About the author: John Kirkwood

John Kirkwood is a son of Issachar. He is a Zionist, gun-toting, cigar-smoking, incandescent light bulb-using, 3.2 gallon flushing, fur-wearing, Chinese (MSG) eating, bow-hunting, SUV driving, unhyphenated American man who loves his wife, isn't ashamed of his country and does not apologize for his Christianity. He Pastors Grace Gospel Fellowship Bensenville, where "we the people" seek to honor "In God we Trust." He hosts the Christian wake up call IN THE ARENA every Sunday at noon on AM 1160 and he co-hosts UnCommon Sense, the Christian Worldview with a double shot of espresso on UncommonShow.com. He is the proud homeschooling dad of Konnor, Karter and Payton and the "blessed from heaven above" husband of the Righteous and Rowdy Wendymae.

View all articles by John Kirkwood
  • Wes Walker

    Happy Independence Day, Parson!
    Enjoy the smoke!

  • Brown Sugar

    People should have their freedoms. If someone wants to smoke, they should have that right.

    • Jonathan Gonzalez

      Yeah I agree we should have the right to buy cigars….cut them open with a knife then fill with weed

      • Brown Sugar

        I agree 100%

      • Brown Sugar

        I agree 100%

      • Brown Sugar

        I agree 100%

    • Jonathan Gonzalez

      Yeah I agree we should have the right to buy cigars….cut them open with a knife then fill with weed

    • Jonathan Gonzalez

      Yeah I agree we should have the right to buy cigars….cut them open with a knife then fill with weed

    • ADRoberts

      SIN: Violation of the known will of God. That is by Websters dictionary.
      So one person may be GENUINELY believing that smoking or drinking is okay. Another may be convinced that they are NOT supposed to do either. But there comes a time when their freedom HURTS others. Such as when the smoke cause a person near them on a regular basis, to develop cancer. Do you think that their freedom should cause the death of another? Or when their drinking gets just a little over the line and they lose control of a car and kill or maim others. Are they without guilt for their slight abuse of their freedom.
      The decision is YOURS. But at the Judgement Bar of God, He will have the final say. Are you willing to risk the certainty of His wrath, just because you WANTED your indulgences and did not love the persons around you enough to deny that indulgence?
      God have mercy on you.

      • Dave

        John 8:1-11 (in particular verse 7) to you.

        • texas57

          Dude, u stole my verse. Well said

          • Dave

            Thank you. :)

          • Dave

            Thank you. :)

        • texas57

          Dude, u stole my verse. Well said

        • texas57

          Dude, u stole my verse. Well said

      • Dave

        John 8:1-11 (in particular verse 7) to you.

      • Dave

        John 8:1-11 (in particular verse 7) to you.

      • Brown Sugar

        I love God and no I do not want to be wrong with God. We grew up in a time were people sat out in a waiting room for the doctor and smoked. And some of the doctors smoked too. We went to drive in movies in cars that was full of cigarette smoke. That is how I grew up. I am 48 years old now. Second hand smoke has yet to kill me. I smoke myself, and yes, I am still alive. I think it is wrong to accuse others of causing harm when you are not positive that it was caused it. There are GMO foods and all sorts of toxins in our water. The government is saying that we are over populated as it is , and they want to change that. I understand that you believe that people should have limited freedoms, and I understand that you are a good person, but please , leave the judging up to the Good Lord himself. Thank You. .

      • Brown Sugar

        I love God and no I do not want to be wrong with God. We grew up in a time were people sat out in a waiting room for the doctor and smoked. And some of the doctors smoked too. We went to drive in movies in cars that was full of cigarette smoke. That is how I grew up. I am 48 years old now. Second hand smoke has yet to kill me. I smoke myself, and yes, I am still alive. I think it is wrong to accuse others of causing harm when you are not positive that it was caused it. There are GMO foods and all sorts of toxins in our water. The government is saying that we are over populated as it is , and they want to change that. I understand that you believe that people should have limited freedoms, and I understand that you are a good person, but please , leave the judging up to the Good Lord himself. Thank You. .

    • ADRoberts

      SIN: Violation of the known will of God. That is by Websters dictionary.
      So one person may be GENUINELY believing that smoking or drinking is okay. Another may be convinced that they are NOT supposed to do either. But there comes a time when their freedom HURTS others. Such as when the smoke cause a person near them on a regular basis, to develop cancer. Do you think that their freedom should cause the death of another? Or when their drinking gets just a little over the line and they lose control of a car and kill or maim others. Are they without guilt for their slight abuse of their freedom.
      The decision is YOURS. But at the Judgement Bar of God, He will have the final say. Are you willing to risk the certainty of His wrath, just because you WANTED your indulgences and did not love the persons around you enough to deny that indulgence?
      God have mercy on you.

