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The Therapeutic Turn

The responsibility of evil actions or practices has turned to psychological rather than religious answers to address the sin problem. “While sin once assumed to be the main human problem, sickness has become the prevailing description for our modern malaise.”1 You often hear or see front-page news stories of heinous acts of individuals. Whether they are shooting up school campuses, nightclubs, or opening fire at a local church, psychiatric evaluation is the course of action. While yes, the psyche of such a person should be evaluated. The appearance of inherent evil doesn’t come into play as it did in previous generations. The Therapeutic Turn shakes its fist in the air screaming that there is no need for a Savior; a therapist will do. Sin has been accepted as something God forgives no matter what, and nobody is perfect anyway. 2 When there is no answer to the situation, rather than turn to God’s Holy Word. The results are often the development of a new form of sickness or disease.

The Therapeutic Turn’s challenge on Christianity is that it allows individuals to dismiss their sin as a sickness or disease, not a responsibility. The desire or conviction to repent is possibly pushed far into the recesses of one’s mind, and Christians may be considered excessive, pushy, outdated, and out of touch. The push that proper medicine and therapy are the keys to returning the person to normalcy, or rather, a tolerable functioning position in society, threatens the altar call. This sin mindset has leaked its way into the church, or perhaps it originated there and leaked its way outside the church into society. Either way, the church doesn’t appear to have any stronger conviction of sin than those not professing Christianity. The prophet Hosea reminds us, “people are destroyed for the lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6, KJV). The modern generation wants power but lacks understanding, discipline, and obedience to God’s Word. There appears to be a God is love-only movement sweeping across the world, and the charismatic leaders inside the church, no matter the denominational origin, appear to be the culprits.

I have personally been told by someone when addressing the issue of sin in an individual that religion wasn’t the answer to everything. And I should stop being judgmental and making everything about God and what the Word says about evil.

It is as though the world is conveniently convinced the devil does not exist. Therefore, he is not at the bottom of the sin situation. And, since he (the devil) isn’t the problem, then religion (God) isn’t solely the solution.


[1]Chatraw, Joshua D, and Mark D Allen. Apologetics at the Cross. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2018, 244.

[2] Ibid, 247.


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