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Westminster Today, Summer 2011

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Cure of Souls & the Modern Psychotherapies

Cure of Souls

David Powlison

Fifty years ago there was no comprehensive model of counseling within believing Protestantism. How things have changed! Yet this counseling revolution has raised many questions that are still being debated concerning epistemology, human motivation and how counseling should be “delivered” to those who need it. As part of our series of articles about the history of CCEF and biblical counseling, we offer David Powlison’s article: Cure of Souls (and the Modern Psychotherapies).

Sex Before Marriage: How Far is Too Far?

Tim Lane

Sex Before Marriage

“We love each other and are faithful to each other, so I don’t think there’s anything wrong with having sex before we get married.”

“Isn’t it a good idea to see if we’re sexually compatible before we get married?”

“Don’t make sex before marriage into such a big deal— everyone does it.”

“I’m not going to let other people make me feel guilty just because I don’t buy into their value system.”

Have you ever thought or said things like this? If your answer is yes, you have a lot of company. Most people, at least in some circumstances, think premarital sex is okay. What was once frowned upon is now an accepted part of Western culture, and sex education usually means learning about “safe sex,” and how to take steps to avoid unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. But you have probably noticed that education about “safe sex” hasn’t protected those around you from experiencing hurt and broken relationships as they have experimented sexually. Since God made you and also created sex, why not take the time to look at what he has to say about your sexuality and how it should be expressed? You may be surprised at what you learn.

For the full article, click here.

No More Bible BandaidsCross Talk

A Three-part series from Michael Emlet

You’ve just learned that a male member of your youth group has starting dating a non-Christian girl and they’ve had sex on at least one occasion. He had made a profession of faith as a young child and lived, until recently, as a faith-filled disciple of Christ. How will you minister to this student? What notes do you want to strike as you bring the truth of the gospel to bear on his life? How you move toward him depends on at least two things—your general approach to Scripture and your general approach to people. These two overarching aspects will shape the way you specifically minister to this teen. It’s important to be self-reflective about the ways we think about the Bible and about people if we are to be wise, compassionate, and gospel-centered in personal ministry. Let’s look at possible approaches to Scripture in this first article.

Click here to read Part 1
Click here to read Part 2
Click here to read Part 3

Depression's Odd Filter

Ed Welch


Someone says to you, “I love you.”

You hear . . . nothing. Actually you hear something. You hear a little voice in your brain that says, “I’m worthless. You’re only saying you love me because you think you have to.”

Somehow, from the mouths of other people to your ear, all words of blessing and encouragement get tumbled upside down and backward and confirm your suspicions about yourself. You are an abject failure. Unloved. Unlovable. And everyone knows it.

There are hundreds of variations.

For the full article, click here.

Alasdair Groves and Robyn HuckDo You Skype?  Counseling in the Age of Technology

Robyn Huck

I was decidedly against it, and I said so. I thought I had good reasons, and I laid them out. But none of them changed Alasdair’s mind. In fact, Alasdair Groves (my boss) already had three Skype counseling sessions booked when we opened our CCEF New England office this past summer. But the idea of counseling by way of a video-internet connection still really bothered me.

For the full article, click here
For Part 2, click here

Links to the Top 10 blogs and Podcasts at CCEF.org

  1. How to Disarm an Angry Person, Ed Welch
  2. No More Bible Bandaids #1, Mike Emlet
  3. Hope for the Depressed, Ed Welch
  4. Facing Death with Hope: Living for What Lasts, David Powlison
  5. What not to Say to Those Who are Suffering, Ed Welch
  6. Making Scripture Personal, David Powlison
  7. How Do You Respond to People Who Feel Shame?, Winston Smith
  8. EMDR and the Meaning of Suffering, Ed Welch
  9. Four Reasons to Incorporate Counseling into the Local Church, Tim Lane
  10. Marital Intimacy, David Powlison



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