Consciously Exploring the Unconscious,
Hoping for Some Clarity!
Dr. Payne is Associate Professor of Family Medicine at teh Medical College of Georgia
I stood in the foyer, poised with my daughter Sherry, to walk down the aisle to “give” her away to her soon-to-be husband, Jon. It was a happy occasion for our family, thoroughly approving of the marriage. Those were my conscious thoughts.
However, within me welled up emotions so powerful that I could barely avoid heavy sobbing and weeping. So, the tears just welled, and a few rolled down my cheeks.
For some, the experience was obvious. However, being a reflective thinker, I could not help (later) being amazed at the contrast between conscious thoughts and deep emotion that I could not have predicted or consciously brought forth.
Surely, those emotions were the fountain of years of joy, frustration, excitement, pain, happiness, and hope for the 22 previous years that Sherry had been my child. Surely, those emotions were triggered in my unconscious and not the simplicity of the moment. Surely, then, there is an unconscious that needs Biblical exploration.
“Although few psychologists accept all of Freud’s theorizing, his views on the presence of unconscious thoughts, wishes, and feelings are now nearly universally accepted.”
S. Bruce Narramore1
“…Thoughts cannot be unconscious.”
Gordon H. Clark2
“…The descent into the irrational on the part of modern psychology … (is, in part) its empha sis on the unconscious whether of the adult or the child [author’s emphasis] …. Modern psychology has made the whole of conscious life to a large extent subordinate to man’s unconscious life ….
“(Yet) Scripture is full of the idea of the subconscious (unconscious). David prays that he may be forgiven for sins of which he is unaware. We say that we are born and conceived in sin…”
Cornelius Van Til3
The presence and influence of unconscious thoughts (popularly called the “subconscious”) on our consciousness makes for fascinating reflection. Unconscious thoughts seem to be one of those “givens” that are the proper domain of psychology. Who has not remembered a person’s name sometime after his most focused thoughts could not recall it? Who has not tried to solve a problem and given up, only to solve it while lying down to sleep or at a time totally irrelevant to the problem itself? Who has not had thoughts or even acted in a way that he wondered, “Where did that thought (act) come from?”
However, such “givens”‘ are usually more complex than first considerations might indicate. The authors cited above convey a range of the thinking on the unconscious among Christians today. There are psychologists and psychiatrists (e.g., Bruce Narramore, Larry Crabb, Frank Minirth, and Paul Meier) who base a great deal of their thinking and practice on the unconscious. Then, there are other Christians (e.g., Jay Adams and Martin and Deidre Bobgan) who minimize, if not deny the role of the unconscious in counseling.
There seem to be omissions, if not errors, with both approaches. From the “believing” (in the unconscious) side, too much credence is given to the concept of the unconscious in theory and practice. From the “non-believing” side, too little consideration is given to the preoccupation with the unconscious and its seeming correspondence to everyday experience.
I will begin with the unconscious as a central doctrine among many Christians, then quote several Biblical theologians who seem to agree, and then try to put together a Biblical and practical approach, offering reasons why the unconscious is not an explanation for our thinking and behavior.
A REVIEW OF PSYCHOLOGISTS WHO ARE CHRISTIANS
Is the theory of the unconscious truly a major focus among psychologists’ who are Christian.? Perhaps, that is the one point upon which we can agree. Drs. Narramore, Crabb, Minirth, and Meier are widely known as “Christian” psychologists.5 Likely, there are many others, since Dr. Narramore has claimed “nearly universal acceptance” for the unconscious (see quote above).
In one of their books, Drs. Minirth and Meier list no fewer than forty “unconscious defense mechanisms frequently seen in counseling. “6 By these clear statements, the Bobgans conclude that Dr. Crabb believes that “Christian counselors cannot hope to properly analyze and counsel people unless they also understand and analyze the unconscious.”‘
Thus, the influence of the unconscious has a powerful presence in the thinking and practice of many psychologists who are professing Christians.
One advantage of psychologists in their debates with each other and with “outsiders” is an individualistic approach to definitions. By almost any method of definition, there are several hundred psychological theories present today (and the number is growing). Thus, a simple, “I differ with so-and-so on his concept of _________” is usually all the refutation that is considered to be needed by the detractor.
