The composition of man consists of his soul (1 Peter 2:11), his spirit (Romans 8:16), his heart (Hebrews 4:12), his conscience (1 Peter 2:19), his mind (Romans 12:2), as well as “the flesh” and its effects. An accurate understanding of man’s nature is a prerequisite for prescribing a correct treatment plan for a particular life-controlling problem.



In Biblical Therapy, man is viewed as a human trichotomy that listens, learns, and responds below the surface. To a Biblical Therapist, man is body, soul, and spirit. The traditional procedure for treating life-controlling problems has been to deal with the three separately. However, man is a creation of order. Like other of God’s creation, His established laws govern in unity. All three components are present in each of us. Each has needs. If we are to be whole, all three components of man must be met in balance. To ignore one will have an effect on the others.




In applying this principle we create a huge difference between the viewpoint of the Biblical Therapist and all other secular and integrationist therapy models. We believe that according to the Bible the counselee undergoes a supernatural change which does not merely constitute a change of habits and or behaviour modification. He/she is born again and receives a new nature or “heart”. This is in line with the promises of God as recorded in various places through the prophets. Ezekiel 36:26 (NIV) tells us:


“And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit within you. And I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh.”




This happens when a person confesses faith and trust in the sacrificial work done by Jesus Christ on his/her behalf in terms of their sin. This is where a great gulf exists between the Biblical Therapist and the view of secular psychology who treats substance abuse and other related addictions as a disease. On top of this anomaly is added the view that addiction is an incurable disease as well. We believe this is greatly attributable to the fact that so very few people are permanently “cured” by humanistic means; be it the medical model, psychoanalysis, hypnotherapy or whatever other therapy model is based on anything else but the all-powerful Word of God. If patients on secular programs are encouraged to believe that their condition is terminal and they either have to stay on medication or attend NA and AA meetings for the rest of their lives, we believe they are being set up for the next relapse. Hence the extremely poor success rate of these programs.




Addiction according to the Bible is a mortal sin. It not only leads to the destruction of the body, mind and soul but also to the demise of a family, community and even a generation. Satan certainly lurks within the corridors where drugs and its related sins are being pandered. It is so insidious and evil that the Bible calls it sorcery, magic spells and witchcraft in 5 places in the New Testament. (Galatians 5;19, Rev. 9;21,18;23, 21;8, 22;15) The Greek root word for this English word is pharmakeus which is derived from pharmakon. The Greek dictionary states it as follows; pharmakon (a drug, that is, spell giving potion); a druggist (“pharmacist”) or poisoner, that is, (by extension) a magician: – sorcerer.




People who are addicted are normally trying to cloak some underlying emotional pain, stress, depression or some other psychological ailment they are wanting to escape from. Oftentimes our emotional and psychological issues are rooted in spiritual causes such as unforgiveness, idolatry and guilt.




The Bible on the other hand teaches us that we are not only forgiven and the slate is wiped clean for the present, Christ’s sacrifice was once and for all time. It also teaches us that we are no longer what we used to be. A new spiritual person has been reborn whose destiny is to be transformed into a Christ-like being. We ought to study His divine nature so that our minds can be renewed to His way of thinking. 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV) tells us:


“So that if anyone is in Christ, that one is a new creature; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”




Faith is required to appropriate what God says about the new identity He has given the new believer. The conclusion is that when Christ sets you free, you are free indeed. The power of addiction has been dealt with in His body on the cross once and for all.




This adapted content was extracted from A Biblical Approach to Psychotherapy authored by Dr Ado Krige, the Founding Director of House Regeneration, a South African drug rehabilitation centre offering a comprehensive discipleship training program. By applying principles of Biblical Therapy, using the Scriptures to teach, rebuke, correct, and train in righteousness, House Regeneration counsellors show anyone who has suffered from addiction how to fully understand why they do what they do and how to bring their belief systems in line with the Word of God.