What follows is a collection of quotes on this subject. They are not meant to sequentially walk through the subject or to comprehensively cover the subject. Their purpose is merely to expose you to a variety of thoughts and perspectives by Christian men and women.
“No matter how they start, addictions eventually center in distress and in the self-defeating choice of an agent to relieve the distress. In fact, trying to cure distress with the same thing that causes it is typically the mechanism that closes the trap on an addict—a trap that, as just suggested, might be baited with anything from whiskey to wool (p. 131)… The exposure event is thus a severe mercy, a potent bearer of shame and grace (p. 135)… In important respects, ‘the addiction experience is the human experience,’ since we all ‘have a habit’ where sin is concerned. Addiction shows us how the habit works, where it goes, and why it persists. In fact, we might think of addiction as a lab demonstration of the great law of returns, the law of longing and acting and the forming of habits that lead to renewed longing (p. 147)… When in full cry, addiction is finally about idolatry. At last, the addict will do anything for his idol, including dying for it (p. 148).” Cornelius Plantinga, Jr in Not the Way It’s Supposed to Be: A Breviary of Sin
“You can control things, but you cannot control God or your relationship to him. Proper worship is not only putting God where he belongs in your life but also surrendering control of your life to him. Impersonal things so easily seduce us because they put us in control, the place where every sinner wants to be. Here is one of idolatry’s great allures, yet it is at once also one of its great dangers. You and I were never meant to be in control, and when we are, we always make a mess out of things… The enslaving, addicting quality of idolatry must not be understated or ignored (p. 100)… Perhaps the biggest and most tempting lie that all of us tend to embrace is that our greatest problems exist somewhere outside of us (p.113).”Paul David Tripp, Lost in the Middle: Midlife and the Grace of God
“Sin is more than conscious choice. Like a cruel taskmaster sin victimizes and controls us (John 8:34). It captures and overtakes (Gal. 6:1 )…. In other words, sin feels exactly like a disease. It feels as if something outside ourselves has taken over. In fact, one of Scripture’s images for sin is disease (e.g., Isa. 1:5-6) (p. 33).” Edward T. Welch, Addictions a Banquet in the Grave
“Who would have thought? The treatment for addiction is to want something better than your addictions (p. 3)… You do your addiction because you like it. Maybe you want to change, but at the same time, you don’t want to change. You are caught between wanting to trust God and wanting to be God. Acknowledge this and you are walking in the right direction (p. 14)… You addiction went from being a friend to a lover to a slave-master (p. 25)… Right now [as you leave your addiction] it feels like you are giving things up. But in reality you are inheriting a new kingdom (p. 28).” Edward T. Welch in Crossroads: A Step-by-Step Guide Away from Addiction
“All sin is ultimately irrational….. Though people persuade themselves that they have good reasons for sinning, when examined in the cold light of truth on the last day, it will be seen in every case that sin ultimately just does not make sense (p. 493)…The Bible’s depiction of the human race is that today it is actually in an abnormal condition…. In a very real sense, the only true human beings were Adam and Eve before the fall, and Jesus. All the others are twisted, distorted, corrupted samples of humanity (p. 518)… Our view of the cause of sin will determine our view of the cure for sin, since the cure for sin will necessarily involve negating the cause (p. 616).” Millard Erickson in Christian Theology
“They become conscious of the fact that they have been merely fighting the symptoms of some deep-seated malady, and that they are confronted, not merely with the problem of sins, that is, of separate sinful deeds, but with the much greater and deeper problem of sin, of an evil that is inherent in human nature (p. 227, emphasis added)… Sin does not reside in any one faculty of the soul, but in the heart, which in Scriptural psychology is the central organ of the soul, out of which are the issues of life. And from this center its influence and operations spread to the intellect, the will, the affections, in short, to the entire man, including his body (p. 233).” Louis Berkhoff in Systematic Theology
“In fact, the longer we struggle with a problem, the more likely we are to define ourselves by that problem (divorced, addicted, depressed, co-dependent, ADD). We come to believe that our problem is who we are. But while these labels may describe particular ways we struggle as sinners in a fallen world, they are not our identity! If we allow them to define us, we will live trapped within their boundaries. This is no way for a child of God to live (p. 260)!” Paul Tripp in Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hand
“There is a progressive character to this string of words that describes the turning away of the believer. The sinful heart, not wanting to live under the convicting light of truth, lives in the shadows and becomes weak and unbelieving. The unbelieving heart, having lost its confidence in God, has no reason to continue to persevere and begins to turn away. And the heart that has turned away, no longer sensitive to the truth of God, becomes increasingly hardened to the things of the Lord. What the passage [Heb 3:12-15] describes is a subtle acceptance of sin patterns, an acceptance that grows until it becomes a hardened turning away from the living God. What a terrifying warning (p. 144)!” Paul Tripp in War of Words
“Sin is what we do when our heart is not satisfied with God (p. 9).” John Piper in Future Grace
“Sin is not just about willfulness; that is, conscious stepping over God’s boundaries. Sin is also about blindness; that is, not seeing what needs to be seen in order to live as God has called me to live. The sinner is both willfully blind and blindly willful (p. 42).” Paul Tripp in “Strategies for Opening Blind Eyes” Journal of Biblical Counseling
“This is how idolatry grows in our hearts. We want things and we aren’t sure God will give them to us, so we put our trust in other gods. This is THE problem of the human heart—misplaced trust. We value, love, and trust something in creation more than the Creator, and since there is nothing in creation that is intended to bear the weight of our trust, we are bound to live in fear. All other loves must be subordinate to your love for Christ (p. 149).” Edward T. Welch in Depression A Stubborn Darkness
If this post was beneficial for you, then considering reading other blogs from my “Favorite Posts on Addiction” post which address other facets of this subject.