That tactic is philosophically simplistic and dishonest. What follows, therefore, is a sufficient description of the unconscious for the sake of debate, although it will probably not satisfy everyone.
“Thoughts, feelings, and other mental processes that are not currently in conscious awareness are considered unconscious. Three of the most obvious examples of unconscious processes are forgetting the name of a friend, slips of the tongue, and posthypnotic suggestion …. The level of awareness varies along a continuum from complete awareness to total unawareness ….”
“Preconscious thoughts or feelings, while not being in immediate awareness, can be called to attention with relatively little effort. One’s age, phone number, or address are good examples …. Unconscious thoughts are much less accessible to awareness. They typically become accessible only with much effort because they are purposely (although consciously) banned from awareness. The individual wants to avoid remembering because the repressed experience would be too painful.”
Note that the border between what is preconscious and what is unconscious is not fixed. (Some label this gray zone “preconscious,” a term that only muddies the water.) The border can be crossed “only with much effort,” meaning the help of psychotherapy, hypnosis, or other means of facilitation. Further, this unconscious is considerably abnor mal. Narramore continues:
“Unconscious thoughts, however, are dynamically unconscious, because they are actively kept from awareness in order to avoid the anxiety, guilt, or pain associated with them. It is the dynamic interaction of anxiety- or guilt-producing thoughts or memories with defense mechanisms such as repression that results in truly unconscious thoughts ….. Unconscious thoughts also operate differently from conscious ones and are not necessarily rational.”
Thus, psychotherapists are needed to discover and help the person to overcome these “defenses.”
With these statements from psychologists as a starting point, we move to views from a radically different perspective.
SOME VIEWS FROM BIBLICAL THEOLOGIANS
I found some writings of my “theological heroes” endorsing something apparently similar to the psychological concept of the unconscious.
Cornelius Van Til writes:
“This step of modem psychology has `good elements’ in it. As Christians, we believe that man was originally created with the love of God in his heart. That is, we believe that man was priest as well as prophet. More than that, we also believe that man was in part conscious and unconscious in his activity. We hold that man was created as a character. That is, we maintain that in his unconscious as well as in his conscious activity, man was directed toward God.
“Scripture is full of the idea of the subconscious. David prays that he may be forgiven for sins of which he is unaware. We say that we are born and conceived in sin-which does not merely refer to the activity of the parents but means that we are sinners when we come into the world even though we are not self-conscious:”
Abraham Kuyper, former Dutch theologian and Prime Minister, writes:
“Our knowledge of self is very small. The plummet of our selfconsciousness scarcely reaches below the surface, while God’s holy eye penetrates the waters of the soul to the very bottom. We are ignorant of much that takes place in the soul, and what we perceive of it often presents itself to our consciousness as different from what it is in Reality.”11 Kuyper does not use “unconscious,” he does speak of “much” that takes place beyond our consciousness.
Gordon H. Clark quotes a 19th century theologian, Dorner:
“The soul is never a mere tabla rasa … there is in it a world of the unconscious. If in our knowledge there is already inherent no innate relation to what is rational and good-a relation that is an original dowry of our nature and not our own work-then knowledge of truth and goodness as such is absolutely out of the question.”
What, then, do we have here? Is there agreement between two groups which are often severely critical of each other? Could the unconscious be a common ground between them? Let the Scriptures speak.
WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY?
“Search me, O God, and know my heart
Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
And see if there be any hurtful (wicked) way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way”
(Psalm 139:23 24).
Here, David seems to be asking God to search his heart (mind) for sins of which he is unaware. This unawareness may be sins which he does not remember (see Van Til) or thoughts and actions which he did not realize were sins and were thus unconfessed.
The Apostle Paul seems to wrestle with an inner force that is beyond his conscious understanding.
“For that which I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but 1 am doing the very thing I hate. But if do the very thing 1 do not wish to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that it is good. So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which indwells me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the wishing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. For the good that I wish, I do not do; but I practice the very evil that 1 do not wish. But if I am doing the very thing I do not wish, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wishes to do good …. “
(Romans 7:15 21).
