marijuana

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Puritanhead

Puritan Board Professor
Originally posted by Scott Bushey
I believe that marijuana would fall under witchcraft, sorcery, pharmacopeia in the bible, not drunkeness.

Speaking of "witchcraft, sorcery, pharmacopeia," I've been saying it all along...

Harry Potter is a gateway drug...

...let your kids get into Harry Potter, and before you know it, they will be hooked on chronic.










post hoc, ergo propter hoc
:D
 

kevin.carroll

Puritan Board Junior
Originally posted by Puritanhead
Originally posted by Scott Bushey
I believe that marijuana would fall under witchcraft, sorcery, pharmacopeia in the bible, not drunkeness.

Speaking of "witchcraft, sorcery, pharmacopeia," I've been saying it all along...

Harry Potter is a gateway drug...

...let your kids get into Harry Potter, and before you know it, they will be hooked on chronic.










post hoc, ergo propter hoc
:D

Funny...mine haven't started chanting spells or holding seances...
 

Larry Hughes

Puritan Board Sophomore
Hey Brandon,

You are welcome. I just think how I intend to teach my children when they are old enough to grasp it.

Ashland, I've been there many times. I'm originally from the Louisville area, just immediately west about 45 miles. I live in centeral KY now.

Portland, OR, great place. I've been there on a visit. I'd love to live there, love the scenary. Its a great area for a geologist like myself.

Ldh
 

Presbyrino

Puritan Board Freshman
Originally posted by Pilgrim
As I saw one brother put it once, marijuana is to be forbidden because it is always a "mind bender" i.e. the equivalent of causing drunkenness, which is condemned in scripture.

So far the conclusion seems to be that marijuana should be abstained from because it would :
1. break the civil law
2. put's one in a state where one is not in control i.e. similar to drunkeness
3. Can cause addiction etc etc

What about pain-killers or codine or morphine or other drugs that are used in medicine that put one in an induced (mind-bending) state and can become addictive? I'm not trying to make a case for marijuana, I'm just trying to see if the criteria for prohibiting marijuana can be used for some of the other drugs used in medicine as well.

Is it the use of marijuana (simply for hedonistic purposes), to induce a mind-bending state, what makes it prohibitive?

So if a medical use could be legitimately established for marijuana, and it did not break the civil-law, would it still be considered prohibitive?
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
Ryan,

Speaking of "witchcraft, sorcery, pharmacopeia," I've been saying it all along...

Harry Potter is a gateway drug...

...let your kids get into Harry Potter, and before you know it, they will be hooked on chronic.










post hoc, ergo propter hoc
:D

I made a similar point some time ago on my blog
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Originally posted by Presbyrino
Originally posted by Pilgrim
As I saw one brother put it once, marijuana is to be forbidden because it is always a "mind bender" i.e. the equivalent of causing drunkenness, which is condemned in scripture.

So far the conclusion seems to be that marijuana should be abstained from because it would :
1. break the civil law
2. put's one in a state where one is not in control i.e. similar to drunkeness
3. Can cause addiction etc etc

What about pain-killers or codine or morphine or other drugs that are used in medicine that put one in an induced (mind-bending) state and can become addictive? I'm not trying to make a case for marijuana, I'm just trying to see if the criteria for prohibiting marijuana can be used for some of the other drugs used in medicine as well.

Is it the use of marijuana (simply for hedonistic purposes), to induce a mind-bending state, what makes it prohibitive?

So if a medical use could be legitimately established for marijuana, and it did not break the civil-law, would it still be considered prohibitive?

I have said, No!
 

VirginiaHuguenot

Puritanboard Librarian
Excellent answer, Larry!

J.G. Vos says something similiar in The Bible Doctrine of the Separated Life (although the passage below is long, I recommend reading the full article to get the entire context):

VI. The Separated Life and the Nature and Extent of the Authority of the Christian Church

In the formulation of creedal doctrine, the Christian church is strictly limited by Scripture. The church has the right to require of her officers and members assent to everything that can be shown to be taught or implied in Scripture, but the church does not have the right to add anything to what is contained in Scripture. The authority of the church is ministerial and declarative, not legislative; it is derived from Christ, not original in the church itself; it is no an absolute authority, but one limited and regulated by a definite revelation, the Scriptures. From these considerations it follows that the church has no right to go beyond Scripture and compile lists of specific things or acts, in themselves indifferent, which experience or science purport to show to be deleterious and which are therefore alleged to be wrong for the Christian to use or to do.

There are some Christian denominations which actually single out certain specific acts, in themselves indifferent, and require of church members abstinence from those things as a condition of membership. In some cases this requirement of abstinence is written into the denomination�s creedal doctrine, and members are not merely required to abstain from the particular things involved, but are also required to express their assent to the rightfulness of this requirement of abstinence. This tendency, which assumes various forms in various circles, is a very unhealthy one, for it tends to give people the notion that the church can, by its own authority, legislate for the lives of its members, and even go beyond Scripture in requiring of them abstinence from particular things which are in themselves indifferent.

Of course the church may and should require its members to abstain from everything that can be proved by Scripture to be sinful. The breach of such abstinence can be justly censured by ecclesiastical judicatories when the fact is proved. But the church has not authority to require abstinence from things indifferent. The church has no authority to usurp the functions of the individual Christian conscience and decide for her members concerning the use of things indifferent. For the church to censure her members for doing that which cannot be proved from Scripture, without the use of any additional authority, to be sinful, is to exceed the limits of legitimate church authority. At the point where a secondary becomes necessary, the matter automatically passes from the church to the court of the individual conscience, precisely because God alone is Lord of the conscience, and human authority cannot bind the conscience. Let all church courts beware of committing the sin which Spurgeon described as �violating the crown rights of God who alone is Lord of the consciences of men.�

Even though a church member may have committed an act which in the opinion of the members of a judicatory would be sinful if committed in like circumstances by themselves, still the judicatory has no right to censure such a person unless it can be proved from Scripture that the act was sinful; just as in criminal law a jury may be of the opinion that a defendant has committed a wrong, but has no right to convict him unless the evidence proves that he has violated the law of the land. A church judicatory may not decide cases by opinion, but must decide according to the law and the evidence.

