Toking the Ghost Revisited
Back in February 2007, a fellow missionary I was traveling with started talking about “smoking the weed from heaven.” He would pretend to have a joint of marijuana between his fingers and have “smoke breaks with Jesus.” He also encouraged other believers to take “hits.” I was a bit uncomfortable with this idea but didn't contest it.
Then in October of that year, I heard John Crowder preach on “toking the Ghost” at a church in my hometown of Fargo, North Dakota. I was inspired to make a video with John to share with my missionary friend. During the filming, I experienced so much laughter I decided to make the video public figuring other people might enjoy it also.
Two weeks later at a church in Minnesota, I heard Benjamin Dunn share testimonies of people getting healed from “toking the Ghost.” This was just before he and John Crowder started ministering together. I believed this was God confirming His word in the mouth of two or three witnesses.
Many people were blessed by my “Tokin' the Ghost” video including those who got saved out of the drug culture. However, numerous individuals took issue with it. One woman emailed me saying she couldn’t find basis for it in Scripture, where there are plenty of references to the Holy Spirit being like wine.
In response, I referred to the leaves from the tree of life mentioned in Revelation 22:2. Evangelist Jesse Duplantis testifies in his book “Close Encounters of the God Kind” that when he went to heaven in 1988, he saw people smell leaves for healing or when they felt weak. I suggested that has a similar effect as “toking the Ghost”, which is breathing in the presence of God.
This same woman also asked if I thought John Crowder and Benjamin Dunn have a genuine reverence for God. Only God knows their hearts. James 1:27 says, “Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.” John’s ministry is involved with taking care of orphans and “loving the lepers.”
Two years ago I decided to remove the “Tokin’ the Ghost” video from YouTube. In recent years, I’ve seen John teach things I thought were inaccurate and unscriptural. Therefore, I no longer endorse John’s ministry but still consider him a friend and brother in the Lord.
As far as I know, both John Crowder and Benjamin Dunn have stopped promoting “Toking the Ghost.” Their like-titled electronica CD is now out of print. Nevertheless, they continue to receive flak for preaching that. One man emailed me wanting to use my “Tokin’ the Ghost” video as part of an exposé on John Crowder’s ministry. I refused his request because I don’t want to give heresy hunters additional ammunition.
I used to get drunk on alcohol before becoming a Christian and yet “drinking of the Spirit” initially offended me. Since then I’ve embraced that just like “toking the Ghost.” Both of which are prophetic acts that I now rarely do in public. Even things clearly encouraged in the Bible such as speaking in tongues can be detrimental if done with the wrong motive or at the wrong time.
“Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside.” - Colossians 4:5