  • Brown Sugar

    People should have their freedoms. If someone wants to smoke, they should have that right.

  • Brown Sugar

    People should have their freedoms. If someone wants to smoke, they should have that right.

  • texas57

    Fire it up!!! I am WHO to judge?, hitting a Fuente in about an hour. good article John

    • RELee

      Ahhh Arturo Fuente…nice! A Partagas is also a nice smoke! Enjoy!

    • RELee

      Ahhh Arturo Fuente…nice! A Partagas is also a nice smoke! Enjoy!

      • texas57

        Correct on both, i did enjoy the fuente, had a partagas yesterday, black maduro

      • texas57

        Correct on both, i did enjoy the fuente, had a partagas yesterday, black maduro

      • texas57

        Correct on both, i did enjoy the fuente, had a partagas yesterday, black maduro

    • RELee

      Ahhh Arturo Fuente…nice! A Partagas is also a nice smoke! Enjoy!

    • ADRoberts

      ‘What will he do when he develops throat cancer? Will he continue to excuse himself? Probably. He certainly is not concerned about his negative influence on others. By the way, do ANY of you actually believe that cigars are not dangerous?

      • Brown Sugar

        They are no more dangers than all the crap they put in our foods these days. Chemicals are killing us. GMO’s in our foods. Antiperspirants, extra… What makes you an expert on cancer ? Could it be that you are listing to all the bull the government puts out ? There are lots of reasons for cancer. Explain to me how a baby that came from a non smoking mother is born with cancer . That baby never smoked anything in it’s life . To just blame cigarettes, or cigars is wrong. People should have the freedom to live as they so choose. You want to be judge and jury. People like you make good Christian people feel like they are not good enough. But, I think it is the other way around. Come down from your high horse and leave good people alone.

      • Brown Sugar

        They are no more dangers than all the crap they put in our foods these days. Chemicals are killing us. GMO’s in our foods. Antiperspirants, extra… What makes you an expert on cancer ? Could it be that you are listing to all the bull the government puts out ? There are lots of reasons for cancer. Explain to me how a baby that came from a non smoking mother is born with cancer . That baby never smoked anything in it’s life . To just blame cigarettes, or cigars is wrong. People should have the freedom to live as they so choose. You want to be judge and jury. People like you make good Christian people feel like they are not good enough. But, I think it is the other way around. Come down from your high horse and leave good people alone.

      • Brown Sugar

        They are no more dangers than all the crap they put in our foods these days. Chemicals are killing us. GMO’s in our foods. Antiperspirants, extra… What makes you an expert on cancer ? Could it be that you are listing to all the bull the government puts out ? There are lots of reasons for cancer. Explain to me how a baby that came from a non smoking mother is born with cancer . That baby never smoked anything in it’s life . To just blame cigarettes, or cigars is wrong. People should have the freedom to live as they so choose. You want to be judge and jury. People like you make good Christian people feel like they are not good enough. But, I think it is the other way around. Come down from your high horse and leave good people alone.

    • ADRoberts

      ‘What will he do when he develops throat cancer? Will he continue to excuse himself? Probably. He certainly is not concerned about his negative influence on others. By the way, do ANY of you actually believe that cigars are not dangerous?

  • texas57

    Fire it up!!! I am WHO to judge?, hitting a Fuente in about an hour. good article John

  • texas57

    Fire it up!!! I am WHO to judge?, hitting a Fuente in about an hour. good article John

  • Dino Bravo

    Smoking won’t lose your salvation, but may harm your witness, you and God have to be the decider on that. However, if you get mouth,tongue,lung cancer..you knew the risks.

    • ADRoberts

      Not so. If you KNOW that it is a bad idea, or you don’t want your children to smoke but you do anyway, then you have ignored the law that God has written on you heart. There is no question that you are in rebellion against God.
      Do any of you understand what it means to say that “Jesus is Lord”. Lord means that HE has total power over you life. And either He is Lord of ALL or He is not Lord AT ALL.

    • ADRoberts

      Not so. If you KNOW that it is a bad idea, or you don’t want your children to smoke but you do anyway, then you have ignored the law that God has written on you heart. There is no question that you are in rebellion against God.
      Do any of you understand what it means to say that “Jesus is Lord”. Lord means that HE has total power over you life. And either He is Lord of ALL or He is not Lord AT ALL.

    • ADRoberts

      Not so. If you KNOW that it is a bad idea, or you don’t want your children to smoke but you do anyway, then you have ignored the law that God has written on you heart. There is no question that you are in rebellion against God.
      Do any of you understand what it means to say that “Jesus is Lord”. Lord means that HE has total power over you life. And either He is Lord of ALL or He is not Lord AT ALL.

