Recovery [short version]
Christian recovery from addictions. As you scroll down you will read my story in AA- as of this update I have 3 years- 6 months sober [7-2016]
TRADITIONS OF www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com
[I developed this short list for the purpose of having a format for Christian based bible studies/home groups. Feel free to copy- use- or even start your own group based on these principles- I wave the copy right to all this stuff. To be honest- I have never used a format in our meetings over the years, but for those who want to duplicate/start their own meetings- I find using a format helps. Zechariah 13:1 In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness. Zechariah 13:2 And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land.
Ezekiel 36:24 For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.
Ezekiel 36:25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. Ezekiel 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. Ezekiel 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. Ezekiel 36:28 And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God. Ezekiel 36:29 I will also save you from all your uncleannesses: and I will call for the corn, and will increase it, and lay no famine upon you. Ezekiel 36:30 And I will multiply the fruit of the tree, and the increase of the field, that ye shall receive no more reproach of famine among the heathen. Ezekiel 36:31 Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that were not good, and shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations. Ezekiel 36:32 Not for your sakes do I this, saith the Lord GOD, be it known unto you: be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O house of Israel.
Ezekiel 36:33 Thus saith the Lord GOD; In the day that I shall have cleansed you from all your iniquities I will also cause you to dwell in the cities, and the wastes shall be builded.
As you scroll down there is lots to read. Those who click this page might be struggling with addiction. For a short/quick help- just read thru this top section regularly [print it if possible]. This will train your mind in a way. Also memorize the short verse I HATE VAIN THOUGHTS BUT THY LAW DO I LOVE. Repeat it 3 times every time you find your mind being tempted- or even if your are in the middle of acting out a particular sin- each time you say it 3 times in a row- no matter what- stop the addiction at that moment. At the start- you might have to do this many times a day [depending on the addiction] but over time it will train your mind to stop. PRAYERS [read together at the start of the meeting]
I confess to almighty God and to you my brothers and sisters- that I have sinned thru my own fault.
In my thoughts and in my words- in what I have done and in what I have failed to do.
And I ask Jesus Christ- and all my brothers and sisters- to pray for me to the Lord our God.
Our father who art in heaven- Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come- thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread- and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation- but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom and the glory and the power- now and forever- Amen.
CONFESSIONS [repeat 3 times each]
I hate vain thoughts- but thy law do I love.
Commit thy works unto the Lord and thy thoughts will be established.
[Readings from Peter, James and John- either read together- or have one person read one ‘pillar’ each. The bible refers to these 3 men as spiritual pillars of the church]
Gird up the loins of your mind and be sober and hope to the end for the grace that is being brought unto you at the appearing of Jesus Christ.
Abstain from fleshly lusts that war against the soul.
Those that have suffered in the flesh have ceased from sin- that they should no longer live the rest of their lives in the flesh to the lusts of men- but to the will of God.
Blessed is the man that endures temptation- for when he is tried- he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those that love him.
Every man is tempted when he is drawn away of his own lust- and enticed. And when lust has conceived it brings forth sin- and sin- when it is finished, brings forth death.
Resist the devil and he will flee from you- draw near unto God and he will draw near unto you. Cleanse your hands- ye sinners- and purify your hearts you double minded.
Be afflicted and mourn and weep- let you laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness- before that great and notable Day of the Lord.
Behold- a new commandment I give unto you- which thing is true in Him and in you- because the darkness has now passed- and the true light now shines.
Whosoever is born of God does not commit sin- but his word remains in him, and he cannot sin- because he is born of God.
This is how we know he hears us- because we keep his commandments and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
THURSDAY MORNING- [Sponsors- the danger of co-dependency]
We had a change of plans yesterday- Mike [my artist] stopped by around 9 am- he asked if I would do a meeting.
His friend saw him last night- and was suicidal.
Mike- who has been a friend for many years- but has just recently been in my meetings- told his friend that we do a sort of Christian based AA/NA meeting.
So- I grabbed a few guys and did a meeting here in the Bluff.
It went well- I talked about how Christ re-established our relationship with God- as our Father.
I spoke about the danger of co-dependence.
When I was in New Jersey last year for 3 months- I met some real good people in the NA meetings.
But during my year in AA- I saw things that from a Christian perspective- were not compatible with healthy living.
I did write about it- in a gracious way [it’s on my blog- under the section ‘Christian addiction recovery’.
But one of the things I never hit on was the teaching on Sponsors.
I wrote a book years ago- part of it dealt with the Shepherding/discipleship movement back in the 70’s.
This was a movement within the church that had ‘shepherds’ who were sort of like Sponsors in AA.
The problem with that movement was it created a co-dependency - people became too dependent on another person.
In scripture the concept of Sponsor- Mentor- is there- but the biblical view is- it’s only for a period of time.
There must be a breaking away from that relationship over time.
The Shepherding movement made the mistake of trying to control people- for life.
Jesus discipled his men for 3 years- then told them it was needful for him to leave.
At first- they didn’t want that- but he said ‘I go to prepare a place for you’
We often read that as ‘I’m going to get heaven ready for you’.
Actually- in context [it’s in John’s gospel] he was saying-
‘I go- to make room for you [here on earth]’
Sort of like ‘when I leave- the Spirit will come- and the works that I did- now you will do them’.
He had to leave- so they would grow in their own relationship with God.
In my meeting yesterday I spoke about how we- people- become co-dependent on girlfriends- sponsors- etc.
There must come a time where we move on.
In New Jersey- I met a guy at one of the meetings- don’t remember his name- but we talked a bit.
He told another person next to him ‘I have not only done the 12 steps- but 13’.
Now- he was nice- talking to some friends- The lady asked ‘what do you mean’.
You could tell he was hesitant to sound critical of NA- he must have been in it for around 20 years or so.
