hould Christians smoke weed? Beginning in December residents of Michigan will be able to legally buy recreational marijuana because 56% of voters approved it in last year’s election. It’s expected to become a multibillion-dollar industry in the state. Medical marijuana dispensaries are already in use, but finding a store in which to purchase recreational marijuana may be more difficult (at least at first) since 79% of Michigan communities (including St. Johns) have banned such businesses from opening. As I was watching the news a couple nights ago, however, they told a story about a new trend at wedding receptions, where in addition to the alcohol bar, now the weed bar is starting to become popular. Offering weed to wedding guests is becoming a trend, apparently.
Some Christians are wondering if they should buy weed. The bigger question is just because it’s legal, is it right or good? People already are allowed to purchase alcohol; pot smokers see weed in the same way. They enjoy it, and as long as they are not hurting anyone, they should be allowed to consume it, despite whatever downsides there are. Many social experts and most law enforcement, however, do not believe recreational weed is going to be good for society, public safety, mental health, family life, kids, and future generations. We don’t know yet the damaging impact a stoner culture is going to have, or how much of a gateway it may become to addictions and worse things as more people smoke it, vape it, eat it, and apply it more frequently and in higher concentrations.
The way I see it is basically the same way as the drinking of alcohol. God says we should not get drunk (1 Cor. 6:10), but nowhere do we read in the Bible that drinking alcohol is forbidden. A Christian may have liberty to drink without getting drunk, but it still may not be wise or beneficial (1 Cor. 10:23), which is why I've chosen not to drink. Science shows that when a person drinks alcohol they lose some measure of self-control, which can open up a person to harmful influences and sinful behaviors. That’s the reason why God doesn’t want us getting drunk.
The Bible tells us to always remain sober-minded and self-controlled (1 Peter 5:8, Titus 2:1-14). Drinking wine in ancient times was recommended in a medicinal way (1 Timothy 5:23), so a case can be made for the appropriate use of medical marijuana. But can a person take a hit without getting high? Isn’t the purpose of recreational use the same as getting drunk? If I were not a Christian, perhaps it wouldn’t matter so much what I did. But as a follower of Jesus—as one who identifies myself by Christ—my purpose isn’t to gratify my sinful desires; rather, it is to glorify God in everything I do. I can’t do that buzzed.
I want to honor God with my body and mind (1 Cor. 6:19-20, Romans 12:1-2). I want to set a good example for others (1 Tim. 4:12), especially children who may be swayed by my influence. I’d rather be filled with the Spirit than filled with intoxicants (Eph. 5:18). I want my joy to come from God, not drugs.
Living an intentional life with you,