Making Psychology Theological Again: A Review of The Logic of the Body

The book “is the product of LaPine’s Ph.D. research… at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Deerfield, IL). His academic interests in theology, human emotion, the functions of the mind, and neuroscience were motivated by personal reasons and the desire to help those closest to him” - London Lyceum


Sounds like a thoughtful work. I appreciated the lengthy review.

"The Midrash Detective"

Not available in audio, but you can get it in Kindle. (I’m suppose to note that the above is an affiliate link that routes a bit of pocket change to SI.)

On the whole, I like the way LaPine is thinking.

When it comes to the church, no area is more impacted by The Logic of the Body than that of pastoral care and counseling. If anthropology is complex at the theoretical level, the practice of caring for people carries with itself that same complexity. LaPine does not envision or prescribe any specific treatments or therapies for emotional struggles. He does conclude, however, by proposing six theses that are worth mentioning for caregivers (351–355):

  1. The saving grace of God is the beginning, middle, and end of Christian therapy.
  2. Because we are embodied beings, physicality always qualifies our agency.
  3. Our physicality puts limits on our change, but God renews us.
  4. God grants us the capacity to think, choose, see, and feel in order that we receive new life in Christ.
  5. Our bodies are burdened by spiritual and bodily failings, weakness, and trials.
  6. Habits are a grace, corrupted by the curse, renewed by the Spirit.

These theses do not provide a complete model for care, as the author notes, but they do push pastors and counselors, especially in the context of the church, toward what LaPine calls “compassionate curiosity” (350). If Christian ministers are to be exegetes of Scripture and people, then these theses offer some hints into how to proceed into the complexities of human emotions with love and curious caution.

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.