THE BIBLE & THE TWELVE STEPS
The 12 Steps, properly understood, actually point to verses of scripture specifically chosen and simplified for the addicted one. When properly applied, they have the ability to walk a man out of bondage, clean him up, teach him how to live, and equip him to effectively help others find freedom. A physically sick person would go to a doctor and get a medicinal prescription, and if taken as directed, would hopefully recover. The addicted one however, has damage in all three areas (body, soul, and spirit) and is in need of healing in all three areas. The problems buried deep within the soul and spirit are spiritual and thus require a spiritual solution. The only One that can expose and dispose (surgically remove them) is the Spiritual Surgeon, Jesus. He discloses the truth, exposing the lies; disposes the root and then heals the wound.
The twelve steps, "a spiritual prescription of scripture" are twelve verses of scripture simplified for the alcoholic and the addict to understand, accept, and utilize. This process, Biblically speaking, is known as deliverance.
This simple formula has the ability to deliver an abuser from a life of bondage and insanity, to a place of freedom, peace, and joy. We find in Jesus, what most have been searching for in a bottle, needle or pipe.
Steps 1 through 3 have the ability to take a person from a state of selfish self-centeredness, powerless, helpless, and hopeless, to a Christ-centered life, hopeful and all-powerful in Christ Jesus. At step three, the all-powerful Helper comes to live within. "Made a decision" has a deeper meaning to it. To decide actually means to kill off the other option or options. In the process of deliverance, this term is called renounce. When we decide to turn our will and life over to the care of God, we are actually renouncing the connections we have with the other gods we were worshiping such as alcohol, drugs, sex, money, etc. The Gate Keeper, our Lord Jesus Christ, is the only One with the power to get them out, can and will get them out and will keep them out but only if He is asked. He is the giver and respecter of free will, leaving it up to us to choose how we want to live. When a spirit is removed (in the power of Jesus), the only way that spirit can return is through a (conscious or unconscious) invite back. God has given man a free will and He will certainly respect and protect it.
Steps 4 through 9 are house cleaning steps, a time to utilize the Helper (the Holy Spirit living within) in the cleansing process of inner self. First, immoral behavior (sin) is dealt with, then the sinful nature (the defective character living within) that leads us to sin, and finally we face those that we have harmed with our sinful destructive behaviors. Admitting our wrongs, repenting of that behavior, forgiving one's self, forgiving others, and receiving God's forgiveness as well as the forgiveness of others is the key to freedom. What a freeing experience it is to clean up the wreckage of our sinful destructive behaviors. We confess our sins to God for forgiveness and a cleansing (1 John 1:9), and to each other for healing (James 5:16a).
Step 10 is the maintenance step, teaching us to evaluate our daily behavior, while encouraging us to clean up potential problems before they become problems. Diligently revisiting this step keeps us from building a new inventory of lingering unresolved immoral issues.
Step 11 encourages continual spiritual growth, continuously improving our personal relationship with God. It is His desire to have an ongoing personal relationship with each of us, and healthy relationships require good communication. We communicate with Him through prayer and meditation. In prayer, we speak to Him, and through meditation, He speaks to us. Some of our biggest lessons come directly from Him through prayer and meditation. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly (Col. 3:16).
Step 12 is all about trying to help those still suffering in bondage to their addiction. We become living, breathing testimonies of God's transforming power. Carrying the message of freedom, Biblically speaking, is known as the great commission. Those that have experienced this new found freedom can't help but want to share it with others.