He was clean- doing well.
But he said he got a new sponsor a few years ago- and he made him do the steps all over- over a period of years.
He said he didn’t think he needed to- but he had to obey the sponsor- so he spent a few more years- doing something- that he felt was a waste- but if he didn’t do it- he was fearful that he was not obeying the sponsor.
I didn’t say anything- but of course I saw the same danger in this- that I actually had written about years before.
Any movement- or group- that creates this sort of co- dependency - can be dangerous.
So- we talked in our meeting about eventually moving beyond that initial relationship [I think Sponsors are ok- just at the start- maybe even a year- but over time it would be better to move on].
Stephen Covey- in his best seller ‘7 habits of highly effective people’ talked about 3 types- stages- of personal growth.
Independent is the mindset of ‘I don’t need anyone else’.
Co-dependent is ‘I can’t live without you’.
Interdependent is ‘I don’t ‘need’ you to survive- to make it- but I see the value of our relationship- and we can go further together- as co-equals- than alone’.
I think that’s the proper view.
I have a friend who is dating a local girl.
Her ex-boyfriend is also my friend.
They are both at the street mission every week.
Then- her ex-husband now shows up [he got out of prison recently].
When she’s there- she has these 3 guys ‘fighting’ over her.
One actually stabbed the other one a few years ago- over this.
My closet friend [out of the 3] said ‘John- she just loves the attention- she wants us to fight over her’.
He was right.
Part of overcoming addictions- is also becoming interdependent.
Recognizing the value of others- but being mature enough to say ‘Brother/sponsor- I know you think I need to do this [whether it’s redoing the steps- over a few years- or whatever] - but I am maturing in this initial relationship- and I’m moving on’.
In my year in AA- I never had a sponsor- But boy was there pressure to get one- almost to the point of ‘we are waiting for you to re-lapse- so you will see your in rebellion’ [I was actually told this by a good friend].
This is a very important aspect- in my view- of becoming a well-rounded person.
Ok- that’s it- see you next week.
2; AA/NA AND THE SEX ISSUE
Note- when I post these types of post on Facebook- my intent is not to ‘preach’ to my friends who are living in various situations [I have gay friends- friends in different situations]. No- these types of posts are for those who are in these types of groups- AA- etc. and seem to be wanting a lifestyle change to some degree. So- for those who keep seeking some difference- and keep stumbling over stuff- for those- I thought this type of post might help- ok- trust me- I don’t wish to offend anyone.
I want to cover Sponsors in one post- but first let’s get to what I think might be the most important aspect of why some- in AA/NA- might still be struggling- with continual relapse- after an entire lifetime in the program.
This past year as I did read the Big Book- and attended meetings- I noticed- and was told- that many in AA/NA have ‘traded one addiction for another’.
Actually one of our first Halfway House residents told me how- in his view- many have traded the substance addiction for ‘sex addiction’.
That is- a lot of the people are ‘picking up’ people for sex- to put in bluntly.
A few months ago- I was having a talk with a friend who is sort of ‘an expert’ in AA.
Been in it for 25-30 years- knows the material well- good guy.
In our discussion I told him that I feel like many are continuing to have problems because the sex issue is really not dealt with- as a sin- and many who stop drinking/using- are still dealing with the guilt- and what the bible calls ‘wrath’ on a daily basis- because of this actual issue.
Ok- I’m not preaching here- I have ‘been there- done that’.
As most know- I’ve pretty much talked about stuff in an open way this year.
So- no one here is a saint.
But- in scripture- the act of sex- outside of marriage- is considered much more destructive to a person’s soul than all other sin [outside of murder].
So- when people stop abusing drugs/alcohol- but still participate in adultery- the penalty- feeling this Wrath- will still be there- but in a much more pronounced way.
Let me explain.
The Apostle Peter wrote ‘There are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises- whereby we can escape the corruption that is in the world THRU LUST’.
As I have stated in other posts this past year- I have come to believe that the core issue of addiction is indeed this lust [sex] issue.
Now- many will identify as a substance abuser- but often the person started using substances- maybe years earlier- as a way to deaden the Wrath [that feeling of guilt- and judgment] that comes along with ‘sleeping around’.
You cannot escape this- period.
So- for some- the root cause of their addiction is this very thing [remember- the bible- which I just quoted above- actually says that the corruption exists in the world- thru lust. Which means that is the root of all other sin in the world. Not saying sex- the God ordained way- in the marriage covenant- but any sex outside of marriage brings this judgment on a person].
I do believe that this is a root cause of relapse- continuing in what the bible describes as a much worse sin/addiction- then the actual substance abuse itself.
But now- when some do indeed find freedom from the substance- but can’t seem to overcome the sex thing- Walla- you begin feeling this judgment- this wrath- in a more pronounced way.
And because the sex thing is not dealt with [I’ll explain in a moment] then there is a natural tendency for the user to want to return to the drug/drink- because that’s the thing that ‘deadened’ the guilt from the start.
Now do you see?
Ok- when I was talking with my friend who has much experience in AA- I told him that when I read thru the big book this past year- I remember reading a page that said the founders of AA decided to be neutral on the sex issue.
My friend vehemently denied this!
See- once again- it was more of a defense of the movement itself- then an honest conversation.
I was not defensive- I told him ‘oh- maybe I’m wrong- I just remember reading a passage- and I remember how it talked about the popular philosophy of Freud- Hedonism- and then that page seemed to say that AA takes a neutral position on the sex issue’.
I remembered the passage because I teach philosophy as well as history- and when the Big Book was written the thinking of Freud was a big debate- Freud taught that one of the problems of man was him trying to restrain himself from any expression of sex at all. That if we throw off all those old ‘Victorian/religious’ rules- and practice unrestrained sex- Hedonism- then we can resolve man’s problems.
