Can I smoke pot? For most readers of our book, the title’s question can be answered with one word (read the book to find out what it is). But God in Scripture doesn’t shape us merely by giving us lists of things we must do and things we must not do—with an appendix tossed in for things we can do if we want. He trains our heads in what to think and our hearts in what (and whom) to love. He fills Scripture with reason, argument, story, poetry, and prophecy. He also uses real-life experience—“constant practice”—to increase our “powers of discernment” (Hebrews 5:14).
So a good, Christian, biblically careful discussion of marijuana requires more than a simple yes or no.
Here are three things you will learn; three things that Can I Smoke Pot? Marijuana in Light of Scripture can help teach you beyond simple answers:
1. Can I Smoke Pot? can model how to honor God in your choices.
Every human being has a decision to make regarding marijuana. Right now, Americans in particular are paying a lot of attention to this question. Even if many people haven’t yet given it any thought, they will very likely have to before too long. But for some people, particularly Christians, and particularly younger ones, the question is pressing hard right now: Can I smoke pot?
Christians must not make important decisions on simple impulse. God calls his people to make choices that honor him (1 Corinthians 10:31). This means that Christians should care what God has to say about marijuana. Can I Smoke Pot? provides a model for how to increase your powers of discernment.
2. Can I Smoke Pot? shows you how to answer questions the Bible doesn’t address directly.
Discernment is needed, particularly when the Bible does not speak directly to a particular moral question. The Bible, it’s true, never mentions marijuana. But that doesn’t mean it fails to answer our moral questions about it. Though the Bible doesn’t get updated every few years to reflect the latest issues, it does contain everything that Christians of all ages have needed and will need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3).
Can I Smoke Pot? demonstrates how to answer questions with the Bible when there’s not a clear verse to point to.
3. Can I Smoke Pot? shows you how to love your neighbors well.
Christians and non-Christians alike have questions about marijuana. Part of our service as Christ’s ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20) is to offer God’s answers to our neighbors. Jesus calls his church to represent him to the world, and to do that we have to know what God actually says.
Do you have friends or family with questions about marijuana? How do you start a conversation with your children about it? Let us help! We want to give you some concrete ways to go about having fruitful conversations with others. We want to help you understand how to address this topic thoughtfully, wisely, and from within a Christian worldview.
Our goal in writing this book was more than providing an answer on whether or not it is sinful to use marijuana. We also wanted to demonstrate, briefly, how we can use the Bible to answer this question and others like it.
What can you expect to learn from this book? Most importantly, we hope you learn how to use the Bible well.
Learn more about Can I Smoke Pot? – Marijuana in Light of Scripture
Tom Breeden received an M.Div. from Reformed Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. and is currently licensed by the Blue Ridge Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA). He currently serves as the Pastoral Intern at Grace Community Church in Charlottesville, VA.
Mark L. Ward, Jr. received his PhD from Bob Jones University in 2012; he now serves the church as a Logos Pro at Faithlife, writing weekly articles on Bible study at the Logos Talk Blog. He is the author of multiple high school Bible textbooks, including The Story of the Old Testament and Biblical Worldview: Creation, Fall, Redemption.