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  1. #1
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    Alcohol

    WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT...DRINKING ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES?
    by Betty Miller

    Proverbs 20:1 (KJV):
    Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.

    Proverbs 20:1 (AMP):
    Wine is a mocker, strong drink a riotous brawler, and whoever errs or reels because of it is not wise.


    The Bible has much to say about many subjects; and drinking alcoholic beverages is one of them. There is a debate in religious circles in regard to the question - was the wine in the Bible referring to grape juice or fermented grape juice, which is alcoholic in nature? To answer this question we must study the original language in which the Bible was written.
    Actually, there are fifteen words from the Hebrew and Greek languages, which are translated "wine" in the Bible. When we compare these words in the context in which they are used we can better understanding their scriptural meanings.

    The first scripture in which wine is mentioned is found in the book of Genesis. The Hebrew word used there is "yayin." It always means fermented wine, primarily from grapes.

    Genesis 9:20-21:
    20 And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard:
    21 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.

    Noah could not have become drunk by drinking grape juice, so we must assume he drank an alcoholic beverage made from the grapes of his vineyard.

    The New Testament word translated wine is usually the Greek word "oinos." We also find in the New Testament the account of Jesus performing his first miracle which was turning water into wine. You can read the entire account of this miracle in John 2: 1-11.

    9 When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,
    10 And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.

    Notice in verse 10 the comment that men usually served the good wine first and kept the wine that was not as good to be served lastly so that its quality was not noticed. This had to be a reference to fermented wine, as the alcoholic content of the wine would be more inclined to cause them not to notice bad wine later in the evening after they had a few drinks.

    There are many other references to wine throughout the Bible showing that it is actually an alcoholic drink. Now with this scriptural evidence, comes the next question. Is it sinful to drink wine? The answer to this question is that the wine itself is not sinful, because sin is in the heart of man and does not exist in any object of itself. It is the drunkenness and intoxication that comes about when a man drinks too much that causes him sin. The Bible teaches discipline and moderation; even eating too much food is a sin and is called the sin of gluttony in the Bible.

    The scripture in Proverbs 20:1 warns us what wine and strong drink can do to a man. Men can end up raging and brawling and doing things in a drunken stupor that are very unwise and that they will also regret. How many times have we heard the expression when someone talks unwisely after drinking too much -- "That was the alcohol talking." The Bible does make a distinction, as to the affect that strong drinks (alcoholic beverages like whiskey, vodka, etc.) have on a person, as opposed to wine, showing that the strong alcoholic drinks are far worse at causing men to become out of their heads and violent. The wine is bad enough, as it can cause men to loose their senses and mock others. People will also mock them for their out of control inebriation.

    So what should our position be as Christians since we know the many sorrows that drunkenness causes? We know that alcoholism is responsible for many broken homes because of the abusive behavior toward family and others. We know the many deaths on our highways caused by drinking and driving. What about the many premature deaths caused by health problems stemming from alcoholism? Alcoholism has now become a costly drug addiction problem. Yes, drunkenness is a very evil sin that hurts the whole nation. The Bible says all drunkards who do not repent will not inherit the kingdom of God.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-10:
    9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
    10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

    Although, a Christian may be free to drink moderately as long as they do not become drunk, is that the highest thing we should do? Paul stated in the New Testament that he would not allow his liberty to be a license to sin, nor would he do anything that would cause a brother to stumble.

    Galatians 5:13: "For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another."

    1 Corinthians 8:9: "But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak."

    In the Old Testament there was a group of people known as Nazarites that took a vow to separate themselves unto the Lord and therefore they would not drink any wine or alcoholic beverages.

    Numbers 6:2-3: "And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When either man or woman shall separate themselves to vow a vow of a Nazarite, to separate themselves unto the LORD: He shall separate himself from wine and strong drink, and shall drink no vinegar of wine, or vinegar of strong drink, neither shall he drink any liquor of grapes, nor eat moist grapes, or dried."

    We must all give an account of ourselves before our Lord. What would please Him? Would it not be pleasing to Him if we loved others enough to give up those things we could have, for a greater cause? Would it not be a more powerful witness to others in our age to stand out as one who did not drink alcoholic beverages because we had no need to do so. When we are filled with the Spirit of God, His spirit gives us the joy and release that many are seeking by drinking. May we instead desire to be filled with the Holy Spirit and have no need for "spirits."

    Ephesians 5:18-20:
    18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
    19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;
    20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;

  2. #2
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    "The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, 'Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners." (Mt 11:19)
    Jesus himself admitted to drinking fermented wine on occasion. The Bible does not say that consumption of alcohol is wrong. Intemperate consumption of alcohol is what is wrong.