So- that’s why I remembered the passage from the big book- it did not say it accepted Freud- but also chose to take no position and not really deal with the whole sex issue [which in my view is THE ROOT of most addictions].
So- my friend- who at first said I was wrong- that the big book does take a stance- went and found the page.
I read the passage- and sure enough- it was the page I remembered.
And- as I re-read it- I was right.
[Just a note here- when he showed me the page- he seemed to say ‘see- it’s here’- like he was defending the Big Book. When I sat there and read it- I told him ‘yeah- this is what I just said- that here AA takes the neutral position’. He then agreed with me. He too knew Freud. He admitted I was right. See? That’s a problem in AA- even my friend- who was open and sincere- when he knew the page he opened to was actually agreeing with my point- he still went ahead- to defend the book- knowing he was wrong.]
I wasn’t mean- I just told my friend how as you read the page [he did know about Freud] that you can see that the Big Book is not taking a stand on the sex issue.
And actually teaches- in another section- that on these issues you follow your conscience- and if whatever type of sex your conscience says is ok- then that’s acceptable.
Ok- once again- if you follow this- and try it- you will never be able to escape the ‘built in’ wrath of God- and in my view- eventually relapse- because the root issue is not dealt with.
I want to say that my experience in AA was not a negative one- but because I was open minded- and never was ‘anti-AA’- this allowed me to get to know people- ask them questions- and try and learn from their experiences.
This last year- as I read up on addictions and the Rehab industry in the U.S.
I found some who are totally opposed to AA- and want to end the program.
I am not in that camp.
As I sit here and write- a verse comes to mind.
When I was back in N.J. - I struggled with whether or not to stay in the meetings.
Most of all I didn’t want to be a stumbling block to those who have found AA/NA as a great help.
To those- I say ‘great- keep doing what you’re doing’.
My intent in this brief critique is for those who are finding themselves in some of the examples above.
The bible says ‘you will know the truth- and the truth will set you free’.
I have found many- most- of the AA friends do not want to hear- or read any of the other literature on addiction.
If someone is close minded- or has a view that reading the other stuff is somehow wrong- then those people will continue to suffer from not knowing the latest information about addiction.
The verse that I read while asking God what position I should take- I knew I was seeing lots of this stuff because I have taught- and participated in Movements over the past 25 years.
So I knew many of the good things about Movements- as well as the dangers.
So- I could see some of these things- and many of my AA friends had no way to spot some of these flaws.
The verse- from Acts ‘REFRAIN FROM THESE MEN- IF IT BE A WORK OF GOD- NO ONE CAN STOP IT- BUT IF OF MEN- IT WIL FALL’.
I believe AA/NA is a work of God- and that as it goes for all movements- you can attack them- pick them apart [as many did in the books I read- or from friends who did not want to get clean].
So- this critique I write for the benefit of ‘Bill’s Kids’.
Yeah- one of the most amazing things to me in my year with AA was how God used an ex-alcoholic to start a worldwide movement that would help many people become free from substance abuse.
If I were talking to Bill W right now- I would say-
‘Brother Bill- what a great work of God you founded with a small group- I truly enjoyed being with your kids this year- they are a great family.
These things I write are not meant to simply criticize you.
But I felt like the kids needed this- that as all movements- and books go- apart from the bible- they are with flaws.
I even think you would be displeased to see that some of your kids treat the Big Book- almost like the bible.
So- as I say goodbye to AA- I might stop in every now and then- but I felt like my purpose was done with this great family.
I worried- a lot- that my seeing these things- and not being able to deal with them in a meeting format- might cause others to fall- who are your kids Bill- not mine.
So- I bless your kids- they are a great family- you did something that most never do.
You remained anonymous as much as possible.
You effectively passed off the movement to THE KIDS.
Your kids run the show- that’s great!
Yes- many biblical principles have been introduced thru AA.
I pray that as the movement goes on for many more years.
That the adjustments that need to be made- will be made.
God bless you all
Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John. Don’t forget to scroll down on the timeline [FaceBoook] - I have posted lots.
2045- A Christian perspective on AA/NA.
I debated about doing one final post on my experience with AA/NA [Alcoholics anonymous- Narcotics anonymous].
I want to do an honest critique- not only from personal experience- but from the experiences of others.
Yesterday I saw a new resident at our halfway house- I wanted to meet him- a mutual friend had told me this new addition to the house used to be his sponsor- and he relapsed- again.
As a matter of fact- my friend told me that all 5 of his sponsors- over the past 5 years- have relapsed.
The friend who was telling me this- has an addiction to prescription pills- buys- sells- spends whole days in his addiction.
Yet- he too is a sponsor- and does not consider himself an addict- because he has not had ‘one beer in 5 years’.
I tell these stories for the benefit of those who might be saying ‘Gee John- that’s me too!’
Over the years of Pastoral ministry- I of course was familiar with AA.
I spoke about AA in a positive way- most pastors did not.
Many had trouble with the ‘higher power’ concept- not me- till this day most of my friends have found God and refer to God when they use this language.
Yes- many good people have found God and have become clean thru the program.
But- the above scenario has been repeated many times- in just my short year in AA.
I asked the sponsor who relapsed- let’s call him Chuck.
‘Chuck- I was looking forward to meeting you- I have heard lots of great things about you- how long were you clean [this last time] before you relapsed’.
‘Ok- what’s the longest clean time you have had- since you have been in AA’?
‘How long have you been in AA’?
Chuck is 58 years old.
‘Chuck’ was standing in the same room- at our halfway house- as another resident of the house was just a day or 2 before.
Let’s call him ‘Paul’.
Paul has the same story.
Knows the Big Book- quotes it- has been in AA for 30 years.
And is now 5 months clean- after multiple years of clean stints- and relapses.
