Parenting in the Haze of Legalized Marijuana

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Parenting in the Haze of Legalized Marijuana

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Great article

Really appreciated Piper's sound reasoning and Scriptural exegesis on this matter.  He puts forth a coherent argument and also exposes the folly of some of those who argue that 'it's no big deal'.  

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

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somewhat ill-informed article

Usually I like Piper but he is out of his league here. However I think he did write a somewhat balanced piece. The balance part is reflected with lumping other bad habits such as banal T.V. watching, ingesting poor foods, etc. with indiscriminate recreational Cannabis use. Cannabis may be abused but so can many other substances and habits such as cell-phone addiction, excessive gaming, and internet camping. I believe Cannabis may be used recreationally in a responsible manner.

Mary Jane is a code word for drug Cannabis and I will refer to it properly as "Cannabis."

What Piper fails to recognize is proper distinctions of effect. Cannabis works pretty much the same effects-wise in everyone (within reasonable boundaries). What is different is each individual person. Allow me to clarify: How it affects a person is largely related to the person's own mindset and their external environment (setting). So "set and setting" determine greatly the subjective experience a person has. If a person is in a bad mood and Cannabis is smoked, usually the bad mood is exacerbated. If the setting is pleasant and supporting with the subject in a good mental state, the positive mood is enhanced. This is the fundamental effect of drug Cannabis that has been selected toward higher THC and lower CBD. In the past 1000s of years farmers have selected Cannabis for high THC and low CBD because that is what they wanted. It could be likened to perfecting beer, wine, spirits for their recreational use (at least in my mind).

 

Higher CBD concentrations delay onset, cause the peak effect to be lower and lengthen the duration. CBD's effect has many medical applications but is not an exclusive Cannabinoid for all medical benefits. Besides the many cannabinoids in Cannabis terpenes modulate THC for effect. Pure THC is unpleasant and bizarre is the report from researchers in the field. It is the terpenoids contained in a sample that greatly influence the effect. Terpenes are found in virtually all foods and scents.

Using cannabis recreationally is somewhat like mind-driving. At first onset the accelerator is pushed too far and the subject (if they are not experienced) struggles with too many thoughts coming too fast. Later, during the downslope of the sine-wave modeling, the subject seeks to ramp up the thought process speed but it has been spent earlier (this is what is portrayed as "lazy stoner" result but the portrayal ignores the initial heightened effect). Within a few hours everything is back to normal.

In summary: drug Cannabis is an enhancement substance and also a thought generator (not new thoughts but increased activity of thoughts already contained in the subject) with the corresponding deficit of thought generation activity in its comedown phase. Additionally, most Cannabis (mainly Indica type as opposed to Sativa type) relaxes the body. The Sativa type has traditionally been used by farmers and laborers as an energizer during mundane repetitive tasks.

I can respond to anyone with questions tomorrow as I am almost out the door today.

 

 

 

 

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If you are okay with alcohol,

If you are okay with alcohol, then you cannot reasonably be opposed to Marijuana.  I am opposed to the use of both.

1 Kings 8:60 - so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God and that there is no other.

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indeed?

We've been over this before: Yes, you can be okay with alcohol and oppose marijuana--reasonably.

神是爱

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cognative dissonance

Cognative dissonance: psychological conflict resulting from simultaneously held incongruous beliefs and attitudes (as a fondness for smoking and a belief that it is harmful)
 

Yes, you can be okay with alcohol and oppose marijuana-

 

I Corinthians 9:27 But I discipline my body and keep it under control,[b] lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.

2 Corinthians 7:1  Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.

 

Believers are called to self control and to cleanse ourselves from every defilement of the body. But it's ok to use substances that alter the mind and emotions?

I'm not buying it. Since I've never had a drink of alcohol nor smoked a joint, I have no personal experience with the effects of either one. But, I've read enough about the subject to know that even one drink or one puff has some kind of effect on the body/mind. And I seriously doubt that is something which glorifies the Creator God.

 

 

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farmer Tom N wrote:

farmer Tom N wrote:

Cognative dissonance: psychological conflict resulting from simultaneously held incongruous beliefs and attitudes (as a fondness for smoking and a belief that it is harmful)
 

Yes, you can be okay with alcohol and oppose marijuana-

 

I Corinthians 9:27 But I discipline my body and keep it under control,[b] lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.

2 Corinthians 7:1  Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.

 

Believers are called to self control and to cleanse ourselves from every defilement of the body. But it's ok to use substances that alter the mind and emotions?

I'm not buying it. Since I've never had a drink of alcohol nor smoked a joint, I have no personal experience with the effects of either one. But, I've read enough about the subject to know that even one drink or one puff has some kind of effect on the body/mind. And I seriously doubt that is something which glorifies the Creator God.

