"You Shall Rule Over It"
This article on overcoming addiction is an introduction to "Matters of the Heart," our free eCourse for spiritual growth and emotional transformation. The 24 Main Healing Lessons from the course can be found in the downloads section in PDF and MP3 formats. They are also available in our Store as an ebook, a 176 page workbook and as CD and DVD sets of 24, 1/2 hour teachings.
Overcome Addictions with God's Help
Overcoming addiction is a matter of overcoming bondage in our lives. Everyone has some areas of bondage. These may or may not be evident to them, any more than the addiction itself is seen as the problem by the addict while still “in denial.” But the bondage of sin(s) in one form or another is the reason why everyone on earth needs a Savior in order to live the life of true freedom that God desires to give and creation yearns to see (Romans 8:21; Galatians 5:1).
It is important, therefore, that we recognize that people with addictions are not a special class of sinners. All of us have been badly broken by the Fall and need to be saved and mended by the love and mercy of God. The root issues are the same for all of us. The path of redemption and restoration is also the same. Narrowly defined addictions have to do with substance abuse; a wider term for addictions, one that is Biblical, is a besetting sin. The besetting sin is the sin that “besets” us—knocks us down—whenever the temptation for it comes along (Hebrews 12:1-2 KJV).
What is an addiction? An addiction is anything that controls us and holds us in bondage. That which controls us, rules us and whenever it gets triggered, God is not our master—sin is. Whatever we cannot just say no to (that is not of God), holds us in its power. It seeks to enslave us (Romans 6:6), then destroy us and in the process, destroy as many others as it can (John 10:10).
Unless we can honestly face the sin element in our area(s) of bondage, we will find it hard to believe that Christianity has the answers we need for overcoming addictions. And yet it was for the sake of freeing people from sin—from both its penalty and its power over them—that Jesus has come! Christianity has the very best answers and a proven record of success for those who have learned how to receive and apply all that God offers us through our faith in Christ.
Even so, overcoming addiction requires working with all of the equipping we can get for the battle is desperately waged. We will need many things that can only be “filed by title” in this short introduction, but which are the subject of whole chapters in our Workbook or CD/DVD series posted on this site. We will want to learn the basic issues of spiritual warfare (see Kingdoms in Conflict); we will need to learn how to walk in the truth of who we really are and who our God really is (see Beholding the True Image); we will need to bring our inner emotional life in for a serious overhaul (see Mending the Broken Heart); and we will need to expose the three great lies of the enemy at the root of all bondage (see No More Idols!).
The Father is sovereign. Sometimes He touches a person in such a way that the entire addiction is gone with one heartfelt prayer of surrender, relinquishment and return. More often than not it is a battle royal! No one who has been through it will tell you that it is easy. But it truly is possible. In a sense, overcoming addictions is what Christianity is all about—Jesus said that He came to set the captives free (Luke 4:18).
Look to Him, learn from Him, lean hard on Him
and you, too, will be overcoming addiction!
Interested in Going Deeper?
Consider taking our free eCourse for Healing.We have designed a complete series for personal transformation, "Matters of the Heart," to help Christians gain emotional freedom and inner healing. In all there are 24 Main Healing Lessons and 24 Head to Heart Guides to help you bring your heart to God and receive His Great Heart for you in return!