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Old 01-20-2002, 03:11 PM   #1
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Originally posted by Achtung_Bebe:
Well he said that I am to give up smoking, because it is highly unattractive first of all, and second of all because it is poisoning the temple of Christ and his immaculate creation.
Interesting that he listed his reasons in that order.

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Old 01-20-2002, 03:15 PM   #2
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Bebe, smoking like many other lifestyle choices is not and should not be linked to one's faith, imo. The argument that it is sin because it is defiling your body which is God's temple is pretty flawed. By that rule, we could call eating Big Macs a sin because they can give you heart disease and suntanning sin because it can give you skin cancer. Bottom line...external things are of no value. Unfortunately many Christians feel like they have the right or the ability to judge one another based on outward appearance. But then again so did the Pharisees in Jesus' day and he had quite a lot to say to them about that.

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Old 01-20-2002, 03:21 PM   #3
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I couldn't agree more with sula. Anything else I have to say about it is in the "Legalism" thread in that U2 religion forum.

And, personally, there are a lot of really scary "super-Christians" out there, who somehow think that by playing the part--pious, upright, the whole "brother in Christ" line, etc.--they are somehow more Christian than anyone else. If anything, they are the ones missing the point of the New Testament.

Overall, don't worry about him. Quit smoking because it is bad for your health, but don't think that smoking somehow makes you a lesser Christian.


"He had lived through an age when men and women with energy and ruthlessness but without much ability or persistence excelled. And even though most of them had gone under, their ignorance had confused Roy, making him wonder whether the things he had striven to learn, and thought of as 'culture,' were irrelevant. Everything was supposed to be the same: commercials, Beethoven's late quartets, pop records, shopfronts, Freud, multi-coloured hair. Greatness, comparison, value, depth: gone, gone, gone. Anything could give some pleasure; he saw that. But not everything provided the sustenance of a deeper understanding." - Hanif Kureishi, Love in a Blue Time
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Old 01-20-2002, 03:35 PM   #4
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Funny thing, I was brought up in a Baptist Church and I always thought that Christians didn't smoke. I don't know where that thought came from, and I completely disagree with it today! It sounds like this guy who gave you the advice is playing "holier-than-thou" but attempting to skew it so it looks like "the word of God".

Keep on smoking if you like, I wouldn't listen to that guy.

Right on, sula and melon!

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Old 01-20-2002, 03:55 PM   #5
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Yeah, I kind of got the feeling he was one of those showy Christian types... like they're out to impress people at the same time--you know with the "guess that verse" game going on at the study and everything. He knew most of them, aint that swell

I actually ran into this guy at the coffee shop where I work, I was only stopping in to deliver some U2 c.d.'s that I burned for a fellow employee
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Old 01-20-2002, 04:53 PM   #6
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Your body and mind are both important to Christ.
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Old 01-20-2002, 06:09 PM   #7
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does it say anything about crack?
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Old 01-20-2002, 06:55 PM   #8
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From first impressions, he does seem to be the pious type, however, one can never be sure.

There are always distinctions to be made from the genuinely well-intentioned (or perhaps enlightened) and those who are just pious to make themseleves feel better, or sometimes even both. However, if you should decide to quit smoking, you should do it for your own health and because you actually want to, not for his approval.

We may never find out what his genuine intentions and thoughts are, all you can be sure about is what you want, being a christian has nothing to do with smoking; I don't recall the eleventh commandment of 'Thou shall not inhale'. And what about the slogan of 'the pope smokes dope'?
However, Jesus DID say once that what goes into the mouth is never filthy, its what comes out of the mouth one should worry about.

Of course it is still too early, however, as it has been pointed about before, I really find the order of his reasons interesting, saying how it looked 'unattractive'. Some men do like to change women using subtle psychological strategies, be careful you don't find yourself changing just to fit in his 'perfect follower' image.

Personally, the only thing that keeps anyone from God is the mind, not a joint. If he is a true follower of christ, he should realise that the lepers are in one's head, not a cigarette. One of my fave quotes of U2 is 'if you want to kiss the sky you better learn how to kneel', I always interpreted those lyrics as good advice. If you want to know God, one should learn humility, not abstinence from smoking.


[This message has been edited by Anthony (edited 01-20-2002).]
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Old 01-20-2002, 07:49 PM   #9
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Beebs, ignore the Christian and listen to your big sis.
Stop pouring tar into your lungs now!!!!!!!
Am I gonna have to wack you?

Angie has to put up with my crap, you shall now too.
(inserts choking on goo that is inside your lungs and arteries full of thick icky vomit style poison smiley)
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Old 01-20-2002, 08:05 PM   #10
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In defense of the guy at school:

Yes, there are hypocrits who act pious but really aren't. But just because P implies Q, it doesn't mean Q implies P. Just because hypocrits act pious, it doesn't mean that everyone who appears to be pious are all hypocrits.

(And it isn't ALWAYS the case that pious people are also arrogant. One can be pious in a good way. One has to judge these things on a case-by-case basis.)

