What Does The Bible Say About Drugs? Answered!

By Charalampos •  Updated: 04/01/23 •  7 min read

Have you ever wondered what the Bible has to say about drugs? As Christians, we may want to make sure that our decisions and behaviors are in line with God’s Word.

This is why it’s important to know what the Bible says about any activity – including drug use.

In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at texts from both the Old Testament and New Testament of the Bible that deal specifically with drugs – giving us an insight into how God views them. 

With a better understanding of these scriptures, we can be more mindful of how our actions align with God’s will for our lives.

The History of Drugs

Drug use is becoming more and more common in modern society, and more and more people are turning to various substances for relief and relaxation, as well as many pagan religions promoting the use of drugs.

However, drug use is not a new phenomenon, and nothing has changed much in thousands of years. People have been using drugs for various purposes for centuries, extracting them with the help of plants. The Bible, as a book of moral guidance, has a lot to say about drugs.

Alcohol in The Bible

Alcohol in The Bible

Alcohol is a full-fledged drug if a person doesn’t control alcohol consumption. Also one of the most commonly abused drugs today is alcohol, which is mentioned throughout the Bible.

People can buy it at any grocery store, and many people find happiness in their lives only in alcohol, not noticing how the consumption of such drinks makes their life much worse.

While the Bible doesn’t condemn alcohol use outright, it does warn against the abuse of alcohol. For example, Proverbs 20:1 states, ” Wine produces mockers; alcohol leads to brawls. Those led astray by drink cannot be wise.”

In other words, excessive drinking can lead to destructive behavior. A person ceases to control his thoughts and actions and loses his human appearance. Similarly, Ephesians 5:18 advises, “Do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery; but be filled with the Spirit.” This verse suggests that drinking in moderation is acceptable, but getting drunk is not.

It’s also worth remembering the famous episode of the New Testament when Christ was at a wedding and turned water into wine. People behaved decently and therefore God wasn’t against their fun.

Drugs in The Bible

Opinion in the bible about drugs

The Bible also warns against the use of other drugs, particularly those that can alter one’s state of mind.

For example, Galatians 5:19-21 lists “sorcery” as one of the works of the flesh that are opposed to the Spirit of God. The Greek word for “sorcery” in this verse is “pharmakeia,” which is related to the word “pharmacy” and refers to the use of drugs for magical or religious purposes.

This shows that using drugs to alter one’s state of mind is a practice that is opposed to God’s will.

Using Drugs For Recreational Purposes

The use of drugs for recreational purposes is also frowned upon in the Bible. 1 Peter 4:3 warns against them:

“You have had enough in the past of the evil things that godless people enjoy—their immorality and lust, their feasting and drunkenness and wild parties, and their terrible worship of idols.” The use of drugs for recreational purposes can easily lead to a lifestyle of excess and immorality, which is against God’s plan for His people.

The Bible also warns against the harmful effects of drug use. Proverbs 23:29-35 describes the consequences of excessive drinking, which can include poverty, sickness, and even death.

The book of Hosea warns that people who do things objectionable to God and find other idols in life are like “a stubborn heifer” who refuses to be tamed (Hosea 4:16).

«The Israelites are stubborn, like a stubborn heifer. How then can the LORD pasture them like lambs in a meadow?»

In other words, drug use can lead to a lack of self-control, loss of mind, and spirituality, and can also lead to the creation of a new idol in life instead of God, which can have negative consequences.

Drugs for Medicinal Purposes

Despite the Bible’s warnings against drug use, some people may argue that certain drugs are acceptable for medicinal purposes.

The Bible doesn’t explicitly talk about this issue, but it contains some verses that suggest that the use of certain substances for healing may be acceptable.

Ezekiel 47:12, says, “Fruit trees of all kinds will grow on both banks of the river. Their leaves will not wither, nor will their fruit fail. Every month they will bear fruit because the water from the sanctuary flows to them. Their fruit will serve for food and their leaves for healing.”

Also, Proverbs 31:6-7 advises, “Give strong drink to the one who is perishing, and wine to those in bitter distress. Let them drink to forget their poverty and remember their troubles no more.” This verse suggests that alcohol may be used to alleviate suffering in certain circumstances and some things can be used to numb a person’s physical pain.

However, this can’t be an excuse for using drugs to get pleasure, from which a person enters an inadequate state.

The book of Exodus also describes a recipe for anointing oil that includes several aromatic substances, including myrrh, cinnamon, and cassia.

This oil was used for religious purposes, but some scholars believe that it may have had medicinal properties as well. This suggests that the Bible may view the use of certain substances for healing purposes as acceptable, as long as they are used in the proper context and don’t harm the body and soul of a person.

Bible Verses About Drugs

Bible Verses About Drugs

Except for such warnings against drug use, the Bible also guides those who are struggling with addiction.

1. Corinthians 6:12

” “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything.”

2. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your bodies.”

This verse reminds us that we should take care of our bodies and never hurt them intentionally. Abuse and addiction can harm our bodies and make it difficult to honor God.

3. Exodus 20:3-5

Drug addiction can be a form of idolatry, which is also forbidden in the Bible. Exodus 20:3-5, it says,

“You shall have no other gods before me… You shall not bow down to them or worship them.” When people become addicted to drugs, they prioritize them over God and their relationship with Him, which can lead to a loss of faith and spiritual emptiness.

Final Thoughts

It can be concluded that drugs are considered bad in the Bible, any addiction is a sin because it creates a new idol and a person begins to worship it and not God.

Also, drugs introduce a person into an inadequate state in which he can’t control his actions, his mental activity also decreases, and all this harms the soul and body. At the same time, some substances can be used for medicinal purposes, but they should be aimed at alleviating the disease, and not at getting pleasure.


Charalampos is an Orthodox Christian who wants to help others learn about Christianity. His main goal is to help people understand the Bible and how to apply its teachings in their everyday lives. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing sports, and hiking.

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