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Can Christians Use Drugs And Alcohol?

Can Christians use drugs and alcohol for fun? Technically the Bible silent on the issue of most drug usage since many of them were not in use in ancient Israel, but the scriptures do speak of consciousness altering drugs in a few places. Specifically it speaks about alcohol consumption, which was the most widely used drug at the time.

Isaiah 28:7  These also reel with wine and stagger with strong drink; the priest and the prophet reel with strong drink, they are swallowed by wine, they stagger with strong drink, they reel in vision, they stumble in judgment.

This verse speaks of the religious leaders of the nation being infected with drunkenness and giving false spiritual guidance. It proves to be a good warning for Christians. As followers of the one true God Jesus Christ, we are the spiritual leaders in this fallen world, we need to be sober-minded so that we can provide clear and understandable spiritual and moral guidance. The use of drugs and alcohol distort reason and pervert morals.

As beings created in the image of God, we are endowed with both reason and an innate sense of right and wrong, which are damaged by the use of drugs and alcohol. Look at Lot in Genesis 19, he was a righteous man, righteous enough to be worth saving from the judgment of God on Sodom, yet after fleeing to the hills he became drunk with wine and his reason and morals fleeing in the face of such drunkenness committed incest with his daughters.

Lot is an extreme example to be sure, but he serves as a cautionary tale as well. The use of drugs and alcohol do affect ones reasoning and morals. For instance, many people will make choices they would otherwise not make while under the influence, normally peaceful men become angry drunks and beat their wives and children. Under the influence of drugs, people have sex with strangers, commit crimes and endanger their lives with risky behavior.

Okay, you may say, I get that, but what is the harm of smoking a joint, watching some TV and then going to sleep? Well for one thing, you are turning your will over to a drug and not to God. While on drugs the influence of the Holy Spirit in one’s life is suppressed, the fruit of the Spirit is choked with weeds and we turn our back on our God-given reason and moral compass. When our reason is distorted, we have a hard time hearing the voice of the Holy Spirit in our lives, but we hear the voice of Satan loud and clear. The Spirit often convicts our conscience when we are faced with a moral dilemma, but Satan will tempt us, give us excuses and since our self-control is broken while under the influence, we often give into the particular temptation being offered.

Proverbs 20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise.

Scripture teaches that being under the influence makes one stupid and gets one into trouble. More bad than good happens while on drugs or alcohol. Does this mean we can never drink or get high? It means we cannot use something to the point that our reason and morals become subverted. It means that we should drink in such moderation that we never become drunk and never use drugs that will lead us away from God.

Ephesians 5:15-18 Look carefully how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit.

You wont find love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, or self-control at the bottom of a bottle or in drugs, you find only satanic counterfeits. What you eventually find is sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness and orgies. God warned us that those who do such things will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

Ephesians 5:25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.

What are your thoughts on being led simultaneously by God’s Spirit and alcoholic spirits?

About Jonathan Kotyk

Jonathan Kotyk is a student, self taught philosopher, recovering addict and born again Christian. He has spent time on both the far Left and Far Right side of the political spectrum and lives in Canada.

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  1. I think that its probably likely that naturally hallucinogenic plants like peyote and mushrooms were known back then as well. I remember reading something about the oracle at Delphi somehow getting stoned from inhaling smoke from a chasm before she would give her “prophecies“ – don`t know how accurate it is. In theory a Christian should be able to have a glass or wine or a cold beer on a hot summer day if he or she wants to. In theory.

    Because, in theory, it isn`t sin to go to an idol`s temple if you aren`t worshipping the idol. There are demons behind idols according to scriptures. Which is probably what bars and nightclubs should be considered, an idol`s temple. Perhaps we don`t see the reality behind the packaging. But, using that rationale, that its not sin to enter a bar or wrong to have a beer with friends, I joined my husband, who had just made a profession of faith, in going to a bar for a relative`s birthday and in having a beer or two somewhere else. Fast forward a year later and I had been drunk several times with him and had consumed more alcohol in one year than I had in my entire life. And I did NOT have a stronghold of alcohol addiction in my life. So I think perhaps such questions need to be asked in the wider context. Picture it like this.

    Imagine if you were on a long trek through the back country and wanted to take a break at a lovely oasis and enjoy some coconut milk and a swim in the clear pool of water. An oasis on a long day is harmless and quite lovely. Coconut milk is not sinful. Swimming in a clear clean pool is refreshing. No harm in that. But if you back the story up and realize that the trek is taking place through dangerous country inhabited by an enemy who hates you and who is hunting you, and that there are booby traps and ambushes planned for you everywhere, you might look at those harmless things a little differently. Especially if your enemy is something like the Taliban and would love to get a hold of a westerner like you, torture you and kill you after extracting information about the location of your family members or your church. I think we have to think that way when such questions come up, esp. when we feel a sort of pull to justify something that doesn`t feel quite right for reasons we aren’t sure about. Especially in these last days when spiritual warfare and pressure to compromise will increase. Making rules won`t help. But discerning the reality of what`s going on will.

    • Thanks for the comments.

      Peyote is native to North American desert areas only. The use of psychedelic substances are part of mystery cults and the occult, they never played any part in the development of Judaeo-Christianity.

      Many denominations use wine in the Lords Supper, but we do not use it to become intoxicated, that is the line we need to keep in mind when drinking, does it make one drunk. Becoming drunk we lose control and make sinful choices we otherwise would not.

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