The study of psychology and Christianity has been known to be at odds over the past several decades. Many believe that Christianity and Psychology cannot mix or intertwine. They believe a person can only believe in one but not both. In this essay I will discuss what the integration view entails in reference to psychology and Christianity. I will then discuss the major objectives that can arise from this view and follow by the counter objectives and core strengths of this view. I then will give an example of how this view can be used practically in a counseling situation.
This paper will be reviewing the book “Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity: an introduction to worldview issues, philosophical foundations and models of integration, by David N. Entwistle. As the title states, this book discusses how to integrate psychology and theology. It also dives into to why it is so important to be able to integrate the two. Entwistle explains that just because the two are different does not mean they should be separated and that we have to use both our worldviews. “Weaving together perspectives from psychology and Christian theology can help us understand and appreciate humanity more fully than we could either perspective alone.” (p.3)
Within the psychology field and in society, there is a common belief that theological principles, scripture, Christianity, and psychological principles are not compatible. Instead they believe that modern psychology is secular, scientific, and sacrilegious. However, many Christian psychologists and counselors, organizations and associations such as the Society for Christian Psychology, are striving to unite, integrate and incorporate Christian values, principles and knowledge into modern psychological counseling, research, and practice. Two of the main perspectives that tries to merge the two principles and theories is the Integration perspective and the Christian Psychology perspective.
What does psychology have to do with the Christian faith? In Psychology and Christianity: Five Views, by Myers, Jones, Roberts, Watson, Coe, Hall, and Powlison (2010) is an introductory textbook for Christian psychology that provides sound arguments for an array of positions on psychology and faith. Each author contributed an essay and in return the other essayist respond by either agreeing or disagreeing by pointing out faults and explaining why.
In his book, “Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity,” David Entwistle (2010) provides a persuasive discourse for the assimilation of psychology and theology; secular and religious disciplines that present a “multifaceted dialogue shaped by historical interactions and tensions.” (p. 51) Of the two systems, psychology is by much of the Church thought to advocate reason over revelation whereas theology is, by more secular-leaning scholars, thought to be wanting of intellect. With Tertullian 's libretti, “what indeed has Athens to do with Jerusalem?” (p. 8) in addition to modernism’s philosophy of self-consciousness and the skepticism of postmodernism continuing to fan the flames of segregation, the flawed logic that an integration of psychology and theology is not possible ensues.
Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity allowed me to comprehend fully the past occurrences of psychology and theology. The book displayed the faith and confidence that both psychology and Christianity must be combined in order for it to have a better understanding and allowing the client a better chance of healing. In order to do this there must be a complete understanding of each component in and of itself. Entwistle’s (2010) book presented all the facts from history as it has shaped society today (pp. 18-34). As he discussed these historic events, it shows just how the wisdom that is held today is a reflection or reaction of what happened then. Christianity has always had a huge impact on world history
David Entwistle's (2010) Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity appears to be a text with a primary audience which appears to be conservative evangelical Christians. The basic ‘meat’ of the book is the premise that "weaving together perspectives from psychology and Christian theology can help us understand and appreciate humanity more fully than we could with either perspective alone" (p. 3). Entwistle’s view is that in faithful reading of both the book of God's work (nature) and the book of God's word (theology), this textbook seems to be the work of an individual
Today, the integration of Christianity and psychology is becoming more increasingly recognized. The integration begins with understanding the sinful state of the human condition as viewed from a biblical perspective. It continues with being faithful to Christian stewardship and not only embracing theology but also the psychology of human behavior (Entwistle, 2015). A more accurate and complete understanding of human nature and function is provided through the integration of Christianity and psychology. The Allies model confirms that Christian theology and psychology are both subject to God’s authority, and exemplifies the best integrative relationship between Christianity and psychology (Entwistle, 2015). This paper will discuss the integration of Christianity and psychology through the Allies model. It will define integration, review reasons and explanations of why Christianity and psychology should be integrated. As well as look at different methods of knowing, the Allies model concept, and the two books idea along with strengths and weaknesses of this model.
The book Integrative approaches to psychology and Christianity second edition by David Entwistle introduces the text by explaining how psychology can go in a direction, and Christian theology approach can lead in a different direction. He continued by stating the need for understanding and studying human behavior because people come from different walks of life and different expectations. It leads us to form unique perspectives to help give us an understanding of the individuals you encounter. The Entwistle 's book addresses the relationship between Christianity and culture, Christianity and science, and Christianity and psychology.
David Entwistle’s (2010) book, Integrative approaches to psychology and Christianity: An introduction to worldview issues, philosophical foundations, and models of integration, opens the reader’s eyes to unexpected possibilities, beginning with the often combative regimes of faith and reason using Tertullian’s symbolism of Athens as the seat of reason and Jerusalem as the seat of faith; which is the basic ongoing battle between science and religion (Entwistle, 2010). What Entwistle addresses is his belief that integration of the disciple of psychology and Christianity is possible, each contributing to the
Due to differences in worldview, speculation of the possibility of integration of Christianity and psychology exists. Although these differences seem to cause conflict, or undermine integration between psychology and Christianity, some scientific data can be complimentary to the Christian worldview and provide us with a better understanding of humans as a whole. Some problems can arise when attempting to integrate theology and science, such as some Christians having contempt for secular science or secular science believing the Christian worldview is based on irrational thought. Rather than throwing out a view over differences, the differences can be examined and good aspects of psychology that align with the Biblical truths can be found.
“This model declines the claim of the Enemies model that psychology and Theology are connected exclusive, although it recognizes that there have been tensions and misunderstandings that have fostered such antagonism. The Allies model agrees with the Spies model that good psychology can be found in religion, but it categorically rejects the claim that religion is only valuable as a vehicle to express psychological truths and to foster psychological benefits.” (Entwistle, 2015).
In his book Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity, David N. Entwistle explores the necessity of integrating psychology and Christianity, the worldview issues, philosophical foundations, models of integration and discusses the difficulty in doing so. It is often thought that there are secular jobs, such as a psychologist or counselor, and there are ministry jobs. Entwistle points out that God has gifted each with abilities and those abilities are best used to serve God and others.
Mark R. McMinn’s (2011) Psychology, Theology, and Spirituality in Christian Counseling establish a way to bring Psychology, Theology, and Spirituality to Christian Counselors. He introduces a replica of how to integrate the three disciplines in the counseling office. The purpose of the book is to instruct counselors how to integrate categories of Psychology, Theology and Spirituality into Christian Counseling. McMinn (2011) contends that many challenges both professional and personal face Christian Counselors on the frontier of intradisciplinary integration. (Intradisciplinary integration is the new emerging frontier for Christian Counselors).
Jones begins his book by giving the baseline foundations of the Christian belief system and tying those into the baseline foundations of Christian counseling. He says that the Christian faith used to play a larger role in all of the sciences, counseling included, but is “no longer motivated by a desire to glorify God, but rather a desire to serve the self and others”. Once that shift took place, it pervaded past the physical sciences and into the social sciences. Since