Breaking the Word of Wisdom Causes Spiritual Retardation
Stephen L. Richards

Some may feel that these promised blessings come to those who follow the Lord's counsel. The Word of Wisdom is spiritual. It is true that it forbids the use of harmful substances and makes provision for the health of the body. But the largest measure of good derived from its observance is in increased faith and the development of more spiritual power and wisdom. Likewise, the most regrettable and damaging effects of its infractions are spiritual, also. Injury to the body may be comparitively trivial to the damage to the soul in the destruction of faith and the retardation of spiritual growth.

(Stephen L. Richards, CR, April 1949, p. 141)

Section 89

Doctrine & Covenants