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The Bondage Breaker-TC #5 By Neil T. Anderson LaVelle Figueroa ID # 22537191 Liberty University
COUN 507 B07 200920; Fall 2009 Sub-term: B Term Deadline: 10/04/09 Dr. Glenna Dunn Date of Submission: 10/04/09
TC #5 -Figueroa 2 Abstract In his book Neil Anderson makes quite a few valuable contributions to the field of Christian counseling, with his theory he states that our environment has a direct effect on our emotional and psychological welfare. To a certain extent, our lifestyle allows us to leave some space for the devil and his demons to do their work, especially on Christians. This critique gives further details about the key points of the author of ‘The Bondage Breaker’ it will also offer an analysis of Anderson’s theoretical perspective. He criticizes the false dichotomy between what is spiritual and what is emotional. The seven steps to freedom that he recommended are also summarized in this critique. Keywords: Christian counseling, Neil Anderson, demonization,
TC #5 -Figueroa 3 Introduction Dr. Anderson says in his book that people that are possessed by demons act very eccentrically, they are more often than not believed to be unbalanced, anxious or demonpossessed. Even though secular psychiatry and psychology are inclined to question demon possession as a reason for very bizarre conduct of an individual, Neil Anderson (2000) highly developed a theoretical approach of demon possession in addition to well defined counseling techniques based on this foundation. He also drew upon the most important code of beliefs that Christian canons have provided to expand his premise. Key Concepts of Anderson’s Counseling Technique Dr. Anderson (2000, p. 22) deems that non believers or Christians possibly are possessed by demons. These demons then, avert them from taking control of their lives and from breaking free from bad habits although the intention to do so was vast. When believers commit sins or unwittingly make an entrance for demons to enter their lives, they become enslaved and they cannot live the good life as intended by God. He assumes that the battle for control is in the heart of the individual. The demons also attack Christians with lies and other temptations through their heart. Christians are then warned to stand their ground in the truth in turn they must not leave an open door so the Devil and demons to come in. For the reason that a human being is weak, on the other hand, along with thinking processes as well as other environmental stimulus, the demons in spite of everything can tempt a Christian. He also gives further details about the dangers of losing control over our heart and emotions and it is then where the demons are free to tempt us. As well, he points out to the lack of psychological restraint on believers, these repetitious sins which that allow the flesh in preference to the spirit, and deception from the enemy (Anderson, 2000, p. 19). He also claims
TC #5 -Figueroa 4 that demons are very much active in the world today by citing biblical passages and in the face of the claims of psychologists and psychiatrists on psychological disorders. In addition, he argues that there is no dichotomy among spiritual and emotional disorders. More notoriously, he discusses that believers can be also be possessed by demons (Anderson, 2000, p. 21). Truth Encounter and Steps to Freedom In reply to demonization, Anderson (2000, p. 199) provided a well defined clinical techniques which support a true come across a person that is being demonized. He based his theoretical approach to counseling by first clarifying on several truths which are based on the bible and on his therapy sessions with counselees’ who were believers that experienced being possessed by demons. He argues that through his counseling techniques he applied on his counselees and they were freed from bondage as well they received deliverance. He also acknowledges that demons may create control on believers; the key concept that Anderson describes is the identity of the believer in Christ. These characteristics are based on what Christ did at the cross and in His guarantees for Christians in becoming champions. Because of this identity in Christ, a Christian can find freedom from the past. It is in this area where Anderson sees the integration of psychology and theology. He encourages the espousal of integration “of psychology” which is accommodating their clients to cope wt\with past life experiences (Anderson, 2000, p. 200). He listed down seven steps which a believer may do in order to break free from demonic influence and possession: (1) The believers should renounce any involvement with occult practices such as witchcraft and Ouija board; (2) he should choose to live in the truth instead of deceptions; (3) the believer should not be bitter but choose forgiveness—forgiveness of oneself, of others, and forgiveness of God; (4) rebellious attitudes should be done away with and choose
