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What I Wish My Pastor Knew About: Biopsychology

Psychology Meets Biology: Explore how our brains work and how it affects our behavior every day.

William Struthers

Herman Ebbinghaus wrote that, "Psychology has a long past, yet its real history is short." As a scientific discipline, Psychology has only been around for around 130 years, but the desire to understand and explain why people do what they do has been a part of the human experience from the beginning. Consider the answers that Adam and Eve gave to God in the Garden of Eden."Why did I eat the apple? Because she gave it to me." "Why did I eat the apple? Because the serpent tempted me." Denial, rationalization, justification, redirecting blame - it is all found throughout Scripture. The Biblical authors pull no punches when it comes to detailing our less than flattering dispositions. So what is psychology, then? Is it a flawed human system that leads people away from Biblical truth? Is it really the 'psycho-babble' that helps people explain away their sin and give them permission to be narcissists? I am sympathetic to many pastors who might believe that psychology is a nothing more than a guild of 'think happy thoughts' therapists, but I would challenge them that it is something more than counselor training. Psychology is a scientific discipline that has as its object – an explanation of the human experience.

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