What Does the Bible Say About Cannabis and CBD?

Cannabis, CBD and Bible

If you’re curious to know what the Bible has to say about cannabis use, there are a few verses you might want to consider:

… and there was no harm in the pot. 2 Kings 4:41

But the high places were not taken away: the people still sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places. 2 Kings 12:3

… every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love. Ephesians 4:16

Granted, none of these verses are actually about cannabis, even though they use words like “pot”, “high places” and “joint,” they’re not using these terms in the same way.

Honestly, the Bible really never refers directly to cannabis at all. Other than, perhaps, a slight reference to “kaneh bosom” [which might be “cannabis”] as an essential ingredient in the holy anointing oil used by Jewish priests in the Old Testament.

Here’s the verse:

The Lord spoke to Moses: Take the finest spices: of liquid myrrh five hundred shekels, and of sweet-smelling cinnamon half as much, that is, two hundred fifty, and two hundred fifty of aromatic cane (kaneh bosm), and five hundred of cassia—measured by the sanctuary shekel—and a hin of olive oil. Exodus 30:22–23

Now, if this is indeed the case, it’s a huge endorsement for the plant, since that anointing oil was used to bless everything God ever did, and every person God ever chose to lead His people, in the Scriptures.

But is it true? Well, it might be. Scholars are divided over the evidence which comes primarily from the research done by Dr. Sula Benet, a 20th century Polish anthropologist who specialized in Jewish customs. In her studies she found that the term kaneh-bosom (most commonly translated as “calamus” in modern English Bibles) should have been understood as “hemp.”

Her reasons were simple: similar words in languages like Hebrew, for example, have a double-meaning for the root word kan which can refer to both “hemp” and “reed.” Therefore, she deduced that an error may have crept into the text around the third century B.C. during the translation of the Septuagint. Rather than translate “kaneh” and “kaneh-bosom” as “hemp”, the translators instead rendered it as “sweet kalamos.” Unfortunately, this error was repeated all along the way and eventually became the accepted translation.

Even if this isn’t accurate, there are still a few good reasons to believe that God intended for us to enjoy the benefits of cannabis.

First of all, in the book of Genesis, we read that God created everything – specifically plants – for our benefit:

And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:12

And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb and plant yielding seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for food. Genesis 1:29

Every moving thing that liveth shall be food for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. Genesis 9:3

The problem has been that, for many years, Christians have been told that cannabis, is evil, addictive, and harmful. Research confirms this. According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH):

Adults who attend religious services more frequently and hold more salient religious beliefs tend to exhibit lower rates of medical and casual cannabis use.

But this trend may be undergoing a shift. Researchers have also found that:

Although religious involvement is likely to be associated with lower rates of marijuana use, this association could be contingent on health status. Even in the context of contentious political debates, marijuana use has been increasingly medicalized and is now viewed as an acceptable treatment for a range of health conditions in several states. For this reason, marijuana use is often more common among adults reporting fair or poor health.

What we are now learning, as more scientific research is being done, is that there’s no reason to fear cannabis use for health purposes. See, it turns out, it’s not evil at all, but it’s actually good for us. Which confirms what was said in Genesis about God creating all seed-bearing plants and herbs for our benefit. See Genesis 1:12-29

Simply put, cannabis is an herb. It yields seed after its kind. It has many positive healing properties. It is – dare we say it – “very good”, exactly as God declared it to be from day one.

Just how good is cannabis? Well, according to several studies, articles, and  in the professional opinion of many physicians and scientists, cannabidiol (or CBD), which is an oil derived from the cannabis plant, is very good. Especially if you happen to suffer from:

  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Epileptic seizures
  • Eating disorders
  • Migraines
  • Depression
  • Chronic pain
  • Inflammation
  • Nausea
  • Lack of appetite
  • Opioid addiction

The really great thing about CBD is that it doesn’t contain THC, so it’s non-psychoactive – meaning it won’t make you high. Plus, it’s also non-addictive. So, you get all of the benefits you do want and none of the negative stuff you don’t want.

This also means you never have to worry about failing a random drug test at work since CBD does not contain THC (the other compound found in cannabis, which does get you high and which would show up on a drug panel).

So, is it all good? Some are skeptical. For example, while many swear by the positive effects of CBD, others are still waiting for more thorough medical research and extensive clinical trials before they make up their minds. Others are also concerned because, to date, there aren’t a lot of studies being done to see how CBD may affect children.

Overall, most agree that the positive effects of CBD far outweigh any observable side-effects, at least in the majority of cases. Especially for those who suffer from painful epileptic seizures, or chronic pain, the immediate relief they receive using CBD is well worth any minor side-effects they may have to endure.

As always, you should consult your doctor before trying CBD, and of course, consider the legality of purchasing or using CBD in your home state as laws are sometimes confusing regarding its consumption.

But there’s one thing Christians need not worry about when it comes to using CBD and that’s what the Bible has to say about it. It’s simply a natural, organic, plant-based oil derived from a God-given herb that provides a fistful of great benefits to people who are suffering from several serious health issues.

As long as it’s legal in your home town, there’s no reason to worry about using CBD to improve your health.

It’s probably the reason God gave us the cannabis plant in the first place.

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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