(This article was originally printed in June, 2005)
“Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Spirit hath made you overseers, to feed the Church of God, which He hath purchased with His Own Blood.  For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.  Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them” (Acts 20:28-30).
The modern church of today has, by and large, rejected the Gospel and embraced “the wisdom of the world.” Hence psychology, with all its behavioral evaluations and presumptions, has been integrated into the Church in the name of science. Who brought this gross heresy into the Church, and when did it have such a profound impact on how the Church lives and functions?
I believe Rick Warren, the author of “The Purpose Driven Life” and the “Purpose Driven Church”, has meticulously integrated psychology throughout his books. He utilizes the ungodly teaching of personality temperaments to address how God works with us.
RW: He created each of us with a unique combination of personality traits. God made introverts and extroverts. He made some people “thinkers” and some others “feelers.” Some people work best when given an individual assignment, while others work better with a team. The Bible says, “God works through different people in different ways, but it is the same God who achieves his purpose through them all.” The Bible gives us proof that God uses all personalities. Peter was a sanguine. Paul was a choleric. Jeremiah was a melancholy. When you look at the personality differences in the twelve disciples, it’s easy to see why they sometimes had interpersonal conflict (“The Purpose Driven Life” chapter 31, page 245).
NEW AGE TEACHING
This does not come from Scripture. It is the New Age teaching and psychology. The ancient origins of this theory date back to Greek cosmology taught by the philosopher Empedocles (495-425 B.C.). He taught there were four primary elements known in the universe: fire, air, earth, and water. He further purported the elements’ qualities were part of Greek mythology. It was Hippocrates (460-377 B.C.) who expanded the theory to include four corresponding body fluids. He taught that one’s health depended on a proper balance of these fluids. He believed there was a relationship between these fluids, with seasonal variations of the fluids. This theory began to address the changes in the personalities of people. Although his emphasis related to disease, his theory showed a relationship between bodily fluids and personality temperament. Others, such as Plato and his student Aristotle, would expand even further on the teachings of Hippocrates. It was Claudius Galen of Pergamum (A.D. 130-200) who advances Hippocrates’ theory of the Roman world and added how the physiological characteristics and their relationship to personality could be explained. The word temperament means “proper mixing” from its original Latin word Temperamentum. The theory would later progress to include astrology. The twelve prominent zodiac signs and their influence on personality were divided into four sets of three signs, known as trigons or triplicities. This popular theory would extend its tentacles into the modern era through Carl Jung. In his book, Psychological Types, Jung said, “From the earliest times, attempts have been made to classify individuals according to types, and so to bring order into chaos. The oldest attempts known to us were made by oriental astrologers who devised the so-called trigons of the four elements: air, water, earth, and Libra. The Fire trigon is made up of: Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius. According to this old view, whoever is born in these trigons shares in their aerial or firey nature, and will have corresponding temperament and fate. Closely connected with this ancient cosmological scheme is the psychological typology of antiquity, the division into four temperaments corresponding to the four humors (body fluids – blood, yellow bile, black bile, and phlegm). What was first represented by the sign of the zodiac was later expressed in the physiological language of Greek medicine, giving us the classification into the phlegmatic, sanguine, choleric, and melancholic. These are simply designations for the secretions of the body. As is well known, this typology lasted at least seventeen hundred years. As for the astrological type theory, to the astonishment of the enlightened, it still remains intact today, and is even enjoying a new vogue.”
Carl Jung introduced this into the church and claims he received a confirming revelation of this foolish historical nonsense via a visit from his imaginary friend he called Philemon. In his first book, “Seven Sermons on the Dead”, no longer in print, he explains his supernatural encounter. Jung says this book was written, typical of spiritualist mediumship “semi-automatically” in 1916 by a part of himself he called Basilides (alludes to multiple personality/dissociative disorder). Basilides believed there were 365 Aeons, personifications of the emanations, (the origination of the world by a series of hierarchically descending radiations from the godhead through intermediate stages to matter). The first of these Aeons was Christ, also called Nous. Later, in his book “Memories, Dreams and Reflections” Jung writes, “Philemon and other figures of my fantasies brought home to me the crucial insight that there are things in the psyche which I do not produce, but which produce themselves and have their own life. Philemon represented a force, which was not of myself. In my fantasies, I held conversations with him and he said things which I had not consciously thought. For I observed clearly that it was he who spoke, not I.”
Carl Jung has been described as “The psychologist of the 21st Century.” One could say, without overstatement, that Carl Jung is the father of neo-Gnosticism and the New Age Movement within and without the Church. Jung explicitly identified depth psychology, especially his own, as apostolic tradition, especially in what he considered its superior handling of the problem of evil. Jung claimed, “In the ancient world, the Gnostics, whose arguments were very much influenced by psychic experience, tackled the problem of evil on a broader basis than the Church fathers.” The innermost circle of all Gnostic systems is a mystical vision of the union of good and evil.