It will be seen to follow from the foregoing that just as the church has no authority to go beyond Scripture in legislating concerning particular things which are in themselves indifferent, so the church has no authority to censure her members for any use of things indifferent unless that use can be proved to involve the violation of an express or implied command of Scripture. It is not sufficient to show that a command of Scripture may have been violated, or that an act has been committed which might, under some circumstances, involve the violation of a command of Scripture. To be justly liable to ecclesiastical censure, a church member must be charged with a particular act, committed at a particular time and place, and concerning this act two things must be proved: (1) it must be proved that the act was actually committed by the person, and at the time and place specified in the charge; (2) it must be proved that the act, in the circumstances under which it was committed, involved the violation of a command of Scripture, that is, that it was sinful. Church discipline must always deal with real offenses, not with the legitimate and conscientious use of things indifferent. Its function is to remedy actual wrongs already committed, not to prevent the commission of wrongs by enforcing abstinence from things which are in themselves not sinful but indifferent.

VII. The Work of the Holy Spirit vs. the Doctrines and Commandments of Men

Those who wish to add to what God has spoken in Scripture certain man-made regulations concerning things indifferent often take this position because they believe these rules necessary in order to prevent various evils. They assume that unless a rule is made, a particular evil will exist unchecked. So a church in China makes a rule against the use of opium by church members, and a church in Mexico a rule against the use of marihuana. In each case the motive is a laudable one, namely to prevent church members from becoming addicted to certain drugs. Nevertheless, a careful study of the problem leads us to the conclusion that the enactment of such regulations proceeds from false assumptions, is ineffectual for the intended purpose, and is very dishonoring to the Holy Spirit.

For a church judicatory to enact a rule prohibiting the use of opium by church members, for example, shows a presupposition that such a rule is necessary. Clearly the assumption is that, unless such a rule is made, some church members will use opium. And it seems to be assumed that some church members will abstain from the use of opium because of a church rule, who would not abstain if there were no such ecclesiastical regulation. Now those who advocate man-made regulations concerning things indifferent reason as though the Holy Spirit did not dwell in the hearts of the Lord�s people, as though there were no such thing as sanctification by the Holy Spirit, and as though Christian people were the same as the children of the world. They fail to take the power of the Holy Spirit into their reckoning. How are the members of the church to be kept from using opium or marihuana? The only way they can think of is to make a rule prohibiting the use of these things by church members. What a confession! What ignorance concerning the nature and power of the Holy Spirit�s work. What an admission concerning the spiritual state of the church members for whom the rule is made!

Church members are supposed to be Christian people. If they are not Christian people, they really have no right to be church members at all. This does not mean that church officers can examine people�s hearts and admit to membership only those who are truly regenerate, for they cannot. It does mean, however, that in a church where the gospel of Jesus Christ is faithfully proclaimed, where a credible profession of faith is required of those admitted from the world, and where the discipline of the Lord�s house is faithfully administered, the hypocrites will be very few. Such a church will be made up of regenerate Christian people. Now the Word of God teaches us that every Christian is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, and that if any person does not possess the Holy Spirit, he is not a Christian at all (Rom. 8:9). The Holy Spirit is God, He is omnipotent, and He carries on in each of God�s children the work of sanctification until each is made perfect in the likeness of Christ. Therefore, where the gospel is faithfully preached and taught there will be no need to go beyond Scripture and add the doctrines and commandments of men concerning things in themselves indifferent. The Spirit of God will work true holiness in the hearts and lives of the people, their consciences will be enlightened and their walk consistent.

Long ago the Apostle Paul warned the Colossians against all such man-made rules, as we read in Col. 2:20-23, �If ye died with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, do ye subject yourselves to ordinances, Handle not, nor taste, nor touch (all which things are to perish with the using), after the precepts and doctrines of men? Which things have indeed a show of wisdom in will-worship, and humility, and severity to the body; but are not of any value against the indulgence of the flesh.�

From this we learn that man-made regulations about things indifferent are ineffectual: they are �not of any value against the indulgence of the flesh.� Whatever men may say about such rules and regulations, the Holy Spirit here tells us that they are useless as a means of restraining fleshly appetites. In another place the Holy Spirit has given us through the Apostle Paul the true secret of overcoming the fleshly lusts, as we see in Gal. 5:16, �But I say, Walk by the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.�

The whole passage, Gal. 5:16-24, is a radical antidote for the false belief that man-made rules and regulations can curb the sinful tendencies of the Christian�s old nature. Many of those who today are so zealous for human ordinances about things indifferent fall into the error of the Galatians, who supposed that the Christian life is begun in the Spirit, but perfected in the flesh (Gal. 3:3), begun by the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit, but completed by human efforts, actions and abstinences.

Someone may object that opium and marihuana, for example, are not indifferent, but sinful in themselves. We have already shown that no material thing can be sinful in itself. Now if opium, marihuana or any other particular material substance is to be regarded as an exception to this principle, the problem is raised as to what authority is competent to decide which substances are exceptions to the principle that no material things can be sinful in itself. There is, no doubt, general agreement among Christian people that such substances as opium and marihuana, for example, are so dangerous and harmful that they should not be used at all. This general agreement is, however, no proper ground for church judicatories authoritatively pronouncing such substances sinful in themselves, or declaring their use to be sinful per se. The Word of God, not the so-called Christian consciousness, is our only infallible rule of faith and conduct. What authority is competent to determine the harmfulness and on this basis to infer the inherent sinfulness of the use of a particular material substance, withal making this inference binding on the consciences of the Lord�s people? Are church judicatories qualified to issue authoritative pronouncements on such matters? By what right does a synod or assembly composed of ministers and elders decide questions concerning the physiological action and toxic properties of various narcotic drugs? If we grant to ecclesiastical bodies the right to decide concerning opium and marihuana, do we not thereby concede the entire principle that the church may legitimately decide for its members concerning the use of things indifferent? And if so, could we consistently object, for reasons of principle, if a church judicatory were to enact a rule prohibiting the use of tea or coffee? We are far from holding that it is legitimate for Christians to use dangerous drugs. What we are contending for is not license to use poisonous drugs, but freedom under God to decide for ourselves what material substances we ought to leave alone. We would keep the consciences of Christian people free from what Dr. Machen called �the tyranny of the experts.� We maintain that the individual Christian, and not the church, must pass judgment on the pronouncements of experts concerning such things, so far as questions of morality are concerned. We are far from holding that it is �all right� to use opium, marihuana or a great many other material substances, but if the question as to the sinfulness of the use of these things is to be decided for us by a synod or pope, then our freedom of conscience is destroyed and our soul reduced to bondage to the commandments of men. If the thing is indifferent in itself, whatever it may be, then the individual Christian, not the church, has the God-given right to decide ethical questions concerning its use. We fully agree with the general opinion of Christian people that such substances as opium and marihuana should not be used at all, except possibly by a physician�s orders; but we claim the God-given right to make this decision ourselves, and not to have it made for us by an ecclesiastical judicatory. The conscience of each and every one of the Lord�s people is enlightened by the Holy Spirit; to require Christian people to accept ecclesiastical regulations on such matters is akin to the �implicit faith, and absolute and blind obedience� which is required by the Church of Rome.

