PRAYER ALERT on Evangelicals vs Rastafarians . On November 23rd CARICOM’s Regional Commission on Marijuana held a public consultation at the Belize Biltmore on the prospect of legalizing marijuana. There several Rastafarians claimed a biblical case for legalizing marijuana. Yet the panel did not allow NEAB to answer, though we represent 250+ churches. Directly afterward, the Commission asked NEAB to provide a special document addressing what the Bible says about marijuana.
The Rastafarians at the meeting contended that marijuana should be legalized because Genesis One declares all plants good. “‘Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind’…and God saw that it was good” (Gen. 1:11-12). But we see three types of plants in Genesis 1,2 and 3. In Chapter One we see the plants God planted. They are all good. That was when “no plant of the field had yet sprouted, for the Lord God had not sent rain upon the earth; and there was no man to cultivate the ground” (Gen. 2:5).
In Chapter Two we see the second type of “plant of the field” which man began to plant and cultivate along with the plants God planted. “Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to cultivate and keep it” (Gen. 2:15). In Eden, man was free to eat of any tree in the garden, except for one tree. Because he “will surely die” if he ate of it (Gen. 2:16-17).
In Chapter Three man chose to eat from the one tree which would cause him to surely die. This death meant a different, mortal life on ground that was cursed. There we see that a third kind of plant grew. “Cursed is the ground because of you… both thorns and thistles shall grow for you” (3:17-18). God sent man out of Eden to cultivate the dusty ground from which God formed him. “Therefore the Lord God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken” (Gen. 3:23).
Since then man has had choices between many good plants and many bad plants (and between many other good and bad choices as well). The bad plants included not only thorns and thistles but poisonous plants and harmful addictive plants. For instance, some we know that mushrooms are edible, some are addictive, some poisonous, some even deadly, and some medicinal.
Marijuana contains a good medicinal chemical compound, CBD. But it also contains a harmful chemical compound, THC, which damages the part of the brain that we use for motivation and decision-making. THC has many other harmful effects that we have documented at length in the first paper we are submitting to the Regional Commission on Marijuana.
That is why we have strongly recommended that recreational use of marijuana not be decriminalized nor legalized. It’s a well-known maxim that reducing consequences on behavior increases that behavior. And the more THC is consumed, especially by youth, the more it damages the brain. Instead of decriminalization we must offer the kind of rehabilitation which educates offenders on how harmful it can be to their lives and future.
DailyInsight. Using drugs to escape from God’s trials only leads to harder trials (see James 1:2-8).
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