 

 

*sigh*

As has been pointed out ad nauseam, one drink of tea or one piece of chocolate also has "some kind of effect on the body/mind." So can sugar, sunlight, exercise, and orange juice. That something has an effect on the mind/body is not, in itself, the issue here--which is precisely why one can reasonably oppose one and accept the other.

So how can those of you who oppose alcohol and marijuana overlook the obvious effects of caffeine, et. al? Isn't it inconsistent for you not to ban those as well?

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Tired

Don't know 'bout y'all, but I'm tired of the arguments that try to weaken the arguments about the effects of alcohol, etc. by saying sugar, sunlight, (insert any other item here) also have an effect therefore what do we do about those things. 

No, it isn't inconsistent to not ban those other items as well.  If we are going to talk about banning things that have an effect on the body/mind, we might as well ban everything in existence while we are at it.  Everything in this world can have an effect on us.  The question isn't if something has an effect on us or not.  The question is what kind of effect does it have and where does it lead.

Why isn't it inconsistent?  Because sugar isn't known to destroy the body, families, marriages, intoxicate, significantly alter a person's behavior - and on and on.  Sunlight may give you a sunburn, but it isn't strongly discouraged (in my belief) in the Bible.  Orange juice tastes great and has some nutritional value, but beyond that . . . .

One group of items (alcohol, marijuana, tobacco) destroys, kills, alters & tears down.  The other list of items is relatively banal.

One group has an inherent and direct effect in destroying our spirit and taking us away from the Lord.  The other items aren't inherently so. 

 

 

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mmartin wrote:

mmartin wrote:

Don't know 'bout y'all, but I'm tired of the arguments that try to weaken the arguments about the effects of alcohol, etc. by saying sugar, sunlight, (insert any other item here) also have an effect therefore what do we do about those things. 

No, it isn't inconsistent to not ban those other items as well.  If we are going to talk about banning things that have an effect on the body/mind, we might as well ban everything in existence while we are at it.  Everything in this world can have an effect on us.  The question isn't if something has an effect on us or not.  The question is what kind of effect does it have and where does it lead.

Why isn't it inconsistent?  Because sugar isn't known to destroy the body, families, marriages, intoxicate, significantly alter a person's behavior - and on and on.  Sunlight may give you a sunburn, but it isn't strongly discouraged (in my belief) in the Bible.  Orange juice tastes great and has some nutritional value, but beyond that . . . .

One group of items (alcohol, marijuana, tobacco) destroys, kills, alters & tears down.  The other list of items is relatively banal.

One group has an inherent and direct effect in destroying our spirit and taking us away from the Lord.  The other items aren't inherently so. 

 

 

Precisely. And neither is alcohol, in moderation. Too much caffeine will make you a twitchy, neurotic monster, in addition to being bad for your health. Yet we don't cast caffeine as inherently bad because of the effects when taken in excess.

In small amounts, alcohol is both healthy and beneficial (marijuana, on the other hand, is not). It boosts the immune system, heart health, can aid sleep, and tastes great in and with food.

If you're tired of the argument, then folks on your side need to change their language and stop talking about how these things have "effects" on a person. The reason we have to keep making this point, again and again, is that this kind of language/sloppy categorization ("this stuff affects your mind!") functions as well-poison.

神是爱

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Alex O

Alex, your explanation does not fully address or illustrate a distinction between alcohol induced inebriation and the intoxicating effects of marijuana. That's Piper central point. You said yourself it' s like "mind-driving". My experience with marijuana would support that. For most people, it's a fairly instantaneous, mind altering condition, similar, but not quite the same as intoxication. Perhaps a heavy buzz. (Assuming one excepts a gradient of alcohol intoxication, stretching from warm & fuzzy to blackout.) As you said, with good weed, you go from 0 - 60. Boom. Whereas, those of us who enjoy alcoholic beverages know it's completely different.

Another trouble spot for defending weed, and indirectly for those who claim using alcohol is the same, is that the Scriptures are explicit in the use and support of alcoholic beverages. (I know we've debated it.) But there are guidelines in God's Word about the use and misuse of alcohol. You can only draw arguments of inference for marijuana. That's not to say you can't try to make them, but they are still analogous, not explicit.

Which leads to Piper's ultimate point. Isn't the nuanced defense for smoking weed similar to the question of how far can I go with my girlfriend? We would say, don't seek to see how far you can go, be holy. Seek godliness. And so with drugs, we should say, why would I long for a mind altering experience? Why push the proverbial envelope? The joy of life isn't enough? You need to modify your mental state?

