Conscience searing procedures are often performed through spiritually dangerous counseling and “prayer techniques” that are similar to occult practices and secular psychotherapy, which is highly encouraged in Arminian circles. But they are often “Christianized” under terms such as “Soaking Prayer,” contemplative meditation, etc., where one’s unconscious or subconscious “needs” are brought to the surface, to expose causes of “unproductive behavior” that keep one from living up to ones “full-potential.” So the main focus is always upon self… not God. And Scripture strongly warns against self-worship (e.g. Rom. 12:3, Phil. 2:3, 2 Tim. 3:2).
False religious systems promote the idea that one “gets in a bad situation” because their needs are not met, and portrays Jesus as a genie in a bottle. However, Scripture reveals that Adam, Eve and even Satan himself had everything one could ever ask for, and yet, they still rebelled against God! So Jesus let multitudes know that their only hope was for God the Father to draw them to Him the true Christ, to teach them that they needed eternal riches more than earthly treasures (Jn. 6:44-65). But superficial followers don’t want to hear it and so they end up walking away (v. 66).
Scripture makes it clear that sin is humanity’s problem, not “unconscious needs” or low self-esteem. The last thing we need is self-ascension. We tend to love ourselves too much, which is one reason we make bad choices. The heart (which is the seat of our conscience, thoughts, emotions and choices), must be made anew by a supernatural act of God, due to the effects of being spiritually deadened by sin. Although we don’t have the ability to do this ourselves, it does not excuse us from being responsible toward God, for we are still fully conscious, self-aware and actively rebellious. He does not lower His standard just because we are fallen.
This is why we need the Savior, Who lived up to God’s perfect standard of righteousness perfectly. Our rescue is not about self-realization of conscious or unconscious needs that must be “psychoanalyzed” or used as excuses not to be accountable to God for our active, self-centered sinfulness. Behavior modification only suppresses the truth in unrighteousness (Rom. 1:18).
Humanistic psychotherapy is based on the godless imaginations of atheists, such as Sigmund Freud, who, like most unswerving Arminians, hated the absolute sovereignty of God and the biblical concept of sin. Though the CoC claims that confessions of faith (or creeds) are nothing more than man-made opinions, it has the audacity to incorporate into its ministries, the unbiblical opinions of pseudo-science, which is defined as: “a system of theories, assumptions, and methods erroneously regarded as scientific.”
The Bible warns against “science falsely so-called” (1 Tim. 6:20). True science can be measured, studied, tested, repeated, observed and verified. Yet–
“Psychotherapy escapes the rigors of science because the mind is not equal to the brain and man is not a machine. The actual foundations of psychotherapy are not science, but rather various philosophical world views, especially those of determinism, secular humanism, behaviorism, existentialism, and even evolutionism. Its influence has not been confined to the therapist’s office, for its varied explanations of human behavior and contradictory ideas for change have permeated both society and the church.”
See: Martin and Deidre Bobgan, Prophets of Psychoheresy I, (Santa Barbara, CA: EastGate Publishers, 1989), pp. 24, 25.
Copyright ©2020 by Lee Anne Ferguson