January 21, 2018 – Today’s culture world-wide seems to be that of enchantment with the use of drugs, especially those that have a mind altering characteristic. Marijuana, crack cocaine, use of pain killers and much more appears to be commonplace around the world. Even heroine has made a huge comeback, following a decline in the 1990’s. But what does this say about today’s society?
In generations past, drug use was seen as something evil. Today states within the United States have legalized the use of marijuana, and alcoholism is prevalent in society. People today rarely raise an eyebrow at the thought of someone using a ‘harmless’ drug such as marijuana. But substance that alter the state of the mind should be considered more seriously.
Gateway: Over past decades, the use of marijuana was thought of as a ‘gateway drug’, meaning that when beginning the use of ‘weed’, it opened the door for experimentation with more illicit drugs, such as cocaine. Today some try to refute that claim, however, it still remains a fact that the majority of those who use strong drugs, first smoked marijuana.
In a New York Times article, president of the Institute for Behavior and Health, Robert DuPont, mentioned that there can be a ‘priming’ of the brain for responses for other drugs. DuPont also stated “people who use marijuana also consume more, not less, legal and illegal drugs than do people who do not use marijuana.”
Addiction: The use of prescription medication, such as pain killers, has spiked in the USA. In fact, the federal government has begun a crack-down on doctors who over prescribe pain medicines. Hydrocodone and others seem to be the drug of choice for methamphetamine addicts who look for a temporary alternative to meth, when meth may not be available. Even innocent people can become victims to prescription drugs.
Following surgery, many people are prescribed pain medicine. Often, this pain medicine has an addictive effect. Much of the time, quitting pain medicines can cause severe withdrawals and must be slowly stopped, instead of a quitting cold turkey. Many express a tough time stopping the use of pain killers. Depression, shakiness and more are often described as the effects of stopping the use of pain medicine.
Spiritual Implications: Modern society has chosen specifically to depart from the religious beliefs of generations before. Because of the prominence of Christianity in American society, many people would not dare use marijuana or even alcohol, as it was seen as an evil. But is there a basis for that?
In the original text of the Bible, Revelation 9:21 speaks of ‘sorceries’. The original language used is the term in which we get the word ‘pharmacy’, the word ‘pharmakeia’. Pharmakeia means ‘an enchantment with drugs’ or ‘to get high on drugs’. Also, later in the Bible, Revelation 21:8 speaks of sorceries with the original word ‘pharmakeus’ which is the ‘giver of potions’ or ‘giver of poison’. In both instances the terms are described a wickedness with demonic connotations. Also one has to contemplate that satan could specifically use drugs as a means of deception in an effort to keep many from seeing the redemptive grace of Jesus Christ.
With drug use so prominent in American society, we must consider the gateway that is offered that eventually leads to the trappings of drug use. Perhaps, Americans should consider the fact that the spiritual beliefs of past generations, kept our young people safer and stronger, emotionally, physically and spiritually.