TC #5 -Figueroa 5 to be submissive; (5) Humility should be one’s way of life; (6) freedom should be chosen instead of bondage to sin; and (7) any sins and curses placed by ancestors should all be renounced (Anderson, 2000, p. 200). Through these seven steps, it can be seen that one of the major causes of mental disorders and demonization in Christians is disobedience and punishment. Even if he proposed a clinical technique, he still emphasized the significance of maturity and spirituality. Critique of Anderson’s Theory One of the strengths of Anderson’s approach is the process of guiding the counselee to a process of realization in the truth encounter instead of the power encounter. With the latter, the demon is commanded to leave the person while the former seeks to guide the person to a realization of where things have gone wrong. The benefit of this is that the person can readily identify what areas of his life are exposed to possible difficulties. One weakness, however, is a focus on demon possession as the culprit behind the difficulties of Christians when there are also issues with the flesh, willful disobedience to God and other psychological matters, which may not easily be demonization. Furthermore, it is quite difficult to verify the presence of a demon in the person. Although this is the case, the Christian faith recognizes the existence of the supernatural realm and this has direct impact on the mental health of believers and non-believers alike. Anderson’s book, however, is directed more to Christians struggling with their faith and with their lives and thus uses language full of Christian jargons. This makes it a little difficult for non-believers to relate to. Anderson has an unconstructive outlook on psychology insofar as a dichotomy among the spiritual and the psychological is in place. Otherwise, he calls for the use of psychological concepts and techniques to help believers diagnose their true conditions. As Christians, the approach to counseling should be based on the Bible. As such, any Christian counseling should
TC #5 -Figueroa 6 take into account the spiritual health of the person instead of just the psychological aspect. In spite of the theory’s Achilles' heel, Anderson’s effort plays a role in Christian counseling. Personal opinion and recommendations
As Christians we must read this useful tool for spiritual and personal growth as well. To my understanding Dr. Anderson divides ‘The bondage Breaker’ book into three sections. The first section of the book analyzes a Christian’s modeling Jesus personality in their lives. Additionally, the second section of his book analyzes looks Satan's tactics to defeat us. I firmly believe these two sections were concise but he should have condensed it by far. On the other hand it's the third section of ‘The Bondage Breaker’ provides some vital recommendations for every one to follow, and especially Christians "Steps to Freedom" that I believe are helpful. Rooted in the idea that "...people are not in bondage because of past traumas - they are in bondage to the lies they believed as a result of past traumas" Anderson puts forth a seven step process to teach Christians God's truths and help them overcome the enemy (Anderson, 2000). We must be fooled into thinking that Anderson evidently discards that there is something magical concerning the techniques that are used. When a Christian counselor aids in the healing process of their counselee, we must also be aware to of the tactics and lies used by Satan so they can be able to know and acknowledge to the purpose of God in their lives, and this in turn will resulting their conversion and not being Satan possession any more.. As a result, Dr. Anderson provides a bit by bit method to help Christians determine Satan's footholds in their lives and how they can eliminate these footholds by way of prayer and confession.
TC #5 -Figueroa 7 All Christians must praise and be thankful for Jesus sacrifices on the cross thousands of years ago. Being a Christian is more than just being saved form the reigns if Satan and his demons. Yes, we will still battle with sin, (and the devil wag .0es war on a daily basis), but Christ's death and resurrection have endow us with the triumph over sin and Satan. As Christians, we all need to refer to the Bible to stand firm. The Holy Spirit dwells inside of us and as a result He empowers us. There are no forces past or present that can keep Christians from being all God planned for us in Christ. It does not matter what our family conditions are as well. It does not matter what kind of occult background our ancestors may have had, I Cor. 6:11 reads, “And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (NIV). Honestly, I believe that there must be wish seven steps to spiritual triumph as well. But there are not. We must trust God in our life activities and errands, on depend on Him completely and commit to the Holy Spirit. This is all a Christian needs. Rugh, (1994) says: ‘We are always looking for that one formula that will lift us above the struggles, battles, and warfare, but that is not the Christian approach to life. It is an ongoing battle and warfare -- "Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God" (Acts 14:22 NIV). The philosophies’ provided by secular psychology and psychiatry can be very alluring in regard to demonization, might not concur with the teachings of the Bible. Nowadays, there has arisen a religious sect (Satanism), and their doctrine regarding demons is unbiblical. There must be uproar in opposition to this in the Church. Thus far there are people that favor such doctrines and there are many Christians buying and reading those books. The people that favor these teachings should be held responsible for their behavior. Christians that buy these books and to
TC #5 -Figueroa 8 listen audio to this doctrine are made liable before God for their unfaithfulness as well. Eph 4:14 says, Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Believers are not to be "tossed here and there by waves, and carried about by every wind of doctrine’. (Rugh, 1994)
TC #5 -Figueroa 9 Anderson, N. T. (2000). The Bondage Breaker. Oregon: Harvest House Publishers. Anderson, Neil T., Released From Bondage, San Bernardino, CA: Here's Life Publishers Inc., 1991. Kruis, J.M. (2009) Quick Scripture Reference For Counseling. (3rd ed.). Baker Books Grand Rapids, MI Rugh, G.; (1994/1997) booklet titled Demonization of the Believer: An Unbiblical Teaching Exposed Indian Hills Community Church, Lincoln, NE 55 pages. Retrieved November 7, 2009 from http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Psychology/warfare/demonp.htm
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