Understanding Image Bearing and Idolatry Within a Christian Counseling Movement
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Chapter 1 introduces the background to the thesis and the thesis statement, which is that biblical counselors are best able to help counselees when they understand that believers have been delivered from a spiritual state of idolatry. Chapter 2 covers the hermeneutics of the biblical counseling movement. Several hermeneutical models used by biblical counselors are made and a new model is presented that shows biblical theology is needed to understand the relationship between image-bearing and idolatry. Chapter 3 explains the concepts of image-bearing and idolatry from the Old Testament. Idolaters were described as being spiritually blind, deaf, and hard-hearted. The Old Testament ends with the announcement that a new covenant would cleanse idolaters from their idolatry as Israel is led into a new creation. Chapter 4 argues that Jesus delivers believers out of idolatry and recreates them into his image. Often in the Gospels, Jesus heals the blind and deaf to symbolize the spiritual restoration of image bearers who are delivered from idolatry. The renewal of the image in believers is a present-day reality that is ever increasing for believers. Chapter 5 looks at the practical application of the thesis. The application involves three ingredients: biblical truth, biblical vocabulary, and biblical practice. The goal is for counselors to help counselees develop an eschatological imagination and eschatological authenticity during times eschatological discord.