I will not attempt to be exhaustive here. Citing a plethora of Bible verses will not convince or establish a principle to those who will to believe otherwise. Only one clearly stated verse is necessary to convince those who will learn. I cite these few texts to show a pattern in the Bible that is consistent with my exploration of the unconscious here.
The concept of the unconscious is appealing because it corresponds to everyday experience (as in my introductory anecdote). On the positive side, who has not experienced the solution to a problem or recalled a memory while engaged in thinking and activities totally unrelated to the connecting thoughts?
On the negative side, we have the experience of the Apostle Paul in Romans 7. We are cruising along in our spiritual way of life when suddenly we behave as though we were a rank pagan or mini-devil. Whoa! What happened The flesh (old man, evil nature, etc.) made its presence known all too vividly in our present life.
Habits-both positive and negative-are part of this unconscious as well. Jay Adams writes:
“At midnight on a moonless night, you slide into the car seat as someone else slips into the seat beside you. Deftly you insert the key into the slot without scarring the dashboard, turn on the motor, shift the gears, depress the gas pedal, back out the driveway into the street and start down the road, all the while arguing some abstruse point of Calvinism! What an amazing feat that is when you think about it! Well, just think about it. You have learned to perform highly complex behavior unconsciously (emphasis mine).
Thus, we have psychologists, ultra-conservative theologians, the Bible, and empirical evidence in apparent agreement. On further reflection, however, this unconscious is not so apparent or Biblical.
A Critical Review Of Bible Verses And Biblical Theologians
Certain Scriptures that I have cited have perhaps been over-interpreted. When David asks God to search his heart for sins of which he is unaware, he can be simply asking to know sins in his life of which he is unaware, not sinful thoughts below his level of conscious thinking.
When Paul “practices the very evil that I do not wish” and other statements of an evil within, he can be simply struggling against self-gratification (lust) that is longstanding, habitual, and “natural” (see below). There do not have to be struggling forces within his unconscious, as described by Freud.
Van Til and Kuyper were not as precise as they should have been. Extensive reviews of their writings never indicate any exploration of unconscious thoughts, especially as causes of behavior. To the contrary, they are centrally concerned with the actions of the Holy Spirit upon human nature.
Further Biblical Exploration
“The heart is more deceitful than all else
And is desperately sick;
Who can understand it.?
I, the LORD, search the heart,
I test the mind,
Even to give to each man according to his ways,
According to the results of his deeds”
`For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. For every tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a bramble bush. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks”
( Luke G:43 -45, NKJV).
Jesus answered, Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is ,flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, “You must be born again.” The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it but do not know where it comes from and where it is going so is every one who is born of the Spirit”‘
“…That which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse”
(Romans 1:19 20).
“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart”
Within these verses, there is a subtle entrapment about which my “ultra-conservatives” were not careful. (Initially with this paper, I erred along with them!) The starting point is always the Scriptures. What it says and does not say is instructive here. It says that any work below our consciousness or within the nuances of motive is the work of the Holy Spirit (Jeremiah and Hebrews above). It does not say anywhere that our responsibility is to bring unconscious thought to our consciousness.
The subtlety is the experience common to us all that has been described already: We think and do things that surprise us. There does indeed seem to be an unconscious at work that is beyond our control. However, there is another explanation.
Today’s thinking and discussion is superficial. We rarely deal with the concept of nature. Not nature in the sense of the existent universe (as in natural science), but nature as the essence of a thing or creature. It is the distinction between the concept of phyla, genera, species, etc. (of natural science) and “kinds” of the Bible (Genesis 1:24-25).14
More importantly, nature is the difference between pre-Fall Adam and Eve, post-Fall Adam and Eve and us, and our post-earth existence. It is the difference between angels (and demons) and mankind.
The nature of a thing (person) determines what it does (and thinks, if it is sentient). It cannot be anything other than its nature. Hence, Jeremiah’s questions, “Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots? Then you also can do good who are accustomed to evil” (Jeremiah 13:23).
The subtlety is that we can know the nature of a thing or person only by its physical manifestations: animals by their appearance and actions, persons by their appearance, speech, and behavior, and ourselves by the same plus our own thoughts. We cannot know the nature of a thing or person directly.’ We cannot know all the manifestations of that nature except as they appear in that life.
