Thank you Recovery Reformation for all the work you do to bring the Truth of God's Word to people who are lost in the darkness of the recovery movement/industry. I attended over 300 aa meetings myself over the years and never once found any true or lasting peace in "the rooms". The twelve steps - the entire program! - construct a perpetual circle of guilt and shame. It is a system with no conclusion, you are always "in recovery", no matter how much "clean time" you have. It is a complete satanic distortion of reality. But PRAISE THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, today I am free. Through God's Divine Design, I was saved from aa. I have lived the reality of Jeremiah 29:11-14. This Friday, January 5, 2017 will be 4 YEARS since the Good Lord set me free from the bondage of alcoholism after 31 years of pure hell. JESUS IS THE ONLY WAY!! My only ambition in my new life of freedom is to help bring the truth of God's Word to as many people as I can. God has allowed me to pursue a university degree (at age 51), and I am currently putting my own story/testimonial in writing with the goal of publishing it to the widest possible audience. God has brought me from park benches and homeless shelters to a life of peace, strength, and joy. A true miracle. I will spend the rest of my days spreading The Word to the many, many desperate souls who can be saved by no other power than that found in Jesus Christ, the God of the Bible! Amen!
My name is Kevin I am in the Charlotte NC area recently left AA after the Matt Slick talk show was speaking of how its a cult and directed me to your website. How I didn't see this before is amazing. I am looking for other people maybe in my area....lost my support group one thing about AA that is...well convenient...first I sold my soul to drink and drug then I sold it for sobriety. Everything you have said makes perfect sense...I have abused alcohol...drugs mostly cocaine...gambling porn and food...5 habitual sins that kept me in bondage...after I stopped drinking could not get away from porn and gained weight thanks to the sugar feast available at my home group. I Just left a relationship that I started in the program...Got saved through Faith in Jesus Christ April thanks to my roommate. I started praying to Jesus but had this feeling that something was not right...looking around at the hate of that "higher power" in the groups. My Sponsor must have been sent by God..an unsaved angry man who died 5 months ago literally due to anger...was very argumentative when he saw what he considered not AA behavior...had a blowout...got kicked out of his home group...the last meeting I saw him at he called the group a bunch of hypocrites because we were supposed to be non religious but recite the Our Father prayer...then stormed out of the room started arguing in the parking lot the next day he died...the reason I say he was sent by God was because he told me this was not a Christian program...told me I was in a cult....we would make jokes...and really did not like Bill Wilson at all as he called him an egomaniac....a womanizing hypocrite...and "The most famous anonymous person of all time". Also told me to research the history of it...that is where it really gets scary...also the similarity with Aleister Crowley and the AA coin and his group named AA also...powerlessness and all that nonsense. Then the fact that the Oxford Group and Frank Buchman and that cult being the basis for the cult of AA. Occult, masonic like practices of seances, conjuring the dead and Ouija boards and his "burning bush" moment in the hospital 1934 where he "saw god" who appears on command for old Bill while going through DTs under the Belladonna treatment full of a cocktail of various drugs and barbiturates...and high levels of mercury. Also love how people who suffer from "terminal uniqueness' have to get with the program, we are all garden variety drunks....that statement REEKS of hypocrisy in that we all all sinners...and need Jesus...but don't think you are Unique in AA newcomer...hello you are in a satanic cult that has a whole program for one sin...so you can separate yourself because other people don't understand...and a 12 step program for every sin known to man...so if I get a coin for time abstaining from alcohol....then shouldn't I get coins for lengths of time I didn't commit other sins...please give my lifetime coin for not murdering please...I need my 3 month coin for not fornicating...and on and on. To say it is a disease is a complete insult to someone who has a real disease like cancer. If God sets you free you are free indeed, He does not wish that you identify yourself by or obsess over past behaviors you may have long since changed, those sins were paid for a long time ago. Well looking forward to hearing from you soon...thanks and my God continue to bless your ministry...the real GOD that is...not a doorknob
If you are a Christian who was fooled and trapped in the false teachings of Twelve Step programs, I hope you will read and meditate on the words of this wonderful prayer. When I realized the truth of the Twelve Steps I was horrified that I had participated for so long in such heresy. I asked the Lord for forgiveness, turned from the path I was on and repented of the sin the Twelve Steps had led me into.
I am so sorry for the way I'm wasting the precious life you gave me.
Forgive me for living like a selfish three year old.
Forgive me for any pride I take in my "wild times" war stories.
Forgive me for believing in worldly labels like addict, alcoholic, and many others.
Forgive me for portraying myself as sick and diseased.
Let me see the reality of my state.
I am not a victim.
I am a sinner, and a law breaker.
I am guilty for my crimes.
Forgive me Lord for making a program my Messiah and savior instead of you.
Forgive me Lord for putting The Big Book in front of or even alongside your awesome word.
Forgive me for every recovery meeting I ever attended because a recovery meeting is all about ME!