In a previous section of this discussion we made the statement that �Since things indifferent are not sinful in themselves, the Christian is free to use them except when there is some special reason for abstinence from them.� Lest this statement be misunderstood, we would add that the reference is to things indifferent as a class, not to every specific adiaphoron individually. We do not mean that the Christian is free to use every indifferent thing, except when there is some special reason for abstinence, but rather that, of the whole class of things indifferent, the Christian is free to use any specific things except those in the case of which there exists some special reason for abstinence. If a particular material substance is known to be a dangerous, habit-forming narcotic drug, that is certainly a valid special reason for abstinence from that particular substance, but the decision that a consistent Christian walk requires abstinence from that particular thing must be made by the individual Christian, not by the church. If it be alleged that this position fails to safeguard the members of the church against harmful and dangerous habits, we reply that the contrary position dishonors the Holy Spirit and minimizes His work. Regeneration of the heart, sanctification of the life and enlightenment of the mind and conscience of Christian people by the Holy Spirit are realities, and we for our part believe they are far more powerful and effective than any man-made rules and regulations revised to supplement the Word of God.

Having stated and defended the foregoing principles, we wish to add three qualifying statements in order to avoid any possible misunderstanding:

1. Though it is not proper for ecclesiastical bodies to legislate concerning things indifferent, it is sometimes entirely legitimate for the civil government to do so. Civil legislation does not purport to bind the conscience, but only the control the conduct of citizens.

2. While it is not proper for church judicatories to make rules concerning opium or marihuana, for instance, it may be perfectly legitimate for a church session to reject an applicant for membership who uses one of these things, not because the use of these or any other material thing is sinful in itself, but because, in the particular case under consideration, the church session may decide that the degree, manner and circumstances of the use of a particular thing are such as to involve the actual commission of sin of such a nature as to render the applicant�s profession incredible.

3. While it is not proper for church bodies to make rules concerning the use of things indifferent, it may be perfectly legitimate for a church judicatory to censure a church member for the use of something which is not sinful in itself, when it is proved that in the particular case in question the use really involved the commission of sin. It is one thing to administer church discipline if and when real scandal occurs, and quite another to attempt to prevent its occurring by binding a universal man-made rule upon the consciences of the Lord�s people.
 

ChristopherPaul

Puritan Board Senior
Originally posted by Peter
The drunkeness parrallel Chris brought up is really the only legitimate objection to Marijuana use. Why is drunkeness forbidden but that it deprives man of reason and makes him like a fool? A Christian's mind and behavior ought to be earnest not high or wasted.

In response to such lines of reasoning, is mind alteration a sin? Are all "high's" forbidden?

I can stand up right now, spin my self in a circle and become dizzy. My state of mind is altered and, although temporary, I am deprived of full control of my body and become as a fool for a short time. If such a state would last for longer periods of time I would be unable to operate a vehicle or even push my child in a stroller while in such a state.

After the "high" is over, I become ill and my head hurts.

Is it a sin to alter the mind in such a way?

Just last night my family paid money for my children to experience such mind-altering fun at the children's rides at the shore. I had to ride with them on the bigger rides and was in fact quite miserable at nights end with an upset stomach and an annoying headache. But while we were inebriated on the rides, it sure was a blast.

:detective:
 

Richard King

Puritan Board Senior
Originally posted by Scott Bushey
Can the term 'drunkeness' or 'inibriated' even be used when considering that marijuana is smoked or eaten? Intoxication would be the better description. Is the word intoxication interchangeable with drunkeness? I believe that marijuana would fall under witchcraft, sorcery, pharmacopeia in the bible, not drunkeness.


reefer_poster.png


[Edited on 6-17-2006 by Scott Bushey]

[Edited on 6-17-2006 by Scott Bushey]


This is not meant to be argumentative or contentious. I am just trying to examine the conclusions we come to and really examine my own thinking. Its not like I have never been wrong so I know I need to keep my thinking in check and I need Godly counsel and confirmation on some of my thinking.
I never understood the pharmacopeia warnings that people used in my old church. They brought that up often as a reason that faith healing instead of medicine is prefered. It has specifically led my own son to reject medicine he truly needs.
But anyway, using this line of thought...Is a fermented grape... or some hops and yeast mixture witchcraft? It seems it would be even more so than a plant that grows naturally.
 

kevin.carroll

Puritan Board Junior
I suggest that there is an incipient Platonic dualism at work here. It underlies many of the anti-sensual stances the Church has adopted over the centuries (viz, sex is bad; alcohol is bad; smoking is bad; etc). Stronger arguments against MJ or other drug use can be made I think.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Originally posted by Richard King
Originally posted by Scott Bushey
Can the term 'drunkeness' or 'inibriated' even be used when considering that marijuana is smoked or eaten? Intoxication would be the better description. Is the word intoxication interchangeable with drunkeness? I believe that marijuana would fall under witchcraft, sorcery, pharmacopeia in the bible, not drunkeness.


reefer_poster.png


[Edited on 6-17-2006 by Scott Bushey]

[Edited on 6-17-2006 by Scott Bushey]


This is not meant to be argumentative or contentious. I am just trying to examine the conclusions we come to and really examine my own thinking. Its not like I have never been wrong so I know I need to keep my thinking in check and I need Godly counsel and confirmation on some of my thinking.
I never understood the pharmacopeia warnings that people used in my old church. They brought that up often as a reason that faith healing instead of medicine is prefered. It has specifically led my own son to reject medicine he truly needs.
But anyway, using this line of thought...Is a fermented grape... or some hops and yeast mixture witchcraft? It seems it would be even more so than a plant that grows naturally.