If we link this unknowable nature (especially within ourselves) in all its nuances to thoughts that buzz around in our mind and sometimes seem to appear from nowhere, there does seem to be an unconscious mind driving our conscious life.
However, that explanation is not needed at all. Our nature drives us to think, say, and act in the ways that we do. To our consciousness, that nature first appears as some thought, word, or action. We don’t see the nature itself. Indeed, we cannot because we have no way to know the essence of a thing. Genetics is not the final answer because the genes did not put themselves together in their unique way, and something other than the genes tells them what to do and when.16
For man, the unknowable essence is more certain, as he has a non-physical component, the soul or spirit. Thus, what we do just seems to “bubble up” out of the depths. They are not truly depths. Depths can be explored; nature or essence cannot. So, our understanding stops at a conscious level. We cannot go “deeper.”
Only God Changes Man’s Nature
Only God can change man’s nature, as John stated above. Man must be “born from above.” Only the Spirit gives birth to regenerated spirit. Only the Spirit can change the heart of a man or woman.
Biblically and theologically, spiritual rebirth is called regeneration (Greek, palingenesia, Titus 3:5). Regeneration is a total reversal in the heart (soul, spirit, mind)’ of man from one that is actively rebelling against God and His truth to one who worships God and uses His Word to establish truth and shape the lives of himself, his family, community, state, nation, world, and universe.
This change of heart is the action of the Spirit alone (John 3:1-8). Thus, the most dramatic and profound change in one’s orientation to life is an action on the heart by the Holy Spirit. At the precise moments before and after this rebirth, there may he no conscious change of knowledge, only change of orientation to what one believes. For example, before regeneration, the person may know that Jesus Christ is God and Savior, but he does not know Him as his Savior. After regeneration, that knowledge of Jesus Christ is believed to be applicable to himself. What was false before regeneration becomes true after regeneration.”
The watershed point here is that only God, as the Holy Spirit, has uncluttered access to the unconscious and to our nature itself. Regeneration is a profound example of His work.
Psychologists make a serious mistake when they believe that they can become the Holy Spirit and accurately uncover the unconscious. Perhaps, this reality is more evident today than in the past. An increasing number of cases of wrong “childhood memories” are surfacing. Adults falsely remember being sexually molested by their parents and in one case “remembered” being pregnant.19 Extensive investigation has revealed the false nature of many of these memories.
Some of these psychologists use hypnosis as a means of access to memories. However, hypnosis in these circumstances and in the courtroom has often been found to yield false information.-” The Council on Scientific Affairs of the American Medical Association has made this statement:
“… The Council fords that recollection obtained during hypnosis can involve confabulation and pseudomemories and not only fail to be more accurate, but actually appear to be less reliable than non-hypnotic recall.”
Is The Biblical “Heart” The Same As The Unconscious?
In light of all that has preceded here, the question of whether the “heart” in the Bible is the same as the unconscious is a reasonable question. Once the question is posed, however, I must quickly answer with an emphatic “No!”
First, a fatal mistake is made whenever one tries to equate a Biblical concept with a pagan (nonChristian) one. The possibility that a rank pagan such as Sigmund Freud (and others) could define and describe a Biblical concept of any kind is beyond my ability to comprehend. While their thinking might have a superficially “descriptive” overlap with Biblical content, it is nevertheless divorced entirely from the God of the Bible and His actions among men.
Second, the Bible is clear that heart includes conscious thoughts. Jay Adams lists numerous Bible verses to support the following conclusion.
“In the Bible, human beings are said to talk, reason, plan, understand, think, doubt, perceive, make mistakes, purpose, intend, etc., in their hearts”
What is important to distinguish here is the great difference between Freud’s and other psychologists’ (including professing Christians) concepts of the unconscious (with its many nuances) and the Biblical concept even while there are similarities. These similarities are what have allowed such “professionals” to get away with their false theories and practices. The differences are seen more clearly as they are applied practically.
What, then, is the unconscious, and how do we practically understand it?
We can accept the concept that there is a pool of knowledge residing beneath any ready access of the conscious mind. However, we must delineate what can and cannot be done with these unconscious thoughts.
