How Is Biblical Counseling Different Than Other Types of Counseling?
“All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” – 2 Timothy 3:16-17
There are three general categories of counseling.
1. Traditional psychological counseling
2. Integrated counseling
3. Biblical counseling
Traditional psychological counseling makes an earnest attempt to help hurting people find wholeness as it employs over 200 different, sometimes conflicting, psychological approaches for diagnosis and treatment. Psychological counselors will select from Freud, Jung and Adler’s differing approach to Psychoanalysis, Skinner’s Behavioral Modification, Rogerian Reflection, Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs, etc…, or even mix and match differing psychological approaches as they attempt to assist those in need. It is important to note, however, not only were these well-known psychologists and psychiatrists not Christians, but in many cases their moral foundations and approach to the human condition were the antithesis of Biblical thinking.
Integrated counseling attempts to integrate Christian principles into the plethora of psychological approaches. The resulting counsel often neither resembles the original model nor the biblical principles which are being mixed into the stew.
The Biblical counseling movement is founded on the premise that God, as Creator, has solutions to man’s brokenness and that His solutions are more effective than those devised by man (Colossians 2:1-10). The solutions for man’s brokenness and the guidance for living a full, abundant life are found in God’s Word. The Biblical counselor’s dependence on the Holy Spirit and prayer and the use of Scripture as his reference guide make Biblical counseling distinctively different from the other approaches and ultimately, more effective.
Some of the theological and philosophical...