Can Christians Smoke Legalized Marijuana?
I read your article on alcohol, tattoos and implants, and thought it very well done. But, let’s say marijuana became legal, should the Christian partake of it. (I know we are to obey the laws of the land, so this is more of a what-if type question).
The Greek word for witchcraft is “pharmarkaia” from which we get our English word, “drugs.” Note the correlation between drugs and witchcraft. Any sort of mind-altering drug leaves our minds open to control by demonic influence. So, don’t smoke marijuana. It is more of a spiritual warfare issue than a legal one. There are also both short-term and long-term health risks associated with marijuana use. Since as Christians our bodies are temples indwelt by the Holy Spirit, we shouldn’t smoke marijuana.
I affirm your affirmation that Christians are to obey the law. Therefore, those living in states or countries where marijuana use is outlawed have a Christian responsibility to avoid the drug. Paul makes governmental obedience a must for Christians in Romans 13:1-2: “Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.”
However, twenty-four states, including Canada, have legalized marijuana. In fact, marijuana use is legal in most of the countries of the world. So, your question is not so hypothetical after all!
Historically, documented marijuana use extends back to the third millennium B.C. Charred cannabis seeds were found in a ritual blazer at an ancient burial site in present-day Romania. The ancient utilization of Marijuana use is known now to cover virtually every country in the world from 5,000 years ago to the present.
Cannabis was used by the ancient Hindus and Sikhs of India and Nepal. The Assyrians discovered its psychoactive properties and passed it on to Turkey, Greece, Thrace and Bulgaria. The shamans of ancient Dacia (today’s northern Greece) used it in religious ceremonies and called it, “way to produce smoke.” In 2003, a leather basket filled with cannabis leaf fragments and seeds was found next to a 2,500- to 2,800-year-old mummified shaman in Xinjing province in China.
Intriguingly, it seems that William Shakespeare was quite familiar with the usage and effectiveness of marijuana. He makes several veiled references to the drug in his sonnets. Marijuana residue dating back to his lifetime was found in several places in his estate home.
The United Nations estimates that about 4% of the world’s population (162 million people) use marijuana on a sporadic basis while about 0.6% (22.5 million) use it daily.
Frankly, I see no reason why marijuana can’t be used for medicinal purposes—especially as an analgesic to reduce physical pain. However, that does NOT infer that I believe it should be legalized. From my research, I can only say that cannabis used medically can reduce nausea and vomiting, stimulate hunger in chemotherapy patients and help in treating both breast cancer and glaucoma.
In short term use, marijuana has psychoactive and hallucinogenic properties. It alters proper perceptions of reality, alters mood, increases blood pressure, increases heart rate and impairs both short-term and long-term working memory. I don’t care to be near a marijuana impaired driver—ever!
Concerning long-term effects, Cannabis is ranked as one of the least harmful drugs by a study published in the UK medical journal, The Lancet. However, daily cannabis smokers have a 5.7 times higher risk of lung cancer than non-users. Several studies correlate marijuana uses with the development of anxiety, psychosis, and depression.
Thanks, D, for your question. I imagine that many Christians are asking the same question. In summary, I see it could possibly have value for medicinal use. There is no other acceptable reason for a Christian to ingest it.