Aren't you really reducing this to an even simpler problem? I just want to be happy, bro. Weed makes me feel so good. It's a thought generator, man. God wants me to be happy, right? To which we respond. Freedom from sin, and a life of righteousness that exemplifies the fruit of the Spirit, is the path to fulfillment. If you want to get high, set your mind on things above.
 

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Quote:

Quote:

*sigh*

As has been pointed out ad nauseam, one drink of tea or one piece of chocolate also has "some kind of effect on the body/mind." So can sugar, sunlight, exercise, and orange juice. That something has an effect on the mind/body is not, in itself, the issue here--which is precisely why one can reasonably oppose one and accept the other.

So how can those of you who oppose alcohol and marijuana overlook the obvious effects of caffeine, et. al? Isn't it inconsistent for you not to ban those as well?

Does the Bible continually warn against the dangers of excess caffeine consumption?

dmicah makes a salient point -

Aren't you really reducing this to an even simpler problem? I just want to be happy, bro. [Alcohol] makes me feel so good. It's a thought generator, man. God wants me to be happy, right? To which we respond. Freedom from sin, and a life of righteousness that exemplifies the fruit of the Spirit, is the path to fulfillment. If you want to get high, set your mind on things above.

I made this point earlier in another thread...if you consume alcohol / marijuana because 'it helps you relax' or 'makes you feel good' and that is your motivation for pursuing it, then I feel like that motivation needs to be carefully examined. If that really is what you need to unwind, then is it an idol or does it have control over you?  Why can you not unwind or be happy with the knowledge that God has already given you of Himself and what He does for us?

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

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Jay

Jay, hate to retread, but there is a distinction between alcohol and marijuana. I can drink a beer like you might drink a soda. It's a flavored beverage that goes with a good meal. Same for a glass of wine.

I'd have to pound 3 - 5 beers, in rapid succession, to match the intoxicating effects of the marijuana from a joint or a blunt.

And once again, let's go back to Scripture, which clearly and explicitly offers guidance. God, in fact, gave wine for the merriment of our heart. 

By the way, for all of the abstinence folk who claim that a single sip, or a drink has some kind of physical effect, you can only be referring to undetectable biological minutiae. As a practical matter there is no inebriating effect to a single drink imbibed moderately, i.e. throughout the course of a meal. 

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drawing distinctions

dmicah wrote:

Alex, your explanation does not fully address or illustrate a distinction between alcohol induced inebriation and the intoxicating effects of marijuana. That's Piper central point. You said yourself it' s like "mind-driving". My experience with marijuana would support that. For most people, it's a fairly instantaneous, mind altering condition, similar, but not quite the same as intoxication. Perhaps a heavy buzz. (Assuming one excepts a gradient of alcohol intoxication, stretching from warm & fuzzy to blackout.) As you said, with good weed, you go from 0 - 60. Boom. Whereas, those of us who enjoy alcoholic beverages know it's completely different.

Another trouble spot for defending weed, and indirectly for those who claim using alcohol is the same, is that the Scriptures are explicit in the use and support of alcoholic beverages. (I know we've debated it.) But there are guidelines in God's Word about the use and misuse of alcohol. You can only draw arguments of inference for marijuana. That's not to say you can't try to make them, but they are still analogous, not explicit.

Which leads to Piper's ultimate point. Isn't the nuanced defense for smoking weed similar to the question of how far can I go with my girlfriend? We would say, don't seek to see how far you can go, be holy. Seek godliness. And so with drugs, we should say, why would I long for a mind altering experience? Why push the proverbial envelope? The joy of life isn't enough? You need to modify your mental state?

Aren't you really reducing this to an even simpler problem? I just want to be happy, bro. Weed makes me feel so good. It's a thought generator, man. God wants me to be happy, right? To which we respond. Freedom from sin, and a life of righteousness that exemplifies the fruit of the Spirit, is the path to fulfillment. If you want to get high, set your mind on things above.
 

 

Hi Micah,

You have two posts which appear to contradict each other. On one hand you say pot and alcohol are similar and another post that they are fundamentally different.

I have reread Piper and he really is deficient in his understanding of Cannabis. He has not read, it is obvious to me, any pharmalogical studies about the substance. Neither is he aware of the historical usage. He is a "popular" preacher who seeks to address a lay audience. I don't know what area PhD studies involved, but, he is at best a "popular theologian" and not a technical one. Shouldn't we heed the Biblical admonition to "carefully examine" issues before commenting on them? Desiring God Ministries likes to dish it out but, it seems, doesn't want the interaction, the "push back" to what they say. Where is the "comment section?"

As a starting point Dr. Grinspoon would be a good place to start for a current and informed view. Here is a man who sought, by scientific research, to try to convince the youth back in the 60s against pot. After his studies, he had to change his mind about the substance.