  • ADRoberts

    Kirkwood is an arrogant, addicted (to nicotine), self-centered rationalizing false leader. Just like Jimmy Swaggert, you can have a “GOOD” appearance and deliver wonderful, right-on sermons. But when they start to defend their abuses instead of listing to criticism, you have stopped listening to God, speaking through those around you
    Notice I did not say that everyone who criticizes a Christian should be able to make their advise used. But they should be heard. And SOME of it will be RIGHT ON.
    “Work out you own salvation with FEAR AND TREMBLING. Kirkwood has NO fear of anything. He has arrived at what he is comfortable with. And any time he receives criticism, he immediately rationalizes and justifies his SELF INDULGENCE.
    By their fruits, ye shall know them. Kirkwood no longer focuses on the Gospel. He defends himself.

    • ADRoberts

      By the way, drinking alcohol is not a sin. Excess was the offense. Many churches, including mine, KNEW that it was not a sin. But they went in the NAZARITE direction. And went beyond the laws to deny themselves of the very thing, that in Bible times was the MAIN way to stay hydrated.

    • ADRoberts

      By the way, drinking alcohol is not a sin. Excess was the offense. Many churches, including mine, KNEW that it was not a sin. But they went in the NAZARITE direction. And went beyond the laws to deny themselves of the very thing, that in Bible times was the MAIN way to stay hydrated.

    • ADRoberts

      By the way, drinking alcohol is not a sin. Excess was the offense. Many churches, including mine, KNEW that it was not a sin. But they went in the NAZARITE direction. And went beyond the laws to deny themselves of the very thing, that in Bible times was the MAIN way to stay hydrated.

    • sly311

      So pay attention all you fruit heads out there with your own personal addictions. You won’t be spared either.

    • sly311

      So pay attention all you fruit heads out there with your own personal addictions. You won’t be spared either.

    • sly311

      So pay attention all you fruit heads out there with your own personal addictions. You won’t be spared either.

  • ADRoberts

    Kirkwood is an arrogant, addicted (to nicotine), self-centered rationalizing false leader. Just like Jimmy Swaggert, you can have a “GOOD” appearance and deliver wonderful, right-on sermons. But when they start to defend their abuses instead of listing to criticism, you have stopped listening to God, speaking through those around you
    Notice I did not say that everyone who criticizes a Christian should be able to make their advise used. But they should be heard. And SOME of it will be RIGHT ON.
    “Work out you own salvation with FEAR AND TREMBLING. Kirkwood has NO fear of anything. He has arrived at what he is comfortable with. And any time he receives criticism, he immediately rationalizes and justifies his SELF INDULGENCE.
    By their fruits, ye shall know them. Kirkwood no longer focuses on the Gospel. He defends himself.

  • ADRoberts

    Kirkwood is an arrogant, addicted (to nicotine), self-centered rationalizing false leader. Just like Jimmy Swaggert, you can have a “GOOD” appearance and deliver wonderful, right-on sermons. But when they start to defend their abuses instead of listing to criticism, you have stopped listening to God, speaking through those around you
    Notice I did not say that everyone who criticizes a Christian should be able to make their advise used. But they should be heard. And SOME of it will be RIGHT ON.
    “Work out you own salvation with FEAR AND TREMBLING. Kirkwood has NO fear of anything. He has arrived at what he is comfortable with. And any time he receives criticism, he immediately rationalizes and justifies his SELF INDULGENCE.
    By their fruits, ye shall know them. Kirkwood no longer focuses on the Gospel. He defends himself.

  • Leo Stolfi

    Well stated…I prefer a 20 year old Meerschaum pipe and apple-rum tobacco…oh BTW 20 year old single malt scotch to go with it…jus sayin’. Keep up the great work Doug.

  • Leo Stolfi

    Well stated…I prefer a 20 year old Meerschaum pipe and apple-rum tobacco…oh BTW 20 year old single malt scotch to go with it…jus sayin’. Keep up the great work Doug.

  • Leo Stolfi

    Well stated…I prefer a 20 year old Meerschaum pipe and apple-rum tobacco…oh BTW 20 year old single malt scotch to go with it…jus sayin’. Keep up the great work Doug.

  • gundog 1911

    As a Christian and non-smoker and non-drinker (I had three uncles that died
    due to alcoholism. and I do have an addictive nature) I have to laugh at so many
    “Christian Pharisees and pastors who are obese or just plain out of shape with a bulging gut
    and more chins than a Chinese phone book look down their plump noses at
    Christians who have a smoke or a drink. We are not saved by our works or
    non-works. We are saved by Grace alone. Rock on Pastor John I toast you with my
    chilled Coke Classic on the way the gym for a little pumping iron.