Then- one of our newest residents came in- high as a kite [He did not know I was there- or he would not have come in. If you get high- you get kicked out of the Halfway House].
Just about a week before- I had a talk with him about why I feel the AA meetings are not for me.
[Though all the guys at the house are very involved with AA- and I will still take them to meetings- and in no way try to hinder them from what they feel they need to do].
I have tried to be very nice- and honest- about this.
I told this kid ‘son- you keep referring to yourself as someone with a disease that others just don’t have’.
I went on and told him that sin- in its essence- is sort of like a disease.
But all people suffer from it to one degree or another.
And for the past 2 thousands years- many people have overcome addictive lifestyles thru the grace of God.
I told him that when we do overcome these addictions- it would be better to simply view ourselves as yes- sinners- but sinners who have accessed God’s grace- and are the same as all other sinners.
I found the mindset of ‘I have a disease that makes me different than others’ to be counterproductive in some cases.
One friend says ‘John- we are INSANE- the book says we are insane. Why else would someone go back out and drink after many years of being sober- see- we must be insane’!
Well actually- people go out and chose to sin- because they are sinners.
And yes- some might describe this as insanity.
But my friend used this argument in a way that said ‘see- WE ARE in another group of people- who are different- both mentally and physically than normal people’.
[As a side note- I hope to get to this very point in this study. But- Alcoholism does not fit the category of a disease- like other diseases. Now- to be sure- the EFFECTS of putting substances into your body- whatever they be- do indeed CAUSE diseases- but the actual addiction to a substance- apart from babies being born from mothers who used during pregnancy- is not a disease in the classic sense. Many believe because the medical associations did indeed accept it as a disease- that this makes it one. Many doctors do not embrace this idea at all- and if you simply compare the normal idea of disease- with an addict- they are not the same].
So- as someone who never took a negative view of AA- and still does not- I began to see inherent- if you will- structural problems inside the system.
I also found too many defenders of the movement- who were actively in relapse- to some degree- and yet did not want to admit it- because they took a view of AA like some Christians have about their particular church/denomination.
And they hid their relapse because they wanted to defend their movement.
[Note- when people find their identity by having a particular ‘clean date’- and when so much rides upon that date- 2-3- 10 year celebrations- if they relapse- there is a very real sense that ‘all is lost’. I think the ‘identity of addiction/non addiction’ a term I have coined- is counterproductive. Too much emphasis is placed on the DON’T EVER USE command. While I believe- and practice total abstinence- by God’s grace- yet I do not see it thru a legalistic mentality- a LAW mentality. Over the years I have taught about the difference between law and grace. And I think focusing so much on a person’s clean date can lead to a terrible fall- depression- because many who relapse then try and come back and work twice as hard then before- which can be legalistic].
Some have said ‘for the FIRST TIME in man’s history a way has been given…’
[If I remember- I think this is read at the meetings?]
Now- once again- I know this statement means well- but it’s simply not true.
And if you begin believing this [that God has given- for the FIRST TIME- a plan that will work] then you become a defender of a movement [though good] in a way that certain cultic members defend their movements.
‘God has- for the first time- restored the true church’- etc. etc.
So- I have read up this last year on the entire Addiction/Recovery industry- and I want to share more up to date info.
Historically- more people have achieved recovery thru the Church- thru not only ‘attending church’ [which is not ‘church’ to the full degree of being a practicing Christian] but thru either the participation of the sacramental life of the High Church denominations [Catholics- Orthodox, etc] or thru the usual means of the dispensation of Grace from a Protestant perspective [Altar Call- Baptism- witnessing- etc].
What I mean is- more addicts have become clean thru the practice of the Christian faith- than in AA- period.
I don’t say this as a ‘shot’ at AA.
Some have said ‘I tried church- it didn’t work’.
I asked ‘what do you mean- you tried church’.
‘Well- I went to church on Sunday- watched religious shows- etc.’
I would then respond ‘no- that’s not CHURCH’.
I responded ‘no- Jesus- and Christianity teach -you must give it away to keep it’ [a main theme in AA].
I told him ‘what you tried was simply going to a Christian church meeting without practicing the ‘whole program’.
Which includes many [if not all] of the steps that you would follow in AA.
Which indeed is where Bill and the founders based their movement on, it was at one time called THE JAMES GROUP- named after the letter of James in the New Testament.
The point I was making was- I have had more than one well intending person simply write off THE CHURCH- not realizing that they never really tried THE CHURCH.
That is- they never really implemented the teachings of Christ fully- and many others- over a 2 thousand year history- had.
So- once again- this is not to say that God is not working in AA/NA.
No- without a doubt he is.
But because I have had many experiences this past year- of people- who after 30 years or so- continue to relapse.
[Note- these people- without an exception- when I asked them what happened. They simply believed that it was their fault. Now- maybe so. But to the point of ‘no- this program has BEEN PROVEN to have never failed- for those who do it fully’ is taught in the Big Book. But there are many- I’m sure- that might have failed because of other reasons. Like I’m explaining today. See- if after multiple stories of relapse- and if you are reading the words in The Big book- that says ‘up to now- all who failed- did so because of ..’ some fault of their own- then this can become a self-defeating cycle. There might be- and indeed are- other reasons that some of these people continue to relapse. Some have developed such a defeatist view of themselves- and at times an irresponsible one ‘I have a disease- that’s why this happens to me’. See- some have embraced wrong- false ideas. And it is possible that this minority [or majority?] of cases- they are relapsing because they need better- more up to date help with their addictions].
If you hold to this outdated view [that all who have followed this system have never been known to fail- up to now] - penned by good men about 80 years ago.
Then you need to be updated on the latest data.
[Maybe at the time that Bill wrote this- it was true- but not now. And to continue to tell people that all who followed the plan never relapsed- is simply not true].
