Tobacco: Gospel help for fighting the real gateway drug

By June 10, 2024

USA (MNN) — Some say marijuana is a gateway drug to harder substances. However, Brandon Bower with The Lighthouse says that tobacco is the main drug his team sees leading to substance abuse.

He says that almost all of the men who enter their residential Biblical addiction program are addicted to tobacco in addition to other drugs. “We’re seeing a lot of lung disease, lung injury, and COPD from vaping. We’re seeing brain damage, seizures, poisonings, heart problems, and stroke issues. A lot of people see vaping as an alternative to smoking, ‘I’m going to vape because it’s got to be healthier.’ And I’m not so sure it’s not more dangerous,” Bower says.

#1 Preventable Cause of Death

In addition to being legal, tobacco is easy to find and purchase. However, the statistics are sobering. According to the American Lung Association in the United States every year 480,000 people die due to smoking. Additionally, 41,000 deaths are caused by secondhand smoke.

“That breaks down to one person dying every 4.5 seconds from a tobacco-related addiction,” Bower says. “That’s a lot of people. That’s a lot of people that God loves. And if we’re not doing something to speak into this tobacco addiction, I think that we’re failing as a as a group of believers, as a church, to keep people from the number one preventable death in the United States.”

Gospel Hope

In the midst of this darkness, The Lighthouse shines a ray of Gospel Hope. They offer residential programs to help people out of the destructive path of addiction.

(Image by Cheryl Holt from Pixabay)

“The Lighthouse is a Biblical center. We focus all of our work on God’s word. So things like 1 John 2:16 which says, ‘For all that is in the world, the desires of the flesh, and the desires of the eyes, and the pride of life is not from the Father, but from the world.’ Or you can go to Romans 12:1 which says, ‘I appeal to you brothers, by the mercies of God to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.’

“We take Scripture like this, and we apply it to life-altering issues, like tobacco and vaping, and addiction.”

The main thrust of their programs is God’s Word. Although they believe in providing additional resources to help people overcome addiction, the main way they seek to help people achieve lasting change is through a changed heart.

Most people who come to them are seeking freedom from other addictions, but by God’s grace, The Lighthouse is able to provide assistance in abstaining from tobacco as well.

Ready to Get Help?

If anyone is struggling with tobacco or other addictions Bower encourages them to seek assistance from a residential, Biblical program. Those who have not faced addiction, he asks to pray.

“Addiction is an addiction. Whether it’s tobacco or methamphetamines, or alcohol or pornography, I think the prayer for someone trapped in addiction is the same – that they realize the love of Jesus, and they allow Him to free their life from all life-altering substances. I think we can do nothing more than to beg the God and heaven who loves them, to convince them through His Holy Spirit, to change their lifestyle. And that’s powerful.”

For more information on the ministry of The Lighthouse, click here.


Header image courtesy of Lindsay Fox on Pixabay.

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