Christian psychology is flawed because it reveals a loyalty to man’s wisdom as opposed to a pure, childlike trust in the Word of God. It is nothing short of a subtle strategy of Satan to keep the gospel of Christ hidden from men by cloaking it within the arrogance of human wisdom. When human wisdom is blended with the pure truth of Christ, the result is only confusion and the supplanting of faith in the sufficiency of Scripture with trust in man.
The wisdom of man is foolishness to God, and the wisdom of God is foolishness to the unregenerate man. This means that the more man tries to find God or true wholeness through his own wisdom, the more he worships the creature rather than the Creator. Subsequently, the more the church seeks solutions to soul care needs by integrating theology with psychology, the farther we drift from the God of truth and undermine the work of the Spirit, who is committed to working through the Word.
Psychology Is Antagonistic to the Cross of Christ
The revelation of God in Christ is radically distinct from anything the world of psychological counseling can offer. By its very nature, worldly psychology is antagonistic to the cross since it exalts man’s wisdom and diminishes Jesus, the very source of truth (John 14:6). David Powlison testifies,
After years in the psychotherapeutic world, I found that Christ turned my life upside down. Then I started to see that he turned the whole world upside down: everything was God-centered, not man-centered. That meant that counseling needed a fundamental realignment to inhabit the real world, not the world fabricated by unbelief.”
To attempt to integrate biblical theology with psychology is, therefore, utterly foolish and will only lead to the exaltation of man, which in turn will ultimately lead to the spiritual ruin of others.
In our day, as in Paul’s, those who elevate worldly psychology to be equal to or above God’s Word consider themselves to be the enlightened ones, and we who stand solely on the Scriptures are the archaic, unenlightened ones. Looking to secular psychology for new insight, rather than doing the more laborious work of mining wisdom from Scripture, produces the elitism which bubbles up from pride. Though the theories of worldly psychology are constantly changing, the wisdom of God in the gospel is inflexible and superior because it is rooted in Jesus Christ, who is “the same yesterday and today and forever” (Heb. 13:8).
The integration of psychology and theology is nothing less than a silent admission of a lack of confidence in the sufficiency of the Word of God, both living and written. For this reason, biblical counselors must be faithful to engage in active combat with every form of human wisdom “raised up against the knowledge of God” (2 Cor. 10:5). Regardless of the subtlety of Christian psychology’s assault or the sincerity of its advocates, it is an attack on the sufficiency of Christ, nonetheless.
Integrationism is Flawed on Two Basic Levels
The integration of psychology and Christian theology is flawed on at least two basic levels.