Psychology, 2 Cor 5:17

Psychologists 2 Cor. 5:17 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO of Psychology

Psychologists have learned tools in psychology to teach you how to deal with behavioral problems, like marital difficulties, family relationship problems and addictions.  They can also counsel you through certain mental and emotional problems like bipolar disorder, manic depression, depression, and so forth.  But the limitation of psychology is that all of psychologists’ counsel deals with what the Bible calls the “old man.”  They may successfully teach the old man new ways of thinking and acting, but they can’t make a new man out of you.

When you are saved, you are “in Christ,” (1 Cor. 15:22).  And the Bible says that, “Therefore, if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new,” (2 Cor. 5:17).  In other words, salvation does much more than merely give counsel that causes the old man to become comfortable with and adjusted to his past behaviors and sins.  Salvation starts all over again with the new man.   To teach the old man new ways of thinking and interacting with people may help him, but it won’t change him.  Getting saved and beginning life as a new creature can change you completely.

Eph. 4:22 instructs us, “That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts.”  When psychologists delve into the past life of the old man to uncover fear, anger, sadness, shame, etc., they are awakening the old man, rather than putting him off.  Psychology breathes life into something that Christ has crucified (Gal. 2:20; 6:14).  And while psychologists might give you tools that help you to change your behavior patterns, psychology can’t give you anything that really solves the problem once and for all.

Eph. 4:23-24 instructs you to “be renewed in the spirit of your mind: and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.”  Well, the new man is not held by the sins of the past.  He is not controlled by the former fears and is not affected by the things that once made us angry, sad and ashamed.  His life is now and from now on through the future; his life is not in the past.  When you are saved, you have a new mind, the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16).

Like Paul said, “forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus,” (Phil. 3:13-14).  Imagine what a relief it was for Paul to put the shame of causing Christians to be arrested and killed behind him.  Imagine what it was like for Paul to face the crowds he once persecuted and preach the gospel to them without fear (Gal. 1:23-24).

Paul learned and believed that, “God hath not given us the spirit of fear: but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind,” (2 Tim. 1:7).  Just as eternal life is a free gift, so also is a sound mind, with love, power and the absence of fear. These are free gifts that come with salvation.  No psychologist is going to be able to give you these gifts because they come directly from the Lord Jesus Christ when you believe his word and have faith in him to appropriate these things he has given you.

Get your head out of the past sins of 1 Cor. 6:9-10, and start believing and enjoying the salvation of 1 Cor. 6:11, which says, “and such WERE some of you: but ye are WASHED, but ye are SANCTIFIED, but ye are JUSTIFIED in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.”  Can you see how remarkable this verse is?  Jesus paid for your sins with his own blood, and God cast them as far as the east is from the west (Ps 103:12).

Going back to dig all your old stuff up so that you can somehow “deal with it” is to deny the true glory of your salvation.  Those old things are gone, “old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new.”  What you need to do is learn how to live the eternal life you now have in Christ.  You can’t look to your past for clues on how to do that.  You must get into your Bible and spend time in prayer and in communion with the Lord so that he can show you how to start living the right way. Psychology can’t do this for you.

Instead of doing things like you have always done before, why don’t you go to the Lord in prayer and search his word for how he wants you to do things now.  His way of living is very different from the world’s way of living.  He will show you step by step in his word exactly what he wants you to do. And if you will follow him, you will make evident and obvious changes in your life for the better.  God promised you the fruit of the Spirit, which is much sweeter than the fruit of your old sinful ways.

And if you need counsel, which all of us need from time to time, get with a godly man or woman who prays for you and ask him or her.  Timely Biblical counsel is vital to successfully navigate through some of the rough areas in your life.  Others who have been through some things with the Lord will be able to provide you with invaluable instruction to keep you from falling back into the old man’s habits.

In time, you will find that the ways of the new man are far superior to the ways of the old man.  And you will also see that the love, joy and peace of walking in newness of life far exceeds the satisfaction of successfully coping with your old life each day.  Every day in your new man is precious as you find more and more contentment in Jesus Christ.  As much as they may help, psychologists can’t teach you how to have what is only available in Jesus Christ, unless they tell you about Jesus Christ.