Why I Can’t Go to A.A. As a Christian
As a younger man, I was a disciple of A.A. for nearly two years. During that time, I worked hard to complete the twelve steps and I even sponsored other alcoholics around me. Simply put, it became my religion.
I was captivated with their messages about an all accepting “higher power”, and a path to sober salvation through steps gave me a sure hope for the future. However, after I burnt out on following those rules, and the higher power failed to change my desires, I found myself disillusioned. What went wrong? Why was I so turned off by A.A.? Where would I go from here?
Some leaders responded to my failures by telling me that my disease was once again overthrowing my will power, and others speculated that I needed to work harder at the program in order to achieve longevity. What they didn’t understand was that I had given the program every ounce of strength that I had. My tank was empty, and I wanted another route to freedom. Thanks to the true God, that other Way eventually found me.
After Christ saved me, I spent years being trained in His Word. This process changed my worldview to the point of where I could see the fallacy of Alcoholics Anonymous. It dawned on me that I had been lied to. Those lies weren’t intentional, but they were nonetheless lies.
The truth was that A.A. wasn’t just a program to follow for sobriety. It was a works based religion founded on the worship of a self made god. It demanded the allegiance of it’s followers, and it rejected the idea that there were any absolutes in recovery.
Take for example: When you enter into A.A., you are instantly taught that your higher power is defined by whatever you want it to be. It’s important to understand that historically this term “higher power” was created so that people wouldn’t be offended by the word “God”. This is one of the most basic reasons why I renounced A.A. as an alternative for Christian drug recovery.
Christianity is based on the foundation that there is one God and one mediator under heaven. (1 Timothy 2:5) This is one of the most basic beliefs of the Christian faith, yet somehow we have Christian’s who claim that it doesn’t apply when it comes to drug recovery.
A lot of people tell me that I’m wrong for saying anything about this. They claim that A.A.’s higher power system is simply a tool that will eventually lead people to Christ. I understand where they’re coming from, but I can’t find that anywhere in the scriptures. The Bible says faith in Christ comes through hearing the Word of God, not the theories of Bob and Bill. (Romans 10:17)
I also get resistance because of the claim that A.A. “works” for addicts. What they’re saying is that I should keep my mouth shut about the program because it gets and keeps people sober. Once again, I understand that it might “work” for some on this side of eternity, but I counter by pointing out that we will not stand in front of God on judgement day and hand him our sobriety coins in exchange for salvation. We will have to give an account for every word we have spoken, every thought we have pondered, and every act that we committed. (Matthew 12:36; Romans 14:12) Thus, on that day, it will matter greatly which God we worshiped and put our faith in, and this is why we should always speak out against false doctrine….even when it comes to the sensitive topic of addiction.
To my Christian friends, please consider what I’m saying. Sometimes our judgement is skewed because we have not weighed both sides of an argument. I’ve worked on both sides of the table, and I promise you that A.A. is a direct contradiction to the scriptures. If we’re not careful, our feelings will deceive us that Christ really isn’t sufficient to change a man’s deepest desires. In effect, we will believe the world when they claim we need more solutions and works to help Christ set us free! God forbid!
We’re not called to agree with the world on this issue. They are always trying to put salvation back into the hands of man, and we have to be aware of that.
To the Christian who believes A.A. feels right, I would also say that we’re not called to follow our feelings. We’re called to deny ourselves and follow Christ. There is one God. There is one Salvation. There is one Resurrection. There is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and any system that tries to overthrow those facts is simply another enemy of the cross.