Celebrate Recovery

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by tinytim, Dec 9, 2007.

  1. tinytim

    tinytim
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    Your thoughts...

    What is it?
    Is it good, bad, indifferent?...

    I had someone mention it's usefulness, so I am bringing it to BBland...

    What are your feelings?
     
  2. Dr. Bob

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    I've only heard good things about it. Son was at the national conference and said it seemed a top-notch program as a good ministry.
     
  3. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    We have a church local to us that does celebrate recovery. I attended once just to check it out. I think it is a good program, definitly a step above traditional AA groups. I can cover other addictions as well so reaches more people. I went to a NA meeting one time and wow, it was rough. I enjoyed the meeting I went to a great deal.

    I would recommend it to anyone struggling with addictions or anyone who is trying to minister to someone who is.
     
  4. Linda64

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  5. Dr. Bob

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  6. Linda64

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    The link references an article about Celebrate Recovery from the Berean Call Newsletter, October, 2005

    McMahon, T.A.
    October 1, 2005

    There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. (Proverbs 14:12)

    I recently attended the Celebrate Recovery Summit 2005 at Saddleback Church in Southern California. The primary purpose of the conference was to train new leaders who would return to their churches and inaugurate the Celebrate Recovery (CR) program. Saddleback's pastor, Rick Warren, describes CR as “a biblical and balanced program to help people overcome their hurts, habits, and hang-ups...[that is] based on the actual words of Jesus rather than psychological theory [emphasis added].” 1

    As a long-time critic of psychological counseling and 12-Steps therapies in the church (see The Seduction of Christianity and archived TBC newsletter articles and Q&As), I was pleased to have the opportunity to learn firsthand from those who are leading and/or participating in the program, to better understand what was intended in CR, and to see how it is implemented. What I learned right away was that the 3,000 or so in attendance had a tremendous zeal for the Lord and an unquestionable sincerity in desiring to help those who were struggling with habitual sin. This was my impression in all of my interactions—with individuals, in small groups, in workshop sessions, and in the general worship sessions. The CR Summit lasted three (eight- to nine-hour) days and covered nearly every aspect of Celebrate Recovery.

    Nevertheless, other thoughts ran through my mind as I reviewed whether or not I had missed something significant in my previous criticisms of 12-Steps recovery therapies. Is Celebrate Recovery’s 12-Steps program truly different—that is, “biblical and balanced…rather than psychological”—as Rick Warren believes? Furthermore, is he simply naïve when he says in his “Road to Recovery” series of sermons, “In 1935 a couple of guys formulated, based upon the Scriptures, what are now 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 [emphasis added].” Or is Celebrate Recovery another alarming example of a way that seems right to a man but one that is turning believers to ways and means other than the Bible to solve their sin-related problems? Let’s consider these questions in light of some A.A. and 12 Steps background information.

    To begin with, 12-Steps programs are not just a Saddleback Church issue. Increasing numbers of evangelical churches are sponsoring Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) and Narcotics Anonymous (N.A.) meetings and/or creating their own self-help groups based upon A.A.’s 12-Steps principles. Bill Wilson, one of the founders of A.A., created the 12 Steps. Wilson was a habitual drunk who had two life-changing events that he claims helped him achieve sobriety: 1) he was (mis)informed by a doctor that his drinking habit was a disease and was therefore not his fault, and 2) he had an experience (which he viewed as spiritual enlightenment) that convinced him that only “a Power greater than” himself could keep him sober. Attempting to understand his mystical experience, he was led into spiritism, a form of divination condemned in the Scriptures. His official biography indicates that the content of the 12-Steps principles came to him “rapidly” through spirit communication. Certainly not from God.

    Celebrate Recovery began 14 years ago at Saddleback and is used in more than 3,500 churches today, making it evangelical Christianity’s most prominent and widely exported 12-Steps church program. Warren considers CR to be “the center of living a purpose-driven life and building a purpose-driven church” and recently announced that Chuck Colson’s Prison Fellowship would begin implementing CR in every prison where the ministry is functioning.

    Celebrate Recovery is a very complex methodology that attempts to bring biblical adjustments to the 12-Steps program originated by A.A. and utilized in numerous other “addiction” recovery programs. The complexity, however, applies to the setting up and implementation of the program as well as to the strict rules that govern its execution. Although there are many problems related to “making it work,” there is only space in this article to address some fundamental issues. Let’s begin with the implications regarding the name of the program.

    Reflecting A.A.’s influence upon CR, the term “Recovery” is significant. All those in A.A. are “recovering” alcoholics, who, according to A.A., never completely recover. Recovery is a term that primarily denotes a process of physical healing. A.A. teaches that alcoholism is a disease for which there is no ultimate cure. Although CR rejects A.A.’s view of alcoholism as a disease and calls it sin, the title nevertheless promotes the A.A. concept in contradiction to what the Bible teaches. Sin is not something from which a believer is “in recovery.” Sin is confessed by the sinner and forgiven by God. The believer is cleansed of the sin right then. “I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin” (Ps 32:5).

