By Neil Anderson
1 Peter 5:8
Your adversary, the devil, prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour
Here’s another common misconception about the spiritual world that must be dispelled: What the early church called demonic activity we now understand to be mental illness. One counselor argued, “There is no way his problem can be demonic; he’s a paranoid schizophrenic.” Simply accepting secular psychology’s definition of a human problem in no way establishes the actual cause of the problem. Terms such as schizophrenia, paranoia, psychosis, etc. are merely labels classifying symptoms.
But what or who is causing the symptoms? Is it a neurological or hormonal problem, or perhaps a chemical imbalance? Certainly these options must be explored. But what if no physical cause is found? Then it must be a psychological problem. But which school of psychology do you choose: biblical or secular? Why not explore the possibility that the problem may be spiritual?
We should not be surprised that secular psychologists, limited to a natural worldview, supply only natural explanations for mental problems. They offer their explanation from a viewpoint with no concept of God, much less the demonic. Even many Christians who vociferously reject the scientific community’s explanation for the origin of the species naively accept the secular psychologist’s explanation of mental illness. Research based on the scientific method of investigation of human spiritual problems is not wrong; it’s just incomplete. It ignores the reality of the spiritual world because neither God nor the devil submit to our methods of investigation.
Hebrews 11:6 says, “Without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is.” Science is inadequate to explain matters of faith. We must trust God’s Word to explain the reality of the spiritual world.
Prayer: I praise You, Father, that I don’t have to accept fallible man’s knowledge as the last word on life. I know Your Word stands above all human reasoning and will remain forever in heaven.