Addiction falls under the Ten Commandments under idolatry. Why is it idolatry? Jesus focused on two laws to follow that are the most important: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and soul” and “love your neighbor as yourself.” The implied law is love yourself. An addiction, as sin, kills the body and strips it’s life force. You’ll notice addictions drain energy and ultimately kill the body. Anything that kills is sin because in the Ten Commandments, God tells Moses not to kill. It is idolatry because it places a love of something other than God above God, above yourself and above your neighbor. It causes you to act in ways uncharacteristic of a Christ or the wholistic (Holy Spirit filled) individual a Christ follower should be. The Holy Spirit gives us self control and understanding. It is the creative mind of Christ.
You may be thinking, I don’t have any addictions. I don’t smoke, I don’t drink alcohol – etc. That’s good because those things aren’t healthy and they can lead to addictions but there are addictions lurking that are sneakier that what you’d expect. First, I will give a definition of an addiction: it is anything that produces a reaction in the brain or body that is done repeatedly, and without control, in order to induce a sensation in the body, mind or spirit that strips you of your life force.
For a while I struggled and continue to fight incessant thinking. I found that God was displeased with me and he called it sorcery. Addiction is very much like sorcery. I was addicted to thinking. In order to soothe myself, I would repeat words in my mind. They were often illogical but they comforted me – like a cigarette would a smoker. When I was exercising today I noticed that every time a thought that was not creative but intended to create movement with my feelings or the material world I would feel more tired and out of breath. This is because thoughts that are generated in the form of striving (worry or regret, even sorcery) are those that strip your life force because they are sinful. This is why God says in Isaiah, “My thoughts are not your thoughts,” and “[My] thoughts are higher than your thoughts.”
God’s thoughts are creative and inspiring – life giving. They map and instruct. Our thoughts are often no more than addictions and vain repetitions of magical phrases or words that give us comfort – much like an addictive substance. Just like an addictive substance, they strip the mind of creativity, spontaneousness and mindfulness. It takes us from the present moment and forces us into the past or future – in regret or worry – depression or anxiety. It’s all a form of striving. It’s doing something mindlessly and habitually in order to get somewhere meaningful (to a place of contentment). Thoughts that we have that don’t serve us, don’t serve God.
God wants us to think like the Lord. That’s why it’s important for Christians to familiarize themselves with Christ’s words and to meditate and think about them. They will instruct and give life. When you have a thought that doesn’t serve you, let it go. Don’t repeat it or pay it any mind. In fact, use your creativity and God’s Spirit to discern why you had it. That is, you can test it against the Word and realize where it came from.
Why does this matter? All thoughts are important to God. The Lord is intimate with creation and hears our every thought. In fact, in Christ, all our prayers are “yes” or “amen.” This means, don’t fantasize or meditate on disaster because it is like asking for disaster or catastrophe. This is why Jesus said not to worry. God feeds the sparrows and clothes the flowers of the valley – why wouldn’t He clothe and feed you? If you ask for something and believe it to happen, it is true as far as your mind is concerned. Don’t tell yourself things that aren’t true.
For instance, the Bible says that “there is therefore no curse for those who are in Christ.” That means there is no disease. So don’t go telling yourself “what if I get cancer?” Or “I have cancer,” because your body makes true what you believe. If you have cancer it is because you believe you have it. Cancer cells naturally exist within every body and your body’s immune system kills them. It can’t kill them when you’re telling yourself that you are diseased and stripping yourself of your own life force. Christ died so that we could have life. Now we live with Him and we don’t need to worry about disease. That doesn’t mean sin or engage in addictive behaviors but if we do sin, we have Christ as our advocate and the Holy Spirit as our Helper. The Holy Spirit will counsel you on what to ingest and do in order to keep your life force flowing. Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit and do what it tells you to do. If you have the Holy Spirit you will not sin because it will guide you on what to do to stop it and take the desire to sin away so that there is nothing left to propel any addictive forces.
In terms of addictive substances, they are exactly like addictive thoughts. If you prune the negative thoughts that say “if I don’t get my drug I’ll die,” into thoughts like “I don’t need my drug because ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,'” you can stop the addiction in it’s tracks and this is the power of the Holy Spirit at work. Christ said, “anyone who keeps [My] word will never see death.” Christ also said that we are transformed by the reading of His Word. Our minds are renewed with the reading of the Word.
Any fallacy or untruth will flay the body with lacy garments by calling on a calf like idol that cannot save in order to allay one’s fears and causing you to fall.