Alcohol, in my view, is a pleasant, social substance recommended and blessed by God explicitly. We can validly deduce the implicit truth about pot that it was made by God and is "good." Pot is more like a performance drug: it makes a person think quicker with the corresponding deficit on comedown phase. This is why snowboarders, surfers, mountain bikers, etc. find the substance enhancing their activity. These effects are undeniable and Piper has missed them completely. Piper reminds me of Fox News' selectively reporting on issues. He seems to want to give some pastoral guidance on the issue but, in my mind, has not done sufficient research to come to an unbiased conclusion.

 

 

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Micah

Hey Micah -

I understand that you are still differentiating between the permissible use of alcohol and marijuana, but I wanted to comment on the sentiment expressed, since I've heard that from others, both on and off-line, on this issue several times now.

If an unsaved guy came into my office and said that he needed to drink in moderation because it helped him unwind, I would want to follow up on that and pursue it deeper, because it's obvious he's looking for satisfaction in the wrong place - that comes from God.  If a believer came into my office and said the same thing, I would still want to find out why he can get that from alcohol and only alcohol.

 

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

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Caffine = Alcohol?

So too much caffeine will make you a twitchy, neurotic monster??  Really?  You are comparing caffeine with alcohol??

When was the last time you heard of anyone arrested for driving while under the influence (effects) of caffeine?  When was the last time you heard of a children being bitter at their father because he was a Mt. Dew drunk?  How many marriages have been broken because of the influence of too much coffee?  How many secular laws do you see restricting the age of consumption of Red Bull or Rock Star?

You want the alcohol=bad side to change their language and stop talking about how these things have "effects" on a person?  Of course we are going to talk about how it affects you because guess what, it does!  The Bible doesn't strongly teach against alcohol in my belief (or strongly discourage only excess to others) because it has no effect on a person.  The Bible's teaching/warnings about alcohol isn't just filler material.  It is there because . . yes, of how it affects a person.

And you are talking about sloppy categorization!  (Y)!

 

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two responses in one

Jay and Alex

Jay, I think I understand your distinction. 

It's simple to me, at least. Pot = instant high (some gradient there). Alcohol is not an instant high. Alex, I know there' s a million ways to use weed, but I've never considered it a performance enhancing drug. It's more like a laze your butt off - do nothing but eat garbage drug.

If Scripture's consistent thread on the abuse of alcohol relates to coming under its influence, then such should apply to coming under the influence of THC. If you can't control it, then you shouldn't use it. 

If you're saying you can control the high, I suppose that's between you and God.

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Back to "Parenting in the Haze of Legalized Marijuana"

Back to "Parenting in the Haze of Legalized Marijuana":

  • Parents can and should control their children. 
  • There are many temptations out there: marijuana just one of scores (alcohol, substance abuse of all kinds, et cetera)
  • How do parents control?
    • Know what teens are doing, whom they are with
    • Look for evidences of drug use (it's not that difficult)
    • Keep 'em busy with school, family activities and church (and sports) (in my mind "working" is a better development of young people than sports. Start them early shoveling snow, mowing grass, babysitting, etc. Teach them how to earn and save $$. At 14 most teens can and should work part time (my view))
    • Poor academic performance may be an indicator of drug use
    • Use strategy of rewards and withholding of privilege to steer teens. Eg linking of car privilege to correct behavior
  • The church is not the answer to every teen issue. There's the family, God's ordained institition!

 

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variety of effect

dmicah wrote:

Jay and Alex

Jay, I think I understand your distinction. 

It's simple to me, at least. Pot = instant high (some gradient there). Alcohol is not an instant high. Alex, I know there' s a million ways to use weed, but I've never considered it a performance enhancing drug. It's more like a laze your butt off - do nothing but eat garbage drug.

If Scripture's consistent thread on the abuse of alcohol relates to coming under its influence, then such should apply to coming under the influence of THC. If you can't control it, then you shouldn't use it. 

If you're saying you can control the high, I suppose that's between you and God.

Of course, absolutely, pot is a performance drug. Even though your experience informed you of a "couch lock effect", the report from others shows a performance effect. As I mentioned in my first post, the various cannabinoids, in relation to each other greatly determine subjective effect. Further, terpenes modulate THC9. Thin-leafed Sativa varieties with high THC and low CBD increase heart rate and speed up cognitive output- "thought generation." Indicas (wide-leaf strains) are mostly "couch lock" in effect and may increase appetite. Pot intoxication is not as pleasant as alcohol and the smoker will usually not want to toke more once a certain state is reached. On the other hand, alcohol consumption, the subject will often not know when to quit. Pot is often euphoric but is subject to "set and setting." It is not a social lubricant either. Pot, if used injudiciously will cause "overthinking", the existing thoughts come too fast. The pot antidote is sugary drinks or food consumption. People often get tired of all the euphoria so they eat to comfort themselves is my thinking.

