Is God able to deliver you from your addictions at the point of salvation?
My opinion: Yes. We come to salvation because we acknowledge the need for a savior. Jesus Christ is our savior. We may define salvation as surrendering your life to the savior, Jesus Christ.
Above is a link to an article titled: “Picking up the pieces: The heavy price I paid for my addiction to alcohol” published in The Nation on July 21, 2021.
It narrates the story of an alcohol addict by the name Joseph Muchwe Karanja who was delivered from his addiction.
You will note that peer pressure is amongst the causes of Joseph’s alcohol addiction. The article states: “They say some addictive lifestyles stem from peer pressure, and what he picked from his friends turned out to be a habit that almost cost his life. It began as a ‘cool’ thing to do on outings with friends shortly after completing high school. His first time drinking alcohol left a bitter taste in his mouth, but this did not discourage him, and with time he became addicted to it.”
The bible calls the Christian to be a rebel of this world.
Romans 12:1-2 NLT states Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
It is through the renewal of our minds that we have new godly desires and kill ungodly desires.
I personally believe that these addictions; drug abuse, pornography, masturbation, lust…..are demonic spirits.
Why do I say so? When a person is under a demonic spirit, their will is violated. They no longer can control their actions even if their actions could result in death. When you read the article, you clearly see that Joseph could not dictate when he could take a drink or which drink he could take. Anytime and as long as it gave him a euphoric feeling, it was good for him. He had to have it or he could not function.
The article states: “I could not function unless my body was fortified with alcohol, any type of alcohol. I remember my trembling was so bad at times that someone had to hold the glass for me so that I could drink from it,” he says.
The article further narrates: Anything alcoholic, be it chang’aa or harmful spirits, as long as it gave me a euphoric feeling that would help me forget my sorrows, it was welcome,” he recalls.
When a person is under the oppression of a demonic spirit, they deteriorate in many aspects of their life. For instance, their health declines, their relationships strain amongst many other things. All that Joseph earned went into feeding his addiction. The person lacks self-respect and dignity. They walk in condemnation. They may appear they are doing okay to the physical eye but their souls are empty and drained.
The article claims: “He was surviving through any odd job that came his way, and every coin earned would go to fund his drinking habit. By then, he had neglected himself and was dirty and unkempt. His drinking not only affected him, but his family as well. To say he brought total shame to his parents is not an understatement.”
In his reflection, Joseph desires to change. He knows that he cannot break the addiction by himself. He sincerely cries out to God.
“I went to my room, knelt by my bed and said a prayer to God. I prayed like my life depended on it, and in this prayer, I asked God to change me, and asked Him to completely destroy me were I to touch alcohol again. With that covenant made with my maker, I stopped drinking.”
Such a simple yet very powerful prayer. I love how he says I prayed to God like my life depended on it. Come to think about it, it actually did. It is at the point of total surrender that God can be the Lord of our lives.
What I love even more is the covenant Joseph made with God. Joseph asks God to change him and to completely destroy him were he to touch alcohol again. Covenants are not for the ordinary person. You know why? There is a cost. You have to be committed and keep your end of the bargain. Covenants are reserved for people who are not comfortable but want to launch to the deep. Covenants strengthen a relationship.
When you are delivered, such demonic spirits leave the vessel, which is the body. Salvation in itself is deliverance.
In Mathew 12:43-45 NLT Jesus states: “When an evil spirit leaves a person, it goes into the desert, seeking rest but finding none. Then it says, ‘I will return to the person I came from.’ So it returns and finds its former home empty, swept, and in order. Then the spirit finds seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they all enter the person and live there. And so that person is worse off than before. That will be the experience of this evil generation.”
The bulk does not end at getting born again. You will still struggle even though you are saved. You build resistance to sin through obeying God.
The article states: But the demons of alcohol were not done with him yet. Withdrawal symptoms and cravings for the drink were strong on the days that followed, but he managed to resist the urge to drink “one last time”, and gradually, the symptoms and cravings subsided before altogether vanishing.
The house must not be empty. You must fill it with the word of God. When you know better, you do better.
Colossians 3:16 KJV states Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
How can you keep your ways pure?
Psalm 119:9-11 NLT states How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word. I have tried hard to find you— don’t let me wander from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
Our God is not just a powerful God. He is an all-powerful God. There is no chain he won’t break! Nothing is impossible for our God. Do you need deliverance from your addictions? Follow the path that Joseph used and ask God to help you. God is not a respecter of persons. If he did for Joseph, he can also do it for you. You have to be sick and tired of your current circumstances. You have to acknowledge the need for a savior because if you could cause the change yourself, you would not be in bondage. You have to cry out to God with a sincere and repentant heart. Make a covenant with God. I myself made a covenant with God after being set free from pornography and masturbation. I have never looked back and thought of going back to the sin that I used to love. Instead, I hate that sin!
Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