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Return to Thy Mistress, and Submit Thyself Under Her Hands - Genesis 16:9
Jan 7th
Morning Meditation
F. B. Meyer
Categories: Meditation;Inspirational;Book Study

Poor Hagar! No wonder that she fled. Her proud Arab independence and the sense of coming motherhood made her rebel against Sarah's hard dealings. We have often meditated flight, if we have not actually fled from intolerable conditions. Of course, when God opens the door out of a dungeon we need not hesitate, as Peter did, to rise and follow. But this is very different to flight from the post of duty.

Our Cross. - For Hagar, Sarah; for Hannah, Penninah; for David, Joab; for Jesus, Judas; for Paul, Alexander the coppersmith. Life assumes hard and forbidding aspects. Sometimes the cross is not a person, but a trial, the pressure of a slow and lingering disease; the demand for grinding and persistent toil; the weight of overmastering anxiety for those dearer than life, who have no knowledge of God.

Our Demeanor. - Return and submit. We are apt to suppose that we shall get rest and peace elsewhere. It is not so, however. Nowhere else shall we find the path less rugged, or the pillow less hard. To evade the yoke will not give us heartsease. The Master's advice is that we shall take His yoke, and bear it as He did; remain where God has put us, till He shows us another place; and bear what He ordains and permits, even though it comes through the means of others.

Our Faith. - We cannot patiently submit to our lot unless we believe that what God permits is as much His will as what He appoints. Behind Sarah's hard dealings we must behold His permissive providence. Through all the discipline of life we must believe that God has a purpose of unfailing love and wisdom. Then our submission is not stoicism, but loving acquiescence in our Father's will.

Psychology and Psychotherapy (part 1)
Jan 7th
Categories: Warning

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, psychology is "the science of mind and behavior." Is psychology a science? Well, yes and no, depending on one's understanding of the term "science." If one views the study of psychology as simply the pursuit of the knowledge of human behavior, some are satisfied with its definition as a science. Yet that rather vague meaning is far removed from real scientific knowledge gained through a scientific methodology that involves objective observation, evidence, hypotheses testing, induction, repetition, and verification, and ultimately resulting in a commonly accepted cumulative knowledge. Psychology differs greatly, for example, from the sciences of astronomy, physics, chemistry, geology, and biology, the knowledge of which has been amassed through objective means.

Psychology hints at being a science but has failed to produce a significant body of information to prove itself in that way. Its primary emphasis is on human behavior, which can't be quantified in any meaningful manner. The nature of human choices is extremely subjective, involving emotions, values, and consciousness-none of which can be measured; nor can the mind, being a nonphysical part of the human makeup. The issue of whether or not psychology is a science wouldn't be worth debating except that just the term "science" carries a great weight of influence. Legitimate or not, the "science" label impresses the masses.

Nearly 100 disciplines of psychology cover a wide spectrum of undertakings, from applied behavior analysis to transpersonal psychology. Psychotherapy, i.e., psychological counseling or clinical psychology, is the most prevalent. Americans spend more than $200 billion a year attempting to have their mental and emotional disorders cured, usually through psychotherapy.

Psychotherapy, "also called 'talk therapy' or just plain 'therapy,' is a process whereby psychological problems are treated through communication and relationship factors between an individual and a trained mental health professional."1 Psychotherapy is 

psychoheresy. Its subtle deception opens the door to other deceptions, replacing and/or adding unproven, unscientific opinions of men to the Word of God, thus taking away from absolute confidence in the biblical truth about God.

Psychoheresy denies the sufficiency of Scripture for issues of the mind, soul, and will. This intrusion of psychological notions stems from the wisdom of men and reaches into the preaching and practices of Christianity, especially in terms of man's nature, how he's to live, and how he changes. It's imperative that we  examine how these psychological ideas can deceive Christians. Turning to psychotherapy for the problems of living undermines a believer's faith regarding matters of the soul. Once a person moves away from faith in the inerrant, authoritative, sufficient Word of God, he's open to deceptions from many realms.

