Personality Profiling - 

what’s wrong ?


Currently there are three different methods of profiling that have become popular in the church, they are : 

Elemental Profiling Also called the Four Temperaments profiling

Dualistic Profiling (Briggs Myer system)

The Enneagram  

However profiling systems may be dressed up, the root of them all remains occultist.

It's worth looking at these three systems to see where they came from.

The most important issue I want to raise is whether the Church of Jesus Christ needs such tools and whether it's wrong for profiling to be used by Christians.

The most important tool I used throughout this article is the Bible.


So Firstly let's look at Elemental Profiling.

Elementalism is a pagan belief that all life forms are controlled by four powerful spirits (fallen angels). These spirits are said to inhabit and control the four elements of Earth, Wind, Fire and Water. Therefore, they conclude, your personality will be determined by which of these elemental spirits has control over you. This method is often referred to as ‘Four Temperaments Profiling'.

Is it by chance that this is also the basis of fortune telling and has a large part to play in witchcraft?

An Astrologers wheel is firstly divided into four segments of earth, wind, fire and water then these segments are each divided into 3 making the 12 segments which represent the months of the year. According to when you were born, it’s said, you can find which spirit gives you your apparently unchangeable personality and therefore controls your behaviour.

In order to make this system attractive to the Church, it was deceitfully taught that the originator of the four temperaments system was Hypocrates, the father of medicine. In fact Hypocrates only copied the idea from astrology. He made it sound more medical and scientific.  

The Church was presented with this system of profiling during the early 1960s. Of course it was dressed up in Christian jargon and instead of working from your birthdate, your personality group is discovered by asking a few very subtle questions to establish your personality type. The four traits though, are the same as in astrology, fortune telling, tarot cards, divination, etc.

The 12 segments provides the possibility of more accuracy in making the divination.

Does this sound like the God of the Bible?

It should be noted that this Satanic view of humanity is strongly rejected by God as explained in Deut. 18 where it is called Divination Augery and Astrology.

DEUTERONOMY 18 v 10-12 

There shall not be found with you anyone that makes his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, one that uses divination, one that practices augury (the interpretation of signs), or an enchanter, or a sorcerer, or a charmer, or a consulter with a familiar spirit, or a wizard, or a necromancer (spiritist). For whosoever does these things is an abomination to God: 

 Sadly the church rushed out to buy this occult based system without researching its origins or using any discernment at all. The only question raised was does it work?

We must ask therefore : as this system doesn’t have good credentials and originates in ancient pagan beliefs: Can we really trust the results it provides?

The Apostle Paul writes about this heresy throughout Colossians chapter 2. He declares that it deceives and captures people and that Jesus can deliver us from its clutches.

Colossians 2 v 8

See to it that no one carries you off as spoil or makes you yourselves captive by his so-called philosophy, intellectualism and vain deceit, following human tradition – men’s ideas of the material world – just crude notions following the rudimentary and elemental teachings of the universe, and disregarding (the teachings of) Christ the Messiah. 

Dualistic Profiling

This is now the major profiling system used in business and the church and it has it's roots in another heresy called dualism.

Dualism also comes from Eastern religions and traditions where God is seen as simply a force without a mind or a personality. This force contains the two extremes of good and evil. Maturity and personality is discovered and evaluated by how well an individual balances these two opposing forces. 

This system also uses a questionnaire and gives no indication to the respondent what it is looking for. However, this process covertly extracts information from an individual without giving them the opportunity to have any control over what they are revealing to the system. Like all the other profiling methods it gives the results on two levels. The first is what the punter gets to see which is usually shallow but interesting. The second set of results are only for the Company or Church leaders who are using the process. This second result is very deep and detailed and shows just how deceitful and un-Christian the whole covert questionnaire is. Does this sound like a Godly tool?

Due to the detail of this second result, in the wrong hands, it means a person is then vulnerable to being psychologically manipulated. Believe me this happens even in churches!

Surely the purpose of Jesus sacrifice and Gospel, is not to balance us between good and evil, but to save us from the way we were born and transform us into washed and cleansed beings who are acceptable to our Holy God. This is Christian maturity!

The originator of this popular system was Karl Yung, he was an atheist, an occultist and openly a hater of Jesus. He formulated a whole new way of how he thought the mind works along with his sexual partner and mentor Sigmund Freud. He used many occult beliefs as the basis of his thinking. He's called the Father of Modern Profiling

Clever though this system may appear to be, it can only deal with the earthly side of our nature and without any moral code as the reference point. It cannot reveal the work that the Holy Spirit has done in our lives in making us new creatures in Christ. Yet some churches are using this method to choose new leaders. I've seen disasterous results come from this increasingly common tool for evaluating and choosing people for Church leadership.

The profiling tool has become the basis of some so-called Christian Counselling methods who’s aim therefore is to help a person to be balanced between good and evil, rather than being born again. 

The Enneagram

This method of personality profiling is more based on the 'four temperaments' than it is on dualism. It has 9 personality types and is dressed up to look like some ancient Christian artifact. 

Actually the diagram on which the system is based came from the late 19th century and it only became a method of profiling much more recently. It contains little that is different from the other systems, but it's more accessible to the punters, anyone can use it and it's currently being sold to Christians by well-known names in Christian circles.

It's thoroughly 'New Age' and should not be treated as though it can provide any useful or truthful information about us to aid us in reaching Christian Maturity. The main promoter of it as a profiling tool is heavily into mysticism, he’s a monk who is well known for trying to undermine all the basics of Biblical Christianity.

The International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences (not a Christian book) points out: 

Typologies serve two basic functions: they codify and they allow prediction. They are appealing because they offer simplistic pigeonholing and an assumed peek into the unknown. Hence they are a form of divination and fortune telling. They can be as entertaining as any parlor game, but the real tragedy of such schemes is that life-and-death advice is being given to people. A “Temperament Counselor” who advises on a lifetime career, marriage or spiritual development is likely to influence people’s lives for good or ill. Moreover, the victims often believe that they are really gaining knowledge about others and often rely upon the scheme to explain and excuse questionable behavior in others and themselves, instead of growing and changing by assuming responsibility.

Unfortunately, from the scientific point of view, nothing is explained if the state we have attributed to the person from his behaviour, is then invoked as the cause of the behaviour from which it was inferred. Circular explanations like this give the appearance of a genuine explanation that offers genuine knowledge. But it is only illusory.’

Christians are supposed to have fidelity!

Sometimes God only gives us insight in the hours of prayer we spend with him. He wants us to learn to listen and trust Him with patience. In contrast, these systems seem to offer a quick and easy solution, but the results are not Godly! They pander to vanity or insecurity. What we’re looking at here is the enemy's ploy to make us believe that we can’t change. We're stuck forever with the way we were born with only minor self improvements possible. 

The truth is that the Gospel of Jesus Christ changes us ! A radical and eternal transformation IS possible for all those who belong to Jesus, it's by the power of his death and resurrection.  God’s work in us cannot be revealed by any occult based system!    

So, who do WE belong to, who controls us?

The Bible should be our tool to discover who we are, take 

Galations 4 v 4-7 as an example :

But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.

The Big Issue

The church needs to wake up and be discerning and check everything against Scripture. The issue is: 

Does the Bible tell us that we can't change the temperament that we were born with? 

Look into it yourself, but you will find that the answer is definitely NO! The Bible tells us the opposite !

If then, we can be radically changed, be born again and empowered by God’s Holy Spirit, then the whole basis for these ungodly New Age Divinations falls apart!


Martyn Cunnington  


© Martyn Cunnington revised 2021