Another "performance area" of pot usage is with the "act of marriage" (sex). This of course is very subjectively managed again under the concept of "set and setting." What I am saying is that it is not automatic. A bad mindset and/or poor setting is a recipe for unresponsiveness and failure of the intended action. Conversely, when everything aligns properly, definitive enhancement.

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Andrew K. wrote:

Andrew K. wrote:

We've been over this before: Yes, you can be okay with alcohol and oppose marijuana--reasonably.

We have been down the road, and you can adopt the double standard, but the arguments for marijuana are interchangeable with alcohol.

1 Kings 8:60 - so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God and that there is no other.

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mmartin wrote:

mmartin wrote:

So too much caffeine will make you a twitchy, neurotic monster??  Really?  You are comparing caffeine with alcohol??

When was the last time you heard of anyone arrested for driving while under the influence (effects) of caffeine?  When was the last time you heard of a children being bitter at their father because he was a Mt. Dew drunk?  How many marriages have been broken because of the influence of too much coffee?  How many secular laws do you see restricting the age of consumption of Red Bull or Rock Star?

You want the alcohol=bad side to change their language and stop talking about how these things have "effects" on a person?  Of course we are going to talk about how it affects you because guess what, it does!  The Bible doesn't strongly teach against alcohol in my belief (or strongly discourage only excess to others) because it has no effect on a person.  The Bible's teaching/warnings about alcohol isn't just filler material.  It is there because . . yes, of how it affects a person.

And you are talking about sloppy categorization!  (Y)!

 

So the consequences for over-consumption are worse for alcohol than caffeine (largely, provided you don't die)... so? That hardly affects my point that people don't suffer those kinds of consequences for drinking in moderation either.

As for caffeine, Jay, substances containing large amounts would have been unknown, so I think the point is moot.

And no, you can talk about how alcohol consumption "affects" people all you like, provided you clarify that you mean negative effects. But of course once you do that, I can simply point out that those negative effects are a result of substance abuse. Nobody beats his wife after a glass of wine with his meal. No homes are torn apart because I like a beer with my pizza.

James, my understanding is as follows: Alcohol in moderation is not harmful but rather beneficial to health and mental state, so it's use is lawful; marijuana is not beneficial, except perhaps for medical usage. I know Alex and many others will argue this point, but I have done my own reading into the matter as well, and so I remain convinced of what I have stated.

Incidentally, I don't believe I should ever be convinced that breathing in smoke of any sort is healthful, since the was not made to do so. See below.

Donald P. Tashkin, MD, Professor of Pulmonary Care at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), stated in a June 2005 article published in the Monaldi Archives for Chest Disease:
"The smoke of marijuana, like that of tobacco, consists of a toxic mixture of gases and particulates, many of which are known to be harmful to the lung....Whereas THC [primary active ingredient in marijuana] causes modest short-term bronchodilation [expansion of the air passages], regular marijuana smoking produces a number of long-term pulmonary consequences, including chronic cough and sputum, [and] histopathologic evidence of widespread airway inflammation."
 

神是爱

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neither advocate or condemn

Andrew K. wrote:

 

mmartin wrote:

 

So too much caffeine will make you a twitchy, neurotic monster??  Really?  You are comparing caffeine with alcohol??

When was the last time you heard of anyone arrested for driving while under the influence (effects) of caffeine?  When was the last time you heard of a children being bitter at their father because he was a Mt. Dew drunk?  How many marriages have been broken because of the influence of too much coffee?  How many secular laws do you see restricting the age of consumption of Red Bull or Rock Star?

You want the alcohol=bad side to change their language and stop talking about how these things have "effects" on a person?  Of course we are going to talk about how it affects you because guess what, it does!  The Bible doesn't strongly teach against alcohol in my belief (or strongly discourage only excess to others) because it has no effect on a person.  The Bible's teaching/warnings about alcohol isn't just filler material.  It is there because . . yes, of how it affects a person.

And you are talking about sloppy categorization!  (Y)!

 

 

 

So the consequences for over-consumption are worse for alcohol than caffeine (largely, provided you don't die)... so? That hardly affects my point that people don't suffer those kinds of consequences for drinking in moderation either.

As for caffeine, Jay, substances containing large amounts would have been unknown, so I think the point is moot.

And no, you can talk about how alcohol consumption "affects" people all you like, provided you clarify that you mean negative effects. But of course once you do that, I can simply point out that those negative effects are a result of substance abuse. Nobody beats his wife after a glass of wine with his meal. No homes are torn apart because I like a beer with my pizza.