There is a balm in Gilead...........

6875 yrIc. tseriy {tser-ee'} or yrIc\ tsoriy {tsor-ee'}
Meaning: 1) a kind of balsam, balm, salve 1a) as merchandise 1b) as medicine
Origin: from an unused root meaning to crack [as by pressure], hence, to leak; TWOT - 1967a; n m
Usage: AV - balm 6; 6


Genesis 37:25 25 And they sat down to eat bread: and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and, behold, a company of Ishmeelites came from Gilead with their camels bearing spicery and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt.

Genesis 43:11 11 And their father Israel said unto them, If it must be so now, do this; take of the best fruits in the land in your vessels, and carry down the man a present, a little balm, and a little honey, spices, and myrrh, nuts, and almonds:

Jeremiah 8:19-22 19 Behold the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people because of them that dwell in a far country: Is not the LORD in Zion? is not her king in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with strange vanities? 20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. 21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me. 22 Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?

Jeremiah 46:11 11 Go up into Gilead, and take balm, O virgin, the daughter of Egypt: in vain shalt thou use many medicines; for thou shalt not be cured.

Jeremiah 51:8 8 Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: howl for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed.

Ezekiel 27:17 17 Judah, and the land of Israel, they were thy merchants: they traded in thy market wheat of Minnith, and Pannag, and honey, and oil, and balm.

Medicine is biblical. Anyone speaking oterwise is speaking against God! Drunkeness spoken of in scripture had to do with the ingesting of alcohol or 'strong drink'. What exactly is strong drink is something to discuss; my opinion, it was something like corn or apple mash or a liquor; again, alcohol.

One cannot drink marijuana. Anything that is ingested and causes an intoxicated effect should not be considered 'drunk' as it was not technically drunk. Drunkeness applies to things that are drunk.

Is the word intoxication in the bible? I can't find it. The poiint is taken. Mind altering substances are not sinful, abuses of them are. When one loses their capacity to think clearly enough to make logical decisions and conclusions, this is sin. If pot was legal here, and one could partake without becoming as previously noted, it would not be sinful.



[Edited on 6-17-2006 by Scott Bushey]
 

Larry Hughes

Puritan Board Sophomore
On drug use. The problem lies first in the underlying "what is the real issue and what is really the addiction." Which is my previous post.

On the practical level there is simply some common sense here to be exercised. Some drugs in their delivery systems are simply too strong to be safely taken other than administered by a physicians for the alleviation of pain. This is good use. In a sense all "drugs" and other forms of relief, relaxation and such all do the same thing. Give, one, some relief from a tension or pain either mentally or physically or a little of both. How many of us on sleepless nights say something like, "My allergies are bothering me then take a benadryl", to really take the edge off and get some much needed sleep. But that is a good use for we need and are commanded to sleep. Wine, beer, tobacco, food, chocolate, movies, running, reading, relaxing in general in a quiet neck of the woods and etc... all have this relieving peaceful affect on the body and the reason we do them. To use them in a way that is right per the Gospel is perfectly legitimate and using God's good creation as it is intended. To use them to avoid care and work of life is abuse.

The abuse comes when excess comes and we leave our callings in life over them. And excess comes from the fallen heart that fundamentally is trying to go further than enjoyment of something good under the reality of the Gospel. When excess actually goes over into addiction it is in reality not enjoyment but a form of enslaved idolatry. This can happen with a drug, sleep or some other thing, even things of formal ministry can be an addiction and idolatry. In essence the formerly enjoyed thing, whatever it is, becomes one's god. It's one thing to enjoy a thing and be thankful to God through the Gospel for both the earthly gift itself and the Gospel which spiritually frees a man to enjoy such, quite another to be a glutton or drunkard over it.

CS Lewis makes a very good clarifying point about this concerning "gluttony", which fundamentally and operationally is exactly the same as "drunkenness", intoxication is that which leads to the other. "Intoxication" is just another word for "poisoned" or in the realm of risk analysis, having reached "toxic" levels, that is detriminal in some way. CS Lewis points out that like the dry and wet drunk there are two types gluttons. The real point behind "gluttony" is not the fat guy who gorges himself in opposition to the skinny or muscular prick that mocks him. Rather the real force behind gluttony is the selfishness and hence the fundamental of the fall of man "bent in upon himself in all things". He says, similar to Luther, that the outward glutton, like the wet drunk, is obvious in a sense but misunderstood by "pietistic" types. They see his/her outward appearance and addiction and they (society) do not like this gross figure, so they, like the pharisees stuck on outward appearances, religious to the bone, pick up their stones and say, "See here this great sinner!" This is the religious pietism or phariseeism of natural man, stuck on appearances. This is how we view the wet drunk, the bum, and the gross immoral sinner. Society as a whole and religious "christians" alike see this as sin. But they really are missing the real issue of sin. For the same would not see this in the glutton who is sleek and well chisled in his/her physical stature, nor the dry drunk who lauds and praises himself because he "never touches the 'devil's brew'", or the pietist that outwardly is not a 'gross sinner'.