Honestly, if there are genuinely pious people (Mother Teresa comes to mind), they too would appear pious. There's no sense suggesting that everyone who appears to be pious is deceitful.

In other words - and this is more a note against some replies and not Bebe's original post - one shouldn't let one's biases against Christians cloud one's judgment. You can't judge a book by its cover.

Yes, "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves." (Matthew 7:15) But at the same time, "the tree is known by his fruit." (Matthew 12:33) If the person doesn't appear to be hypocritical, he might actually be on the level.

Now, on the question of the morality of smoking...

It appears, due to the current state of scientific knowledge, that smoking is probably harmful to the body. At the very least, it isn't beneficial in any known way.

If you knowingly put yourself in a great risk of physical harm for no good reason, I can see one of two things occuring: Either you believe you won't get harmed, which can be interpreted as tempting God (see Matthew 4:5-7). Or you simply don't care that you may bring yourself harm, which I think qualifies as damaging God's temple (see 1 Corinthians 6:19).

It then becomes a question of whether a long-term smoking habit is "too risky." It certainly isn't flinging oneself of a rooftop, but it does seem more risky than eating meat (which is occasionally contaminated by salmonella, etc.). The fact is that the risk of eating meat can be balanced by the nutritional benefits of protein, etc.; that smoking is not beneficial doesn't help its case.

As an aside, I think the fact that humans have a natural taste for meat and sugar indicates to me that we were born with a certain physical need for the nutritional benefits of both - at least in small doses. That one has to get used to smoking is a very bad sign, in my opinion.

Ultimately, I believe a certain level of self-indulgence (some dirty jokes, violent video games, and empty calories) is either acceptable or simply bad at the level of nit-picking. I believe God would prefer us to focus on loving Him and others.

Whether tobacco falls into that area of quasi-acceptable indulgences is, I think, ultimately something to be worked out between you and God. Outsiders can't tell you what to do, either way.

But if I may...

As one who is for greater personal freedom, I certainly think adults should be allowed to smoke, and private enterprises (restaurants and bars especially) should be allowed to set their own rules on smoking.

That said, I think people should be free to smoke but should also choose not to, mostly for reasons that are outside the scope of morality. It's the simpler case of common sense, not necessarily a moral mandate. It's an expensive habit that, in the BEST case, has no effect on a person. In the worst case, it leads to serious health problems. It strikes me as a bad decision.

And, personally, my mom smokes. When confronted with the risks, she replies that God will "take her" when He wants to. That strikes me as a SERIOUS violation of Matthew 4:7 and its reference, Deuteronomy 6:16: Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

In her case, even if the smoking itself is morally ambivalent, her attitude about her habit worries me greatly.
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Old 01-20-2002, 09:48 PM   #11
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Something tells me Jesus has better things to worry about...

If you cannot live together in here, you cannot live together out there, let me tell ya. --Bono

You've got to cry without weeping, talk without speaking, scream without raising your voice... --Bono
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Old 01-21-2002, 12:29 AM   #12
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I actually believe that smoking is wrong, because not only are you harming yourself and the gift of life given to you, but more than likely you are also harming others because of the effects of second-hand smoke.

Your seven worlds collide
Whenever I am by your side
Dust from a distant sun
Will shower over everyone

-Crowded House
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Old 01-21-2002, 02:18 AM   #13
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There's this guy at my school who is completely devoted to Christ. He was saved a year ago he says. Well anyway, I attended a little bible study with a group from my school, and he pulled me aside and started telling me he could sense the holy spirit urging him to talk to me. It was the strangest thing, he just started opening up to me and telling me aspects in my life to focus on... I was a bit puzzled as to why he says he had a sense to talk to me. I don't put off a "save me" vibe I don't think. Well he said that I am to give up smoking, because it is highly unattractive first of all, and second of all because it is poisoning the temple of Christ and his immaculate creation. He said "you are a diamond, do not tarnish the diamond... unique with intricate detail" I'm using his words basically. He also made it seem like it's a contradiction for a believer to be a smoker. Does anyone else feel this way? I mean I realize you are to strive to be a practicing christian in your daily life (ex. not just paying lip service) but what makes this so un-christian. I mean tobacco was given to us in nature. I had just never been told this before

He also stressed that he wasn't trying to talk down on me, rather help me as a "fellow brother in Christ" ...

"" strive not to be someone's trophy, rather be their treasure ~Jared

[This message has been edited by Achtung_Bebe (edited 01-20-2002).]
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Old 01-21-2002, 07:18 AM   #14
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honestly, I've never thought God judges people by whether they smoke or not. it's my guess he said something to you for one of three reasons. either a) he honestly believes in what he's saying and really wants to help you, b) he wants to show how strong his belief is, or c) he likes you and was looking for a way to approach you

I dunno my guess is he really believes it and wanted to 'help' you, I just don't really agree with this way of pushing religion on people. It's all wrong, imho.
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Old 01-21-2002, 10:14 AM   #15
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Melon & Sula - i couldnt have said it better myself!

Bebe - just do what YOU want to do!!!!

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