The first solid evidence that the Bible referenced Cannabis was made by Sula Benet in 1936, a little known Polish etymologist. Benet found the old testament used the word KANEH-BOSM meaning Cannabis had been mistranslated in the oldest Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible and that mistake was repeated in the translations that followed. The bible first mentioned Cannabis in the Old Testament, Exodus 30: 23-25: 1446 BCE “Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Take the following fine spices: 500 shekels of liquid myrrh, half as much (that is, 250 shekels) of fragrant cinnamon, 250 shekels of fragrant calamus (cannabis), 500 shekels of cassia—all according to the sanctuary shekel—and a hin of olive oil. Make these into a sacred anointing oil, a fragrant blend, the work of a perfumer. It will be the sacred anointing oil.’”.
“There can be little doubt about a role for cannabis in Judaic religion,” Carl Ruck, Professor at Boston University said.
Chris Bennett author of Cannabis and the Soma Solution explains how Kaneh Bosm, was not only used as an incense, but also it was an ingredient in the Holy anointing oil, in the Old Testament. The ancient recipe for anointing oil, recorded in the book of Exodus (30: 22-23) included over nine pounds of flowering cannabis tops, Hebrew “kaneh-bosm” , extracted into a hind of olive oil with herbs and spices. From the time of Moses to the time of Samuel the oil was used by High Priests and Royalty. After the fall of the Jewish Kingdoms the use of this Holy Oil disappeared until the time of Jesus.
According to a study of scriptures first published in 2003 Jesus and his Disciples were cannabis users and used the herb whilst carrying out miraculous healings. Jesus is said to have violated the Old Testament taboo on the cannabis oil, which restricted its use to Priests and Kings, and distributed it freely to heal the sick and wounded. Jesus is also believed to have used incense containing cannabis in prayer.
Although in modern culture people prefer edibles or smoking cannabis in ancient times cannabis was used in oils that were absorbed by the skin. Jesus anointed his disciples with the oil and encouraged them to do the same with other followers. “If cannabis was one of the main ingredients of the ancient anointing oil and receiving this oil is what made Jesus the Christ and his followers Christians, then persecuting those who use cannabis could be considered anti-Christ,” Chris Bennett.
Whilst there is no suggestion that Jesus’s miracles were due to cannabis it seems that Jesus was an advocate of Cannabis use and the Bible’s modern translation leaves out information that is vital to Jesus’s message. It appears prohibition of Cannabis goes against both the teachings of the Bible and of Jesus himself. The omission of Cannabis from the Modern Bible could be simply something lost in translation but this has caused a herb that has enormous healing powers to be illegal in many parts of the world.