How to help people change, by Dr. Jay E. Adams and
Telling yourself the truth, by Dr. William Backus and Marie Chapian Ebony Smith
Counseling 507, Theology & Spirituality in Counseling
Dr. Ben Omungu
February 4, 2012
Theory Critique of Adams vs. Backus & Chapian:
How to help people change by Dr. Jay E. Adams and Telling yourself the truth by Dr. William Backus and Marie Chapian.
There are many views held among Christian counselors about how to Scripturally approach changing human behavior. For some who seek to base the motivation for change on Biblical grounds, an approach to counseling is geared toward changes that would allow one to conform more into the image of Christ. Such counselors would find Dr. Jay Adams’ work to be extremely helpful in carrying out such a task. In his book, How to Help People Change, Adams presents a four-step Biblical approach to Christian counseling based on 2 Timothy 3:16 which he believes “contain a clear outline of the process all Christian counselors must follow if they would help people change in ways that please God.” (p. 10) His approach to counseling, within these four steps, include teaching, conviction, correction and disciplined training in righteousness. (p.13) Adams’ holds fast to the view that the Christian counselors need to be aware that change is only good if it is a change that is “directed toward God.” (p. 16)
In terms of integration, Adams answers those who criticize his counseling approach as “absurd, simplistic, or radical.” (p.34) He explains that there is no necessary relationship between psychology and Christian counseling because Jesus Himself was and always has been the Wonderful Counselor, and his counsel is in no way dependent upon what man has discovered in psychology. However, Adams does believe that there is a relationship between Christian counseling and what he defines as “legitimate psychology”...