12 Jul

Malcolm A. Jeeves, Human Nature at the Millennium: Reflections on the Integration of Psychology and Christianity (Baker Books, 1997)

Category: What We're Reading
By: Amy L. Graeser
Published: 07/12/03

"In addition to specific issues, such as sexual orientation and psychotherapy, there are more general pervasive issues recurring across the board as we detect consensus views emerging about human nature widely shared by scientists working on mind, brain, and behavior. Thus, taken together, much neuropsychological research has pointed almost uniformly to the ever-tightening link among mind, brain, and behavior. One result is that it has raised, generally and with a fresh urgency, issues such as the extent to which we actually do have freedom of choice in our thinking and behaving. In the domain of sexual orientation, this in turn raises important questions for Christians for whom moral choice and responsibility are not optional extras. More specifically, among Christians it raises questions of the status of terms we have become so familiar with in the past such as soul, spirit, body." Malcolm A. Jeeves, Human Nature at the Millennium

In Human Nature at the Millennium: Reflections on the Integration of Psychology and Christianity, Malcolm A. Jeeves discusses how current psychological knowledge may affect traditional Christian beliefs about man and develops a framework for reconciling what Scripture reveals about man with what psychology reveals. Before describing either view, Jeeves introduces readers to psychology. He defines what it is, states that many consider it a discipline of science, and reviews past models of the interaction between established sciences (such as physics, astronomy, or geology) and Christianity and religion. He then provides Biblical and psychological portraits of human nature, discusses contemporary discoveries from psychology about how people function, and compares those discoveries with Christian and Biblical understandings of mankind.

Human Nature at the Millennium comprises a preface and thirteen chapters, a number of which include technical scientific language. Each chapter, however, ends with a "Taking Stock" section that summarizes the chapter's content in layman's terms. [Posted July 2005, ALG]