    At the 2005 Celebrate Recovery Summit, every speaker introduced himself or herself in the A.A. “recovery” mode, with this “Christianized” difference: “Hi, I’m so and so…and I’m a believer in Jesus Christ who struggles with issues of (alcohol, drug, codependency, sex, or whatever) addiction.” The audience then applauded to affirm the individual for overcoming the “denial” of his or her habitual sin. Not to confess some “addiction” or specific sin struggle raises suspicions of “being in denial.” Throughout the three-day conference, there was never a hint from any of the speakers that anything about A.A., 12 Steps, or CR might not be biblical. Moreover, where Celebrate Recovery programs were not available, those “in recovery” were encouraged to attend A.A. or N.A. meetings.

    Rick Warren, on video, reassured the Summit attendees that CR was no man-made therapy. He insisted that CR was based upon the “actual words of Jesus Christ from the eight Beatitudes, which parallel the 12 Steps” and identified his own “Higher Power: His name is Jesus Christ.” I don’t find “Higher Power,” which is a misrepresentation of God, in the Bible. Nor can I fathom why a Bible-believing Christian would want to promote Bill Wilson’s concept and methodology. Why not simply rely on what the Bible teaches?

    Is God’s way completely sufficient to set one free from so-called addictions? Did A.A.’s founders provide a more effective way? If so, what did the church do for the nearly 2,000 years prior to Bill Wilson’s “spiritually enlightened” way to recovery? Moreover, if Wilson’s method really works, why are some in the church trying to add Jesus as one’s Higher Power and the Beatitudes to it? On the other hand, if the effectiveness of the 12-Steps program is questionable at best and detrimental to the gospel and to a believer’s life and growth in Christ, why attempt to “Christianize” such a program? It is imperative that all believers ask themselves whether or not they truly believe that the Scriptures and the enablement of God’s Holy Spirit are sufficient for “all things that pertain to life and godliness” (2 Pt 1:3). A rejection of this biblical teaching is the only possible justification for turning to ways the Bible condemns: “the counsel of the ungodly” (Ps 1:1) and “a way which seemeth right unto a man.”

    “A Way Which Seemeth Right...”
     
    #6 Linda64, Dec 11, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 11, 2007
  7. Dr. Bob

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    I'd sure read some more, unbiased materials friend. There is so much "assumption" in that cut-and-paste hatchet job that I would toss the article in the wastebasket en toto. :(

    One man's biased view (admitted already opposed and then after 3 days is villifying it) is pretty shallow.

    I've done step 4-5 in AA for many years (as a minister, this is where we get involved in AA). AA is weak and Celebrate Recovery, filled with God's Word and NOT man's philosophy, is just the opposite.

    But don't take my view as "gospel", either. My advice? Study it out.
     
  8. Linda64

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    After being in the 12-step ("so-called") recovery program (Al-Anon) for 10 years, I've read lots more than just this one article by T.A.McMahon. This Celebrate Recovery is the "mirror image" of the AA 12-Steps. I also read alot of AA material and the biography of Bill Wilson. Were you aware that Bill Wilson wrote those 12 steps while in a trance state? It's in the book "Pass It On" Go ahead and toss that article in the wastebasket--I've thrown all that 12-Step "rubbish" in my wastebasket years ago.
    You may think the article was shallow, I found it very informative...but that's not all I've read. When I was involved in Al-Anon (for 10 years), my late husband was involved with AA--he was even told that AA was "church" and that he shouldn't go to church. My late husband didn't have a "disease"--he was in bondage to sin. The bottle was his "god"--and he died from "acute ethanol toxicity" at the age of 57 (in October, 2000). The "Big Book" of AA was his "bible"
    Celebrate Recovery uses the "model" of the 12 steps of AA---changed around to make it "biblical". Why does Celebrate Recovery need 12 steps---even filled with God's Word? Why don't they just use God's Word ALONE?

    Why does Celebrate Recovery have to market goods? Seems to me it's a money making scheme.

    [FONT=Trebuchet MS, Arial, Helvetica]Order from our secure online store[/FONT]


    Don't worry...I won't. I'll continue studying God's Word. Any other "avenue" is "another" gospel.
     
  9. tinytim

    tinytim
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    Thank you all,
    Anymore?

    I wasn't surprised that Linda would be against it...
    But as much as her and SFIC rant and rave over Alcohol will send you to Hell, they should be happy when people are recovered from alcoholism...

