The Bible does not contain a single word for mental illness, as Old Testament writers used a variety of biblical Hebrew words to express personality. This has led to some controversy among those in the faith, as the Bible does not explicitly talk about mental illness in terms of how we would define it today. However, more and more churches are recognizing the effects of mental illness within their congregations. While it is difficult to answer questions about treatment and care, the Bible does provide insight into how we should view and respond to those who are struggling with their own minds.
Proverbs 3:7-8 states, "Don't be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and stay away from evil. It will heal your flesh and refresh your bones." In the past, primitive beliefs taught that mental problems were directly related to Satan and were the result of demonic possession; however, this is not true. It is likely that you are not alone in your congregation dealing with mental health issues. The Bible does not refer specifically to mental health, but it does talk a lot about a person's emotions, mind, soul, and heart.
Having a mental illness is not a sin and does not mean that you are less of a Christian because you have a mental illness. Mental illness may be an opportunity to tell others about Christ's love. Although your mental illness may not be cured during your lifetime, God will be with you at all times. Scott, PhD, NCC, LPC-S is an associate professor of clinical mental health counseling at Columbia International University in Columbia, South Carolina, and provides clinical counseling and community oversight through his counseling office, Sunrise Counseling.