Most of Jung’s adult life was spent on the study of alchemy. Alchemy is the blending of geometric signs, elemental symbols, and astrological signs, each part representing the various elements and forces needed for magical work in the quest for physical transformation, spiritual illumination, and immorality. His earliest writings were about spiritualism. He collected one of the largest amassing of spiritualistic writings found on the European continent. He wrote the first introduction to Zen Buddhism, he brought in “Greek Mythology,” the gods and goddesses, the myths, and he studied astrology. Jung’s family had occult lineage on both sides, from his grandfather’s freemasonry involvement, a grandmaster of the Swiss lodge and his maternal family’s long-term involvement with séances and ghosts. Jung was heavily involved for many years with his mother and two female cousins in hypnotically induced séances. Somewhere along the way, Jung acquired a spirit guide and the guru named “Philemon” (who was described by Jung as “an old man with the horns of a bull – and the wings of a fisher”). Before being Philemon, this creature appeared to Jung as “Elijah,” and then finally muted to “Ka,” an Egyptian earth-soul that “came from below.”
Jung himself was a son of a Swiss pastor caught in an intellectual faith crisis. When he was younger, he has a life-changing dream of a subterranean phallic god, which reappeared “whenever anyone spoke too emphatically about Jesus.” Jung commented that the “man-eater” in general was symbolized by the phallus, so that the dark Lord Jesus, the Jesuit and the phallus were identical.
This “initiation into the realm of darkness” radically shaped Jung’s approach to Jesus: “Lord Jesus never became quite real for me, never quite acceptable, never quite lovable, for again and again I would think of his underground counterpart – Lord Jesus seemed to me in some ways a god of death – secretly, his love and kindness, which I always heard praised, appeared doubtful to me.” Jung’s direct and indirect impact on mainstream Christianity, and then on western culture has been incalculable. It is no exaggeration to say that the theological positions of most mainstream denominations, in their approach to pastoral care, as well as their doctrines and liturgy, have become more or less identical with Jung’s psychological/symbolic theology. It is not just the more liberal groups however, that are embracing the Jungian/MBTI approach. In most of the Evangelical theological colleges, the MBTI is being imposed upon the student body as a basic course requirement. Jung said psychological types sprung from my need to define the way in which my outlook differs from Freud’s and Adler’s. In attempting to answer this question, I came across the problem of types. For it is ones psychological type, which from the outset determines and limits a person’s judgment. Jung teaches in psychological types that “The unconscious, regarded as the historical background of the psyche, contains in a concentrated form the entire succession of engrams (imprints), which from time to time have determined the psychic structure as it now exists.”
Carl Jung and psychology have become a central theme to the Church Growth Movement through Bill Hybels at Willowcreek and Rick Warren via his Purpose Driven Church and Purpose Driven Life. The Meyers-Briggs derivative of the Keirsey-Bates temperament sorter is being used extensively by Rick Warren in his shape program. Bill Hybels promoted the Meyers –Briggs test itself in more than 7,500 churches and in 90 countries and endorses the Meyers-Briggs test for its members and attendees. We must not leave out Fuller Theological Seminary and C. Peter Wagner.
Neither astrology nor the four temperaments theory is scientific. Both are deceptive and invalid. Both reinterpret Biblical doctrine and both are bound to their occult roots. Worse still, the four temperaments theology poisons the pure Word of God. To follow this direction, one ends up with a religion of works, occultism, and the loss of his or her soul.
It is odd enough that many large businesses use personality profile tests that include Jung’s fantasies and they boast how it helps identify strengths that can be utilized in the job position they are trying to fill. But what is more outrageous is to see these occultist, cosmological mythical fairy tales find their way into the world’s largest selling book… that claims to be Christian, “The Purpose Driven Life”. There are other popular authors who have successfully marketed Satan’s lies to the Church in the guise of science, such as Tim LaHaye. He authored the famous “Left Behind” series, created his own do-it-yourself temperament test. It is called LTA, LaHaye Temperament Analysis. Although he claims his analysis is 92% accurate, we can conclude it is a waste since it is no scriptural. Secondly, aside from his false assurance of accuracy, Dr. LaHaye can’t produce any written proof to substantiate his research.