    Here are the 8 principles... http://www.celebraterecovery.com/8principles.shtml

    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]R[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]
    Principle 1 -
    Realize I'm not God; I admit that I am powerless to control my tendency to do the wrong thing and my life is unmanageable.
    "Happy are those who know they are spiritually poor"
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]E[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]
    Principle 2 -
    Earnestly believe that God exists, that I matter to him, and that he has the power to help me recover.
    "Happy are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted"
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]C[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]
    Principle 3 -
    Consciously choose to commit all my life and will to Christ's care and control.
    "Happy are the meek"
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]O[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]
    Principle 4 -
    Openly examine and confess my faults to God, to myself, and to someone I trust.
    "Happy are the pure in heart"
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]V[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]
    Principle 5 -
    Voluntarily submit to every change God wants to make in my life and humbly ask Him to remove my character defects.
    "Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires"
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]E[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]
    Principle 6 -
    Evaluate all my relationships; Offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for harm I've done to others except when to do so would harm them or others.
    "Happy are the merciful" "Happy are the peacemakers"
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]R[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]Principle 7 -
    Reserve a daily time with God for self examination, Bible readings and prayer in order to know God and His will for my life and to gain the power to follow His will.

    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Y[/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]=[/FONT]Principle 8 -
    Yield myself to God to be used to bring this Good News to others, both by my example and by my words.
    "Happy are those who are persecuted because they do what God requires"


    Really unbiblical stuff.... Admitting we are helpless, Submitting to Christ's control, yeilding to God....

    Maybe if you can spell recovery another way, there may be a different number of steps that will suit you...

    But 8 is the number of Grace!

    Hmmm... Grace... now that is something the legalists know nothing about....
     
    #9 tinytim, Dec 11, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 11, 2007
  10. tinytim

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    Maybe you missed the fact that CR has only 8 steps... see above post....
    But I guess this is what happens when you get your education from shallow articles, and call them informative...
     
    #10 tinytim, Dec 11, 2007
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  11. standingfirminChrist

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    according toi celebrate recovery gear, it is a 12 step program. They are taking the same 12 steps of AA and adding Scripture to them.

    Then, they make the CR a $ maker by selling books, tshirts, chips, etc.

    If people would not lie and say drinking is ok, there would be no need to even consider 12 steps.

    Another thing, when is the person 'in Christ Jesus'? Paul teaches if one is in Christ Jesus old things are passed away, not to go through some kind of recovery program.
     
  12. tinytim

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    So a person becomes perfect ***BAMMMM**** The moment they are saved, and don't need help with their struggle to sin.

    I must be wasting my time preaching to Christians then...
    They are perfect, so they need no edification...

    No need to rebuke them...

    That would be good, except one pesky little thing...

    Christians still struggle with sin!!

    If a person isn't struggling with sin, Satan has them.

    When a person gets closer to God, the more he sees his sinfulness.
     
  13. tinytim

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    Is CR a program that deals with all kinds of addictions...

    Say, tobacco, or food addictions?
    What about being addicted to the internet?

    And what verses in the Bible talk about addictions?
     
  14. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    Well I don't know exactly how to say this SFIC, but while our sins are forgiven and passed away, God no longer holds them to our charge, but we still deal with them in this world. We deal with temptation, memory, and physical penalties.

    I became an alcoholic long after I was saved. I was "in Christ." I was saved before I ever took my first drink. But I still became an alcoholic. And when God brought me to the point of repentance, when I finally wanted to commit all my ways to him I needed help. I needed Christian brothers who had been where I had been. I needed brothers I could be acoutable to and yet still knew I would be accepted and loved and not judged and cast away. I had never heard of CR then but AA was a great help to me.

    AA has a lot of problems, I am not whitewashing that. Linda you have done an excellent job of listing some of those and I understand your frustration with AA. I could come or go from meetings as I wanted to. When I needed help I could go. When I was doing well I could skip. Many Christians that I met could not. Those court ordered to attend AA and NA meetings had to sit through a lot more than I did. I believe CR has some of those same problems but is a definite step up.

    The thing is AA works. Not perfectly, but it works. It gets people to quit drinking. But that is all it is designed to do. It does not bring people to Christ. It does not bring lost souls to salvation. By treating the alcoholism and leaving the soul lost they many times treat the symptom and not the real problem. Al-Anon that Linda mentioned was formed because the AA leaders saw that while they were successful in getting people to stop drinking their marriages and families were still falling apart after they got sober. But it also never addresses the root problem.

    Linda mentioned
    and here is the real problem. While meeting immediate needs programs like AA can keep people from confronting their real problem. There is a God sized void in the soul of man. A void that every lost soul feels in those quiet moments of life. You can fill that void with lots of stuff, (AA, Freemasonry, Community Service, Religion, Material Possessions, etc), but in the end they all become idols that keep us from knowing our creator and savior.
     
  15. rbell

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    Keep in mind...SFIC believes that it is impossible to commit the same sin twice if you are saved.

    So, in his philosophy, there is no need for CR.

    Sad, but whaddaya do?

    I've been very pleased at what I've seen from CR in my exposure to it. The Rick Warren-bashing hatchet job article referenced earlier is way off.
     

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