Substance Abuse

(A spiritual comparison)

In the past working as a Bail Supervisor working in a local court system, I had a number of individuals assigned to report to me on a weekly basis. Many of them had substance abuse problems and It became obvious to me that they were using drugs and/or alcohol to escape current /and or past pressures in their lives. In doing so, they experienced broken relationship, loss of jobs and income, and finding themselves charged with criminal offences.

Let's consider another type of substance abuse; a spiritual one.

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."( Hebrews11:1) NKJV

I really like this bible version as it states faith is a substance.

One dictionary defines substance as, "the matter,stuff, material of which a thing is made of". Faith is a good substance made up of hope and evidence of good possibilities, and without it the bible states, we can not please God (Hebrews11:6)

The apostle Paul urged us not to use our faith and the anointed freedom that comes with our salvation, for our fleshly advantage.

"For you brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another" (Galatians 5:13) NKJV

I've witnessed talented Christians using their anointing to entice fellow believers into questionable multi-level business schemes, leading them to manipulate family and friends for profit, and using the Lord's name in their hyped up meetings.

I've also seen men using their new found freedom, to take advantage of na´ve Christian women. Then there are those who know the word of God, but continue to believe in and live their lives, according to worldly philosophies.

These actions I believe can be categorized, as forms of "spiritual substance (faith) abuse" and just as my former bail clients, cause lots of problems.

Prayer: Oh blessed heavenly Father, I pray that none of us will ever use Your precious anointing to our fleshly advantage. If we wander into spiritual faith abuse, I pray that You rescue us and bring us back in line with Your purposes for our lives. In Jesus' name, Amen!

Allan Smith

Innisfil Ont. Canada

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