Dangers of Drug Abuse

Does the Bible speak out directly against drug abuse? In Galatians 5:19-21, Paul enumerates a concise list of works of the flesh. Contained in that list is the Greek word, pharmakeia. It is translated “witchcraft” or “sorcery”. From the Greek word pharmakeia one can clearly see that such words as “pharmacy”, “pharmacist”, “pharmaceuticals” and “pharmaceutic” are derived from it. So, the fact of the matter is, when the Bible mentions sorcery, it also refers to drug abuse, which was an integral part of ancient sorcery.

Drug Abuse Harms Our God Given Body

Scripture teaches that the human body is a gift of God and deserves the utmost respect not destruction through drug abuse. Genesis, the first book of the Bible, reveals the holiness of its creation. Man was created in God’s image (Gen. 2:7).

The common belief of modern man is much like that of the Corinthians two thousand years ago. They argued, “foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods” (1 Cor. 6:13a). In the context, the body was made for sex and sex is therefore for the body. Paul counter-argued, “now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body” (1 Corinthians 6:13b). God did not give us bodies to use any way we want. The Christian must remember he has been bought with a price. The price is the redemptive blood of Jesus Christ. Paul went on with his argument, “or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1Corinthians 6:18-20). Christians should present their “bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1). The fact is drug abuse is really the abuse of oneself.

Drug Abuse Kills the Flesh

In 1971 John Lennon himself told Rolling Stones Magazine that the Beatles were engaged in pushing drugs via their music. Ringo Starr sang, “I get high with a little help from my friends.” Marijuana is praised in such songs as: Mary Jane, Lady Jane, Rainy Day Woman, Along Came Mary, Acapulco God, Norwegian Wood, etc. County music is just as bad in the promotion of drinking, smoking and chewing. Willie Nelson sang: “I gotta get drunk, I can’t stay sober.”

PARADE MAGAZINE, in December 1980, ran an article listing the tragic deaths of some of music world’s greatest “stars”.

• Brian Jones, Rolling Stones guitarist, was found at the bottom of his swimming pool in East Grinstead, England, dead under the influence of drugs and drink.
• Janis Joplin, was 27 years old when she died in 1970 of a heroin overdose alone in a dingy West Coast motel.
• Jimi Hendrix, guitarist-singer, died in 1970 at age 27 after an overdose of sleeping pills.
• Jim Morrison, singer, leader of The Doors, died in 1971 at age 27 of apparent heart attack, but was a heavy drinker.
• Alan C. Wilson, a member of the Canned Heat rock group, died in a sleeping bag behind the home of a friend in California’s Topanga Canyon, apparently from an overdoes of sleeping pills.
• Elvis Presley, singer, died in 1977 at age 42, ostensibly of a heart attack, but was addicted to a wide variety of drugs.
• Keith Moon, drummer for the Who died in 1978 at age 32 from an overdose of drugs.
• Sid Vicious, guitarist, died in 1979 at age 21 from an overdose of heroin.
• Malcolm Owen, singer with the Ruts, died at 24 in 1980 of a heroin overdose.
• John Belushi in 1982 age 33 died from “speed-balling”, mixing cocaine & heroin.

Drug Abuse Will Cost Some Their Souls

The Bible places a severe consequence on those that abuse drugs “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Rev. 21:8). “But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie” (Rev. 22:15).

Drug Abuse Violates the Law

Christians are commanded by God to obey the Laws of man. “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God” (Romans 13:1). The laws of the land have criminalized the use of certain drugs without a prescription.

Drug Abuse Enslaves Users in Addiction

Many drugs are addictive. Despite the arguments made by advocates of legalization, marijuana can be addictive. Marijuana has long been known as a threshold drug. After one uses it for a while, it begins to take more and more marijuana to achieve the same high. Stronger drugs are required to produce the desired high, such as, speed, cocaine, and crack. Christians are to be slaves to God and righteousness not slaves to sin and lusts of the flesh. “For by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved” (2 Peter 2:18). The best way to prevent addiction is never to begin using marijuana

Drug Abuse Stunts Spiritual Growth

Since illegal drugs hinder mental development and processes, it often results in the user’s inability to learn. Those who have problems retaining memories or facts cannot learn effectively. Spiritual development requires one to remember God’s will and commandments. Being faithful to obey and resist temptations requires sober mindedness. These drugs produce an apathetic outlook on life. To grow in Christ, one must care about their soul’s condition and eternal destination. Christians “as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby” (1 Peter 2:2). Spiritual growth is hard work. “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58). Marijuana is one such encumbrance to the Christian race. Therefore, “let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12:1).

Drug Abuse Does Not Result in Finding Joy and Peace

As is often the case with getting high on drugs, they produce a gratifying experience which is short-lived. After it is over the user is left with a feeling of emptiness. Some use drugs to escape the pain and problems of life. However, when they come down off their high, their problems are still there. Others find no joy in drugs due to their addiction. Instead, their life is consumed by constantly chasing after the next drug induced experience.

A genuine relationship with God is the only lasting and real source of joy and peace this life has to offer. “For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17). The fruit of the Spirit includes “love, joy, peace” (Galatians 5:22). We are to “be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).

Drug Abuse Destroys Sober-Mindedness

Most illegal drugs intoxicate, thus hindering self-control while at the same time lowering inhibitions. Drugs impair judgement. If a person is high, they are more likely to sin. Christians are to be sober-minded. “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age” Titus 2:11-12). “For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night…therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober” (1 Thessalonians 5:2,6). “Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:13). “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). “Likewise exhort the young men to be sober-minded” (Titus 2:6).

– Daniel R. Vess

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