Psychotherapy is based on theories of personality that are simply unproved opinions originating from atheists, agnostics, and other non-Christians. These theories aren't like scientific theories. They're simply collections of unscientific, secular, and, in many cases, anti-Christian beliefs that often contradict one another. The therapy itself is simply "talk," which includes talking about the client and the client's problems and helping the client to see himself/herself from the perspective of whatever particular theory is being used by the therapist. Psychotherapy (psychological counseling) is the most subjective and therefore the most deceptive branch of psychology.

"Syncretism" is "the combination of different forms of belief or practice." It's one of Satan's most deceptive and appealing techniques, devised to destroy true faith and undermine the Christian's confidence in God's Word and dependence on Christ. Psychotherapy and its underlying psychologies are actually religious in nature and practice. They're like oil and water! The euphemism for this kind of syncretism is "integration," which occurs when two or more ideas or systems are combined. However, psychotherapeutic beliefs cannot truly be integrated with Scripture. One works with the old man of the flesh (carnal); the other works with the new man in Christ (spiritual). They're at enmity with each other, just as the flesh and the Spirit are contrary to each other (Gal. 5:17) and just as the carnal man is at enmity with God (Rom. 8:7). They can't mix, because they're enemies just as the idols of the nations around Israel were at enmity with God.

Christians who mix psychology and the Bible aren't practicing and promoting ordinary integration but rather religious syncretism, overlaying their psychology with the Bible. This ultimately disguises the psychological religious systems they're using, and then this psycho-syncretism subverts and subtracts from the faith. The "integrating" of psychology and Christianity appeals to those Christians who believe that what is being discovered about the mind, the will, and the emotions is science-that it's part of God's creation yet to be discovered in the same way that discoveries have been made in physics, chemistry, and biology. Since psychology misrepresents itself as a science, and psychotherapeutic ideas are organized into theories, many pastors don't even realize that these scientific-sounding theories are simply another competing belief system.

Instead of knowledge being added to knowledge with more recent discoveries resting on a body of solid information, in this case, one system contradicts another, one set of opinions is exchanged for another, and one set of techniques replaces another. Psychotherapy changes along with current cultural trends. Just the knowledge that there is an accumulation of about 500 separate psychotherapeutic systems, each claiming superiority, should discourage anyone from thinking that so many diverse opinions could be scientific or even factual. Psychotherapy and its underlying psychologies are amassed in confusion, with their pseudoknowledge and pseudotheories resulting in pseudoscience.

The dream of a scientific study of human nature and a scientific method of treating unacceptable behavior was most alluring. The hoped-for science of behavior promised much to those who had been struggling to unravel the vast complexities of individual personalities in equally complex circumstances. Thus, through study and imagination, psychologists pursued the dream of

discovering scientific methods of observing, explaining, and transforming human behavior.

Clinical psychology and its active arm of psychotherapy have indeed adopted the scientific posture. However, from a strictly scientific point of view they haven't been able to meet the requirements. In attempting to evaluate the status of psychology, the American Psychological Association appointed Sigmund Koch to plan and direct a study that was subsidized by the National Science Foundation. This examination involved eighty eminent scholars in assessing the facts, theories, and methods of psychology. The results of this extensive endeavor were then published in a seven-volume series entitled 

Psychology: A Study of a Science.2

Koch describes the delusion of people regarding psychology as a science: "The hope of a psychological science became indistinguishable from the fact of psychological science. The entire subsequent history of psychology can be seen as a ritualistic endeavor to emulate the forms of science in order to sustain the delusion that it already is a science"3 (italics his).