    SLE
    I want to be a coin in God's pocket that He can spend any way He wishes.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpiritLedEd View Post
    "The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, 'Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners." (Mt 11:19)
    Jesus himself admitted to drinking fermented wine on occasion. The Bible does not say that consumption of alcohol is wrong. Intemperate consumption of alcohol is what is wrong.

    SLE
    Ephesians 5:18-20:
    18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

    I thought for years that the above scripture was drink no longer wine? Must have heard it from a preacher, or todays uninformed Church about the truth of drinking. This can also cause offence once the unlearned see the sciptures for themselves, big mistake to do so...the saints need to be told the truth about these things to avoid offence because of lies about it. We hear many preachers say it is evil to drink wine or call drinking evil, these are the touch not handle not crowd. Doctrines of devils are here to stay, but its to bad for the unlearned as they now judge one another over it.

    The early Church used it in moderation, some used it as a pain killer (ie Timothy), no Tylenol of Percocet back then. Today we spend to much time makeing up sins because of a weak conscience, and the weak are teaching the saints to be more weak as time goes by, yes wine is dangerous as is any alcoholic beverage... but so is lies about it.

    So i quess the question would be, should we teach lies about drinking to hold the doctrines of men, and break a commandment of God? let God be true and every man a liar.

    But as Paul would say if any man thinks something is unclean, then to HIM it is unclean. Therefore don't preach your weak conscience over the pulpit. And stop judgeing one another over meat and drink... also don't destroy your brother with your strong conscience... or wine.

    God bless
    In his service for his glory, blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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    would have to agree with the prior post that moderation in drinking and in most things is called for. Have been to a lot of weddings and cannot recall one where the alcohol ran low because people were abstaining. Weddings are a time of celebration and from my experience the alcohol helps loosen some people up a little.
    Of course in NT times they did not have to worry about driving home, but given that they ran out of wine, you can bet that there had to be some there that did not make it home on their own. To me if one is responsible and this is done among family and friends that would look out for those that have a few too many, that this is all part of celebrating life.

    after any post or edit my connection stalls.....hmmmmmmm

    seesm we r not use to this server
    Last edited by Faithful Son; 11-09-06 at 01:56 AM. Reason: posts merged

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrBubbaLove View Post
    would have to agree with the prior post that moderation in drinking and in most things is called for. Have been to a lot of weddings and cannot recall one where the alcohol ran low because people were abstaining. Weddings are a time of celebration and from my experience the alcohol helps loosen some people up a little.
    Of course in NT times they did not have to worry about driving home, but given that they ran out of wine, you can bet that there had to be some there that did not make it home on their own. To me if one is responsible and this is done among family and friends that would look out for those that have a few too many, that this is all part of celebrating life.


    "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your body." (1 Cor 6:19-20).

    I don't agree with passing off the accidental drunkenness that comes on people at social functions as "part of the celebration of life."

    In 1983, God lifted me out of a thirty year addiction to alcohol. All my drunken escapades were "accidental" in that I never set out to get drunk when I drank, but I usually ended up soused.

    SLE
    I want to be a coin in God's pocket that He can spend any way He wishes.

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    I Praise God SLE for your sobriety. Going by all the scriptures mentioned, to me it doesn't say drinking alcohol is wrong, but in excess it is. And alot of people just do not know what their limit is. I for one cannot handle alcohol, even in moderation. I have not an addiction to it, but drinking alcohol excessively in the past has got myself into alot of trouble. Even after being saved, I still drank and was a terrible witness for Christ. I now do not drink alcohol at all, I have no desire for it whatsover, the smell of it makes me feel nauseus, . And I am thankful to the Lord for this.

    I believe I may have contributed to my oldest sons drinking habits, who no longer lives with us but he and my youngest son has seen me drunk in the past and it was a terrible thing for them to witness. It has taken a couple of years for my youngest to see that I have changed in this area and I am now a good example and witness for Christ. I do not want to be the cause of my son or anyone elses downfall. If I drink and a Christian brother or sister who are still young in their faith see me drink alcohol, it may mislead them and cause them to stumble.