But the sleek one as Lewis points out is every bit the glutton and even worse than the gross one (talk to someone with weight problems and they will tell you the pharisicial pietistic disdain they experience from society). In Jesus terminology regarding the similar Pharisees, and pietist of our time as well, these are indeed the Sons of hell and when they make a convert (a gross sinner into a hidden outwardly clean sinner) they indeed make them twice the sons of hell they themselves are. Nothing is worse than a dry drunk that use to be a wet drunk or a former outward glutton who is now an exercise fanatic or a former gross sinner who thinks Jesus "changed his life" into this "clean white washed tomb". Lewis points out by example that the petite very prim and proper lady who turns down food offered them say in a restaurant by saying, "Oh, no take that away that is to much FOR ME." Is a bigger glutton than the former gross glutton. Why? Because the issue of real gluttony is original sin, the obsession with self. And this prim and proper "dry" glutton is just as obsessed with self AND food, if not more than the "wet" glutton. Body builders, for example, are more obsessed with themselves and food (what they eat) than are 400 pound men, and worse, like the Pharisee and pietist, the body builder AND society feed his outwardly "pretty" sin. At least the 400 pound man knows his is sin by its gross appearance and knows his will is ensalved. The body builder thinks he is free from himself and his addiction by his will but in fact he is the greatest of slaves to himself and addiction and fundamentally his "free will power" IS his enslavement.

These are the real underlying spiritual issues with gluttony and drunkenness and by extension ANY drug abuse. Pietist who abstain say from alcohol or tobacco for religious reasons are in fact "dry" drunks obsessed and addicted in a "dry" way to the very thing they point out against the "wet" drunk. But outwardly, to the eyes of men, these false religionist are lauded and praised. Ever notice how their language is thus, "I must protect MY witness". The emphasis on self, just like the body builder or prim and proper lady, "Hey you all, yoo hoo, LOOK over here AT ME, I'm so good and pretty and in control of my sins. SEE my religious wonder, see how well I abstain, all glory in me!" But to the eyes of real faith, the cross, the Christian calls a thing what it really is, sin and worse than the wet drunk in that sense, vomitous sin! Because the wet drunk, wet glutton or gross sinner at least has some real clue that their sin is sin, the dry drunk, dry glutton or cleaned up church going white washed tomb sinner thinks he's clean and his/her nose is in the air toward others.

If you are around strong pietism enough, like I've been and am occassionally in some settings you can pick up on their language, religious language. They will speak of "so and so" at church who, heaven forbid, drinks a beer or smokes or does some other free thing or even in reality struggles much with sin and say, "Do you think he's saved, I don't know if he's saved, he just needs to "get saved""...their meaning of salvation and their false gospel reveals itself as "self improvement", this IS THEIR witness they are protecting. They decorate their language with "Christ" and "Gospel" terms, but their "Christ" is no different than Salt Lake City's "Christ" and just as false.

Going all the way back to strong drugs, MJ is somewhere in the middle. There is a practical point. I cannot take opium such that it can do anything less than knock me out of my skull, unlike beer or wine which we can govern. There could be a medically valid time for this though in extreme pain! Yet, the body does release opiate derivatives at times such as high adrenaline moments, sex and even with certain foods that are naturally low dose and yet give an effect of pleasure and relaxation. When we concentrate this into "opium" at those concentrated levels then we go too far.

Second, good things of creation are not so for us just for their pragmatic (America's false home grown religion) realities. God gives us food, beer and wine and etc...to show He is a good Father to us. My family is more than a pragmatic effect to me and so are wine, food and tobacco if you enjoy those things. I don't only drink wine because it is medically good for my heart and cholesterol, I enjoy it, it is relaxing in the evening to sit out on the porch and talk with my wife with a good wine or beer or for those who enjoy a good cigar or bowl of tobacco.

Keep in mind that America's religious obsession against such things as alcohol and tobacco was derived by a false gospel doctrine in the early 1900s that produced the same things in Mormon cults as prohibition from cafienne and any drugs. All of this was produced by a false dilemma about them as causal agents of the sins that surround them. But as Luther said, "Man can go wrong with wine or women, shall we abolish women!" Man goes, even worse, wrong with worship in idolatry, shall we end the churches and the Lord's day just because this is so! This age old doctrine of demons comes up constantly and in the early 1900s by some false teachers within the church has led to all of these false abstaining programs and "protect my witness theologies" in many circles today.

That's a birds eye view,

Ldh
 

beej6

Puritan Board Sophomore
'Intoxification' is not in the Bible. Did you mean 'intoxication'? In the ESV, 'intoxicated' shows up in Proverbs but not in the context of mind-altering substances but (if you will) a mind-altering woman:

"œa lovely deer, a graceful doe.
Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight;
be intoxicated* always in her love.
Why should you be intoxicated*, my son, with a forbidden woman
and embrace the bosom of an adulteress?" (Prov. 5.19-20, ESV)
{* Hebrew note: 'be led astray'}

***

I would have no problem with a pastor warning his flock of the dangers of, say, alcoholism, methamphetamine abuse, or cannabis abuse if that was a problem for his flock. Individually, or as a condition of membership, I agree with the long post above citing JG Vos.

As always, the use or abuse comes down not only to the outward signs and symptoms, but to the inward depraved heart. It is hard to argue with someone using marijuana for pain control, or even anxiety control when all else has been tried. It is easier to argue with someone using marijuana to become intoxicated.
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Originally posted by beej6
'Intoxification' is not in the Bible. Did you mean 'intoxication'?

Yes! Doh! Ignorant; and in the medical field at that.

In the ESV, 'intoxicated' shows up in Proverbs but not in the context of mind-altering substances but (if you will) a mind-altering woman:

"œa lovely deer, a graceful doe.
Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight;
be intoxicated* always in her love.
Why should you be intoxicated*, my son, with a forbidden woman
and embrace the bosom of an adulteress?" (Prov. 5.19-20, ESV)
{* Hebrew note: 'be led astray'}

Good point. But that is my premise. It is sinful to be led 'away' or intoxicated by anything. Intoxication is sinful and will 'lead one away'. Having spewed that, if one could partake of marijuana legally, and not get intoxicated :cool:, it would not be sinful.


I would have no problem with a pastor warning his flock of the dangers of, say, alcoholism, methamphetamine abuse, or cannabis abuse if that was a problem for his flock. Individually, or as a condition of membership, I agree with the long post above citing JG Vos.

I will look at that.

