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“The Bible is God’s Psychology Book”

I would encourage readers to listen to the first hour of Janet Parshall’s program from August 11 [link], where in the first hour sports psychologist David Cook visits to plug a book and a movie that are named at the link above.

The quote I’ve pulled above comes at about 32:00. I’d encourage you to hear it in context.

There’s a lot about this interview that bothers me; there are some elements of what Cook has to say that are helpful: Christianity should be passed along as part of a discipleship relationship, and is poorly transmitted in the modern church service, with one speaker who is both physically and emotionally distant from most of the people in the audience, and we need one-on-one relationships to learn the practice of being Christians.

Beyond that, it’s hard for me not to hear what Cook is selling as something like “God will make you a better golfer.”

I don’t know what to make of the fact that in evangelical circles we have moved from a culture where pastors and bishops were the authorities to one where psychologists, politicians, and business leaders are also authorities. On the one hand Christianity is less held captive by a pastoral fraternity, but on the other we’ve accumulated all sorts of folk theology that may or may not be orthodox. We got a lot of freedom as a result of first the Reformation and then the disestablishment of the state church, but I’m not sure we’ve done great things with it.

Anyway, I’d ask you to listen to the interview with Cook and tell me if I’m way off here. I am inclined to hear this from my old fundamentalist perspective, where “bodily exercise profits little” was used to denigrate any kind of recreational exercise, and golf itself was considered evil because lots of men go golfing on Sunday when they could be in church, but even beyond that I think I hear something that just sounds wrong, and I don’t have a good way to pinpoint quite what it is.

 

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