1) There is no entity that exists as “the unconscious, ” because there is no fixed border between the conscious and the unconscious. Late in the evening, I have difficulty recalling information that the next morning will be crystal clear. Or, while focusing on one activity, a thought may come to mind that I could not recall with great effort only hours before.
2) We must be careful with knowledge that is supposedly from the unconscious. Who has not recalled erroneous information from his unconscious-a phone number, a person’s name, a childhood memory, a promise to one’s child or spouse, a route to some location, etc. Knowledge from the unconscious needs verification from other sources. To act on this knowledge without verification is precarious. Where serious injury, a threat to one’s life, one’s sin, or his relationship to others (as well as to God) is concerned, verification surely ought to be sought, if it is available. If it is not, it is best left unused.
In judicial decisions, such information should not be used. God has prescribed that legal evidence be verified by two or three witnesses (Deuteronomy 19:15, Matthew 18:15-20, II Corinthians 13:1). By this requirement, the vagaries of both memory and observation (not to mention intentional deceit) are most likely to be overcome.
3) A large part of that which is unconscious is goods Almost exclusively, “the unconscious” is considered pathological by modern psychologists and psychiatrists. Yet, the major activities carried out each day are done without conscious thoughts: tying one’s shoes, driving a car, walking, etc. These activities can be brought into consciousness, but they do not involve the hard work and careful attention required when originally learned.
Thus, psychologists who believe that knowledge derived from the unconscious is reliable are seriously in error. As noted, recent cases of recalled “memories” (including recollection by hypnosis) are overwhelming in their testimony to this inaccuracy. The Bible says that only God can fully know the unconscious side of the heart. Thus, attempts to reach the unconscious are proscribed by both practical experience and Biblical truth.
The introductory comment by Gordon Clark (page 8) illustrates this observation, “…thoughts cannot be unconscious.” What resides in the unconscious is a sort of amorphous mixture of accumulated knowledge that has become fragmented and unorganized-not identifiable as thoughts at all-until brought into conscious thought. And even then, these thoughts cannot be accepted as true unless verified by other sources (as all thoughts must).
The error is compounded by psychologists who excuse the present actions of their counselees because of their past. The Bible nowhere excuses the sinner from personal responsibility. The danger is described by Abraham Kuyper:
“Every heresy that has conceded in one way or other that man has a share, most generally a lion’s share, in the work of redemption, has always begun by calling in question the nature of sin.”23
Placing blame upon the past in their unconscious is one method by which counselees have sometimes excused their sin.
I want to suggest a new term, “peripheral consciousness” to substitute for “the unconscious.” The use of the expression “unconscious,” even by those who are fully aware of its serious limitations, carries too much Freudian and psychological connotation, if not denotation.
Peripheral consciousness can be compared to peripheral vision. We clearly see what is in the center of our focus and surroundings close to that center. The farther out in the field of vision, the more blurred the objects. To see these objects clearly, we have to focus our vision on them.
Our active thoughts are our field of vision. However, other knowledge is swirling around just outside this conscious focus. At the extremes, that information is just too vague to grasp. My analogy is limited by the fact that we can turn our heads and clearly see what was formerly in our peripheral vision. Much information in our minds (both organic and spiritual components) cannot be accessed clearly.
Peripheral consciousness also avoids the concept of “depth.” Psychologists are always trying to discover the “depths” of their clients’ minds. It is not a matter of depth, but a matter of focus and clarity. Both personal experience and empirical research demonstrate the unreliability of this information.
The “depth” of thoughts is not the problem. The accuracy of thoughts is! What good is information supposedly from the deepest recesses of the memory if it is false? In fact, such information can be extremely harmful, destroying individuals, families, and other relationships and even leading to convictions in civil and criminal trials.
“Peripheral consciousness” places all one’s personal knowledge on a level plane. Focus and clarity of understanding become the issues, rather than a false notion of “depth.”
This concept is coherent with the focus of the Bible. Regeneration (above) is a radical change of a person’s nature that occurs unconsciously, yet it powerfully affects conscious thinking. The overwhelming emphasis on this new orientation is a “sound mind” (e.g., II Timothy 1:7 and James 1:(r8). Drunkenness (and thus other drug-induced mental conditions) gives more control to unconscious drives and is proscribed (Ephesians 5:18).
