"The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."
Ministry of John the Baptist
3 In those days John the Baptist appeared in the desert of Judea announcing, 2 “ Change your hearts and lives! Here comes the kingdom of heaven! ” 3 He was the one of whom Isaiah the prophet spoke when he said:
4 John wore clothes made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist. He ate locusts and wild honey.
5 People from Jerusalem, throughout Judea, and all around the Jordan River came to him. 6 As they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River. 7 Many Pharisees and Sadducees came to be baptized by John. He said to them, “ You children of snakes! Who warned you to escape from the angry judgment that is coming soon? 8 Produce fruit that shows you have changed your hearts and lives. 9 And don’t even think about saying to yourselves, Abraham is our father. I tell you that God is able to raise up Abraham’s children from these stones. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees. Therefore, every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be chopped down and tossed into the fire. 11 I baptize with water those of you who have changed your hearts and lives. The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 12 The shovel he uses to sift the wheat from the husks is in his hands. He will clean out his threshing area and bring the wheat into his barn. But he will burn the husks with a fire that can’t be put out. ”
Chances are, no church is immune to the drug demographics in America. Pointing out that addiction is a pervasive problem in North American society, Lynn Dann provides pastors and other pastoral caregivers with crucial help in understanding the needs of the addicted, their families, and the congregations of which they are a part. He draws on years of experience as a pastor and a certified alcohol and substance abuse counselor to offer practical guidance on how to recognize the addicted and minister effectively to them.
Dann begins by outlining, in clear and accessible terms, the best contemporary thinking on the nature of addiction. From there he moves to a discussion of the particular resources that Christian churches can add to the treatment of addiction and the support of the addicted and their families. Finally, he includes tools for preaching and teaching on the nature of our drug-obsessed culture and biblical themes related to the care of the addicted. Those who are just beginning in pastoral ministry, as well as those who have engaged in it for many years, will find this an invaluable resource for knowing how to deal with this tragic and increasingly prevalent problem.