Sunday, March 22, 2015

Should Christians Use Marijuana?”

“My son is having pains and we are told that he could benefit from medical marijuana. Do you think that it is alright?” This is a very controversial topic unlike others. You will have to read the article until the end to find my opinion. I don’t want you to start popping smoke here and there and when they ask you, you say that, "Hamilton told me that I can smoke because it is written in the Bible." I must tell you that I neither smoke nor use any drug, whatsoever. Actually, I have never used drugs (marijuana, cocaine, etc ) in my entire life.
I wonder how I have never answered this question. I will define the word, trace it in the bible and then deal with its morality and legality. Cannabis is defined as, “/can·na·bis/ (kan´ah-bis) the dried flowering tops of hemp plants (Cannabis sativa), which have euphoric principles (tetrahydrocannabinols); classified as a hallucinogen andprepared as bhang, ganja, hashish, and marihuana.”[1] Our next step is to locate the plant in the bible.  
Many people have thought that calamus mentioned in Ex 30:23; Can of Cant 4:14 & Ezek 27:19 is the same plant as marijuana. The only problem is that the word calamus in the bible refers to an aromatic reed.[2][3]Packer and Tenney define Calamus as, “A tall reed-like grass with hollow stems. The Hebrew term for this plant (Keneh bosem) means ‘reed of fragrance.’ It is indeed a very sweet-smelling plant (Song of Sol. 4:14).”[4] Elwell and Comfort define calamus as, “ a variety of sweet-smelling cane.” [5] Everyone knows that marijuana is not a sweet-smelling plant, so calamus in the bible would not be the same as marijuana.
However, cannabis is a plant, and the bible reads, “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; to you it shall be for meat(Gen 1:29).” God authorizes humans to eat plants that bear seeds. Cannabis is a plant that bears seeds. Therefore, cannabis is edible. Why should that raise polemics? If it is a plant, then it is justified to be eaten. Don’t be too excited! There is a little catch. The most popular way people use marijuana is by smoking.
Smoking is not mentioned in the bible, but it qualifies into the definition of sin, “All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death (I Jn 5:17).” As of 2015, lung cancer is the #1 killer amongst all cancers and smoking is the leading cause. [6] Cigarettes have chemicals like dibenspyrene which is known to cause cancer. Tobacco smoke contains more than 70 different substances that can cause cancer, so these chemicals enter into your lungs and body as you inhale the smoke. As a result, they alter important genes which cause them to duplicate or replicate out of control. Some people flatter themselves with filters. Smoking can caused blocked coronaries which prevent blood flow and cause heart attacks. Therefore, since we are jubilating with the libertinism of weed or cannabis, I will like to remind you that smoking per se is a very unhealthy and sinful practice. The rate of smoking will determine how fast the individual dies of cancer too. It does not mean that some people have not been lucky to have smoked without having cancer. It also does not mean that if you do not smoke, smoking may not affect you. You get affected by second hand smoke even much more than you smoke, so you should avoid smoking areas. The bible talks about avoiding things that are unclean. Therefore, using marijuana by smoking is like using fornication to satisfy your sexual desires.. That still leaves us with ingesting or drinking it as tea or vegetables.
While smoking may not be the healthy way to consume marijuana, one could still use it as tea or vegetables for medicinal purposes. Again, one should not be too fast again to start eating and drinking marijuana all day long as veggies and tea. There are still some limitations. John again defines sin as, “... sin is the transgression of the law (I John 3:4).” At this juncture, we are confronted with legality versus morality. You can consult this article for further reading.[7]It will be legally and morally right for you to drink or ingest marijuana as a veggie or as a tea or extracting the oil if your state laws permit.[8]

Therefore, you will have to look at the various limitations caused by the different laws and regulatory bodies like World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the Unites States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA). Does your state permit the usage of marijuana? If it does, then you look at the others if you play sports. Otherwise that will not be any excuse if you fail a drug test as a sports star. Let us say that you do not play any sports and your work does not require you to take a drug test, then there is no moral or legal injunction against using the plant. Otherwise, how are we going to deal with the adjurement of the Bible for the creatures of God to use the leaves for medicine and the fruits for food? 
If cannabis is an edible plant, then it is covered under the divine and moral permission of the word of God (Ex 30:23, Ezk. 34:29, and Rom 14:2, 3, 13-17). As with every medicine, if used in excess, you will suffer the consequences. I truly believe that if hemp oil is well extracted from the marijuana plant, it could do wonders just as we use many plants in Africa for healing. I have used different herbs to treat different diseases that I don't see the fuss about using marijuana for medicine. If you have abnormal heartbeats you could use watercress plus milk, you could use garlic, ginger and turmeric to control or eliminate your hypertension. There are at least 20 plants that I can give anyone to treat different ailments. That should not be different with marijuana simply because it has THC. If any  Christian intends to use it, they should consult their different laws and regulations.
As a final caveat, I do not use drugs, do not use marijuana in any form whatsoever, but I think for the purpose of education, we cannot play politics with people’s lives. The Bible is not against Christians using marijuana! 

Until then, I hope that I answered your question.

St Arrey of Ntenako.

[1] "Cannabis." N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.
[2] "Blue Letter Bible :: Book of Beginnings - Genesis Chapter 1 - King James Version." Blue Letter Bible. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.
[3] Freedman, David Noel, Allen C. Myers, and Astrid B. Beck. Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans, 2000. Print. P. 210
[4] Packer, J. I., and Merrill C. Tenney. Illustrated Manners and Customs of the Bible. Nashville: T. Nelson, 1997. Print. P. 251.
[5] Walter A.Elwell - Philip Wesley.Comfort - Tyndale Bible dictionary. Tyndale House Publishers - 2001 P. 249
[6] "Lung Cancer Fact Sheet - American Lung Association." American Lung Association. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Mar. 2015.
[7] "Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk (Ph.D)." : Do You Think Legality Is Different from Morality? N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.
[8] "RUN FROM THE CURE - The Rick Simpson Story - A MEDICAL MARIJUANA FILM (FULL MOVIE)." YouTube. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

“Bonyfish beware because the same net that caught the jawless fish, caught the cartilaginous fish” (Hamilton Ayuk). Beware earthly paradise seekers because there is a serpent in every paradise"(Hamilton Ayuk). "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable." (I Cor 15:19). "It is not how well you know a person; it is how well you treat them that they will live longer and happier with you." Hamilton Ayuk. Idle people write, idler people read, and idlest people read and whine that idle people are taking their time (Hamilton Ayuk).

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