Updated: Apr 8, 2021
As you may know, the Enneagram is a test that identifies 9 types of personalities for the purpose of further discovering knowledge of one's true self. The Enneagram Institute provides a more detailed description of each type and how the test functions if you are not already familiar. The Enneagram has grown in increasing popularity in the States over the past decade or so, especially amongst Christians. In fact it's become so popular that staff members of churches are taking it before being hired and many pastors are preaching aspects of the enneagram from the pulpit. It's practically become a sacred part of Christian culture. But it is crucial to understand that the Enneagram is not Christian in origin, theory or practice. There is a beaucoup of Christian books, such as The Road Back to You and The Sacred Enneagram, as well as instagram pages that attempt to offer the Gospel for each different Enneagram type.
They're all attempting to attack the issue of anthropology, or the nature of man. The danger with the Enneagram is that it doesn't merely produce useful information about your habits and tendencies, which can then be used to help you submit yourself and your sin unto Christ. It has sold itself as a comprehensive worldview that focuses on attaining self-realization. If that doesn't make your ears perk up, read this quotation taken directly from the Enneagram Institute website:
"We have to distinguish between a man as he is in essence, and as he is in ego or personality. In essence, every person is perfect, fearless, and in a loving unity with the entire cosmos; there is no conflict within the person between head, heart, and stomach or between the person and others. Then something happens: the ego begins to develop, karma accumulates, there is a transition from objectivity to subjectivity; man falls from essence into personality." -Oscar Ichazo
In short, that is an extremely unorthodox and anti-Biblical statement. So no, this is not just another personality test that can be used in tandem with our Christian worldview. It is inherently and intrinsically opposed to it.
Also, before you think me to be an overly judgmental or dogmatic radical, please know I have taken the test. I tested as a '2 wing 1' and know I'm probably married to a '7'. I've also followed the enneagramandcoffee instagram page and other pages like it. I've sat around with my friends discussing all the different types and laughed about how good it feels to be "understood". So, I get its' allure and the comfort of thinking you finally understand your true motives. But as the author of Ecclesiastes says, a search for wisdom apart from Christ is merely "striving after the wind"(v. 17). And that's the essential issue we've got to take with this test. It asserts that it has the key to uncover true identity but excludes the critical components of the fallen nature of man and the glorious doctrines of grace and sanctification.
Christians, we've got to be more diligent with this! Paul exhorted the church at Thessalonica not to despise prophecy but test everything and hold fast to what is good (1 Thessalonians 5:20-21). We've been playing softball with this New Age junk and it's starting to show. So many believers today are severely confused about who they are and whose they are. Yet, we're still piddling around at small group brunches wondering whether we're truly a 6 wing 7 or 7 wing 6.
Instead, we should be encouraging each other, spurring one another on in the Truth. How? Read the Bible, from cover to cover. Then read it again. Then grab some friends and read the Bible together. The more we know God, the more we can obey Him. The more we obey God, the more truly human we become. Worshipping Him in Spirit and Truth (i.e. obedience) is what Jesus says is how we truly love Him. (John 14:15; John 4:24) So be free! Don't live to know yourself. What a drain. Live to Christ! Be fully known by God and be fully transformed into His likeness, not your own.
For more information watch Marcia Montenegro, a former New Age astrologer, give a short and insightful history lesson on the origins of the Enneagram.
This resource is such an incredible little 3 minute introduction to New Age Spiritualism and how it has crept into Christian thought. (Rachel is one of my favorite communicators on this topic so if you want more here's a bonus video in addition to the one linked below.)
Also do yourself a huge favor and buy You Who and Why it Matters . In this book Rachel Jankovic combats the lies of the world's view of the "self" and sheds light on the true Christian view of self. It most definitely packs a punch.
Lastly, check out this 8 minute podcast that treks through a short history of personality tests, tackles the origin of the Enneagram, gives a link to a video by Claudio Naranjo (one of the principal contributors to the Enneagram) and encourages you to walk away free.