Updating these mistaken concepts would help the movement- in my view.
For their sake- those who have a history of relapse after many years in the program- over the next few days I want to give you a balanced approach.
Though I am clean for a year- I really don’t see this as some ‘rare’ thing.
Nor do I want to use my example as the basis for this study.
No- the actual data show us that more people over the past 2 thousand years- have become free from addictions- thru the practicing of Christianity [and to be fair- other religious disciplines as well- Islam- etc.- which teach biblical principles of self-discipline- prayer- fasting- etc] then following any other program.
The bible does indeed tell us that we can chose to ‘sin not’.
That’s really not such a surprise- to have to go thru all types of other things- then to simply seek God- apply the teachings of your church- and yeah- many get clean.
Ok- I don’t want this final post on AA to be negative.
Those in the movement that have found freedom- I bless you.
If you were to ask me a percentage number on the ‘good versus bad’.
Geez - I would say 90% is good- maybe 10 % needs a correction- a structural change within the movement.
The problem is- because AA is truly a movement- and yes- a God given movement [but not THE FIRST- or only].
Run by what we call ‘laymen’ [the biblical principle of the actual followers running the show- this is very biblical in nature- and because the meetings are founded this way- with no single Pastor type person- the meetings are in my view run in a more biblical way than many churches].
But at the same time- I don’t know how the movement can make the adjustments that in needs to make.
There are many examples I can give- from well-meaning people in the program- who simply do not realize that their view of AA/NA in general has become ‘cultic’.
Just one example- out of many.
One friend was giving me the NA book- and of course as a reader- who has also read many more up to date materials on addiction- I received the book graciously- and told him I would start reading.
Which I of course did- like I did with the Big Book.
But he told me that all the other books I read- they were ABOUT addiction- no- this one was different than all others [once again- the same cultic approach you see in various Christian cults- who are also very good people- but have a sort of higher view of the writings of their movement- sort of like scripture].
My friend simply believed that the NA book he was giving me was one of a kind.
That every other book on drug addiction fell into the category of ‘about addiction’
But that this one- this was the only one that saved you from addiction.
Once again- all well-meaning people- but these signs are danger signs- at least to me.
They come too close to the more extreme Christian churches- who also hold to these types of views about their writings.
I also found that many appealed to their own example [though as of now- every one that has discussed this with me- has seemed to have relapsed]
I would say ‘don’t just look at me- or any other person- no- the data show [data- other books- studies] show that many are getting clean thru these other approaches’.
[Note- in my discussions- some friends openly admit this- they say that the Book says there are other programs that work. But yet later- they will also still hold to the concept that FOR THE FIRST TIME God gave a program that frees people. These 2 ideas are contrary. I think some simple changes to the language would help].
One friend- a leader in the local movement- would tell me outright that reading the other literature was sort of being unfaithful to the Big Book.
I gave him my other books on addiction- he did not read them.
But then when we got into these discussions.
Maybe he would say ‘No- this is the first time a God given program has been shown to man…’
I would simply quote the latest data- which shows this belief to be false.
He would say ‘I never heard that’.
I would respond ‘if you don’t read anything else on addiction- but simply keep re-reading the 154 pages [which seems to be a sort of Fundamentalist approach within the movement itself- I have heard some Old Timers say the 154 are the key] over and over again- then you will never broaden your perspective about anything- including addiction recovery!’
THURSDAY- I’m going to do something right now- that I never planned on doing again.
Write a bit more about AA/NA.
The main reason I did not want to write on this subject anymore- is because I never was really ‘in the program’- in the sense that I never did a step.
I never had a sponsor- but only attended some meetings early on- and did read the big book.
Now- why write then?
One of the changes that I felt needed to be made- in my ‘transition’ season that I have been writing about- was I felt in all good conscience that I can’t be affiliated with previous ministries- for a few reasons- but one is they are strong in AA- to the point where at times I see many ‘cultic’ signs in some of the people I associate with.
What do you mean Cultic?
Since I’ve been back in Texas- I have had friend’s relapse- again- and they start the whole routine over ‘John- I called my sponsor and…’.
Ok- if that’s the track you feel you need to be on- fine.
But if after 30 years- and the track never lead to anywhere [in around 90% of the cases- this is true. The latest statistic I read was the success rate is about 10%- many in the movement do not know this- because they do not read the most up to date data on addiction- many feel it is in a way wrong to be informed about the issue].
So- even though I am now clean for almost 2 years- yet- in a sense- when I run into some old friends still in the movement- and not clean themselves [many are addicted to prescription pills- and some use pills that are not prescribed to them- yet they still count their clean date from the last time they drank a beer].
It’s almost like trying to escape a cult- they view all of life thru the paradigm of AA/NA- which is a danger sign.
These are all good people- and when I first started writing on AA I did not want to side track those who are finding help thru it- the 7-10 % of success stories.
But- there are the other 90 %- who still need help- and often times the relapse is indeed because they are in a legalistic bondage to AA/NA.
I’ve taught on this a lot- and this is the basis of Christianity [many of the videos I’m making deal with this- the freedom from a system- the law- and having a new life in Christ- not focused on some system- that’s the heart of the New Covenant].
So- even though I have determined to try and cut all ties with the movement- in some ways those who are in it- however well intended- seem to take a cultic approach.
If you attempt to keep a relationship- with others in the movement- you are viewed as needing to ‘get with the program’.
I fear many of the well meaning people in the movement do not see the danger.
When I was in N.J.- not this last time- but about 2 years ago.
The last meeting I went to there was a speaker [note- I do realize you are not supposed to talk about what was said in the meetings- let me say- I am not in AA- and I am trying my best to not step on too many toes here- one of the aspects of a cult is you do not talk about what’s going on in their meetings- so- when I share the things I learned- it’s so we can all benefit- I also realize the reason people do not share is so they can be anonymous- which is ok- I get it].