As always, the use or abuse comes down not only to the outward signs and symptoms, but to the inward depraved heart. It is hard to argue with someone using marijuana for pain control, or even anxiety control when all else has been tried. It is easier to argue with someone using marijuana to become intoxicated.

Agreed. And thanks for the correction. :D
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Originally posted by Larry Hughes
On drug use. The problem lies first in the underlying "what is the real issue and what is really the addiction." Which is my previous post.

Larry, I hear you. However, what if there is nothing underlying, i.e. no addiction?

On the practical level there is simply some common sense here to be exercised. Some drugs in their delivery systems are simply too strong to be safely taken other than administered by a physicians for the alleviation of pain. This is good use. In a sense all "drugs" and other forms of relief, relaxation and such all do the same thing. Give, one, some relief from a tension or pain either mentally or physically or a little of both. How many of us on sleepless nights say something like, "My allergies are bothering me then take a benadryl", to really take the edge off and get some much needed sleep. But that is a good use for we need and are commanded to sleep. Wine, beer, tobacco, food, chocolate, movies, running, reading, relaxing in general in a quiet neck of the woods and etc... all have this relieving peaceful affect on the body and the reason we do them. To use them in a way that is right per the Gospel is perfectly legitimate and using God's good creation as it is intended. To use them to avoid care and work of life is abuse.

I hear you again. If my job is burdensome, is it wrong to drink some wine to bring joy to my heart? The bible suggests to give wine tothe sickly so that he may forget his worries. Just to be clear, I do not argue from my end advocating anyything other than that which is legitimate and biblical. All thsoe things that fall under abuse I reject. I would assume that most believers are not abusing.

The abuse comes when excess comes and we leave our callings in life over them.

This is sad and if one was a believer that fell in this way, discipline, repentance, and the church's help would be in order.


abusess comes from the fallen heart that fundamentally is trying to go further than enjoyment of something good under the reality of the Gospel. When excess actually goes over into addiction it is in reality not enjoyment but a form of enslaved idolatry.

I agree. With liquor it is drunkeness idolatry and with medicines, I would clasify that as witchcraft.


This can happen with a drug, sleep or some other thing, even things of formal ministry can be an addiction and idolatry.

true.


In essence the formerly enjoyed thing, whatever it is, becomes one's god. It's one thing to enjoy a thing and be thankful to God through the Gospel for both the earthly gift itself and the Gospel which spiritually frees a man to enjoy such, quite another to be a glutton or drunkard over it.

Agree 100%

CS Lewis makes a very good clarifying point about this concerning "gluttony", which fundamentally and operationally is exactly the same as "drunkenness", intoxication is that which leads to the other. "Intoxication" is just another word for "poisoned" or in the realm of risk analysis, having reached "toxic" levels, that is detriminal in some way. CS Lewis points out that like the dry and wet drunk there are two types gluttons. The real point behind "gluttony" is not the fat guy who gorges himself in opposition to the skinny or muscular prick that mocks him. Rather the real force behind gluttony is the selfishness and hence the fundamental of the fall of man "bent in upon himself in all things". He says, similar to Luther, that the outward glutton, like the wet drunk, is obvious in a sense but misunderstood by "pietistic" types. They see his/her outward appearance and addiction and they (society) do not like this gross figure, so they, like the pharisees stuck on outward appearances, religious to the bone, pick up their stones and say, "See here this great sinner!" This is the religious pietism or phariseeism of natural man, stuck on appearances. This is how we view the wet drunk, the bum, and the gross immoral sinner. Society as a whole and religious "christians" alike see this as sin. But they really are missing the real issue of sin. For the same would not see this in the glutton who is sleek and well chisled in his/her physical stature, nor the dry drunk who lauds and praises himself because he "never touches the 'devil's brew'", or the pietist that outwardly is not a 'gross sinner'.

But the sleek one as Lewis points out is every bit the glutton and even worse than the gross one (talk to someone with weight problems and they will tell you the pharisicial pietistic disdain they experience from society). In Jesus terminology regarding the similar Pharisees, and pietist of our time as well, these are indeed the Sons of hell and when they make a convert (a gross sinner into a hidden outwardly clean sinner) they indeed make them twice the sons of hell they themselves are. Nothing is worse than a dry drunk that use to be a wet drunk or a former outward glutton who is now an exercise fanatic or a former gross sinner who thinks Jesus "changed his life" into this "clean white washed tomb". Lewis points out by example that the petite very prim and proper lady who turns down food offered them say in a restaurant by saying, "Oh, no take that away that is to much FOR ME." Is a bigger glutton than the former gross glutton. Why? Because the issue of real gluttony is original sin, the obsession with self. And this prim and proper "dry" glutton is just as obsessed with self AND food, if not more than the "wet" glutton. Body builders, for example, are more obsessed with themselves and food (what they eat) than are 400 pound men, and worse, like the Pharisee and pietist, the body builder AND society feed his outwardly "pretty" sin. At least the 400 pound man knows his is sin by its gross appearance and knows his will is ensalved. The body builder thinks he is free from himself and his addiction by his will but in fact he is the greatest of slaves to himself and addiction and fundamentally his "free will power" IS his enslavement.

These are the real underlying spiritual issues with gluttony and drunkenness and by extension ANY drug abuse. Pietist who abstain say from alcohol or tobacco for religious reasons are in fact "dry" drunks obsessed and addicted in a "dry" way to the very thing they point out against the "wet" drunk. But outwardly, to the eyes of men, these false religionist are lauded and praised. Ever notice how their language is thus, "I must protect MY witness". The emphasis on self, just like the body builder or prim and proper lady, "Hey you all, yoo hoo, LOOK over here AT ME, I'm so good and pretty and in control of my sins. SEE my religious wonder, see how well I abstain, all glory in me!" But to the eyes of real faith, the cross, the Christian calls a thing what it really is, sin and worse than the wet drunk in that sense, vomitous sin! Because the wet drunk, wet glutton or gross sinner at least has some real clue that their sin is sin, the dry drunk, dry glutton or cleaned up church going white washed tomb sinner thinks he's clean and his/her nose is in the air toward others.

