A 2013 survey found that 6.5 million Americans aged 12 or older used non-prescribed drugs the month before the survey was taken. Currently some 23.5 million Americans are addicted to drugs or alcohol. This means that one out of every ten U.S. citizens 12 or older are hooked. And these are only the ones we know about. There are probably that many more closet addicts whom no one suspects have been snared by addictive chemicals. We simply do not know the exact numbers because many are very adept at hiding their addiction from those around them. But this we do know: there will be more addicts next year than there are this year. As the use of drugs becomes more accepted by the general public, the rate of addiction will continue to climb as new generations come into less inhibited familial and social environments. When parents and friends use drugs, there is a high probability that children will follow their example. So how does God’s “cause and effect” law fit into the life of the nation that proclaims in writing that she is “Under God,” the God in Whom she professes to “trust?” Does the Biblical God have anything to say about drug use and a nation’s present and future? Does He explain to us the cause of a nation’s drug dependence? Let us examine these questions in light of the Holy Bible.
The expression: “cause and effect” is used many times in the course of the nation’s everyday conversations. It simply means that when something happens in our lives–an “effect”–it always involves a “cause.” At times the one experiencing the effect is not aware that a cause has taken place and is therefore surprised by the effect. For example, a rock hits my windshield. I did not know that an automobile in front of me had kicked it into the air. In such an instance neither the cause nor the effect was intentional or planned. This is called “life” in that we all see the law of cause and effect in action at some point in our lives.
In other instances one party “causes” an “effect” to happen to another party through carelessness, stupidity, ignorance, etc. Again, this is merely life happening. An example might be a driver misreading a highway sign, turning the wrong way and hitting an oncoming car. Again, life. No one is immune to making such a mistake.
Then there are those who deliberately cause a negative effect to happen to another person. Removing a
“bridge out” highway sign would be an example of this. Normally, we don’t experience such a cause and effect situation, but it does happen.
And then there are the cases in which one deliberately does something to himself that results in a negative reaction. Smoking is an excellent example. The warning on the cigarette package says in effect: “Smoking (the cause) will harm you (the effect).”
Which brings us to America’s drug problem. We will not even talk about her drug-like addiction to those little boxes people carry around like life support systems. To emphasize the addictive power of those things, students from a famous American university are suing one of the main internet providers for selling them an addictive product. They are openly admitting that they are addicted to the informational/recreational “drugs” the service provides. They are hooked, and as is usually the case in modern times, it’s not their fault. A “force” compels them to spend on average four hours a day staring at the small screen they hold in their hand. No, we will not examine this type of addiction. We will remain strictly in the chemical realm.
For a good, well-written, well-researched look at America’s drug problem I recommend the March 8 edition of Time Magazine. Having suffered tremendous pain and having used drugs that enabled me to bear the 24-7 agony, I can understand how a hurting person can become dependent on pain killers. To experience pain, even terrible pain, is also life. It happens to all of us. After 21 days of lying on the floor around the clock I was miraculously and instantly healed by the Lord after repenting of a sin I had committed. The cause was sin; the effect was Sciatica. The solution was admission of sin, repentance of sin, asking for forgiveness of sin and, most important, reception of the unmerited grace of God. Since then, when sickness or mishap comes my way, I immediately go to God. The formula does not fail because it is written in God’s Rules of Engagement for Life in the Body of Christ. In spite of all that God says concerning His cause and effect law, the majority of church people do not believe it. L.J.