I’d like for a moment to disclose how psychology made its inroads into the thinking of the modern church. It was not done by accident or innocence. As I have mentioned in previous articles, Rick Warren received his degree from Fuller Theological Institute. Could he have learned from his liberal professors this so-called scientific foolishness? It was the vision of Fuller to integrate the Christian faith with today’s mental health services. Charles Fuller and Harold Ockenga, co-founders of Fuller Theological Seminary, embraced a reconstructionist view of the Bible. In their minds they wanted to change the Biblical “worldview” of evangelical Christianity to a Manifested Sons of God theological foundation agenda. This noxious heresy has changed the thinking of the church towards believing that Christians must change the world before Christ can return. It is done under the new term evangelicalism. It totally illegitimizes Bible eschatology. It is a social gospel intended only to meet man’s behavioral needs by satisfying his physical and felt needs first. To accomplish this task, in 1965, Fuller and Ockenga established a school of Psychology within Fuller Theological Seminary. It would become the only seminary-based graduate school of psychology accredited by the American psychological Association. According to Fuller’s web page about this school, “Fuller’s School of Psychology,” places “The cross in the heart of psychology,” integrating the Christian faith with today’s mental health services. In order for one to graduate with a Doctor’s degree in Theology, one would have to complete courses in psychology at Fuller.
NEW BIBLE VERSIONS
To further their evil agenda and exonerate (to clear from blame) themselves from Scriptural errors, they would have to replace the Word of God with translations that would substantiate their new socialized teaching. It was necessary for them to present Bible versions, which would support their new theology.The “old” view of Bible inerrancy, which means free from error, was superseded at Fuller in 1962 when Dan Fuller, Charles’ European-educated son, endorsed the idea from neo-orthodox theologian, Karl Barth, that the Bible, while the infallible guide to faith, was not necessarily authoritative on scientific and historical matters… Barth believed the Bible contained the Word of God, and thereby contained truth. (But was not The Word of God an absolute Truth?) Thereby, the Word of God is not sufficient to meet all of man’s needs in a modern society, they say.
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for Doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in Righteousness” (II Tim. 3:16).
Christianity was never intended to educate through the practice and experience of cultural diversity and ecumenism. It is through the preaching of the Gospel alone that God would effectually work to save the lost and edify His Body. Fuller Theological Seminary and its School of Missions, along with its accrediting organization, are part of a thrust to tear down the traditional Biblical doctrine of separation in exchange for acceptance by the world. Their object is to create an institution nurturing scholars to write books necessary to give evangelicalism intellectual weight.
“That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works” (II Tim. 3:17).
“Every Word of God is pure: He is a shield unto them that put their trust in Him” (Prov. 30:5).
The concept of personality testing would be even further expanded by another professor at Fuller, C. Peter Wagner. He would take it to a new threshold, a new paradigm in the spiritual sense. He would create a “Spiritual Gifts inventory.” This stupidity is often used by the modern Church to help Believers find their place in ministry.
RW: Rick Warren claims, “Spiritual gifts and ability inventories can have some value, but they are limited in their usefulness. In the first place, they are standardized, so they don’t take into consideration your uniqueness. Second, there are no definitions of the spiritual gifts in the Bible, so any definitions are arbitrary and usually represent a denominational bias… The best way to discover your gift and abilities is to experiment with different areas of service… Just start serving, experimenting with different ministries, and then you’ll discover your gifts… When it doesn’t work out, call it an “experiment,” not a failure. You’ll eventually learn what you’re good at.”(“The Purpose Driven Life”, pages 250-251)
Can you imagine Isaiah experimenting with prophecy to see if that was his real calling? Something as important as the souls of human beings are at stake when Warren encourages experimentation by the laity with spiritual gifts. The world has enough sense to know that before a doctor practices medicine, a time of preparation is to take place. It is God who gives gifts to men. Paul would make it clear to the Church in his teaching from the Holy Spirit about Spiritual Gifts.
“Now concerning Spiritual Gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant” (I Cor. 12:1).
The entire chapter gives the diversity of the Spiritual Gifts from one Holy Spirit for the benefit of the Body of Christ. We are to “covet the best gifts,” not experiment with the ones we think we want or may have. Can you imagine the harm to a Believer being the target of an experiment of one who claims to have the gift of healing? How about a prophecy that is derived from one’s imagination coming forth as a word from God? Isaiah saw the sad condition of Judah and her rebelliousness and spoke of the Lord by saying, “For behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, doth take away from Jerusalem and from Judah the stay and the staff, the whole stay of bread, and the whole stay of water,  The mighty man, and the man of war, the judge, and the prophet, and the prudent, and the ancient  The captain of fifty, and the honorable man, and the counsellor, and the cunning artificer; and the eloquent orator.  And I will give children to be their princes, and babes shall rule over them.  And the people shall be oppressed, everyone by another, and every one by his neighbor: the child shall behave himself proudly against the ancient, and the base against the honorable” (Isa. 3:1-5).
The Church has “babes” like Warren ruling over them. Immature spiritual babies who are unskilled at using the Word, leading the Church through works of law and away from walking in Faith. In these last hours, before the Lord Jesus Christ returns, Satan’s greatest attempts are being made to pervert the Gospel. Jesus would say of His time when returning, “I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall He find faith on earth?” (Lk. 18:8).