  • gundog 1911

    As a Christian and non-smoker and non-drinker (I had three uncles that died
    due to alcoholism. and I do have an addictive nature) I have to laugh at so many
    “Christian Pharisees and pastors who are obese or just plain out of shape with a bulging gut
    and more chins than a Chinese phone book look down their plump noses at
    Christians who have a smoke or a drink. We are not saved by our works or
    non-works. We are saved by Grace alone. Rock on Pastor John I toast you with my
    chilled Coke Classic on the way the gym for a little pumping iron.

  • Tom Harlander

    I smoked occasionally when young, and felt it wasn’t what I should be doing. One day I was sitting with an open pack of cigarettes beside me and the aroma was so enticing. I simply said to the Lord, “Lord, if You don’t want me to smoke, take this desire away from me. Otherwise, I’m going to light up.” Nothing more than that, and as soon as I said it, that wonderful aroma was gone and the smell of ordinary tobacco was left. I threw away the cigarettes and have never been tempted since. Sometimes one has to ask the One who created man to show the way, and not just assume we know what to do.

  • Tom Harlander

    I smoked occasionally when young, and felt it wasn’t what I should be doing. One day I was sitting with an open pack of cigarettes beside me and the aroma was so enticing. I simply said to the Lord, “Lord, if You don’t want me to smoke, take this desire away from me. Otherwise, I’m going to light up.” Nothing more than that, and as soon as I said it, that wonderful aroma was gone and the smell of ordinary tobacco was left. I threw away the cigarettes and have never been tempted since. Sometimes one has to ask the One who created man to show the way, and not just assume we know what to do.

  • Tom Harlander

    I smoked occasionally when young, and felt it wasn’t what I should be doing. One day I was sitting with an open pack of cigarettes beside me and the aroma was so enticing. I simply said to the Lord, “Lord, if You don’t want me to smoke, take this desire away from me. Otherwise, I’m going to light up.” Nothing more than that, and as soon as I said it, that wonderful aroma was gone and the smell of ordinary tobacco was left. I threw away the cigarettes and have never been tempted since. Sometimes one has to ask the One who created man to show the way, and not just assume we know what to do.

  • Starbrander

    And Joints Too..,..God Created It

  • Starbrander

    And Joints Too..,..God Created It

  • Starbrander

    And Joints Too..,..God Created It

  • Chaplain C

    I never drank alcohol in any shape until I had heart surgery. While recovering, the surgeon told me I should have a glass of wine every day to avoid future surgeries. I began my custom of a glass a day. If I am out when I have my glass of wine, I will not drive (being an officer in the military, I cannot afford to be stopped for a DUI, or overweight). Perhaps we as Christians should be cautious when deciding what is and is not sin. Although Paul did state Everything was permissible, it was not always profitable. Growing up in a very legalistic church, I could not wait to grow up and get out! I have since learned going to the movies, wearing shorts, or heavens forbid, going shirtless, does not blot out my name from the Lamb’s Book of Life. If Scripture says do not, then I don’t. That includes judging. Enjoy your cigar and glass of wine, just be willing should the Lord ask you to lay them aside for His Glory, to do so without hesitation.

  • herdzcatz

    I was raised by alcoholics and was an alcoholic myself until Jesus entered my life and saved me from sin, alcoholism, and self-righteousness. I don’t drink now because I love to drink! I don’t disdain believers who do drink or smoke; if they ask my opinion, I give it to them honestly and kindly, but I realize that not everyone has my physiology, my tendency toward addiction. I believe in being a thinking, bold Christian, but will not turn my boldness into license to beat my brother or sister up for drinking or smoking when I don’t know what God is saying to them. Some things are black and white in the Word of God; other things are left alone in the Bible and those things are left up to each believer between himself and God.

  • Rev. Tom Davis

    Enjoyed the article. It is definitely on target. In Scripture, those who did not understand liberty, where referred to as “weaker brothers’ (i.e. weaker in understanding))-Romans 14. It also teaches us that we should limit the use of our liberty when it may cause the weaker brother to (spiritually) stumble. Of course, as Christians we should always seek to “so no harm”. However there is a point when a “weaker brother”, becomes a rigid, judgmental legalist, in spite of having been a believer long enough to know better.

    I do not limit my liberty for the satisfaction of a modern-day Pharisee!

  • Rev. Tom Davis

    Enjoyed the article. It is definitely on target. In Scripture, those who did not understand liberty, where referred to as “weaker brothers’ (i.e. weaker in understanding))-Romans 14. It also teaches us that we should limit the use of our liberty when it may cause the weaker brother to (spiritually) stumble. Of course, as Christians we should always seek to “so no harm”. However there is a point when a “weaker brother”, becomes a rigid, judgmental legalist, in spite of having been a believer long enough to know better.

    I do not limit my liberty for the satisfaction of a modern-day Pharisee!

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