Archive for the ‘Drinking’ Category

DRINKING ALCOHOL FOR A CHRISTIAN IS WRONG

Proverbs 20:1 – “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.”

Wine and alcohol not only lead to foolish behavior, but they have led even good men (such as Noah and Lot) into folly and sin; since wine and strong drink darken the reason and bring the soul under the control of excitement and passion, and by that control prepare it for foolishness and wickedness of every kind, no wise man will ever give himself up to the influence of them.

Drunkenness is foolishness epitomized. The Bible tells us that wine is a mocker and strong drink is raging. To those that decide to take of it, it will mock you, it will make a fool of you, and it will promise you satisfaction which it can never deliver. It will smile upon you at first, but at the last it bites.  It is raging in the body, damages your health. Wine will mock a man, make him look like a fool or rage like a madman. Drunkenness, which pretends to be a sociable thing, makes men unfit for society, it makes them abusive with their tongues and can make them physically abusive to those around them. It makes men act outrageous and act out sinful passions. (Proverbs 23:29-30 – Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine.)

Thomas Haweis speaking on this topic said “Drunkenness is a vice most odious; exposes a man to be the jest and sport of others; brings him into broils: disorders his body with feverish heat; and though the liquor at first seems to exhilarate his spirits, he is deceived thereby; it drowns his reason and his conscience together, and tends to ruin of body and soul both here and hereafter.”

***I am a Christian and I don’t drink. I am a Youth Director and the son of an alcoholic and the nephew of alcoholics. I need to make that disclaimer right up front. Although it makes me a little biased on the subject, it also gives me real world experience to draw on when teaching on this matter. In other words I know what I am talking about in the statements I make. ***

Some of the worst “shudder moments” of my life have been watching men I love while under the influence of alcohol.  I have witnessed extreme self destructing moments in the lives of men in my family because of alcohol. You will never be able tell me it’s God’s best for a Christian to drink, or it’s OK for a Christian to drink socially. I repeat, you will never be able to tell me that or convince me of that. Common sense tells you it is wrong, and the Bible teaches that it is wrong.

We are living in a church age where drinking has become the in thing to do for some. Christian young adults post pictures of their signature drink on Facebook, or they talk about what a great night they don’t remember on social media. Middle-aged Christian’s may name drop their favorite brand of this alcoholic drink or that one to impress their worldly minded friends. I have even recently heard of some pastors that drank. Then I later heard of one of those pastors losing his ministry and family over his alcoholism.

This lesson is not only a biblical defense on the topic of Christians and why they should not drink alcohol, but it is a heartfelt plea. I humbly ask you to put aside any knee jerk, pro the right to drink alcohol arguments that you may have ever heard, or made, and prayerfully consider what the Bible says on the topic and what just plain common sense teaches us on the topic.

FIRST LETS LOOK AT 25 COMMON SENSE REASONS NOT TO DRINK

  1. Alcohol is a depressant. Anything that depresses should be avoided at all costs.
  2. Alcohol skews judgment.
  3. Alcohol leaves people worse, not better.
  4. What I do in moderation, my children will do in excess.
  5. Even the unsaved know Christians shouldn’t drink. Bible in one hand, beer in the other—any lost person could point this out as a confusing contradiction.
  6. Alcohol doesn’t bring us closer to the Lord when we drink, but further away.
  7. Show me a family for whom alcohol has made a positive difference in their lives. You won’t be able to.
  8. I have never heard anyone say, “Wow, that gin and tonic made me feel so Christ like!”
  9. Alcohol makes it much harder for someone to practice self-control.
  10. Alcohol is a legal mind-altering drug.
  11. Alcohol is addictive.
  12. Many regrets are associated with alcohol.
  13. No one has ever said, “If only I had taken a drink, things wouldn’t have gotten out of control.”
  14. Alcohol causes people to act in ways they normally wouldn’t.
  15. Alcohol kills brain cells.
  16. Alcohol is a counterfeit and provides a false peace.
  17. Alcohol is a waster of: money, gifts, talents, futures and so on.
  18. Alcohol leads to really bad behavior. It is a factor in 50 percent of violent crimes.
  19. Alcohol has ruined many, many marriages.
  20. If you don’t start drinking, you’ll never have to stop.
  21. Alcohol lowers your resolve to resist temptation.
  22. Alcohol = Brokenness (broken lives, health, dreams, etc.)
  23. When the world sees a Christian drinking, it sends the message that Jesus isn’t enough.
  24. Social drinking? How about social pornography or social heroin use or social lying or social adultery?
  25. Alcohol fills your mind with impure thoughts.