If you are around strong pietism enough, like I've been and am occassionally in some settings you can pick up on their language, religious language. They will speak of "so and so" at church who, heaven forbid, drinks a beer or smokes or does some other free thing or even in reality struggles much with sin and say, "Do you think he's saved, I don't know if he's saved, he just needs to "get saved""...their meaning of salvation and their false gospel reveals itself as "self improvement", this IS THEIR witness they are protecting. They decorate their language with "Christ" and "Gospel" terms, but their "Christ" is no different than Salt Lake City's "Christ" and just as false.

yes.

Going all the way back to strong drugs, MJ is somewhere in the middle. There is a practical point. I cannot take opium such that it can do anything less than knock me out of my skull, unlike beer or wine which we can govern. There could be a medically valid time for this though in extreme pain! Yet, the body does release opiate derivatives at times such as high adrenaline moments, sex and even with certain foods that are naturally low dose and yet give an effect of pleasure and relaxation. When we concentrate this into "opium" at those concentrated levels then we go too far.

I don't quite understand your last statement.........

Second, good things of creation are not so for us just for their pragmatic (America's false home grown religion) realities. God gives us food, beer and wine and etc...to show He is a good Father to us. My family is more than a pragmatic effect to me and so are wine, food and tobacco if you enjoy those things. I don't only drink wine because it is medically good for my heart and cholesterol, I enjoy it, it is relaxing in the evening to sit out on the porch and talk with my wife with a good wine or beer or for those who enjoy a good cigar or bowl of tobacco.

Keep in mind that America's religious obsession against such things as alcohol and tobacco was derived by a false gospel doctrine in the early 1900s that produced the same things in Mormon cults as prohibition from cafienne and any drugs. All of this was produced by a false dilemma about them as causal agents of the sins that surround them. But as Luther said, "Man can go wrong with wine or women, shall we abolish women!" Man goes, even worse, wrong with worship in idolatry, shall we end the churches and the Lord's day just because this is so! This age old doctrine of demons comes up constantly and in the early 1900s by some false teachers within the church has led to all of these false abstaining programs and "protect my witness theologies" in many circles today.

That's a birds eye view,

Ldh

;)



[Edited on 6-17-2006 by Scott Bushey]
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
I agree with Voss here:

1. Though it is not proper for ecclesiastical bodies to legislate concerning things indifferent, it is sometimes entirely legitimate for the civil government to do so. Civil legislation does not purport to bind the conscience, but only the control the conduct of citizens.

2. While it is not proper for church judicatories to make rules concerning opium or marihuana, for instance, it may be perfectly legitimate for a church session to reject an applicant for membership who uses one of these things, not because the use of these or any other material thing is sinful in itself, but because, in the particular case under consideration, the church session may decide that the degree, manner and circumstances of the use of a particular thing are such as to involve the actual commission of sin of such a nature as to render the applicant�s profession incredible.

3. While it is not proper for church bodies to make rules concerning the use of things indifferent, it may be perfectly legitimate for a church judicatory to censure a church member for the use of something which is not sinful in itself, when it is proved that in the particular case in question the use really involved the commission of sin. It is one thing to administer church discipline if and when real scandal occurs, and quite another to attempt to prevent its occurring by binding a universal man-made rule upon the consciences of the Lord�s people.
 

Peter

Puritan Board Junior
Gill on Eph 5:18

The sin of drunkenness here dehorted from, is a custom, or habit, of voluntary excessive drinking of any strong liquor, whereby the mind is disturbed, and deprived of the use of reason: though wine is only here mentioned, that being the usual liquor drank in the eastern countries, yet the same holds good of any other strong liquor, as of that; nor is drinking wine for necessary use prohibited, nor for honest delight and lawful pleasure; but excessive drinking of it, and this voluntary, and with design, and on purpose; otherwise persons may be overtaken and intoxicated, through ignorance of the strength of the liquor, and their own weakness; and it is a custom, or habit of excessive drinking, for not a single act, but a series of actions, a course of living in this sin, denominates a man a drunkard; and generally speaking, excessive drinking deprives persons of the use of reason, though not always; and such are criminal, who are mighty to drink wine, and strong to mingle strong drink; as are also such, who though not guilty of this sin themselves, are the means of it in others: the sin is very sinful; it is one of the works of the flesh; it is an abuse of the creature; it is opposed to walking honestly; for it persons are to be excluded from the communion of the church; and, without the grace of true repentance, shall not inherit the kingdom of heaven: many things might be said to dissuade from it; it hurts the mind, memory, and judgment; deprives of reason, and sets a man below a beast; it brings diseases on the body, and wastes the estate; it unfits for business and duty; it opens a door for every sin, and exposes to shame and danger; and therefore should be carefully avoided, and especially by professors of religion

Gen 9:20 And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard:
Gen 9:21 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.
Gen 9:22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without.
Gen 9:23 And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father's nakedness.

Gen 19:33 And they [Lot's daughters] made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.

Poole's commentary

to wit, in excess, so as to deprive him of the use of his reason and grace, which was likely to frustrate their project: this was a great sin, not only in them but also in Lot himself, not to be excused of ignorance of the virtue of wine, which being known of the daughters certainly their father would not be ignorant of...
he perceived not; wherein there is nothing strange, it being usual with drunken men to do many things in that condition which when they come to themselves.

Pro 20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.

These passages emphasize the deceitfulness of wine and the mockery it sets us up for. The commentators I have read agree that Noah and Lot sinned in drinking to excess and that the loss of reason played a part. Of course addiction to wine is sinful but that is not the cause of scripture warnings. The two I see are being surfeit and inebriate. Scripture teaches that intentionally getting drunk is sin. One can get drunk without being addicted to alcohol. Now if using one substance to cause irrationality is sinful then it is for any. If smoking marijuana recreationally is intoxicating then it is sinful.

Further, we see from numerous injunctions in scripture that Christians are always to dispose themselves with seriousness, soundness of mind, and sobriety.

1 Peter 1:13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
Titus 2:2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.
Titus 2:12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;

As for the buzz you feel on a rollercoaster, I think that is different from the irrational passion drunkards and potheads experience.