Koch says: "Throughout psychology's history as 'science,' 

the hard knowledge it has deposited has been uniformly negative"4 (italics his). He contends that much of psychology is not a cumulative or progressive discipline in which knowledge is added to knowledge. Rather, what is discovered by one generation "typically disenfranchises the theoretical fictions of the past." Instead of refining and specifying larger generalizations of the past, psychologists are busy replacing them. He adds, "I think it by this time utterly and finally clear that psychology cannot be a coherent science"5 (italics his). Koch suggests, "As the beginning of a therapeutic humility, we might re-christen psychology and speak instead of the psychological studies"6 (italics his). And he would certainly criticize psychotherapy for living under "the delusion that it already is a science" when it is not.7

Another reason why psychotherapy cannot legitimately be called a coherent science is because it attempts to deal with deep human complexities that can't be directly observed or consistently predicted. Furthermore, the therapist and client are each individually unique, and their interaction lends an additional dimension of variability. When one adds time and changing circumstances, it's no wonder that the therapeutic relationship escapes the rigors of science. In considering the dilemma between science and personal individuality, Dr. Gordon Allport says: "The Individual, whatever else he may be, is an internally consistent and unique organization of bodily and mental processes. But since he is unique, science finds him an embarrassment. Science, it is said, deals only with broad, preferably universal, laws....  Individuality cannot be studied by science, but only by history, art, or biography."8

We could add that the individual not only escapes the formulas of science, but also defies the descriptions of literature. Nevertheless, if one must choose between the two, it appears that literature has more ably revealed human beings. Language describes the complexities of individuality far better than formulas. Language and literature, rather than personality theories and psychotherapy, better portray human nature and provide a glimpse into the depths of the soul, but it is the Bible that best portrays and gives accurate truth about mankind.

There are subtleties and similarities between certain ideas from psychology and Christianity that increase the vulnerability for one to begin thinking and ministering psychologically rather than biblically. The deceitful heart finds its friendliest friend in a psychologized gospel, where the sinful nature of man is given free reign and where sinful speaking can be expressed without restriction, questioning, or proof. That is why Christians must spend time in the Word and in prayer instead of looking for answers to life's dilemmas outside Scripture and the church. Again, psychotherapy and its underlying psychologies are not science. They are human speculations about the soul, with a pseudo-scientific facade.

There has been so much searching outside of Scripture to find ways to minister to suffering saints that a whole cadre of psychologically trained (or at least psychologically tainted) professionals and lay counselors are prepared to minister the ways of men and the wisdom of men along with Scriptures that appear to support their practice. This is syncretism. Others guilty of false integration are: (1) Christian schools and seminaries that positively promote the use of counseling psychology and/or prepare individuals to become licensed as psychotherapists, especially Christian schools that have programs accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA), (2) pastors or others who promote and affirm those psychological ideas and/or refer congregants to psychotherapists, (3) authors and organizations that promote a psychological understanding of man, (4) professing Christians who are deeply committed to this "integration," which comes from not believing that Scripture is sufficient for life and godliness (2 Pet 1:3).

The delusion nevertheless continues despite this disclosure by members of the Christian Association for Psychological Studies, a group that includes psychologists and psychological counselors who are professing Christians: "We are often asked if we are 'Christian psychologists' and find it difficult to answer since we don't know what the question implies. We are Christians who are psychologists, but at the present time there is no acceptable Christian psychology that is markedly different from non-Christian psychology. It is difficult to imply that we function in a manner that is fundamentally distinct from our non-Christian colleagues...."9

We are not questioning the faith of Christians who, as psychotherapists, pastors, and church leaders, support psychotherapy and clinical psychology. We are critical, however, of their practice and support for these activities that deny the sufficiency of Scripture. The Word is true; the theories and practices of psychotherapy that speak in place of God's written Word and its promises are counterfeits. This psychologizing of the faith has come to full flower so that those who know better will not for the sake of the Gospel do better. There are many pastors and church leaders who believe as we do regarding psychotherapy but will not make an issue of this false religious compromise of true faith in God's Word. We have often challenged Christians who believe as we do regarding psychotherapy to ask their pastors if they have any problem with referring those with life issues to a psychotherapist.