NEXT LETS LOOK AT 25 BIBLICAL EXAMPLES & TEACHINGS ON WHY CHRISTIANS SHOULD NOT DRINK ALCOHOL OF ANY KIND – One has only to examine the Bible to find abundant references condemning and demonstrating drinking as evil. Below is a summary of Scriptures about this topic:

  1. Genesis 19:30-38– In this instance drinking resulted in Lot’s debauchery of his own daughters.
  2. Leviticus 10:9 “Do not drink wine nor strong drink…” here is an express command not to drink.
  3. Deuteronomy 21:20 – Drinking leads to stubbornness, rebellion, and gluttony by young men; and brings dishonor to parents.
  4. Deuteronomy 29:2-6 – Abstinence assures better knowledge of God.
  5. 1 Samuel 1:14-15 – Hannah, an example of all honored motherhood, practiced total abstinence.
  6. II Samuel 13:28-29 – Amnon, while in a drunken brawl, was murdered by his brother Absalom.
  7. II Samuel 11:13 – Only by strong drink could David lead Uriah into a trap.
  8. Proverbs 4:17 – Through drinking the wicked become violent. They are bad enough at best, but drink leads them to violence.
  9. Proverbs 20:1 – No wise man will take wine or liquor.
  10. Proverbs 23:21 – Strong drink leads to poverty.
  11. Proverbs 23:29-30 – Strong drink produces woe, sorrow, contentions, babbling, wounds without cause, redness of eyes.
  12. Proverbs 23:31-32 “Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.” – We are urged not to even look upon intoxicating beverages, let alone drink them.
  13. Proverbs 23:33 – It fills men’s minds with adulterous and impure thoughts.
  14. Proverbs 23:34 – It brings on insecurity.
  15. Proverbs 23:35 – It is habit-forming; one drink always calls for another.
  16. Isaiah 22:13 – Drinking and carnal behavior go together.
  17. Isaiah 28:7 – Drinking brings on spiritual blindness.
  18. Daniel 1:5, 8, 16; 10:3 – God honored Daniel because he abstained from the king’s wine.
  19. Amos 6:6 – Drinkers tend not to be concerned about God, nor about the welfare of other people.
  20. Hosea 4:11 – Strong drink and immorality go hand in hand.
  21. Luke 1:15 – Greatness of John the Baptist linked with his total abstinence.
  22. I Corinthians 6:10 – No drunkard shall inherit the Kingdom of God.
  23. Galatians 5:21 – Revelers in drunkenness shall not inherit the Kingdom of God.
  24. Ephesians 5:18 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;” – Here is a direct command not to become drunk.
  25. I Thessalonians 5:6-8 – Sobriety, as opposed to drunkenness, is celebrated and encouraged upon the Thessalonians.

THE TEMPTATION OF ALCOHOL – Lots of people you may know consume alcohol of some variety. I have seen it consumed by several different family members in my life and I have seen lots of destructive behavior and lots of destruction because of it. Alcohol is a strong temptation and once it has its hooks in you it is one of the hardest things to get away from. First, never take the first sip. Never try it. But if you are tempted by it remember what the Bible says about temptation in I Corinthians 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”

