By TAC Team: Some content has been paraphrased from Miss Shirley Crowder’s and Dr. Mark Shaw’s Podcast Conversation about the book EASTER: Meditations for Addict, available at Amazon here
Can God Really Rescue Someone Who is Deep in Addiction?
Addiction has physical components that must be addressed by medical professionals. But we have a message that eternally rescues the souls that are perishing!
The Gospel is good news to those who repent and trust in Christ alone for salvation from sin’s penalty and power.
Who is Qualified to Reach the Addicted?
Is Matthew 28:18-20 just for evangelists, missionaries, and Gospel rescue missions?
What about those who have “really bad” addictions?
Don’t people need to go to a recovery program to “get their lives straight” before they can “handle” the Word of God or be told the Gospel?
Let’s start with the Word of God.
“And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20, ESV)
Jesus died on the cross suffering the punishment that each of us deserved.
After he had risen, but before He ascended into heaven into the clouds, Jesus gave us the authority to make disciples, and He said He will be with us. The wording indicates that this is an ongoing command.
Our responsibility is to go and share the gospel. Not just once, but over and over again.
We have been rescued from an eternity in hell.
So each one of us Christ followers, can tell of the Good News of the saving power of Christ Jesus to forgive sins.
But what if they are not ready?
How do we know if someone is “ready” to listen to the Gospel message. Jesus never limited his command to make disciples only of those who are “ready to hear it.”
“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9 ESV)
But what if they angrily reject it? Will I push them further from God?
We don’t know who will repent and who will not. Dr. Mark Shaw often says, “You are not able to ‘push someone further from God.’ They are already far from God.”
People are either in the Kingdom of light or in the Kingdom of darkness. There is no in between.
I Don’t Think I’m Able to Do This
Whether you have been saved and rescued from a lifestyle of addiction or saved and rescued from other types of sinful habitual sin, you have a good message to share.
You just might have a unique audience that God has called you to reach—don’t neglect your opportunity. There are certain works that God has prepared beforehand for you to do (See Eph. 2:10). People in your circles of influence need this good news that you have received.
Their acceptance or rejection of the message is not up to us. We are unable to make someone come to Christ. That’s the Holy Spirit’s job. But because God commanded us to tell others, it is our joy and our responsibility to share the truth of God’s Word.
But I Don’t Know What to Say or How to Say it Best
If Christians keep the truth of our own rescue from darkness in the forefront of our minds, we will be more prone to speak the truth of the good news in the love of the Holy Spirit (Eph 4:15).
Remind yourself of the eternal significance of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Your eternity is secure, so why not tell others?
You can get some affordable basic fundamental training in addictions biblical counseling. Click the link or the image below for more information!
What distracts us sometimes is the pursuit and attention to worldly issues instead of the urgency of eternity. Death will be faced by every human on this planet—death and then eternity.
When this life is over, John 3:16-17 will still be true:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 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.”
EASTER: Meditations for Addicts was written by Dr. Mark E. Shaw and Shirley Crowder and is part of a series along with the book ADVENT: Meditations for Addicts. Shirley is a co-founder of this ministry with Dr. Shaw and serves as The Addiction Connection’s Vice President. She is a gifted writer and speaker and teaches women all over the country.
The Addiction Connection is Here for You!
The Addiction Connection is a network of ministries who offer hope in Jesus for those struggling with addiction of any kind. Our network of encouraging resources, ministries, and biblical programs that stretch across America and the world will always point people to truth in Jesus Christ for answers.
- Looking for biblical addiction training? Find out about our 4-6 month Commissioning Program HERE.
- Here is a list of people we have trained in biblical addiction counseling through our Commissioning Program who you can reach out to for hope and help.
- Need a Biblical Residential Program? Here are some we recommend.
- Need a Biblical Non-Residential Program? Here are the ones we’d recommend.
- Are you a leader who wants to help addicts? Check out this disciple-making curriculum we created just for you entitled Next Steps: Be TRANSFORMED.
- Looking for additional resources, courses, curriculum? Find out more HERE.
- Are you more of a podcast-listener-while-you-get-things-done? The Addiction Connection Podcast is just for you!