This is a book to help counselors understand and deal with typical problems that arise in a marriage by offering biblical solutions.Publishers Description
Counselors unanimously find that marriage and family problems outnumber all other counseling problems combined. For that reason alone, counselors should want to learn all they can about marriage counseling. Jay Adams This book will help counselors understand and deal with the typical problems that arise in a marriage. The approach is to offer not merely solutions, but biblical solutions. Chapter by chapter, each problem that is brought into focus is addressed by Scripture, and a solution arising from Scripture is developed. Unless one understands what a biblical marriage is supposed to be, it is difficult to solve marriage problems. For that reason, Dr. Adams spends the first few chapters developing a biblical model. Then he treats many of the specific kinds of problems that typically arise: life patterns, priorities, children, sex roles, in-laws, and so forth. This is a book that belongs on every pastor s and every counselor s shelf."
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.55" Width: 5.5" Height: 0.42"
Weight: 0.35 lbs.
Release Date Jun 1, 1986
Publisher Zondervan Publishing
Availability 1 units.
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
|Some good advice, but he lost me at "obey" Jan 11, 2007|
|Adams is clearly a thoughtful Christian man who cares about husbands and wives. My problem: his definition of those roles are too old-fashioned and rigid for my taste. Just so you know, I am not a liberal woman who either ignores the Bible or is ignorant of its teaching; I know the Biblical teachings on marriage and it is their instructions I disagree with Adams about. He consistently calls the wife the "helper", which diminishes the aspect of partnership that I believe marriage should be. A leader and a helper is not a partnership, it is basically one central figure and a secondary figure who helps them. Adams stresses the specialness of a helper to uplift the concept, but is apparently unaware that the role still pushes a sense of lesserness on the woman's side because, if a wife is a helper, who is she helping? The husband! The man is still the central figure and the wife is not seen as his mate, but his "helper", a moon revolving around a sun. His beliefs basically come from the age-old concept of, in regards to a wife's role, taking the Biblical word "Submit" and turning it into "obey". Honey, they're not the same. Submission, unlike obedience, can be mutual and does not always have to do with authority. The concept of marital submission, I believe, is basically to surrender to another's needs and put the other before oneself; this does not at all necessarily mean obeying! Therefore, Adam's words that the husband is never to submit to the wife were incorrect. Certainly the husband is never supposed to obey his wife, but he is clearly expected to submit to her needs. The Bible stresses the importance of the husband laying down his life for his wife if necessary; that is HUGE submission on the husband's part. Submitting to a spouse should not be a matter of one ruling over the other, but rather a matter of both spouses making sacrifices out of love and respect for each other. |
Adams' words of wifely obedience were very grating to me, especially when he tried giving examples of when a wife should refuse a sinful "command" from her husband. If a husband freely commands his wife, we've got bigger problems than whether the command itself is sinful or not. Adam's advice for the wife to "respectfully" refuse a sinful command also rather threw me, since his example of a sinful command was if a husband wanted his wife to play spouse-swap with another couple. His idea of what to say to such a husband? "I must respectfully say no. You must not ask me to sin and I cannot do that." Firstly, if a husband actually had the nerve to ask his wife to do something like that (or command it, in Adams' words), he'd be lucky if a disrespectful answer was all he got. Secondly, I defy anyone to find a self-respecting wife who actually talks that way. The monotone of that robotic answer gave me the impression that Adams' taken this obedience thing a little too far. This impression was strengthened with his example of how a counselor should advise a woman who "has not been a good helper". His advice: "They (wives) must be trained to put on helpful deeds, a step many counselors overlook." Maybe counselors overlook this because the concept of training women to be obedient helpers is, rightly, obsolete for most people.
Books like these, which so rigidly define the roles of spouses, have a tendency to simultaneously overcomplicate and oversimplify marriage (not an easy thing to do, but they manage). They oversimplify marriage because they seem to believe that if women just obey and respect their husbands and if husbands just love and nurture their wives, the marriage will go swimmingly. It is NOT that simple! Marriage is not a recipe with instructions, it's a union between two people who will occassionaly have conflicting ideas, and conflicts will NOT magically vanish if one spouse always gives in to the other. This method also overcomplicates things because it stresses the idea of training women to be followers rather than just letting them be led by love and respect for their husbands and letting the rest fall into place on its own.
Every marriage is different; it should be Godly, of course, but you cannot make the roles of spouses cookie-cutter. Christian books tend to do this mainly as a result of the author taking the Bible too literally. Adams does this by saying that, because the Bible tells the husband and not the wife to love, loving is primarily the husband's job. He went on to say that, if a husband complains that there is little love in the marriage, his counselor should tell him that it's mainly his fault! Honestly, this alarmed me more than his earlier words about counselors training women to be helpers (what kind of counselors are these, anyway?). To automatically blame either spouse for a marital problem based on your personal interpretation of the Bible instead of what's actually happening in the marriage is a little scary (if a professional counselor does this, it's downright terrifying). The interpretation itself is rather skewed; the Bible stresses on women giving respect and men giving love because respect is something that most men already give naturally and love is already something that women give naturally. It does NOT mean that the husband is the only one who has to love and the wife only has to respect, so to blame a lack of love automatically on the husband is simply unfair and silly. There are plenty of women who have a hard time loving and men who have a hard time respecting; you cannot simply assume which spouse is at fault because of Biblical instructions.
This is not a bad book, but unless you view marriage in the same rigid terms as Adams, it probably won't do much for you. If it focused more on mutual love and respect rather than defining one sort of behavior for one particular spouse, it would've worked a lot better for me.
|Not surprised Nov 9, 2006|
|This book is a representative authority of helpfulness in understanding what is necessary for couples to live happy lives. Dr Adams's source of authority is from the words of God, so that we are led by a power greater tht anything that we can ever imagine.I can easily recommend this for any person looking for help from an authoritative source.ColvinB|
|A Must Read for Christian Couselors Jul 22, 2001|
|Solving Marriage Problems, by Jay Adams is a short easy to read book of only 122 pages. One should not be fooled by its brevity however. As far as a well annotated, academic treatise on marriage and family counseling goes, this book does not purport to be of that genre. What it is rather, is a very well thought out, practical handbook for the Christian counselor. |
It follows judiciously it's a priori notion that God is in control of our lives, and therefore has the right to prescribe what is best for His children. It proscribes any solutions based solely on human ingenuity, but recommends instead a reliance on God's word. One gets the distinct impression while reading this book, that in the mind of the author, no marriage problem is too insurmountable for God, when these biblical principles are applied.
The assignments at the end of each chapter are an indispensable tool that counselors should avail themselves of. They force counselors to think very hard about the principles discussed in the previous pages. On balance, this is an excellent book that should be on the shelf of every serious Christian counselor.
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