The Canadian government has chosen to legalize the recreational use of cannabis (marijuana). This differs from medical marijuana use in that it permits Canadians to smoke weed for pleasure.  The stated reasons include: (1) to reduce criminal profits from the sale of marijuana, (2) to reduce marijuana use among young people.

Apart from the basic fact that the Bible advocates for sobriety, and therefore any mind-altering substance for the purpose of recreation is wrong, consider the danger to Canada and the world:

  1. Based on precedent, consumers will argue that other drugs should be legalized too in order to stem criminal enterprise.
  2. Criminals will simply wait for prices to be set for legal marijuana and then sell theirs for less!  Plus, they’ll have greater access to new varieties, a wider market to peddle drugs, and a more open environment to do so.
  3. Criminals will have unfettered access to marijuana and sell it abroad in places where it’s still illegal (virtually everywhere except for Uruguay).
  4. The government will increase its revenues through taxation of the product providing a rationalization and motivation for legalizing other drugs.
  5. More people will be killed on our highways due to cannabis-impaired driving. What apology will the Senate offer to the first victim of their reckless decision?
  6. Courts will require greater access to tax dollars to pay for impaired driving charges. Over 72,000 impaired driving incidents due to alcohol were reported in 2015. The taxpayer-born costs to prosecute more substance-abusers will be staggering.
  7. Police will have to receive more training to test impaired drivers since cannabis highs are harder to test for than alcohol is.
  8. Addictions will rise leading to a call from citizens for taxpayer-funded addiction recovery programs. With the recent shift in society to label all addictions “diseases”, instead of seeing them as character or behavioural issues, this will place an added strain on healthcare costs.
  9. Families will be damaged as addictions increase. While cannabis is less addictive than alcohol, it is still an addictive and unhealthy substance.
  10. Churches will fragment as denominations take different stances on the issue, since many churches now accept as “moral” anything that the law declares as “legal” (i.e. new definitions of marriage).

This is another example of a vocal minority getting their way to the detriment of the majority, proof of social immaturity, hedonism trumping historic morality, and a government that shuns religious institutions and decides what is morally right or wrong for us.  It’s a bad move for Canada and her citizens. Into this slippage the church must continue to bear witness to the Gospel and the call of Christ for us to live as aliens and strangers in a perverse world (1 Pet. 2:11).  Let us pray that the Lord will redeem this unfortunate law and further awaken people to the emptiness that comes from seeking satisfaction in anything other than a vibrant relationship with the God who alone satisfies (Ps. 107:9).