  • The demands of life may tempt you to seek gratification in alcohol and other things. We must be on high alert for this temptation. The enemy uses “opportune times” to draw us away from God (see Luke 4:13). The line is so thin that it is often hard to determine when we cross over. I believe that total abstinence from alcohol should be practiced by all Christians, especially if they have members of their immediate family that drink often and in excess; they could be more at risk for alcoholism. The Bible teaches a principle of the sins of the fathers being visited onto the 3rd and 4th The influence of the lifestyle lived by fathers onto their prodigy has been scientifically proven to exist (it is called epigenetics) and it is passed on and extends to the 3rd and 4th generations just like the Bible said. (Exodus 34:7bvisiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.) So if you had a father, a grandfather or even a great grandfather that was an alcoholic you could be more susceptible to becoming one too if you were to ever take that first sip.
  • Social media influences people on a broad scale. In Jesus’ day, society was much more isolated—no Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. We have no idea how many people are affected or tempted by social media posts. We can foster temptation by the things we post and we can be tempted into making life altering decisions by viewing others posts. We need to call on the Lord to help us resist all temptations no matter the form they take or the avenue they use to get to us. (Matthew 26:41 – Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.) We need to be vigilant about resisting temptations like alcohol consumption.

“In Christ alone there is deliverance from man’s tortured thoughts and freedom from the sordid habits which are destroying so many people. Why does the Bible so clearly denounce drunkenness? – Because it is an enemy of human life. Anything that is against a person’s welfare, God is against.” – Rev. Billy Graham

THE DESTRUCTIVENESS OF ALCOHOL – In August of 2016 Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte was flying high, just winning a gold medal, but then news broke that he was robbed at gunpoint. We soon learned this report was not true, what we now know to have happened is he was under the influence of alcohol and vandalized a gas station and then while still under the influence of alcohol talked to a reporter and made up the story of being robbed at gunpoint. He was made out to be a liar, he caused a bit of an international incident, he disgraced himself, he embarrassed his teammates and his country, and he ruined his reputation, all because of the influence that alcohol had on him that one evening in Rio de Janeiro. This brings us back to our opening verse Proverbs 20:1 “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.”

  • Alcohol is destructive. God is never for anything that could destroy Alcohol, unfortunately, is also promoted and elevated as a normal/sophisticated activity in society today; even among some Christians this statement is true. It is also expensive, addictive and enslaving. People get hooked by America’s number one legal drug. And just like all illegal drugs, alcohol finds its way into the body, the bloodstream and the brain of the user/abuser.
  • I had two uncles whose lives were damaged by alcohol. The exception you say? Hardly. Alcohol damaging or ruining lives is the norm where it is concerned. It is not what they wanted when they dreamed of their futures when they were in their 20s. But praise God, they were wonderfully delivered in their 60s when the grace of God became real to them. My one uncle, especially, his salvation testimony was amazing, and can you imagine what a strange coincidence they both had, they both became total abstainers from alcohol and got their lives back by the power and direction of the Holy Spirit! – Alcohol has no place in the life of a Christian who is right with God!

IN CONCLUSION: Matthew Henry said this about the use of alcohol “It seems hard to believe that men of the greatest abilities, as well as the ignorant, should render themselves fools and madmen, merely for the taste or excitement produced by strong liquors.Drunkenness is foolishness epitomized. The Bible tells us that wine is a mocker and strong drink is raging. To those that decide to take of it, it will mock you, it will make a fool of you, and it will promise you satisfaction which it cannot deliver. Alcohol is a strong temptation and once it has its hooks in you it is one of the hardest things to get away from. First, never take the first sip. Never try it. But if you are tempted by it remember what the Bible says about temptation in I Corinthians 10:13.  Plain common sense teaches us to abstain from all alcohol, and the Bible clearly teaches us to abstain from it. It is destructive, it ruins live, it ruins reputations, it ruins relationships, it destroys your health and it can kill innocent victims on the road. Stay away from Satan’s beverage and make it a conviction you will never waver from, that you will NEVER drink any alcoholic beverage in your life; but if you have already, God is the God of forgiveness and the God of the second chance. Seek out his forgiveness and deliverance now, and set your conviction that from now on you will never partake of alcohol again. (I John 1:9 -If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.)