A New Take On Life

Image of marijuana leaves to prompt the conversation of marijuana and christianity.

“If God made Marijuana…”

National Recovery Month:

“Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so.The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. ” – Genesis 1:11-12

With National Recovery Month behind us, let us not lose our momentum in the fight against addiction. In July we talked about the concept of being “California Sober, ” and this month I want to continue that conversation and address another interesting argument in favor of the use of Marijuana that I have been encountering more often…Christian’s and THC.

There is a Christian “influencer” (I put that in quotes because I don’t know how much positive influence she has at this point) that I have been following for a few years on Instagram. She helps women with starting up their own businesses and offers paid courses and she also leans heavily into political content and talking a lot about Jesus and the culture we live in today. Recently she began really talking about her mental health and opening about the struggles she has had with anxiety and depression and exposed that she has been using SSRIs since she was 17 and that she was tired of being dependent on Big Pharma to help make her feel better. Hey, no argument here! I am completely supportive of anyone who wants to use medication to help and who doesn’t want to, it’s your journey, not mine. Although I am not personally a fan of Big Pharma, I support the use of medication because I know that it has been studied and gone through many tests and it is monitored for its effectiveness and for its side effects. Scientists have been able to come up with specific formulas that work, and they know exactly down to the smallest dose of just how much of the ingredients that are in the pill that is being prescribed. But I digress…we will save the Big Pharma talk for another day.

This individual posted a few months ago about using marijuana for her mental health and it opened the flood gates for opinions from both sides of the topic and for a minute, things got pretty ugly. She dropped the conversation and did not post about it until recently when she ran out of her SSRI and decided not to refill it and began solely depending on Marijuana to help her. She posted a picture of herself with smoke rolling out of her mouth and a commentary of the victory she feels of being free of panic attacks and of pharmaceuticals. Once again, the flood of comments from both sides were sparked and once again, it got heated very quickly. The one comment that sparked my attention was, “Seizure free with gods glory and his greens”, to which the “influencer” excitedly jumped on using as a legitimate argument. Obviously as a substance abuse counselor the use of Marijuana is concerning, just as concerning as the over prescribing of Benzodiazepines which are highly addictive medications used for anxiety. So, on the spiritual side of things, I felt this was worth addressing.

Often, and in this Influencer’s argument, the question is posed this way, “Didn’t God create Marijana and, isn’t it good?” There is an argument that the God of the Universe in His infinite wisdom and love created this plant with all its properties – and created US with an entire system in our bodies that not only responds well to exogenous cannabinoids (like in cannabis form) but produces them endogenously (see: anandamide). Therefore, cannabis is a tool for healing and relief, and it is the only medicine that has helped some people with specific issues and no negative side effects. Isn’t that a good enough argument to say yes, yes God created this, and it must be good? I think that often, people are simply looking for words to support an addiction that they know deep down inside in their heart is cutting them off from God. Because again, addiction is in part, a spiritual issue, is it not? Yes, God created marijuana, and He also created corn, wheat, barley, salmon berry, spruce trees, and rose bushes. God does not lie, He tells the truth, so when He says that He saw it and it was good, He means that, but I think what we as humans take as “good” and what God takes as “good” are often different things.

Each plant that God created serves its own purpose. For example, the rose, while beautiful to look at and smell, was created with thorns as a way of protecting itself from animals that might eat it. God created spruce trees which are good for building things, but you’ll notice that not many things eat a Spruce tree. Nicotine on tobacco plants is created to deter bugs from eating it. THC, the addictive chemical in marijuana, serves the same purpose, to keep insects from eating them. Yes, the God the Creator made marijuana plants designed with THC, but its purpose was not for humans to use it recreationally, but for the plant’s defense against enemies. God also created iron.

Open bible with a magnified glass to display christians directing the Bible to determine God's intent for marijuana.

Iron has purpose, but when men use it to steel knives and then stab people no one would say in the knives defense, “well God made iron, so he must want people to be stabbed, ” but is that not what the heroin addict would say about the poppy plant, or the dying man of lung cancer about nicotine? When we as humans operating out of flesh take what God made for good and use it for evil, that is man’s plan, not God’s purpose.

The next question inevitably is, “where does the Bible tell me not to smoke marijuana?” It doesn’t. It also doesn’t tell us not to smoke or not to eat poison, nor does it tell us not to shoot heroin, or snort meth. In fact, the Bible gives us this direction, “All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. ” (1 Corinthians 6:12) In God’s economy, marijuana is lawful because its fiber makes rope, paper, cloth, and even lotion. Should we then smoke or eat it? We just read what the Bible said, “but I will not be brought under the power of any. ” Ask any substance abuse counselor, parent, or teacher what happens when someone comes under the power of marijuana. Productivity changes just like under alcohol or any other mind-altering substance, but not only that, it drastically reduces our chances for salvation. In 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, the Bible is very clear that drunkenness prevents us from inheriting the kingdom of God. Is not being stoned another form of drunkenness, a different seat on the bus?

**** Marijuana changes people… For more information on how, reference July’s newsletter, California “Sober?” on our blog. It changes you under the influence and when unwillingly sober. We expose ourselves spiritually to things that have power over us and open up to the enemy to wreak havoc in our lives. So what should you do if you believe you are under the power of marijuana? Reach out to Christ and come under the power of the Holy Spirit like in Acts 1:8, and then reach out to a professional counselor who can help you begin to unravel some of the lies that you have been taught.

Two women - one counselor and one client - sitting in a room during a counseling session.

“Cannabis And The Christian Church: A Clear And Concise Theological Examination of Cannabis And How The Church Should Approach It”
By Michael Thacker

With the legalization of cannabis becoming more prominent than ever throughout the United States and world as a whole, it is time for the church to do its research and come to understand the health benefits of cannabis and how, as Christians, we have the liberty to utilize it. Christian teacher and author, Michael Thacker, goes on to reveal how misinformed and misguided the church has been throughout the past century when it comes to cannabis and how theologically, it is lawful to use within the constraints of self-control for better health and the treatment of several ailments. Here, Michael deals with the arguments against the use of cannabis by countering the arguments from a clear, concise theological approach while looking deep into the meaning of passages as well as the Hebrew and Greek translations throughout both the Old and New Testament. Be ready to be informed and forever changed by this eye opening, revolutionary book about the rise of cannabis within the church.

Jessica Pottorff, MS, MA, T-LMHC, CADC

Woman with red hair wearing black dress with white polka-dots. She is wearing red glasses with white polka dots and leaning up against a brick wall smiling.

Jessica holds a Master of Arts degree in Christian Counseling of Substance Abuse and Addictive Disorders as well as a Master of Arts degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. She is also a certified alcohol and drug counselor. Jessica is currently accepting new patients; please use the contact form if you would like to schedule a session with her.

Jessica is passionate about working through codependency issues, guilt and shame, and spiritual issues and allows God and Scripture to empower clients to see their potential and to find their identity in Christ. Jessica is authentic and builds rapport quickly with her clients by being personable, compassionate, and Christ-centered. She has a passion to help people develop a deeper relationship with God as they pursue wholeness in all areas of their lives.