I’ve been seen enjoying the blissful aroma of a great cigar many times. This is because I’ve never felt the need to hide it. When I was a sinner living for my own pleasure, I would surely have had a much more aggressive response to the modern-day pharisee’s religious condemnations!
With this new peace I have, peace that I am blessed with by a much higher power than my own satisfaction, I spend many of days thinking up educated, Godly responses to such claims.
The frank truth is, it is NOT a sin to smoke cigars. If I had it my way, I would leave this blog post at that. But for the confused christian trying to live like Jesus, I am going to lay out some evidence to my bold claim.
The most common Bible verse used today in condemning the “christian smoker” is
1 Corinthians 6:19:
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
Very powerful verse. It is a verse that utters a serious command to the believers. But the command that is being uttered here is not about cigar smoking. The religious people online didn’t mention that when they were commenting on your cigar pictures did they?
This verse in CONTEXT is referring to sexual immorality in the church of Corinth.
Context is such a simple concept, but one that is overlooked by even the most dedicated theologians. I believe it is sinful to take a verse out of context and use it to condemn fellow believers. God’s word is not relative, it is a static book of laws, teachings, advice, and experiences. We are to read his word, learn from it, and live it.
The same verse as mentioned above is often used when religious people are criticising people who drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, partake in other drugs, or risk themselves in any way. This is a story for another part in this blog series though.
Anyway, back to the cigar smoking.
People will talk about the health risks, which is actually valid. There are risks involved with the hobby. A cigar smoker may get cancer, heart disease, or a lot of other negative health conditions. This is true.
But when did taking risks start to equal sin?
The bible is full of people taking risks. In bible times, walking to tend to your gardens was a risk with people trying to rob you, prostitutes trying to tempt you, and disease so easily spread on such a wild scale.
There are risks associated with eating a cheeseburger, swimming in open water, sky-diving, or even day to day driving.
Does this mean we are to live sheltered lives for fear that the risks we partake in are too dangerous? I know I am going a little too deep on this topic but Lord forgive me for I am passionate about some things, and the Gospel and cigars happen to be a couple of them.
Christians. I encourage you to enjoy a nice somewhat expensive cigar today (if that is what you want.) We are followers of God, we are blessed with freedom. It is not un-godly or sinful to smoke tobacco.
This hobby becomes sinful when we are no longer smoking in glory to God, but we begin smoking because we are controlled by the substance. Satan will try to win you over by tempting you with addictions, but with Jesus by your side, and armed with God’s word, you can bypass his shade, and lead a proper christian life.
In closing, I want to put a thought out there. We should spend less time worrying about whether or not something is sinful for another believer to do, and instead study our own heart’s and determine why we consider it to be that way.
Keep an eye on this blog as I continue to speak about common christian questions about drinking, smoking, and other taboo topics.