The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders

Dr. Michael Emlet discusses the recent fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). The DSM is the official diagnostic manual used by mental health professionals and published by the American Psychiatric Association. Dr. Emlet explains the origin and purpose of the DSM and the questions this new edition raises for Christian believers. He outlines the way Christian counselors and pastors can benefit from the DSM and clarifies the relationship between psychiatric diagnoses and spiritual problems. Click here for the blog post mentioned in the episode.

Michael R. Emlet, M.Div., M.D., practiced as a family physician for twelve years before becoming a counselor and faculty member at the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF). He is a Lecturer in Practical Theology at Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia). He has written numerous published articles and is the author of several CCEF booklets including Asperger Syndrome, Angry Children: Understanding and Helping Your Child Regain Control, Help for the Caregiver: Facing the Challenges with Understanding and Strength, and OCD: Freedom for the Obsessive Compulsive; as well as a book, Crosstalk: Where Life and Scripture Meet published by New Growth Press.

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Christ the Center focuses on Reformed Christian theology. In each episode a group of informed panelists discusses important issues in order to encourage critical thinking and a better understanding of Reformed doctrine with a view toward godly living. Browse more episodes from this program or subscribe to the podcast feed.

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Stephen Smith

7 years ago

As a Reformed Christian with Aspergers Syndrome, I found this discussion very insightful. It could have been ten times as long due to the nature of this topic!

The question was asked about the DSM and other nations. Here in New Zealand, at the bottom of the globe, the latest ed of the DSM is a hot topic. Most Western Nations face similar issues.

I know Dr. Emlet has written a booklet on Aspergers Syndrome but there is a need for a sizable book on Aspergers Syndrome from a Biblical Perspective.

As well as CCEF, I have also found the writings of Dr D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (a highly qualified medical doctor) and the Puritan writings a big help in negotiating the minefield between the practical aspects of Aspergers Syndrome and the need to live a godly and mature Christian life.

I am also interested in discussion issues with other Reformed Christians with Aspergers Syndrome. 2 Peter 3:18 “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”

Bob McDowell

7 years ago

1. Form follows finances.
2. Lumpers vs. splitters.
3. The personalities of committee members can make a tremendous impact on the output of the committee.
4. I’m skeptical about the explosion of autism diagnoses. (Vide supra, #1). E.g., http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials-on-the-right/060412-613640-welfare-incentives-even-distort-diagnosis-for-autism.htm?p=full

Bob McDowell

7 years ago


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