The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics decided to go above and beyond (and arguably away from) the call of duty the other day after sharing an article on Facebook about how marijuana may alter brain structure in certain people:
Maybe we could have a discussion about what that article does and does not say… but instead, the conversations in the comment thread just got weird.
First, it helps to know that some people believe the anointing oil used by Jesus in the Bible contained cannabis. In Exodus 30:22-36, one of the ingredients listed is 250 shekels of “fragrant cane” (a.k.a. “sweet calamus”). Some believe that’s actually cannabis.
Anointing oil in The Bible is not cannabis. Hebrew tradition clearly taught the use of holy anointing using ollive oil… God expects us to have fresh oil because when oil gets stagnant, it becomes stale.
Joshua, that verse in Genesis is talking about God’s plan for providing food to sustain life, not for getting intoxicated. Just because it was created by God doesn’t mean it is “good” inside the human body (Jimson weed, poison ivy, poison oak, hemlock). You can’t cherry-pick scripture to find verses that fit your argument. You must take the full Bible for all its worth. There are more than 75 verses in The Bible of warnings not to become intoxicated and commands to remain sober-minded at all times.
Shelly, you are correct. The recipe is in Exodus. And it does not contain cannabis. The recipe for Moses Holy Anointing Oil was provided in Exodus 30:23-24. The essential oils that were used include:
•Myrrh Essential Oil – 500 shekels
•Cassia Essential Oil – 500 shekels
•Cinnamon Essential Oil – 250 shekels
•Calamus Essential Oil – 250 shekels and
•Extra Virgin Olive Oil (1 hin).
Thanks for the recipe…?
The ACLU of Oklahoma certainly took notice of the exchanges, telling their own Facebook fans (with tongue planted firmly in cheek):
Apparently the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics is now answering your theological questions. Have a question? Call them at (800) 522-8031
The ACLU also released a brief statement to Alternet:
“We are astonished that the Bureau would pass itself off as a biblical authority,” Oklahoma ACLU executive cirector Ryan Kiesel said Monday. “I’m sure there are plenty of folks who work at the OBNDD who are familiar with the Bible, but as a state agency, it’s just not their job to conveniently interpret scripture to justify their policy positions.”
Given the church/state separation problems already happening in the state, this is certainly not egregious… but it’s a little weird, don’t you think?
Now let’s get back to the issue at hand.
Getting stoned with Jesus: Good idea or great idea?
(Thanks to Brian for the link)