Alcoholics Anonymous and the Bible

You would be surprised at how many people in Alcoholics Anonymous meetings today think that you can't mention the Bible, share from the Bible, discuss the Bible, or even place a Bible on a table in the meetings.

This is a sketch of Alcoholics Anonymous and the Bible--by no means comprehensive, but definitely informative and useful.

    1. The first three Alcoholics Anonymous members--Bill Wilson, Dr. Bob Smith, and attorney Bill Dotson--all had Christian upbringings. All had studied the Bible long before A.A. began. And all believed in God.

    2. When Bill and Bob were formulating the Akron Alcoholics Anonymous Christian recovery program in the Smith Home in Akron in the summer of 1935, Dr. Bob's wife read the Bible to Bill and Bob every single day.

Stop Rescuing the Alcoholic and Start Rescuing You

Ask Angie: Dear Angie, I have been married to an alcoholic husband for eight years now and we have two young children together. We have taken marriage courses and I have been reading the Love Dare. I have tried the detach method but it is difficult since he starts drinking every day at around 9 or 10 in the morning (since he was laid off over six months ago) and drinks until he goes to bed which is usually midnight. If I don't talk to him when he's drinking he gets angry. How can I make the detachment work in this situation and how can I protect our children from his anger?

Alcoholics Anonymous Recovery: Twelve Steps to What!

Folks who study the Big Book, take the Twelve Steps, and carefully consider the Alcoholics Anonymous program of recovery as it is laid out in the book "Alcoholics Anonymous" should really have no problem defining the recovery program, its specified course of action, and the intended objective of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

So we will begin by looking at what the Founders and the Big Book have said about the Twelve Step program of recovery and the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Bill Wilson put these important comments in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, and here is how they are still expressed today:

Alcoholics Anonymous Questions Often Asked

Many times, questions are asked about Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) by courts, by clergy, by recovering alcoholics and addicts, and by members of the public. They have to do with genuine concerns as to what A.A. is and does; what the history of Alcoholics Anonymous is; where A.A. came from; what someone has to believe in order to be a "member;" and just how A.A., its recovery program, and its fellowship should be characterized.

The following questions and answers are those I have learned as a long-time A.A. member-recovered for over 24 years; as one who has researched and published on A.A. history and roots for over 20 years; and as one who receives these questions with some frequency-by phone, by email, by Facebook comments, by live audiences, and by mail.

A.A. & the So-called "Original Manuscript"

Many who follow my blogs, articles, books, and talks on real Alcoholics Anonymous history have asked if I have heard of the so-called Alcoholics Anonymous being published by Hazelden. A typical publicity article can be found in the Boorstein article published by The Washington Post.

As a writer, historian, retired attorney, Bible student, CDAAC, and an active and recovered member of the Alcoholics Anonymous fellowship, I have devoted 20 years to investigating Alcoholics Anonymous origins, history, founding, original program, astonishing successes and changed. See

Several remarks are appropriate at this time:

Soft Addiction and Accountability

The key to overcoming bad habits or a Soft Addiction is to take the time to learn how to become self-accountable. If a person is not held accountable for something, there is little motivation to change. We, who struggle with behavior addictions can relate to this problem. It is a main element of denial. It is getting into the habit of saying, Who, Me!

What was Surrender in Early AA?

What Was a Surrender in Early A.A.?

In the original A.A. “Christian fellowship” program founded in Akron in June 1935, pioneer newcomers had a very clear idea of A.A.’s requirement that they surrender.

The Surrender at Akron City Hospital

First, at the close of the usually-required, initial hospitalization in Akron City Hospital, there was a ceremony that involved only A.A. cofounder Dr. Bob and the newcomer with whom he had been working. It soon involved two events:
(1) The question Dr. Bob asked the newcomer:

    “Young feller, do you believe in God? Not a God, but God!”1 [emphasis in original]

(2) Then the requirement that the newcomer get out of bed, get down on his knees, and pray -- with Dr. Bob leading the prayer.2

The Quandary of Faith

I'm not one who talks much about "faith" because the word comes from a Greek root that can be defined either as "faith" or "belief." And I prefer the position that A.A.'s Dr. Bob took and required of all the early AAs he helped. It really came from the Book of Hebrews:

    Heb 11:6 (KJV): But without faith, it is impossible to please him; for he that cometh to God must believe that he is and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Dr. Bob's Bible -The "Good Book" in A.A.

The "Good Book" Is the Bible

As I have reported before-and will show again below-Alcoholics Anonymous cofounder Dr. Bob is often seen referring to the Bible as "the Good Book" in A.A. General Service Conference-approved literature. A well-known Christian couple who condemn A.A. have questioned whether Dr. Bob was a Christian because he called the Bible "the Good Book" rather than "the very Word of God"; which, they claim, "is what a true Christian would do." [See: Martin and Deidre Bobgan, "Dr. Bob Smith: A Christian 'Root' of AA?" in PsychoHeresy Awareness Letter (PAL), Jan-Feb '03 - V11N1,; accessed 5/21/10.]

Detach with Love from the Alcoholic

To detach with love from the alcoholic means to not allow what they do while drinking harm your emotional and or spiritual well being.
Detaching with love is something learned that over time becomes a habit-a good habit actually.

To understand how detaching with love works, we must first understand what not detaching is, and what it does to us, as well as the alcoholic you live with. When we don't detach we get angry, resentful, and sometimes fearful over the behaviors of the alcoholic. This happens because we are "too" consumed with the behaviors of the alcoholic or better known as the symptoms of the drinking.

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