Is Smoking Pot Sinful If It’s Legal?

When the states of Washington and Colorado legalized the recreational use of marijuana they created a never-before-seen ethical issue for Christians in those states (and quite possibly the rest of us at some point) to address.

Is it a sin to smoke pot if it’s legal?

At CCV we’ve always said that drinking a beer or two (depending on your body mass, etc.) is not a sin.

But does smoking pot fall into this same category? Pot smoking = beer drinking.

What do you think?

Brian loves helping Christians live thoughtful, courageous lives. He's a popular blogger, author, and pastor at Christ's Church of the Valley in the suburbs of Philadelphia.

  • Allen Hamon

    I noticed that nobody wants to go first commenting on this somewhat controversial topic.  So let me break the ice by deferring my time to the gentlemen across the isle … (just kidding).

    If you didn’t smoke or try to justify your use before it was legalized… the chances are that things won’t change much in your life a.d.

  • Kandysrant

    I would say it is not a sin if you are not given over to uber highness, idolizing, being a stumbling block, not breaking the law, being led astray from God, taking from God’s glory by others judging you and/or God or by you doing things that you wouldn’t normally do, etc.. Remember that just like wine and strong drink is a mocker and a brawler, so is marijuana.

  • Cat

    what made it “sinful” before – just because it was illegal??  i may be comparing apples and oranges here, but if you consider your speed when you drive – you can legally go 65 on most highways, but where the posted speed limit is 25, it is “illegal” and therefore sinful to drive 65.  so by that argument, no, i don’t think it is sinful.  But as Paul says in I Corinthians, there are lots of things that we have the right to do that are not beneficial or could be a stumbling block to the weak.  i would also categorize this activity as one to avoid if you are in a position where you need to be “above reproach.” 

  • Rob Petersen

    If it glorifies God and leads other closer to him through your example, then light up.

  • Jon Weatherly

    Is it a sin to do something utterly stupid?

  • Randall

    One or two beers may not get you inebriated. But one joint would definitely get you inebriated.

    The inebriation is what’s a concern here not what gets you that way.

  • Kikifalcone

    The use of chemicals to alter one’s mind and reality
    regardless of legality is often a question many struggle with. What one must
    consider is the intent. What they  are using for? Are you escaping reality or
    altering it? For those who suffer from the reality of daily pain, the escape of
    that reality may be considered “coping” .The use of chemicals for
    recreational use is in question. The abuse of chemicals for recreation is not
    the same. The problem here is, the lines between the two are often very hard to
    discern! What I can say is…… using drugs and chemicals for pure pleasure often
    leads to a very slippery path.

  • Robert Smithson

    I tend to go back to the scripture for these things – I Peter 1:13-16 says, “13 Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming. 14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”  So, we’re called to have “minds alert and fully sober” – that tells you something right there.  Also, in Acts 5:29, Peter and the other apostles say,”We must obey God rather than human beings!”, so the laws of God are more important than whether or not someone here on earth makes something “legal”. In summary, in I Corinthians 11:1, Paul states, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”  Good advice, and something to consider along with keeping “alert and fully sober”…

    • Brian Jones

      That’s good advice. You know, this is only going to become a larger issue for the church, and reminding us to go straight back to scripture is the best advice possible. Especially when it involves “Christian liberty.”

  • bblande

    Not sinful but not healthy. You’re still inhaling smoke.