On Smoking

Larry Devore
Carlisle, Ohio

I am amazed at the number of brethren who continue to be the users of the "filthy weed." tobacco. When we read of the many medical reports showing the relationship between tobacco use and cancer and respiratory diseases, how can a Christian, a responsible person, one who is to be moderate, have self-control, and exercise good judgment in all things, partake of tobacco in any form? I am at a loss to explain it. Paul writes in 2 Cor. 7:1, "Having therefore, these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the sight of God." Paul is telling us plainly enough that because we are the children of God, and recipients of His promises, we should do whatever necessary to clean up our lives. Even if our tobacco-using brethren could prove that the use of tobacco is of no harm spiritually, then we still ought to abstain from it in order to keep the physical body clean because the evidence is overwhelming regarding the harmful effects of tobacco upon the human body (cf. 1 Cor. 3:16-17). What does the use of tobacco do to enhance your spirituality? Nothing that I know of. We ought to be willing to give up tobacco for the sake of the physical body and the cause of Christ. Are many in the church today worshipping these 100 mm. idols? Not many in the church would bow down to a shrine or image, yet we have pet sins that become our idols. Some act like they might quit the church rather than quit smoking. Are we buying our idols in packages of 20 and cartons of 200??

April 1969