Seven score and one dozen years ago U.S. President Abraham Lincoln said
And that we should endure civil war to
— Abraham Lincoln. Gettysburg Address. (Note minor wording updates within brackets.)
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What goes into your mouth does not make you ‘unclean.’ It’s what comes out of your mouth that makes you ‘unclean.’”1
Nothing outside of you can make you ‘unclean’ by going into you. It is what comes out of you that makes you ‘unclean.’”2
As has been pointed out in many places by many theologians, ministers, pastors, lay people, etc…, this passage clearly shows that you do not defile your soul or spirit by eating bacon, drinking soda, wearing lipstick, smoking cannabis, eating a mushroom, or drinking Guinness Extra Stout or taking ANY drug.
However, that does not mean doing drugs is always a good idea. Duh. You may have heard one of Solomon’s most famous song adaptations through the Byrds. :-)
The sad irony is that Prohibitionists have been working hard to deceive everyone by pretending that “illegal” drugs (and plants) are somehow chemically radically different from legal drugs — and illegal drugs and plants cause spiritual uncleanliness, and that they, the wizards and High Priests of Assigning Permanent Shame have some special secret knowledge of this they use to calculate the severity of punishment which they masquerade as the WILL OF GOD in the oldspapers, over the airwaves, and to “send messages to the children.” Not to mention sending a bill through time to their children, great-grandchildren, etc… for the ongoing and future costs of escalating counter-productive Drug War.
However, one does not need to achieve the level of experience and wisdom of neuropsychopharmacologist Dr. Carl Hart to know what Dr. Stanton Peele says is true: some of those in government (& out) act to stigmatize certain substances and behaviors but end up being so draconian they cause far more problems than were among those they complained about in the first place. Dr. Peele says it much more gracefully than me, titled, Government Says You Can’t Overcome Addiction, Contrary to What Government Research Shows.
Does this mean you should treat your body like a garbage disposal, cesspool, or compost heap and toss in whatever? Snort, sniff, smoke, inject or drink anything with abandon? NO! And I’m positive Dr. Hart and Dr. Peele agree with that.
Jesus’ quote doesn’t say it’s pleasing to God to do anything to your body, the quote says you can not become spiritually unclean by what you consume.
Spreading lies, like telling people alcohol or any drugs are intrinsically bad, is what makes a person “unclean.” Telling people the lie that alcohol, marijuana, etc… are not useful as a medicines or religious sacraments is what makes people “unclean.”
Saying that people are dirty or clean based on their urine is what makes a person unclean. Spreading fear for the sake of income is what makes a person unclean.
Now here is the part you must weigh yourself to keep you on the straight and narrow, avoiding unhealthy excesses. Jesus told us we must deny ourselves, we need to “carry our cross.” Please note Jesus does NOT say “force people to carry something you designate, ordain, or legislate as their cross.” [“Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”]
In other words, if you don’t want to drink [etc…], fine, then don’t; but please don’t force or stigmatize others to join you; just follow the Golden Rule; if you’re a self-chosen abstainer then you do not want others forcing alcohol, etc… on you. It’s that simple. Jesus advises us to spend our time seeking God’s Kingdom & Righteousness, and removing logs from our own eyes, not clawing at specks in others’ eyes.
Preventing and stopping drug abuse? Great in theory. However, Prohibitionism-enactments, no matter how well intentioned or painted that way, end up only exacerbating existing harms then cause additional harms.
There are warnings in the Old Testament about falling into the temptation to party all the time. Partying to get wasted is never advised. (Although a thorough reading of the Bible does turn up some recommendations to enjoy and share from God’s bounty and goodness). Mary thinks and questions, Martha pushes. Approach with caution and education, please don’t jump blindly or push.
Therefore it is beyond a gross injustice to force the government to legislate mandatory self-denial in the form of Absolute Abstinence. And Prohibitionism ensconced in some U.N. treaties have become weapons of mass destruction!
Please note I am not calling drugs “garbage.” The title of this piece, Garbage Out is Sin, Not the Garbage In is a play-on-words of a computer saying, which is part of a family of Ins and Outs: GIGO, FIFO, LIFO, & more!