Whether you desire to serve as a counselor in full-time ministry or simply seek to encourage others in your workplace or church, the biblical counseling program at BJU will equip you to point others to Christ. First and foremost, you’ll be challenged to develop your own relationship with the Lord by seeking Him in His Word, crying out to Him in prayer and serving out of gratitude for Who He is. Then you’ll learn how ministry to others is an outflowing of what God is doing in your own heart.
You’ll study various forms of psychology, from educational to social to abnormal, and you’ll evaluate secular theories and methods from a biblical viewpoint. You’ll also study and biblically critique how abnormal behavior is diagnosed by use of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. In your counseling classes, you’ll learn how biblical counseling is rooted in the doctrines of sufficiency of Scripture and progressive sanctification—and differs from secular and integrational counseling. And through Bible classes and daily chapel messages, you’ll be well grounded in timeless truths of God’s Word, ready to approach counseling problems with godly wisdom. Having numerous electives throughout the program will allow you to customize your experience, whether you’d like to focus on women’s ministries, youth ministries or something completely different like business or journalism.
Your senior year you’ll have the opportunity to complete a counseling internship on campus or at a local Christian ministry, developing and maintaining case studies throughout. Guided by a faculty member, you’ll be able to put into practice the biblical counseling principles you’ve been learning.
The liberal arts core, an essential part of the BJU educational experience, will challenge you to see life from a broader perspective. Studying subjects like economics, music and speech will help you better relate to those you minister to. These subjects will also help you develop essential life skills like critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity and effective communication—skills necessary for flexibility in an ever-changing job market.
Our counseling graduates have gone on to serve God around the world—some in full-time Christian ministry, some in secular vocations. No matter where they are, they are able to fulfill the Great Commission by making disciples of the precious souls God places in their lives.
- Counseling students in a Christian elementary or secondary school
- Counseling men, women and children in the church, including premarital and marital counseling
- Leading support groups, which includes working with people in hospitals, counseling those with friends and relatives in hospitals, and dealing with those who are facing death
- Counseling family and youth, which may include working with delinquents, runaways or those in halfway houses
- Counseling in rehabilitation centers and jails, particularly prior to release
- Serving in your local city, county or state government
- Serving as house parents in a children's home
In the Classroom
A variety of psychology and counseling classes, combined with the equivalent of a minor in Bible, will give you a thorough knowledge of the counseling field from a biblical perspective. Through psychology classes such as Educational Psychology, Social Psychology and Abnormal Psychology, you’ll gain exposure to diverse schools of thought and evaluate them from a biblical worldview. Journal articles, case studies, group projects, experiments and personal observations round out your study. In your counseling classes you’ll learn how to apply the timeless principles of God’s Word to all situations of life, with an emphasis on developing your own walk with God in order to encourage your counselees in the same way.
Outside the Classroom
Your senior year you may have the opportunity to participate in a counseling internship on campus or at a local Christian ministry. Guided by a faculty member, you’ll develop and maintain case studies, putting into practice what you’ve learned in the classroom.
Every summer dozens of BJU students, both counseling majors and non-counseling majors, serve in Christian camps around the United States. Continual exposure to passionate preaching, memorization of God’s Word, constant accountability, and opportunities to encourage campers or fellow staff members with biblical principles will stretch you personally and allow you to apply everything you have learned during the school year.
Averaging 12 years of teaching experience and 22 years in the counseling field, your faculty have both the academic training and the practical experience to prepare you to be the best counselor possible.
Also the pastor of a local church, Dr. Greg Mazak teaches psychology and counseling classes on both the undergraduate and graduate levels at BJU. He holds a PhD in New Testament interpretation from Bob Jones University as well as an MEd in counseling and guidance from Clemson University. Dr. Mazak brings to his classes 26 years of biblical counseling experience.
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- Demonstrate a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ and model Christ-like behavior in relationships with others
- Define the discipline of psychology, providing a general overview of the various fields of study within psychology, including educational, clinical and social psychology
- Demonstrate knowledge of the basic principles of research and design within psychology
- Identify and critique the major psychological theories of human development
- Explain and critique how abnormal behavior is diagnosed by use of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
- Identify and critique the major approaches to psychotherapy
- Explain how biblical counseling is rooted in the doctrines of sufficiency and progressive sanctification—and differs from secular and integrational counseling
- Explain how to approach counseling problems from a biblical perspective