James, my understanding is as follows: Alcohol in moderation is not harmful but rather beneficial to health and mental state, so it's use is lawful; marijuana is not beneficial, except perhaps for medical usage. I know Alex and many others will argue this point, but I have done my own reading into the matter as well, and so I remain convinced of what I have stated.

Incidentally, I don't believe I should ever be convinced that breathing in smoke of any sort is healthful, since the was not made to do so. See below.

Donald P. Tashkin, MD, Professor of Pulmonary Care at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), stated in a June 2005 article published in the Monaldi Archives for Chest Disease:
"The smoke of marijuana, like that of tobacco, consists of a toxic mixture of gases and particulates, many of which are known to be harmful to the lung....Whereas THC [primary active ingredient in marijuana] causes modest short-term bronchodilation [expansion of the air passages], regular marijuana smoking produces a number of long-term pulmonary consequences, including chronic cough and sputum, [and] histopathologic evidence of widespread airway inflammation."
 

Hi Andrew,

Though I do not advocate recreational use, I recognize some use it that way and I can't really fault them from my understanding.

I agree on the effects on the lungs and would discourage the method in general. All things being equal though, if someone were suffering pain to a degree where the detrimental effects of smoking was inconsequential to the greater need for pain relief, then it would make sense to me.

Edible usage of Cannabis is a viable option and produces essentially the same results. It has good efficacy.

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Marijuana & Alcohol Both Wrong

Alcohol is wrong, and marijuana is wrong. A wise, biblical Christian will stay away from both.

http://gulfcoastpastor.blogspot.com/2014/01/why-marijuana-should-remain-...

David R. Brumbelow

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Do you think alcoholic beverage sales should be illegal?

David R. Brumbelow wrote:

Alcohol is wrong, and marijuana is wrong. A wise, biblical Christian will stay away from both.

http://gulfcoastpastor.blogspot.com/2014/01/why-marijuana-should-remain-...

David R. Brumbelow

Do you think alcoholic beverage sales should be illegal? Do you advocate a return to Prohibition?

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Baptist Press articles on Marijuana

I’m not worried about debating Prohibition of alcohol. But when we have a legal substance that is America’s number one drug problem (alcohol), why unleash another dangerous, addictive, mind-altering drug (marijuana) on our country?

Baptist Press has some good articles on marijuana.

http://bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?id=41895

David R. Brumbelow

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Don't let your mind go to pot indeed.

The article's were good-if all the more alarming to the "new" day in which we live. (yet nothing is new).   My heart is pierced for todays children, especially those without godly influences in their lives.  My goodness..who'd have thought the smell of ganj might be a regular fixture in Anytown, USA?  The youth are once again being targeted in a big big way, this whole pot legalization thing is yet another example of bringing down society 101--seems to have kicked into high gear of late. 

I praise God for the local church and the wisdom of Godly leaders and teachers, and the fellowship of the saints.  As the days grow darker we're going to be relying more and more on each other.

Some of the above responses got me thinking..
Wine/alcohol is mentioned throughout scripture rather matter of factly;  whether in warning about, enjoyment of, in description or prescription.  Seems clearly evident that it was an acceptable aspect of biblical life, and properly self governed is still today. I take the to-each-their-own approach.  (Rom. 2:15; 1Cor. 10:29-33 ...)

Pot isn't even in the same category as alcohol and no more belongs in the realm of Christian liberties as say, shrooms, cocaine, lsd, or sharing spouses for that matter.   The fact that pot is even being "debated" in the evangelical world at all is a testament to the age we are in.   I know from all too much experience that pot directly and adversely affects the psyche and what might (as such) be considered our "spiritual" side.  And that's just the start of it.  You suck in that sweet smoke and you have no idea the spirits you have just opened yourself up to right along with your euphoria.  Pot is a liar and deceiver disguised as an angel and the enemy cackles especially gleefully at the "Christian" toker.  As the light has no place with the darkness a Christian has NO business playing around with nor condoning the use of marijuana........Hellooo?!?  

Yeeks.

(to be clear- I'm not talking about medicinal use)

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@David R. Brumbelow - you are inconsistent

David R. Brumbelow wrote:

I’m not worried about debating Prohibition of alcohol. But when we have a legal substance that is America’s number one drug problem (alcohol), why unleash another dangerous, addictive, mind-altering drug (marijuana) on our country?

You are inconsistent​

I mention this because:

  • It seems most consider prohibition to have been an epic failure (I personally do)
  • And many (I have not finalized my own views on this) consider the so-called "war of drugs" to have likewise been a failure
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On Prohibition and Losing the War on Drugs

Jim,

I would encourage you to read the first article I reference above.