Forgive me for sitting in a room where you are horrifically referred to as a higher power. My heart aches that I described you in that way.
Have mercy on me for holding hands and reciting the way you taught us to pray as a cheap means to a better life. Show me what that prayer really means!
Forgive me for every sponsor I ever had and I pray that you would reveal truth in their hearts that they might also be saved.
Lord, from this day forward I put my faith and trust in you.
I repent, I am turning from my sin and wicked way of life and I desire to live a life that is pleasing to you.
I believe Lord that you went to the cross and took my sins, my lawlessness with you and you suffered and drank down the cup of wrath that was mine.
I believe I am saved through grace alone, in Christ alone.
It is this grace that keeps me sober and changes my desires.
I believe that your word is sufficient for my life.
Father, thank you for the gift of your son.
Holy Spirit, fill me and help me live the life I am called to.
All praise and thanks to Jesus Christ my Lord who took me from death to life and from darkness to light.
- By Doug Hardy
After being on the Matt Slick Live radio show for three days last week I was contacted by a few individuals trying to defend Celebrate Recovery. The following is my response to a man who leads Celebrate Recovery at his Church:
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. - John 3:17-18
Without experiencing and understanding the conviction of sin and the resulting condemnation, how can anyone come to see the need for Jesus Christ as Savior, repent, and be blessed with the divinely generated desire to follow and serve Him as Lord?
The erroneous disease concept of Alcoholics Anonymous works in such a way that the sinner trapped in alcoholism through rampant sinful desire is veiled from the guilt and remorse of sin by being falsely led to believe that they are afflicted with disease and that their destructive behaviors are it's symptoms. The destructive danger of the disease concept of alcoholism lies in the fact that the sinner in dire need of hearing the gospel, experiencing the conviction of sin, repenting of their sin and trusting in Jesus Christ, instead begins seeking "recovery" from a non-existent disease by working a program in an effort to get their life back together. They grieve for what they have lost and the damage they've caused, but their entire concept of recovery is self focused; hence the easy to swallow "god as we understand him" put forth by Alcoholics Anonymous rather than the only true God of the Bible who by the working of the Holy Spirit through the gospel generates by grace a genuine grief leading to repentance of sin and faithful trust in Jesus Christ.
For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death. - 2 Corinthians 7:10
By striving to provide "recovery solutions" the gospel has been pushed aside and the entire purpose of the church has been hijacked. The modern church's myopic obsession with recovery must be thrown out and replaced with a reliance on the sufficiency of scripture and faith in God that when His gospel is proclaimed without compromise the Holy Spirit will transform people who seem beyond any hope of redemption.
“The gospel has it’s convictions to make way for it’s consolations.” - Charles Spurgeon
Below is a reply I posted on Facebook to a comment from a disciple of Celebrate Recovery. I hope this helps to open the eyes of some of those who have been misled by that program.
Their comment was:
"Thank you Chad I respect your opinion as it is yours. I learned in CR how to stay clean and sober for 27 years. It worked for me. It works for anyone wanting sobriety and willing to work on it."
Actually, my response was not simply my opinion but the truth about Celebrate Recovery from a Biblical perspective.
On page 18 of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous we read, "An illness of this sort - and we have come to believe it an illness - involves those about us in a way no other human sickness can." But is alcoholism really an illness or disease? To answer this question I will address it strictly from a Christian perspective and go directly to the scriptures.
Luke 21:34-35, But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap.
For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth.
Romans 13:13-14, Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.
Galatians 5:19-21, Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God
It is quite clear in God's Word that drunkenness is a sin and not a disease. But is this false teaching by Alcoholics Anonymous really that big of a deal? Is it really hurting people to convince them they have a disease in order to inspire them to work harder at the program because of the fear produced by the false belief that if you don't work the program you will probably die? If it helps an alcoholic to believe they suffer from a disease for which there is no cure, but only a daily reprieve as the book Alcoholics Anonymous claims on page 85, "We are not cured of Alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition." Is that a bad thing if they are able to get sober and get their life back together? Of course it's a bad thing. Anything that is based on a lie and especially if it directly contradicts God's Word is a very bad thing - in fact this lie can be eternally fatal.
The problem is by convincing someone suffering in the sin of alcoholism that they have a disease almost instantly removes much of the feeling of guilt associated with the sin. But more importantly it moves them away from the vital need to experience the conviction of sin which leads to repentance. I can tell you this is exactly what can and usually does happen because it is what my own personal experience was. When I was told that I drank and used because I was an alcoholic with a disease and that's what people with that disease do, I still vividly remember feeling a sense of relief from guilt and remorse - and that was about twenty three years ago. It took me about thirteen years after that experience to finally start waking up by God's grace to the truth that I was not sick, I did not have a disease - I was a sinner. I had been lied to and suckered into working a ridiculous program day after day, going to meetings day after day, and talking to clueless misled sponsors day after day for over thirteen years - so pathetic!