So- one of the last meetings I went to- there was a guest speaker.
As he spoke- he said he wished he could live his life without being in a never ending process of depending upon meetings- sponsors- the whole thing.
He described it as a sort of bondage-
But he said because he was an addict- he can never have a normal life- being free from addiction- unless he did this- for the rest of his life.
I didn’t say anything- and maybe he was having a bad day.
But his own testimony- from his mouth- was what I already began seeing at the time.
The fact is- the free gift of grace- does indeed free us from focusing our lives around overcoming addiction- that was indeed the great break thru of the Cross- that God would set us free- for FREE [meaning you do not have to focus your life around a system to be free- Paul the apostle taught in Romans 7 that if you do try harder to keep the law [any program that you think you need to follow to be free] that it actually strengthens the sin [addiction]. This is what is indeed happening in many of the 90% of those who are relapsing].
NOTE- When I read other literature on addiction recovery- just to broaden my understanding- I did not realize that there were many others who saw major flaws with AA/NA- many of these alternative approaches were developed because of some of the stuff I mentioned above.
Any movement- must in time be open to new things- and I have had people tell me that AA/NA was given by God to Bill W- and because it was given- by God- that’s why it ‘rarely’ fails for those who do it.
But it does fail- often-
And it’s ok to say this- it needs to be said-
But if your view is because it is a God given program- that man never had before- then you become a defender of a movement- much like a cult defends their beliefs- this is happening with many in the movement.
Some of the teaching that I did recently dealt with the SEX issue- how in the bible adultery [any sex outside marriage- even Porn addiction] is considered very serious.
The bible says ‘drunkards- adulterers- etc.’ will not inherit the kingdom.
Now- if you’re in AA/NA just to try and get free from a substance- that’s your prerogative.
But- in the biblical teaching- if you are ‘under’ [meaning sponsor type thing] people who do practice sexual sin- then those under you will never get free- from the thing the leader is in bondage to.
That’s a biblical principle.
[I have had many friends tell me that the porn/sex problem is one they cannot overcome- yet they stopped using substances- they do not realize the biblical principle I am writing about now- they need to know this- or the train will never stop]
I was invited to an AA celebration last year- I was told ‘you might not want to go- they are all renting rooms already- to sleep with each other’.
The person knew I would have a problem with that.
I said ‘what you have is hedonism- without the alcohol’.
Now- if that’s what you want- fine.
But Christians in the movement are submitting to sponsors- if they are involved in this- that the bible teaches you should not submit to.
Because the sex issue- in scripture- is just as bad [or worse] if done outside of marriage- as the substance.
The biblical principle is you can’t help others- if you’re in bondage yourself.
I often tell people ‘look- if you want help quitting smoking- I can’t help you’.
Because I smoke.
I wrote in the past that I felt the underlying issue to most addicts is lust- The BIBLE says ‘we have escaped the corruption that is in the world THRU LUST’.
If you are in a fellowship- that actively practices lust- you will never get free from it- and many of the people who have overcome drugs and drink thru the program- do indeed struggle with lust- porn- adultery.
Because of what I just told you- the bible is a higher authority than man- and any movement that allows you to develop your own conscience on sex- leads to a bondage- if at the end of your ‘sex inventory’ you come to a conclusion that is not compatible with scripture- which is God given.
This past month those of you who have followed my journey- you’ll notice some of the verses and old radio quotes dealt with the issue of how should believers relate to those living in sin.
I tried to strike a balance between being ‘in the world’ yet not of it.
I mentioned that in the letter to the Corinthians the apostle Paul did say to have no fellowship with the brother who was in sexual sin- because his sin was open- and accepted.
Yet- in the ‘world’ you will have people who are living in all types of situations- and it’s ok to have ‘friends’ that are sinners.
Jesus was called ‘a friend of sinners’.
Now- the problem with joining with a group/fellowship that practices sexual sin [not all- but many- and I covered in previous posts that the movement has decided to take no stand against adultery- in the big book I gave you the section that left that open-and I have known people in the movement that said when they did their sexual inventory that their conscience permitted various sexual sins that scripture forbids].
Now- I’m not nit-picking here- the point I’m making is if a believer puts himself under the authority of a movement/sponsor- that permits sexual sin [which is very different then someone who struggles with sin- yet does not condone it].
Then they are violating the mandate to not be unequally yoked together- meaning when you voluntarily submit to the leadership of a person- or movement- that permits this- you are indeed violating scripture- in this area.
I read a book from some pastors who were pro AA.
At the time I too was ‘pro’ AA- until I saw some of these things.
In my time in AA- there was more than one occasion that I knew of younger kids- struggling with porn- who were getting advice/sponsorship from men who themselves permitted it- they told me that to them it was not a sin.
Yet- the younger ones they sponsored did not know they were under the ‘covering’ of men who practiced the same thing [as far as I know].
There was a very respected older man- in his 70’s- who is well known around the country for having brought many to sobriety thru AA.
One day I was working with a person from the streets- and I mentioned how I thought the sex issue- being openly practiced- was a problem.
I later found out that this highly respected older man- well did the same thing [I can’t explain it all- but the girl knew the man].
I said ‘I can’t believe it’!
The person told me that he’s just a leader in AA- and it’s not ministry.
Now- that might be ‘ok’ if your not a Christian- but if churches and pastors are ‘partaking’ of a movement that permits a very serious sin- bondage- and many young men in the movement are seeking deliverance from this very thing [lust- porn- etc.].
Then the church leaders need to re-examine their support- because if they are recommending to join a ‘fellowship’ that permits this- then in my view they are violating the scripture in the area of not associating [or at least recommending] a movement that permits this.