Psychoheresy deceives the soul. O. Hobart Mowrer, in his book titled 

The Crisis in Psychiatry and Religion, asks a penetrating question: "Has evangelical religion sold its birthright for a mess of psychological pottage?"10 Christians need to take an objective, hard look at their birthright and the mess of psychological pottage. Without a firm hold on the Word of God they will be led astray and more so as deception will increase exponentially in the days preceding Christ's return.

When asked about the time of His return, Jesus said: "Take heed that no man deceive you." How deeply deceived might those Christians be after seeking help from psychotherapy and its underlying psychologies? How will they be able to discover how much they are deceived, if they have already mixed deceptive psychological notions and nonsense into their understanding of the Bible? Twice in the book of Proverbs (14:12; 16:25) we're told that there's a way (the world's way) that seems right to a man, but it is separated from God's truth and leads to death.

Nearly all of those who believe they've been helped by psychological counseling eventually recognize that their mental and emotional problems have neither been resolved nor lessened. In part II of this series, we'll address the myth of psychological counseling being efficacious and the value of ministering God's way through the sufficiency of His Word and the enablement of the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:3).

Let the Headlines Speak
Jan 7th
Daily News
From the Internet
Categories: Today's Headlines

Israel lists international pro-BDS organizations to be banned from country 
Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs on Sunday released a list of international pro-BDS organizations to be banned from the country for their calls to boycott the Jewish state. “We have switched from defense to offense. The boycott organizations need to know that the State of Israel will act to stop them and prevent their representatives from entering the country to harm its citizens,”…Gilad Erdan said in a statement.

Netanyahu: UNRWA needs to pass away from the world 
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) needs to pass away from the world, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday…”I fully agree with President Trump’s strong criticism of UNRWA,” Netanyahu said…referring to Trump’s tweet last week threatening to cut aid to the Palestinians, including to UNRWA, if the Palestinians do not return to the negotiation table.

Iran protests: Students ‘among more than 1,000 arrested’
Ninety university students are among more than 1,000 people arrested since anti-government demonstrations began last month, say reformist MPs in Iran. Mahmoud Sadeghi told the Iranian Students’ News Agency that many of them were not involved in protests. Another MP, Farid Mousavi, said it was a preventative measure and they would be released soon.

Manhattan reported more UFO sightings than any other borough
Manhattan has gone from Studio 54 to Area 51, leading the five boroughs in sightings of unidentified flying objects over the last two years, data from the National UFO Reporting Center reveals. Otherworldly tourists have included travelers in a “round orange orb,” a crew in a “cigar-shaped” craft and even “an unknown creature” that rudely “teleported” into one New Yorker’s back yard, according to reports made to the Washington-based group.

A new generation of L.A. Satanists finds community in blasphemous times
…“It’s important for women to try to reclaim our images for ourselves.” That, more than anything, is the animating force behind this new wave of interest in both Satanism and the occult… If satanic rituals of old were centered on smashing Christian orthodoxy and middle American propriety…this form of Satanism explicitly uses a huge range of ideas to give shape to the inchoate rage felt by so many — especially women and other marginalized groups.

Severe flu brings medicine shortages, packed ERs and a rising death toll in California
So many people have fallen sick with influenza in California that pharmacies have run out of flu medicines, emergency rooms are packed, and the death toll is rising higher than in previous years. Health officials said Friday that 27 people younger than 65 have died of the flu in California since October, compared with three at the same time last year. Nationwide and in California, flu activity spiked sharply in late December and continues to grow.

Ex-Iranian president Ahmadinejad arrested for inciting unrest
Former Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been arrested by authorities for allegedly inciting unrest against the government, the London-based daily Al-Quds Al-Arabi reported Saturday, citing “reliable sources in Tehran.” The newspaper said that Ahmadinejad, during a visit to…Bushehr…said, “Some of the current leaders live detached from the problems and concerns of the people, and do not know anything about the reality of society.”