[Edited on 6-17-2006 by Peter]
 

Larry Hughes

Puritan Board Sophomore
As for the buzz you feel on a rollercoaster, I think that is different from the irrational passion drunkards and potheads experience.

On the scientific effect level, actually, it is not. It's duration and effect are merely shorter and immediately mitigated. If one could extend and increase such effects (the analogy of exceeding moderation) the result would be the same. This is why gambling addicts with no immediate chemical "infusion", if you will, will destroy their homes to continue their fix. Likewise those who destroy all for the sake of adultry. Likewise men improperly using their careers for excessive gain and the "high" there in destroy their children.

The very "intention" of "getting drunk" betrays the causal reality. The wine is itself innocent, and again the human heart the problem. Addiction is just a lengthy extension of the same problem, to continually loose rationale to control the beast of the fallen human heart within.

In human language we speak in causal "short cut" or representative language. Beware of wine or things that can lead us astray we say. But yet, the man who hears the real Law of God knows what the Law is saying about the human heart's real condition in this and knows that in reality the problem is not the wine anymore than a gun that causes murder or leads to other subsequent sins. The issue is always the fallen heart of man whether we speak of a momentary "lapse of reason" into a single moment of drunkeness or the extended version of that which we call addiction.

In Lot's case there were at least two sins, the drunkeness he LET himself get into (the wine did not coax him) and then his follow up sin on top of that. In all cases the causal agent was the fallen human heart and not the wine, though we speak in short cut language about in the term "wine". Wine here is being used as a type of language representative for the whole situation (e.g. "The White House said...meaning really the President's administration, the "White House" is just being used to represent the former though the "white house" doesn't say a thing).

Pro 20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.

Here again this is not "blaming" wine or strong drink, but rather the unwiseness of one actively using it for the end of "getting drunk". The wine or strong drink do not sin nor cause sin, sin is caused BY the abuser, the whole verse presupposes this.

Calvin concerning Ephesian 5:18, "18. And be not drunk with wine. When he enjoins them not to be drunk, he forbids excessive and immoderate drinking of every description. "œBe not intemperate in drinking."

In which is lasciviousness. The Greek word ajswti>a, which is translated "œlasciviousness," points out the evils which arise from drunkenness. I understand by it all that is implied in a wanton and dissolute life; for to translate it luxury, would quite enfeeble the sense. The meaning therefore is, that drunkards throw off quickly every restraint of modesty or shame; that where wine reigns, profligacy naturally follows; and consequently, that all who have any regard to moderation or decency ought to avoid and abhor drunkenness.

The children of this world are accustomed to indulge in deep drinking as an excitement to mirth. Such carnal excitement is contrasted with that holy joy of which the Spirit of God is the Author, and which produces entirely opposite effects. To what does drunkenness lead? To unbounded licentiousness, "” to unbridled, indecent merriment. And to what does spiritual joy lead, when it is most strongly excited?"

We must be acutely aware of how a society speaks in order to convey the idea underlying the words. For example the danger today in today's "the devil made me do it", "I'm a victim of circumstances" and so forth society, unlike ancient Israel and older times when sin and the fall were actually believed in some sense of reality, is that warning against "alcohol" is immediately translated to the layman as "that evil alcohol is the problem and not my fallen human heart." We are highly pseudo-scientific and "evolution" charged nation, world and even church today in which we are given over more to the deism side of the coin, even in the Christian church. So it is easy to take such language in the bible understood in a much different paradigm and make it sound to our ears as "wine is the cause, I better flee from it, better yet call it evil and prohibit it." Which is EXACTLY the condition we find ourselves in - in America whose alcohol abuse (short or addiction) is greater than in countries where it is still viewed as a gift from God.

So the wisdom should be in reminding the people that the Bible is not saying the "wine" is the problem, me and you and our fallen old man are. Yet, too many "preachers" want to soften it, scared to give those rough edges, and leave at "the wine made me do it." At least implicitly.

Ldh
 

Peter

Puritan Board Junior
Larry, I agree fully with your point about the fault of alcoholism and intoxication being with our sin not the substance itself. I was just pointing out that the sinfulness of the behavior primarily lies in the disturbance it causes the mind. Your point is entirely more profound yet the two points are not contrary, infact they are only related in that they concern some forms of substance abuse.
 

Larry Hughes

Puritan Board Sophomore
FYI on the latest seared conscience binding doctrine of demons "resolution". Michael Spenner (a SB) has a great response to this. Funny how they "loose" or "free" the conscience over the heavy anti-alcohol Masons running better than half of their show, yet bind the conscience where Scripture frees it. Somethings are just plain and obvious regardless of sophistical arguments.

SBC Annual Meeting 2006

Resolution No. 5
ON ALCOHOL USE IN AMERICA

WHEREAS, Years of research confirm biblical warnings that alcohol use leads to physical, mental, and emotional damage (e.g., Proverbs 23:29-35); and

WHEREAS, Alcohol use has led to countless injuries and deaths on our nation's highways; and

WHEREAS, The breakup of families and homes can be directly and indirectly attributed to alcohol use by one or more members of a family; and

WHEREAS, The use of alcohol as a recreational beverage has been shown to lead individuals down a path of addiction to alcohol and toward the use of other kinds of drugs, both legal and illegal; and

WHEREAS, There are some religious leaders who are now advocating the consumption of alcoholic beverages based on a misinterpretation of the doctrine of "our freedom in Christ"; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Greensboro, North Carolina, June 13-14, 2006, express our total opposition to the manufacturing, advertising, distributing, and consuming of alcoholic beverages; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we urge that no one be elected to serve as a trustee or member of any entity or committee of the Southern Baptist Convention that is a user of alcoholic beverages.

RESOLVED, That we urge Southern Baptists to take an active role in supporting legislation that is intended to curb alcohol use in our communities and nation; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we urge Southern Baptists to be actively involved in educating students and adults concerning the destructive nature of alcoholic beverages; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we commend organizations and ministries that treat alcohol-related problems from a biblical perspective and promote abstinence and encourage local churches to begin and/or support such biblically-based ministries.
 
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