Now- this is not a critique of others who are just in the movement to get free from drugs/alcohol- this is a Christian based view that I feel is scriptural.
In essence- church leaders are telling their people to submit to leadership- that is in violation of the scripture willingly- openly- and not ‘repenting’- like the Corinthian brother.
And many of the younger [older] leaders in the movement practice sexual sin- because they permit it.
This is much different than working with people struggling to overcome sin- but know it is wrong.
The sinning brother at the church of Corinth was engaged in sexual sin- and was open about it- he saw nothing wrong with it.
That indeed is the position of many in the movement- those they sponsor WILL NEVER GET FREE from a lifestyle that the leadership condones- Do you now see?
THE DALLAS BUYERS CLUB-
Right from the start of me going to the AA meetings- my friends knew that this was an area that I had strong problems with.
Meaning they knew that I felt the ‘addiction’ to sex sin- be it porn- sleeping around- etc.- was a sin/addiction that was just as strong [or worse] then drugs or alcohol.
And my friends knew that I had a problem with those who openly slept around with other people in the group.
In Texas at the end of the meetings we did pray the ‘Our Father’ which was a good thing- but some in the prayer saw nothing wrong with leaving the meeting- with someone else from the group- and having sex.
It was simply acceptable.
One day one of the old timers- famous in AA- he knew I had these strong reservations.
He told me a story from back in the day- that there was a famous Dallas AA group- and one member was jealous that another member had sex with his girl.
He went to New York City and brought back 2-3 hookers- who had aids.
He didn’t tell anyone in the group- he just brought the girls to the meetings- knowing the other members would sleep with them.
According to the old man- many [he said all] of the the men in that group contracted aids- and it became a famous story in the movement.
One of the kids that was at our halfway house- James- he was very paranoid from his use of Meth.
Some days I would go the halfway house- and the door was locked with a chain- I couldn’t get in.
I liked the kid- and he knew I was doing the Christin aspect of recovery [the meetings you see me do on video- actually the video for this week was done at the halfway house where James was staying].
James eventually left our halfway house- and I saw him about a year later.
I was at Timons [a feeding mission] and he said ‘Hey John- don’t you remember me’.
I didn’t recognize him- he was clean- gained weight- and ‘on fire for Jesus’.
He went to a Christian based recovery group- called Rapha House [I have taken guys there before- also to the Victory Outreach- these are Christian based recovery groups- many in these groups are very anti AA].
He said ‘John- I found true recovery thru Christ- I’m sorry- but the halfway house and AA thing – to be honest- were of no help’.
Now- I share these stories to let Christians- who advocate for AA/NA- see that from the Christian view- it’s problematic.
I want to make a note- many who struggle with Porn- sleeping around- etc. - have actually justified it thru their reading of the literature in AA/NA.
Yet- some have also expressed- to me- that they feel tremendous guilt when they practice these things.
I have always told them that the bible is a higher authority then what they are reading in the Big Book- that even if you develop a view on sex- that in your mind is acceptable- because of what you found in the Big Book- yet- you have to decide if you will hear God’s view [from scripture] or man’s view.
But- some of these people have a view of the movement- that says ‘because God gave this movement to Bill W- for the first time a way has been made- therefore what the movement says- has God’s approval’.
I don’t know how many times I have told my friends- in this area- they have it wrong.
Now- I had no plan on covering this issue again- but in the last week I have run into some of the guys- and the cycle repeats ‘I relapsed- called my sponsor- …’
All of these guys are also struggling with sex issues- one told me ‘Johnny- I’m doing ok- but I’m still looking at porn on the phone’.
Others are still sleeping around- I mean you can’t get ‘free’ if you do these things- and view them as acceptable.
Look- if your struggling with these things I’m not condemning you- struggling means you see it’s wrong- and are trying- by God’s grace- to stop.
But many in the movement condone- practice- and teach that it is ok- that they are simply trying to stop substance abuse- and in many cases they have.
But they are using their ‘freedom’ from drugs/drink- to go full speed ahead in a practice that the bible clearly condemns- adultery- in just about every form you can imagine.
The BIBLE says ‘do not use your new found freedom to engage in sexual desires’.
For those of you who are not getting this yet- this book is called THE BIBLE- It trumps all other man made books- including the big book- get it?
Now- I’ve already gone too long here- my advice for Christians in the movement- the bible forbids being in fellowship [meaning a spiritual community] of people who practice adultery.
If you are seeking freedom from bondage- all forms- you will not find it in a fellowship that allows/practices it- period.
If you have found freedom from substance abuse in the program- I bless you- great.
But in my experience- I have seen younger kids battle with the lust issue- and calling their sponsors- who do the same thing- and have justified doing it- because of all I wrote in this post.
These kids will struggle with that addiction- for life- if they submit to a leader/movement who approve of it- that’s the biblical teaching on this- ‘A bad tree cannot produce good fruit’ if the ‘tree’ [movement- etc.] permits a practice that the bible condemns- then it’s considered a bad tree- in that area- it will never be able to help you- in that area- because it is the nature of the tree to re-produce after it’s ‘kind’- this is a biblical principle that will never change.
There’s a verse that says ‘blessed are those who do not condemn themselves in the thing they allow’.
Some have told me that after they did the sex inventory- their conscience permitted certain sex practices that the bible forbids- but ‘their conscience is God given- so God ok’s it’.
The bible says our consciences can be ‘seared with a hot iron’ meaning you can violate Gods word- and actually manipulate your ‘conscience’ to justify sin.
That’s what these guys are doing.
Once again- it’s an issue of believing God’s word- or the words of men in some book.
ESACPED A CULT?
The other day one of my friends- who I have helped over the years- who recently relapsed- again- asked me something about AA.
I told him ‘brother- I’m out of that cult’-
Now- understand- me and the boys are open- those of you who have seen my site realize this.
