GF writes: “I used to be a fan of Brian Tracy, Joseph Murphy and Terry Cole Whittaker untiI I started recognizing that their teachings seem to deviate from bible principles although their books quote Bible verses to make their point. So I stopped reading their books. I recently purchased a book called The 4:8 Principal, the Secret of a Joy Filled Life by Tommy Newberry. Would you please advise if his motivational teachings are aligned with biblical teachings.”
Tommy Newberry is a life coach who rehashes the same motivational techniques as many New Age writers such as Stephen Covey (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People) and Napoleon Hill (Think and Grow Rich) – but with one exception. Newberry insists that a person must have a right relationship with Jesus Christ for any of it to work.
Newberry’s book, entitled The 4:8 Principle: The Secret to a Joyfilled Life, is a bestseller based on Philippians 4:8 which teaches: ” . . . (W)hatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
Newberry takes this scripture and provides the reader with a variety of simple ways to keep their thoughts under control and thus ensure a much less stressful life. Each chapter ends with a prayer to God asking for His help in making a positive life change.
Newberry is a life coach and the founder of The 1% Club which is dedicated to helping entrepreneurs and their families reach their full potential. He is a certified emergency medical technician and PADI rescue diver who also has a black belt in the Korean martial art of choi kwang do.
Because I have not read any of Newberry’s books, I can’t say for certain if they contain New Age ideas; however, Christian reviews of his book are generally good.
If he (or any other motivational speaker) does espouse New Age ideas, they’re easy to spot and now is as good a time as any to learn how to discern who is New Age and who isn’t.
For example, New Agers espouse the same principles as the New Thought/Law of Attraction crowd of the last century which contends that “whatever the mind can conceive, a person can achieve.” They believe the mind has a power of its own that can actually make things happen – something that is not part of the Christian worldview.
There are other signs listed in this blog that will help you to discern whose books and techniques are okay for Christians and which ones can lead you astray.
Send your New Age questions to firstname.lastname@example.org