On Prohibition:

“One of the clear lessons of Prohibition is that when we had laws against alcohol there was less consumption, less alcohol-related disease, fewer drunken brawls, and a lot less drunkenness. And contrary to myth, there is no evidence that Prohibition caused any big increases in crime.”

-William Bennett, a graduate of Williams College, has a doctorate in political philosophy from the University of Texas, and a law degree from Harvard. He was director of the National Drug Control Policy under President George H. W. Bush, and Secretary of Education under President Reagan. Quoted in “Ancient Wine and the Bible.”

Christians need to speak up against some of the myths about Prohibition.

On losing the war on drugs:

We could also say we have lost the war on murder. After all, we have had laws against murder for centuries, yet murder still happens. In great numbers. So, should we admit failure? Should we legalize murder? Should we tax murder? Of course not.

A law against a harmful practice does not eliminate the practice. But making something illegal does limit it, stigmatize it, and punish those who abuse the law.

Legalize marijuana, and you are guaranteed to get more, much more, marijuana use. And more of the harmful effects that go with marijuana.

David R. Brumbelow

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"Ardent Spirits: the Rise and

"Ardent Spirits: the Rise and Fall of Prohibition" by John Kobler (Da Capo Press: New York, 1973). Good summary of the temperance and prohibition movement. Many social ills decreased during prohibition such as disorderly conduct, cirrhosis, and the murder rate. The rate of increase in the murder rate was higher prior to prohibition than during. Approximately 105 thousand people (2.5 million worldwide) die each year in our country from the direct effects of alcohol according to Dr. Bill Bennet. It is nigh impossible to outlaw the recreational use of alcohol, but let's not add to the problem by legalizing pot and other drugs.

Pastor Mike Harding

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Second Edition

Generally speaking, when you legalize something, you will get more of it.  I wonder if some cities in America will become similar to Amsterdam which legalizes many inebriating drugs and prostitution.  Is that the kind of America we really want?  The pushers and cartels will simply concentrate their efforts on other drugs such as cocaine and heroin, once marijuana is legalized throughout the country.  Last night I spoke with a young man who is taking "medical marijuana" for back pain.  Really?  Are there no other remedies or more effective remedies?  Sounds like a ruse to me.  I am a firm opponent to the recreational use of alcohol.  Nevertheless,  Michael Medved and others have commented recently that alcohol is water dissoluble whereas marijuana (THC) stays in the body much longer with longer term effects.  In a day where modern invention enables us to free ourselves from inebriating drugs, many are using modern techniques to increase the mind altering, mind numbing effects of inebriating drugs by increasing the alcohol content in beverages and strengthening marijuana to the point that some brands are nearly as potent as LSD.  It's all so tragic and pagan.  By the way, Dr. Randy Jaeggli is coming out with the second edition of his book on the Christian and drinking.  The title is "The Christian and Drinking: The Scriptural Case for Abstinence".  The book is longer than the first edition and addresses a number of issues not previously dealt with in the first edition.  Randy is a chemical engineer.  He also has his M.Div. and Ph.D. in OT interpretation.  The book should be available in about two months.

Pastor Mike Harding

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So you have greater knowledge than the MD that prescribed it?

Mike Harding wrote:
 Last night I spoke with a young man who is taking "medical marijuana" for back pain.  Really?  Are there no other remedies or more effective remedies?  Sounds like a ruse to me. 

So you have greater knowledge about the man's medical needs than the MD that prescribed it to him?

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Medical Marijuana

Medical Marijuana
“Don't be taken in. Marijuana is a dangerous drug with countless negative effects. The rush to decriminalization in the name of pain control or mental health cannot be justified.
Most people who use marijuana to relieve severe pain combine it with stronger pain relievers because marijuana is not effective enough by itself. Furthermore, marijuana's pain-relieving ingredient has been available by prescription for years. A person can purchase Marinol -- right now -- with a doctor's prescription…

“The plain fact of the matter is that there are better and safer drugs [for pain]. Marijuana is not the solution. It merely adds more problems.” -Barrett Duke, BP; 8-6-2012

http://gulfcoastpastor.blogspot.com/2014/01/gleanings-on-damaging-effect...

David R. Brumbelow

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Pastors Brumbelow and Harding ... cutting to the chase here

Pastors Brumbelow and Harding ... cutting to the chase here:

Presuming that medical marijuana is legal in your arena of ministry:

  • Church member (of your church) discloses that he/she takes medical marijuana for [whatever medically prescribed reason]
  • You would do what? And why?
  • Could that same one continue in your church's membership they continued to take medically prescribed  marijuana?

Were I a pastor ... I would not be concerned (since I asked your view ... only fair that I provide mine!)