Palestinians seek to become full UN member state
The Palestinians are planning to ask the UN Security Council to upgrade their status from a non-member observer state to a full member state with voting rights at the United Nations. The Palestinian move is the latest in a diplomatic war that was sparked by US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital…and recently culminated in US threats to cut funding for the Palestinian Authority and the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA).

Breaking: Whistleblower Bigger Than Wikileaks Exposes Documents That Destroy Deep State Forever
Much like the early days of Wikileaks, a high-level intelligence source known only as QAnon is leaking secret information from deep within the system, and Infowars’ Owen Shroyer breaks down how this renewed the FBI investigations into both Hillary Clinton’s emails and the Clinton Foundation.

TRUMP EFFECT: Spain Suddenly Tilts Toward Israel, Strikes Down BDS Boycotts
In Spain, whose parliament called on the Spanish government to recognize a Palestinian state only hours after two Palestinian terrorists used meat cleavers and a gun to murder four rabbis at prayer and a policeman in 2014, and a country at the top of the list of the Anti-Defamation League’s 2015 anti-Semitism index in Western Europe, suddenly there has been a sea change regarding Israel.

Life Time fitness tunes out all-news TV outlets from its big screens
Life Time has scrubbed all-news cable channels from the screens at its fitness centers, saying a growing number of customers think they don’t fit a healthy lifestyle.

War between Israel and Iran is inevitable, and there is one person to blame
In 2015, President Barack Obama was successful in passing the controversial Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, also known as the Iran Nuclear deal. The deal received quite a response. President Trump has called the JCPOA “the worst deal he has ever seen.” Senator Ted Cruz has called the deal “catastrophic.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the deal an “existential threat to Israel.” Alan Dershowitz, the famed lawyer, former Harvard legal professor, and longtime Democrat, believes that Obama may eventually be compared to Neville Chamberlain, the late Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, who signed a peace pact with Adolf Hitler.

MEDIA SILENCE: Egyptian regime cracks down on gays, musicians and atheists – world shrugs
Egypt now looks set to inherit the coveted title of Arab country with the most absurd restrictions. Having made little progress in combating an Islamist insurgency, the Sisi regime has turned its attention to the “threat” posed by atheists, gay people and – increasingly – musicians.

Report: Labor unions ‘ATM of the Democratic Party’
Labor unions across the country sent nearly $1.1 billion in member dues to hundreds of advocacy groups aligned with the Democratic Party from 2010 to 2016, according to new research.

Trump deals another blow to Obamacare
…now the administration is taking the first step toward implementing one of the most important planks of conservative health-care reform: allowing the sale of health insurance across state lines.

Video: “National Students for Justice in Palestine” Exposed
Campus watchdog group Canary Mission recently released an exposé of the 2017 National Students for Justice in Palestine (NSJP) Conference, held at the University of Houston, Texas, and the virulent anti-Semitism of its student participants. Social media posts include support for terror, incitement, anti-Semitism, praising Hitler, mocking the Holocaust and calls for violence. Watch the shocking companion video to the Canary Mission report below.

Israel set to green-light over 1,300 settlement homes next week
Among plans are retroactive building permits for 11 of the 15 homes sanctioned for demolition in illegal Netiv Ha’avot outpost

‘Preparing For The Unthinkable’: CDC To Hold Briefing On How To Prepare The Public For a Nuclear Detonation In America
Amid rising tensions between the United States and North Korea, the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention have scheduled a briefing for later this month that will teach healthcare professionals how to better prepare the public for a nuclear detonation in America.

Iran Claims It Has “Hard Evidence” Of Foreign Meddling In Protests
Iran’s ambassador says he has “hard evidence” that recent protests in Iran were “very clearly directed from abroad.” France’s ambassador said “no to instrumentalization of the crisis from the outside.”

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