Are Drugs a Sin? 5 Things You Need to Know

Are Drugs Sin

For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with Thanksgiving. 1 Timothy 4:4

When it comes to using drugs, the Christian Church has long-held the view that they are simply wrong. But why? What about drugs like caffeine, ibuprofen, aspirin, and codeine? Are Christians forbidden to use all drugs, or only drugs classified as “illegal”, or are we missing something?

Here are 5 things you need to know when it comes to drugs:

  1. The Bible does not forbid drug use. There are no mentions of drugs, even though many historians and Bible scholars admit that drugs were used during Biblical times.
  2. The Bible does warn against drunkenness, but not always. In addition to the verses that prohibit drunkenness, there are several verses that actually encourage and advocate getting drunk in certain cases. See Psalm 104:14–15, Proverbs 31:6, and John 2:1-11
  3. Caffeine, ibuprofen and aspirin are drugs many people – especially Christians – freely use (and abuse?) daily. So, if we’re going to say that Christians cannot use drugs, we need to define which drugs we mean, and what constitutes abuse.
  4. Endorphins and adrenaline are just as powerful as any man-made drug, and they can get you just as high as marijuana, heroin or cocaine. This is why people get addicted to extreme sports or even to long-distance running: because the body releases compounds in our bloodstream that create a natural high which can become addicting, and dangerous to your health.
  5. Many drugs are beneficial. We already know that certain drugs like morphine, for example, are highly addictive and often abused, but for someone suffering intense pain, morphine is an answered prayer. Other drugs can produce healing affects, or aid in the process of healing. Those drugs are not bad, per se, but can be abused by those who are looking for the high and not the healing properties they contain.

Conclusion: Anything can be good, or bad, depending on how we use, or abuse it. People can be addicted to food, for example. Or some people can even be addicted to other people, creating an unhealthy, co-dependent relationship.

Let’s face it: Some drugs are good for us, and some are not. Some are good for us in certain situations, and others are not good for us at all, ever. Still other substances may be beneficial in small doses, but dangerous or deadly if taken too often. We have to use discernment, and if we ever feel like our use of a substance is getting out of hand, we need to have the courage to ask for help with our addiction – or to get help before it can become an addiction.

One example of how a drug that most see as dangerous has been repurposed to capitalize on its healing properties is cannabis.

Since the early 1900s, cannabis, or “marijuana,” has been classified by the U.S. Government as an illegal, controlled substance, Schedule 1 – the most dangerous category of drug.

But why? According to Dr. Malik Burnett at DrugPolicy.org, it was largely due to racial intolerance:

To understand how we ended up here, it is important to go back to what was happening in the United States in the early 1900’s just after the Mexican Revolution. At this time we saw an influx of immigration from Mexico into states like Texas and Louisiana. Not surprising, these new Americans brought with them their native language, culture and customs. One of these customs was the use of cannabis as a medicine and relaxant.

Mexican immigrants referred to this plant as “marihuana”. While Americans were very familiar with “cannabis” because it was present in almost all tinctures and medicines available at the time, the word “marihuana” was a foreign term. So, when the media began to play on the fears that the public had about these new citizens by falsely spreading claims about the “disruptive Mexicans” with their dangerous native behaviors including marihuana use, the rest of the nation did not know that this “marihuana” was a plant they already had in their medicine cabinets.

The demonization of the cannabis plant was an extension of the demonization of the Mexican immigrants. In an effort to control and keep tabs on these new citizens, El Paso, TX borrowed a play from San Francisco’s playbook, which had outlawed opium decades earlier in an effort to control Chinese immigrants. The idea was to have an excuse to search, detain and deport Mexican immigrants.

That excuse became marijuana.

During hearings on marijuana law in the 1930’s, claims were made about marijuana’s ability to cause men of color to become violent and solicit sex from white women. This imagery became the backdrop for the marijuana Tax Act of 1937 which effectively banned its use and sales.

While the Act was ruled unconstitutional years later, it was replaced with the Controlled Substances Act in the 1970’s which established Schedules for ranking substances according to their dangerousness and potential for addiction.”

Since that time, medical research has begun to shed new light on the many benefits of cannabis, and slowly doctors are starting to change their tune about its use to treat chronic pain, insomnia, nausea, and even opioid addiction.

One of the greatest breakthroughs in recent times has been the discovery of CBD, a non-psychoactive compound derived from cannabis, that can help relieve, reduce or even eliminate painful seizures.

In this video you can see for yourself how one father was able to help relieve his daughter’s seizures. Gwenevere, just two-years-old, was having between 40 to 50 seizures per day. After taking CBD, her seizures disappeared completely and that lasted for an entire year.

As more and more of these types of CBD breakthroughs are being reported, the medical community is beginning to come around. What is even more surprising is that the FDA just recently approved CBD for use in treating seizures.

As it says in Genesis 1:29:

And God said, ‘Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed’…

So, God’s intention was for us to use our ingenuity and common sense to make good use of the plants and substances He has placed here for our benefit.

If drugs are a benefit to us, like CBD, then there’s no reason to call using them sinful.

What do you think?

Keith Giles
Keith Giles
Keith Giles was formerly a licensed and ordained minister who walked away from organized church 11 years ago, to start a home fellowship that gave away 100% of the offering to the poor in the community. He is now a best selling author and co-hosts the "Heretic Happy Hour" podcast on iTunes, Spotify and Podbean. He and his wife live in Meridian, Idaho, awaiting their next adventure.

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