So my answers: If legal in my state (and it is not in Minnesota): Answers: Nothing & Yes

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Jim,

Jim,

 

I have been in consultation with several doctors in my church and a Christian medical doctor who is an addiction specialist.  All of them seriously question the use of medical marijuana and all of them insist there are more effective treatments.  It is my personal opinion that the medical marijuana push in ten of our states is the door to legalization of recreational marijuana.  My son-in-law is the head of Orthopedic Surgery in his hospital and he told me that no competent physician would ever prescribe medical marijuana for back pain.  I would not personally interfere with a doctor's prescription; nevertheless, I would encourage anyone to get several expert opinions before smoking a joint in order to get healthy.

Pastor Mike Harding

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Medical Marijuana Trojan Horse

Jim,

I believe most legal medicinal marijuana use is a ruse to enjoy it and get stoned.

But if a church member was under strict care of a competent, reliable medical doctor who proscribed medical marijuana, while I would be suspicious, I would tolerate it. After all, we have all types of mind-altering prescription drugs that we accept. The key here is strictly medicinal vs. recreational use.

By the way, I just read Pastor Mike Harding’s comment, and agree.

Another quote on Medical Marijuana:

Trojan Horse

“Part of the reason we have not had more success ending rampant illicit drug abuse in our nation is the fact that so many states have legalized marijuana for medical purposes. Such counterproductive policies are the equivalent of drilling holes in the bottom of your boat while you are frantically trying to bail water.
In fact, if you take a closer look, you will see that most states currently debating legalizing the use of marijuana for recreation first legalized it for medicinal use. Medical marijuana is the Trojan horse of recreational marijuana.” -Barrett Duke, BP; 8-6-2012

David R. Brumbelow

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Re Medical Marijuana Trojan Horse

I think you are correct. 

I do think that some of the momentum to legalize is backlash against the perceived harsh sentences for marijuana infractions and the billions spent on the so-called "war on drugs"

An observation about the medical marijuana angle: There are a lot of non-standard treatments that society is open too, especially in the areas of aid for those in chemotherapy and also treatments for chronic pain. I myself have chronic pain but in most cases NSAIDs, heat, rest and time are effective.

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Penalties - Marijuana

Jim,

I strongly support keeping marijuana illegal. But I’m open to looking at changing some of the penalties of marijuana possession.

For example: “But by keeping marijuana illegal, we can better develop ways to discourage its use. A system of increasing fines, penalties and requirements, like substance-abuse counseling, can be developed. Penalties even could include the loss of one's driver's license. Jail could be a last resort for habitual offenders.” -Barrett Duke, BP; Sep 4, 2012

David R. Brumbelow

 

SuzanneT's picture
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Agree

I agree with what Dave and Mike have added. It seems much of marijuana's medicinal use could be (indeed is) a ruse at worst, and just unnecessary at best. Definitely a can-o-worms in the matters of the Christian faith!  Ultimately, some of these things must fall through the sieve that is matters-of-the-heart, which only God sees.  

Just a thought: I find it ironic that as prescription drugs moved into realm of the street; we now have what originated as a street drug moving into the realm of the "prescription". 

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Saw on local news last night

MN Families Make Tough Move To Colo. For Medical Marijuana

 

The Jay family made the move a few weeks from Fort Ripley, Minn. to Bailey, Colo. Their daughter has epilepsy and a specially cultivated pot plant has shown promise in treating seizures. It has been a long road to be able to make that 1,000-mile move to Colorado, from everything and everyone they knew in Minnesota. Eight-year-old Jenna Jay has epilepsy. Surgeries, diets, and 20 different medications haven’t been enough to control the hundreds of seizures she has suffered every month for more than five years. “If there’s a chance that it could help why not at least try it,” father Jason Jay said. The Jay family first heard of a custom-cultivated marijuana plant grown only in Colorado after Charlotte Figi’s parents went public with their story. Charlotte Figi takes a dose of the cannabis oil daily. The plant has a high amount of a compound shown to help control seizures in some kids. “It’s been two years and she’s off all of her pharmaceuticals,” mother Paige Figi said. “She’s walking, talking, eating. (It’s a) 180-degree difference for us.”

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The world renowned Mayo Clinic

http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/marijuana/background/hrb-20059701

 

The plant has been studied as a potential treatment for many conditions, including chronic skin disorders, cancer-related weakness and weight loss, chronic pain, Huntington's disease, sleep disorders, eye disease, multiple sclerosis, and schizophrenia. The most significant benefits have been seen in the treatment of chronic pain and multiple sclerosis.

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Thanks for those links, Jim,

Thanks for those links, Jim, very promising solutions for some indeed!  Can God's common grace include the use of cannabis? I wouldn't rule it out.

One other aspect about the use of "medical" marijuana that I remember thinking was a good thing was in the case of cancer patient's whose lose their appetites from the chemo treatments.