So- I would not have said it like this to a normal ‘AA’ member- get it?
When I first started attending meetings- meeting the guys- I did express to the older guys ‘look- I’m getting free from alcohol addiction- but I think the underlying issue to addiction is lust- so- no more porn for me- or sex at all- I’m doing the celibacy thing’.
Now- I can’t say much more here- you say ‘brother- you’re married’.
Just trust me- I’m doing the celibacy thing- ok?
Now- I had a friend who fought me on this- he told me it was impossible- and every time I saw him he tried to discourage me.
He justified masturbation to porn- he justified sleeping with people you are not married to- and I would say ‘look- the bible does say some men- not all- practiced this’.
He would tell me ‘no- these guys all did it- it’s impossible’- He was a Christian!
Now- I didn’t make it an issue- he made it one!
Always telling me ‘it can’t be done’-
It would be like me saying ‘you can’t stop drinking- or using drugs’.
He was trying to pull me down- because he engaged in this stuff.
Now- this is the principle I’m writing about- how can kids being sponsored by these guys- who come to them- about this very issue- ever get clean?
They can’t- and the sponsors [in some cases] just keep reassuring the kids- and then when they hang up the phone they engage in the practice.
This is very problematic-
In order to get free from an addiction- you must admit that it is wrong- and it has power over you.
But- if you justify the sex issue- then you are violating the whole procedure of getting free.
And this issue- porn- sex sin- many of the kids in the movement are wanting to get free of it- do you now see the problem?
I want to make a note- I’m talking about the snare of porn and all- if you are a girl who made porn- and have seen that is was wrong- and stopped.
Then don’t let that effect you any more- God forgives- and you can move on.
Don’t live in the fear of ‘what if they see my videos- or on-line stuff’.
God forgives- and if people are seeking it- they are just as in the wrong as the poor girl who made them.
So- for you girls who made it- you’re forgiven- ok?
A few months ago I lent my phone to a new friend- Jacob- He was living on the streets.
He called his ex-girlfriend in San Antonio- fine.
But later I kept getting texted by someone I didn’t know.
Then I realized it was his girl- I said ‘hon- I’m not him- I lent him my phone’.
So- she texted me a few more times- and one said ‘check out my pictures here’.
Now- I was with another friend- older then me, a Christian- he saw the texting thing.
Then I said ‘I’m deleting all of this right now’.
He said ‘wait- let’s look at the pictures’.
I deleted it- before I opened it up.
I realize that this issue is big- and lots of kids do the ‘sexting’ stuff- I’m not writing any of this to be judgmental- I want you to understand I’m dealing with an issue where kids in a movement- who are trying to overcome these things- are in the wrong movement- for this thing.
1Corinthians 5:1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father's wife. 1Corinthians 5:2 And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you. 1Corinthians 5:3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed, 1Corinthians 5:4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, 1Corinthians 5:5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. 1Corinthians 5:6 Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? 1Corinthians 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: 1Corinthians 5:8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 1Corinthians 5:9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: 1Corinthians 5:10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. 1Corinthians 5:11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat. 1Corinthians 5:12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within? 1Corinthians 5:13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.
Revelation 21:7 He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.
Revelation 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
Ephesians 2:1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;
Ephesians 2:2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:
Ephesians 2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
Ephesians 2:4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
Ephesians 2:5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
Ephesians 2:6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
Ephesians 5:1 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children;
Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
Ephesians 5:3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;
Ephesians 5:4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.
Ephesians 5:5 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
Ephesians 5:6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.
Ephesians 5:7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them.
Ephesians 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
Romans 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: Romans 8:4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Romans 8:5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. Romans 8:6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Romans 8:7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. Romans 8:8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. Romans 8:10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. Romans 8:12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. Romans 8:13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
Colossians 3:1 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
Colossians 3:2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
Colossians 3:3 For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.
Colossians 3:4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
Colossians 3:5 Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry
Colossians 3:6 For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience
Colossians 3:7 In the which ye also walked some time, when ye lived in them.
1Peter 2:11 Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;
1Peter 4:2 That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
1Peter 4:3 For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:
1Peter 4:4 Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:
1Peter 4:5 Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.
1Peter 4:6 For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.
1Peter 4:7 But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.
Revelation 21:7 He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.
Revelation 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
These are from the King James bible- but much of the language is referring to sexual sin.
In scripture- you’ll notice- that drinking alcohol [which I do not do] is actually not forbidden- drunkenness is.
But- in the area of sexual sin- there is no moderation- meaning- you can’t do ‘a little’ and get away with it.
It is not like substance abuse- according to God’s word- it is only permitted in the marriage covenant.
What I fear has happened in AA- is some have a false reassurance- because they don’t drink at all [like me] and somehow think the sex issue is ok.
Actually- the sex issue- is worse- according to scripture.
I obviously am not condoning alcoholism- or drug abuse- but- the scripture puts a much higher price on those who commit sexual sin.
LAST WORD- as I get ready to post this- to be honest- I hope it’s the last time I write on this subject.
Yesterday I made a couple of new teaching videos- which I will upload in the next few days.
Some of the guys are already talking about making a trip to San Antonio again- and doing- a ‘spur of the moment’ meeting- with our friend in San Antonio.
In the next few weeks I’ll text some of our former home groups- and see if they want- we will do a meeting or 2- like I said we would.
Now- in this post- I know I hurt some friend’s feelings- my purpose is not to offend anyone.
These past few years- as I saw some of these things- I went out of my may to let my friends see these things-
I copied- printed- these posts for friends who do not have on-line access.
I hand delivered the posts- told my friends ‘I think you need to read this’- I really felt like some of my friends needed to take a strong- hard look at what was happening.
So- I’ll post this in a few minutes- and God willing- move on.