    1 Cor 8:9 'But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to them that are weak.'

    Calluna

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    Quote Originally Posted by calluna View Post
    I Praise God SLE for your sobriety. Going by all the scriptures mentioned, to me it doesn't say drinking alcohol is wrong, but in excess it is. And alot of people just do not know what their limit is. I for one cannot handle alcohol, even in moderation. I have not an addiction to it, but drinking alcohol excessively in the past has got myself into alot of trouble. Even after being saved, I still drank and was a terrible witness for Christ. I now do not drink alcohol at all, I have no desire for it whatsover, the smell of it makes me feel nauseus, . And I am thankful to the Lord for this.

    I believe I may have contributed to my oldest sons drinking habits, who no longer lives with us but he and my youngest son has seen me drunk in the past and it was a terrible thing for them to witness. It has taken a couple of years for my youngest to see that I have changed in this area and I am now a good example and witness for Christ. I do not want to be the cause of my son or anyone elses downfall. If I drink and a Christian brother or sister who are still young in their faith see me drink alcohol, it may mislead them and cause them to stumble.

    1 Cor 8:9 'But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to them that are weak.'

    Calluna
    I don't believe that your drinking did anything to encourage your son to take up the habit. Many, many times, as people have told their stories in recovery program meetings, I've heard them say that they had sworn that they would never become drunks and behave as their father/mother did. Yet, because there seems to be something in the root cause of addictive behavior that causes the addict's brain to ignore the pain of past experiences, they did become alcoholics/drug addicts.


    My daughter witnessed my alcoholic stupidity quite often in her grade school years, yet, at the age of 14, she took up drinking and drugging until my wife and I forced her into a rehab program. She's been clean and sober 21 years.


    SLE
    I want to be a coin in God's pocket that He can spend any way He wishes.

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    I, like SLE, was bound by alcohol for many years and finally after much embarrassment and humiliation I called on God to deliver me and He did. I am no longer an alcoholic.

    In discussing the rights and wrongs of alcohol listed in the scriptures, one can justify themselves in either of the two. My opinion, which is based on my own life experiences is this; I cannot recall one person ever saying that they had a wonderful life and they owe it all to alcohol, or that alcohol even enriched their life in any measure. But I have witnessed many that have attributed destruction and devastation in their life and the lives of their family to alcohol. Now again this is just my observation but I would like to meet some or even one who can honestly say that their life is bettered because of alcohol. When given into, and allowed to lead, it seems that alcohol always leads to trouble so I have found it best to leave it alone.
    Last edited by jiggyfly; 11-11-06 at 10:42 AM.
    Religion is an ugly tyrant.

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    I do not see any good that comes from drinking even the least amount of alcohol. I am not stating this from a legalistic platform or wish to enforce my opinion upon others. Just seems that nothing good comes from it. And I go with the idea that we have all liberty, but if it stumbles ourself or others, why take that liberty. I've never seen a winning argument for drinking alcohol, only that the person wishes to keep it in their lives.

    I used to drink heavily and know some that have died from it. I also know many that do drink only a little at a time. They've told me it relaxes and gives them peace from stress in their lives.

    To me, in my opinion... That's what a relationship through prayer with God does. Does it not?
    Courage is not the absence of fear, but the faith to overcome it!

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    I think that is exactly what Paul was saying to the Church members. If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen. But don't judge the ones who can. It is plain to see from scripture that alcohol is not forbiden, just drunkeness and rioting, and being a total reject. The ones who forbid meats or drinks are warned not to do so. The drunkard and liar will both find themselves in the same place. Its probably a converted drunkard who started this no drinking alcohol doctrine in the first place. Like i said the doctrines of devils are here to stay.

    1Ti 3:8 Likewise [must] the deacons [be] grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre;

    Tit 2:3 The aged women likewise, that [they be] in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;


    1Timothy 5:23 Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach's sake and thine often infirmities.


    Like i said above some used it for pain. So yes it did serve a good purpose...



    Rom 14:14 I know, and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus, that [there is] nothing unclean of itself: but to him that esteemeth any thing to be unclean, to him [it is] unclean.
    Rom 14:15 But if thy brother be grieved with [thy] meat, now walkest thou not charitably. Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died.


    Rom 14:1 Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, [but] not to doubtful disputations.
    Rom 14:2 For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs.
    Rom 14:3 Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him.
    Rom 14:4 Who art thou that judgest another man's servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.



    And last but not least, don't destroy your weak brother...


    Rom 14:21 [It is] good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor [any thing] whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak.
    Rom 14:22 Hast thou faith? have [it] to thyself before God. Happy [is] he that condemneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth.


    Rom 14:23 And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because [he eateth] not of faith: for whatsoever [is] not of faith is sin.


    God bless
    Last edited by Fellowservant; 11-13-06 at 04:04 PM.
    In his service for his glory, blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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