I believe having my PhD in psychology allows me ‘license’ to make the following statement. Over the last 4 decades, psychology has gained significant influence in Christian preaching and programs. And speaking as a Bible teacher, I believe the attempt to integrate psychology and the Bible, i.e., interpreting doctrine through a psychological grid, is hazardous to sound doctrine. The psychologizing of Jesus’ message has led to a man-centered message: self-development over improving one’s relationship with God.
Any pastor knows that a seminar on the 'Holiness of God’ will draw smaller crowds than one called ‘How Christians can have a healthy sex life.’ (By the way, which would you rather attend?) In our hug yourself culture, the popularity of self-centered, ‘you can have it now’ messages should not surprise us. You don’t have to listen long to these psychologized messages before you ask: “Where on Earth Is God?"
We must all—including myself—pay close attention to our teaching (1 Tim 4:16) to question how the philosophy of psychology has affected our thought process, our biblical interpretation, our world view. Even in teaching the treasured truth of “abundant life,” I must be alert to doctrinal distortions. The precious truth of “Christ in me” can be inadvertently displaced with a focus on “who I am”—more about my son-ship than his Lordship. Is this why Paul said: “For I resolved to know nothing… except Jesus Christ and him crucified...for 'I' have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer 'I' who live but Christ lives in me” (1 Cor. 2:2; Gal. 2:20)?