We are to put on new habits, so that the spiritual life becomes unconsciously automatic (Ephesians 4:1732). The emphasis is putting off the past (the old man at conscious and unconscious levels), not spending energy and time trying to resurrect unconscious memories (that are unreliable). “Thy word have I treasured in my heart, that I might not sin against thee ” (Psalm 119:11).
These verses and many more underscore that the conscious mind is the focus of life in Christ. But, this conscious focus changes one’s peripheral consciousness as well.
Thus, the key to Godliness (sanctification) is the work of the conscious mind learning God’s instructions and applying them to everyday life. There is no Biblical instruction to delve into the unconscious. Whatever is brought to mind in the course of daily experience that is not in conformity with God’s Word is simply to be put off in word and deed.
Indeed, changes below our consciousness, i.e., in our nature, are the work of the Holy Spirit alone! Leave Him to His work and let us focus on consciously restructuring our thoughts and behaviors to conform to His Word. There is more than a lifetime of work in those areas alone!
All Bible quotes are from the New American Standard Bible unless otherwise indicated.
1. S. Bruce Narramore, “Unconscious,” in David G. Benner, Ed., Baker Enqvclopedia of Psychology, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1985, p. 1188.
2. Gordon H. Clark, The Trinitv Hobbs, New Mexico: The Trinity Foundation, 1985, p. 106.
3. Cornelius Van Til, Psychology of Religion, Phillipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1976, pp. 71-75.
4. Henceforth, I will use only “psychologist instead of the more laborious “psychologist and psychiatrist.’
5. “Christian” is in parenthesis because Christian is properly a noun. However, these psychologists are often referred to as “Christian’ psychologists. I include psychiatrists when I use `psychologist.’ Also, for the purpose of this paper. -counselor’ is used as a synonym for `psychologist.’
6. Frank B. Minirth and Paul D. Meier, Counseling and the Nature of Man. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1982, pp. 35-46.
7. Martin and Deidre Bobgan. Propbets of PsychoHeresy – 1. Santa Barbara: EastGate Publishers, 1989, p. 149.
8. Narramore, “Unconscious,’ pp. 1187-1188.
10. Van Til, Psychology pp. 71-72. Van Til goes on to discuss the unconscious relative to Arminianism and Calvinism, but such discussion is beyond our topic here.
11. Abraham Kuyper, The Work of the Holy Spirit, Grand Rapids: Win. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1979 (reprint), p. 480.
12. Gordon H. Clark, The Biblical Doctrine of Man, Hobbs. New Mexico: The Trinity Foundation, 1984, p. 20.
13. Jay E. Adams, The Christian Counselor’s Manual, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1973> pp- 180-181.
14. Henry M. Moms, The Biblical Basis for Modern Science, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1984, pp. 372-382.
15- I am convinced that a “kind’ is not determined by its genetic information alone, but by a unique cytoplasm as well.
16. Franklin E. Payne, Making Biblical Decisions-, Escondido, California: Hosanna House Publishing Co., Inc., 1989, pp. 132138.
17. These terms are all used in the Bible to denote the area of thought-life within the person according to the emphasis of the particular text. For an excellent discussion of the nuances of these words, see Jay E. Adams, More Than Redemption (now. Theology of Christian Counseling), Phillipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1979, pp. 108-118.
18. A critic could argue that a change of orientation is a change of knowledge, a thought that came to me only as I wrote this section. That is a criticism with which I would agree. However. I have let stand what I originally said here to show that the profound change of regeneration begins with only a slight change in thinking (belief), but one that grows to the difference of pagan and saint and heaven and hell.
19. Glenna Whitley, “The Seduction of Gloria,” D Magazine, October 1991, pp. 45-49, 66-77 and January 1992, pp. 36-39.
20. Martin and Deidre Bobgan. Hypnosis and the Christian. Minneapolis. Minnesota: Bethany House Publishers, 1984, pp. 25-26.
21. Council on Scientific Affairs, Journal of the American Medical Association, April 5, 1985, pp. 1918-1923
22. Adams. More Than Redemption, p. 114.
23. Kuyper, The Work of the Holy .Spirit, p. 3(1i.