I never needed to work a program, go to meetings, get a sponsor, maintain sobriety so that I could have a daily reprieve from an incurable disease - that was all time spent brainwashed by lies. I needed to repent and turn away from the sin that was killing me through drugs and alcohol and throw myself into the loving arms of Jesus Christ who is the only one that can save anyone from the wages of sin which is death. I needed to experience grief, guilt, and conviction of sin in order to come to the only truth of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
2 Corinthians 7:10, For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.
Acts 4:12, And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
Disciples of Alcoholics Anonymous often tell frightened and angry newcomers, "Don't leave before the miracle happens". I can tell you from experience that the only miracle that happens in Alcoholics Anonymous is when the Lord wakes you up and you leave that apostate program in the dust and follow Jesus.
Matthew 8:22, And Jesus said to him, "Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead."
"Any teaching that detracts in the slightest from the glory of God is not a biblical teaching."
- James R. White, The Potters Freedom - A defense of the reformation, pg 181
Because Celebrate Recovery is based on the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and practiced in thousands of Christian churches without ever being questioned or held up to the light of scripture it is one of the most damaging forms of apostasy in the modern Christian church. The Twelve Steps in no way bring glory to the Lord and false teachings cannot be combined with the word of God.
"Substitute anything for Christ, and the Gospel is totally spoiled!
Add anything to Christ, and the Gospel ceases to be a pure Gospel!
Put anything between a person and Christ, and that person will neglect Christ for that very thing!
Spoil the proportions of Christ's Gospel, and you spoil its effectiveness!
Evangelical religion must be the Gospel, the whole Gospel and nothing but the Gospel!"
- J.C. Ryle
The common argument from proponents of Celebrate Recovery when presented with the truth of the twelve steps heretical origins is that because bible verses are used along with the Twelve Steps in Celebrate Recovery it is a Christian program - this defense is ridiculous. If bible verses were added to Hitler's Mein Kampf or the Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx, would these writings then be considered Christian? Of course not. False teachings are false teachings and have no place in a Christian church.
This [evil] persuasion is not from Him Who called you [Who invited you to freedom in Christ]. A little leaven (a slight inclination to error, or a few false teachers) leavens the whole lump [it perverts the whole conception of faith or misleads the whole church]. - Galatians 5:8,9 Amplified Bible
Is adding to God's word by blending the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous with the scriptures as the Celebrate Recovery Bible does biblical? Not according to Proverbs 30:5-6, "Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar."
Celebrate Recovery is part of Rick Warren's Saddleback church. Rick Warren made the following claims regarding the twelve steps during his "Road to Recovery" series of sermons:
"In 1935 a couple of guys formulated, based upon the scriptures, what are known as the classic Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and used by hundreds of other recovery groups. Twenty million Americans are in a recovery group every week and there are 500,000 recovery groups. The basis is God's word."
Rick Warren's statement above is completely false and it is irresponsible for any Christian Pastor to make such claims. He either never took the time to research the origins of the Twelve Steps and what they teach or he was intentionally making a false statement. There is no way that the Twelve Steps were "based upon the scriptures" or that their "basis is God's word" as he claims. The concept of God as a Higher Power of our own understanding put forward by Bill Wilson in the Twelve Steps is blasphemy. The Twelve Steps also falsely teach forgiveness of sins by a God of our own understanding while Christ is no part of the Alcoholics Anonymous Twelve Step program whatsoever.
If you have not yet done so, please read through the sections on this website that disclose The Origins of the 12 Steps, The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, Other Alcoholics Anonymous Writings and Publications, and Views and Commentary on the 12 Steps. Then honestly and prayerfully decide if, based on the truth of scripture, it is acceptable for Celebrate Recovery meetings to take place in Christian churches since Celebrate Recovery is founded upon the heretical Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.
You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. - 1 Corinthians 10:21
The word of God is all we need. There simply is no way to justify the need for anything else - especially something as far from the Christian gospel message as the Twelve Steps.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. - Hebrews 4:12
This morning while reading Matthew Henry's commentary on the book of Exodus I came across a comment that Henry makes regarding chapter 10 verse 17 in which Pharaoh states, "Now therefore, forgive my sin, please, only this once, and plead with the Lord your God only to remove this death from me."
Henry comments, "Pharaoh desires their prayers that this death only might be taken away, not this sin: he deprecates the plague of locusts, not the plague of a hard heart, which yet was much the more dangerous."
What a mirror image this is of one of the greatest dangers presented from an eternal perspective by Alcoholics Anonymous and the twelve steps. By presenting the false concept of alcoholism being a disease, the required conviction of sin leading to repentance via the gospel is completely avoided. Instead, the focus is on the removal of immediate pain and the recovering of temporal possessions and standing while religiously working a program of false spirituality. The devastating consequence is that the plague of alcoholism may end as long as it is replaced with the religion of the program, and secular life might be restored - yet the plague of the hardened heart dead in sin still remains. And it is much more dangerous.
All of the articles here can be accessed by category on the Articles and Breaking Through Recovery Pages.