea, or we developed from amoebas after nothing exploded in outer space so that man eventually walked the earth.   Every  secular college that teaches psychology courses blindly accepts this theory.

Here are seven differences between secular counseling and Christian counseling:

1) The secular humanist line of thinking stems from the belief that mankind is a type of advanced animal that can think and choose for itself.  But the bible says we were created as mankind, as explained in Genesis, that we were created by God and have not evolved from some other species over time, as Darwinian theory posits.

2) Secular humanists say that mankind is inherently good, but we know from the bible that mankind’s nature fell, and we cannot help but sin against God, man’s creator.

3) The secular humanists say that mankind gets to choose right from wrong and makes these choices intelligently, but the bible tells us that that the way man thinks is right leads to death.

4) Secular humanism says that we have no soul and that we are “just a body”.  Electrons bounce around in our brains, that consciousness is just a physical function of your body.  We know from the bible that our souls go to heaven and that Jesus Christ died on the cross to save us from our sins.  Without His dying at Calvary we would have no hope of continuing life with him for eternity.

5)  Secular humanists refer to psychology as a “science”, but it is immeasurable and more of an art form than a pure science.  There are more than 250 theories about mankind in the study of science, and more are being added according to man’s theories he creates according to how a therapist finds it most effective to treat certain condition.  Christians know that we are created in the likeness of God and that the bible teaches us how to live our lives; praying, reading the bible, caring for our brothers and sisters in the Lord, doing “good works”, helping others, and treats our illnesses compassionately.  He does not tell us that our mentality must be divided into theories of treatment dreamed up by someone in psychology in order to make someone whole.

6)  The premise of secular counseling is that mankind knows best how to heal mental illness, not God.    The father of modern psychology is often thought to be Sigmund Freud who said that the unconscious mind governs behavior and psychoanalysis would bring the unconscious forth to the conscious to enable people to have control over their behavior.  The field of psychology rejects the Father in Heaven and does not believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God.  

7)  Secular psychology puts man above God.  In counseling, the client is often asked what their goals are while in Christian counseling, people are taught how to deal with life’s issues the way God teaches in the bible.

I’m sure there are those of you who know more differences between secular humanist thought and Christian belief that could be listed here.  Feel free to put them in the comments section.

Although I’ve said that seeking support and seeking someone to talk to is not wrong in my opinion, it may just be a starting place to organize one’s thinking and feel supported to help themselves.   If, however, someone is seeking Christian advice about how to handle life’s problems and on an ongoing basis, a true Christian might be a better choice because you are getting Godly advice; you are in the hands of another Christian.

In either event my hope and my prayers go out to those who need counseling support.  I pray that the Lord Jesus Christ provides a light to your feet, and shows you the way to go.

9 thoughts on “Seven Major Flaws Of Secular Counseling

  1. I practiced both secular and christian counseling for many years, and both systems have their faults. The bible is filled with things like demons and exorcisms and God testing people, which is problematic in christian counseling. There has an astonishing rise of exorcisms in America (google it if you’re unaware)…most of those believed to be demon possessed are women and children. Blaming physical and mental health problems on satan or demons is simply not something I can get on board with. Even if the practitioner doesn’t attribute the problem to demons, the clients often will.

    There is also the licensing issue: christian counselors are required to have zero hours of formal training, and they are not licensed by a governing body which ensures certain standards. This leaves the door open for all sorts of bad things to happen. If they could require christian counselors to be properly licensed by the state before embarking on faith based counseling I would take less issue with it.

    Secular counseling is unhelpful at worst, but does not have the potential to be as catastrophically damaging as counseling which is not rooted in evidence based medicine (ie: christian counseling). If/when there is abuse of the patient, a secular therapist is punished and stripped of their license, whereas a christian counselor is free to continue practicing.

    So while there are certain benefits of faith based counseling, it is important not to overlook the downsides as well. Acknowledging both sides will help clients make an informed decision where they’re fully aware of the risks and benefits.

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    • Thank you for your comment, there are a lot of risks to be addressed on both sides. Churches can address abuse, as well. I think an evangelistic avenue is what I’m going foe; strengthening a person’s fairh; listening, caring, letting people talk. I have many ideas about what I can do to help the Christian community.

      I quit my job because a counselor stole my wallet at work, although no one thought I should quit; as long as I could keep my percentages up in productivity, in a workplace run by licensed counselors, and also Kid’s. It shows me that a person’s spiritual condition is what I’m working for; people wanting to serve Christ, and not sin against others, is a huge part of what I’m supporting in my quest here.

      Many things go wrong in both secular, but also non-secular, unfortunately, but I place my hope in Jesus, that’s my aim and wherever he uses me is where I will be led.

      Thank you, again – I pray for all my readers here, come back and visit!

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      • I know what you mean when you refer to “keeping percentages up.” While in my work as a psych counselor I was never measured by percentages, the hospital forced us to keep such a horrifically frantic we were nearly useless to our patients. I guess I helped people survive (avoid suicide and homicide, etc), but I didn’t really help people *live.* Running hospitals like corporations is an incredibly big problem in the secular area.
        I think you have the right idea and intentions, but do be careful about the “gray areas” when practicing as a christian counselor…these things can sneak up on you during a session. I’ve noticed a particular problem area is when talking about the fallen nature of humans, depressed people can really seize onto the idea of being worthless despite us trying to stress grace. In the secular world people don’t start out as “fallen,” and therefore that isn’t such a huge obstacle to overcome.
        Good luck to you! I hope you find some rewarding employment soon that best suits your skills. That can be a very difficult thing in today’s world.

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