Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
June 19, 1958

Serious Thoughts For Smokers

Roger M. Hendricks, Dayton, Ohio

Written for the thoughtful consideration of those who smoke!

Odds 10-1 Against Smokers In Cancer Report Claims

The above caption is the title of an article which appeared in the Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio) in June, 1957. Interwoven in the article are the following thought provoking statements:

"Men who smoke cigarettes are 10 times more likely to die of lung cancer than nonsmokers, the American Cancer Society reported today.

"It finds the lung cancer death rate one thousand per cent higher in smokers than among non-smokers. Smoking also boosts the chances of fatal heart attacks by 70 per cent, the society said.

"They declared smoking boosts the chance of premature death from all causes. The more cigarettes, the higher the risk. Quitting smoking reduces the risk."

Cigarette Smokers Advised To Quit

An article bearing this caption appeared in the Dayton Daily News on April 15, 1958. Smokers, consider the following statements from it:

" 'Quit . . . Cut It Out Completely.'

"That's the advice to cigarette smokers from Dr. Alton Ochsner of New Orleans, La., who has treated more lung cancer patients (1600) than anyone else.

"Dr. Ochsner is a professor of surgery at Tulane university and director of surgery at the Ochsner clinic and Ochsner Foundation hospital.

"He said figures show that the death rate from coronary disease is 115 per cent higher among cigarette smokers than among nonsmokers.

"He said that it takes about 20 years for lung cancer to develop.

"In the last 20 years he said the per capita consumption of cigarettes has increased about 100 per cent. The effects are being felt now."

The Truth About Tobacco

"The Truth About Tobacco" is a rather lengthy article which appears in Volume 6 of THE BOOK OF POPULAR SCIENCE. The article is a very interesting one, indeed. Space will allow only random comments from the treatise to be given here.

The writer clearly points out the fact, which most are probably already cognizant of, that "Until the present century, women who smoked were generally held to be either rustics or eccentrics." Even today it isn't much of a compliment to a woman to say of her, "She smokes!"

The writer says that smoking "obviously contributes nothing to health." According to the two articles found in the newspaper, just the opposite is true.

Realizing that many smokers are prejudiced regarding the subject, he says:

"The man of science has the utmost difficulty in persuading people that he writes impartially on this or any subject which comes so close to the likes and dislikes of his readers. Those who like what he says will applaud, and those who dislike it will dismiss him as biased."

This is a problem which most gospel preachers face, too, isn't it brethren? The disposition to accept those comments which please us and to reject those which displease us is found in many church members. Our minds should ever be open to the truth!

We are informed that "Nicotine, weight for weight," is more poisonous than is prussic acid.

"One-third of a grain of nicotine has killed a man; and if we compare this drug with prussic acid, weight for weight, nicotine is slightly more poisonous; indeed, chemistry knows few poisons more powerful."


" ... as one draws in a mouthful of smoke, one draws in with it a certain amount of nicotine in gaseous form, derived from some part of the tobacco between the lips and the part undergoing combustion. No doubt the proportion is tiny, but the substance is potent."

Without further comment at the present from me, let the smoker ponder the following words:

"Few smokers can ever learn to inhale the smoke of a cigar or a pipe — for a reason which we shall have to study soon. Therefore the inhaler smokes cigarettes, and the possibility of inhaling their smoke is thus the special danger of cigarettes. The habit is one of which few people can break themselves, and it is highly desirable that the young smoker should be warned against it. As long as one has never inhaled, smoking is just as enjoyable, and far safer, without it.

"Doctors and, above all, doctors who specialize in the throat and larynx, know how constantly young singers lose their voices and spoil their careers because of this vice of the inhalation of cigarette smoke. It is a vice; for its consequences are vicious, and the essence of it is mal-treatment of one of the most delicate and irreplaceable parts of the body — the organ of the 'living voice'.

"The fact that tobacco is a poison is no more disputed by anyone now than the like fact regarding alcohol.

"The objection to the description of nicotine as a poison is naturally raised by the habitual smoker — the case being the same with alcohol, opium, cocaine and all the other neurotic poisons which induce habits.

"...the fact is that the satisfaction which the regular smoker obtains is precisely the same in essence as that obtained from his alcohol by the drinker, or from his morphia by the morphinomaniac.

"...the expectant mother, who, if she smokes, must undoubtedly be exposing the young tissues and the developing nervous system of her child to be deleterious influence.

"Smokers are notoriously more liable to cancer of the lower lip, mouth and tongue than are non-smokers ...

Yes, there are some serious thoughts contained herein for those who smoke. And while our brethren are meditating on these things, they might do well to consider these statements of Paul: "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are." (1 Cor. 3:16, 17.) "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's." (1 Cor. 6:19, 20.)