Drinking, appropriate or not?

In Archived Posts by Jerad Hill9 Comments

The Bible condemns Drinking to excess. It doesn’t tell us where to draw the line between being sober or becoming drunk. You have to decide for yourself how much is to much, what your limit is and if you want to take the risk of making one of your brothers or sisters in Christ stumble.

In 1 Corinthians 5:11, it tells us ” you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or a drunkard.” So if you’re one to take the risk of becoming drunk, other Christians aren’t supposed to associate with you, because you can become there stumbling block. In Romans 14:21 it says, “it is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother to fall.” Would you want to be the cause or be held responsible for causing someone else to stumble? You should be a person that other Christians can look up to and be their inspiration. You don’t have to stop eating, but if you are doing something that could cause your brother to stumble or fall short of the glory of God, you should not do it out of respect for that brother. In 1 Corinthians 6:10 it says, “nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanders nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” When you drink you put your eternal salvation on the line for simple pleasures, that even in the morning most people tend regret doing (hangover from the night before).

People may even question this: Doctors say that if you drink even a little bit of wine a day it is healthy, which is a fact. The Bible however warns/tells us, “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery; instead be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Ephesians 5:18.

Even if you are seen drinking by another Christian, they are not obligated to ask for your reasons of action, but may very well assume that you are a drunk, or a hypocrite. You can deal with drinking however you like, but you have to keep yourself from getting into trouble with God, and set a good example towards others.

Comments

  1. In response to an email I received I replied with the following:

    Thanks for commenting back. I really do appreciate it. You have to ask yourself this one question since you have a lot of friends that are non believers… When you ask them if they want to be a Christian you are really asking them if they want to be like you. So even though there is nothing wrong with drinking a little from time to time you need to look at what you are doing to be an example. Same goes for your Christian friends. You do not know what is going on in their mind and if they chose to drink for the first time which led to a life of suffering at the hand of alcohol how would you feel being the one that set off that downward spiral? We are called to be an example of Christ to the world and to be loving to our brothers and sisters in Christ. When we put ourselves in a position to set up another brother or sister to fall we are doing the oposite of loving them. There is nothing wrong with having a drink but people need to recognize that there is a place for that. That place is not infront of others who might become uncomfortable by such a situation. I myself do not drink at all, I used to, but not anymore. I would never put myself in a position where a person believer or not could entertain the idea that I liked to drink in public.
    Well I really have to get going, i have not quite started Christmas shopping yet. If you want to chat more about this I would love to…
    Thanks
    Jerad

  2. A comment left on myspace:

    Do you believe that you can lose your salvation? I’m glad that you posted this because I believe it will make a lot of people think. Provoking thought is almost always a good thing. I don’t think that I agree with a some of your interpretation of scripture here, but I know that your heart is right. It seems as though you hard-core condemn drinking, but do your remember that Christ’s first miracle was turning water into wine? And good wine at that? Jesus drank wine at the last supper. I think I understood where you were going on this post, and I agree that we need to watch ourselves and the example that we set. One thing that I believe to be just as important as how much you drink is also where you drink. Having a beer in your home or at a restaurant and having a beer at clubs or bars are very different situations.

    ‘Even if you are seen drinking by another Christian, they are not obligated to ask for your reasons of action, but may as well assume that you are a drunk, or a hypocrit.’

    Jesus said, “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgement you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.” Matthew 7:1.

    One of the worst habits Christians today have is judging others. The attitude of the Christian mentioned above is wrong. A Christian cannot make judgements and condemn another for their actions when those actions are not contrary to Biblical standards. What if a Christian held a firm belief that owning a cell phone was wrong? Can he assume that you are materialistic and storing your treasures on earth because you have a cell phone? I know this is an absurd example, but the concept is similar. Let GOD judge others. Its not our job.

    I am in no way advocating drinking. It has torn so many families apart. I think that wherever you go, you will encounter a ‘weaker brother’ and it is our job to look out for him. Our job is to also help him grow stronger. Sorry for the long comment, but I think that Christians would be much better off letting people live their lives under Christ’s authority, rather than their judgements. Good post, Jerad.

  3. My response to the last comment left on myspace…

    I do not believe that drinking is wrong. I do not condem it, and I do not and did not say that a person can or could lose their salvation. Eternal salvation means more then just getting into heaven. If you had a beer at the bar with some friends and some guy at the other end of the bar who saw you at church once before noticed this and decided he was going to give up entertaining the idea of seaking God and that man died a sinner do you not think you will be confronted by God when you meet Him on your day of Judgement?
    There is nothing wrong with alcohol, yes Jesus turned water to wine but do you think Jesus would have sat down in the same room as a bunch of people who looked up to Him while he had a few glasses of wine? Knowing well that his actions could have a direct effect on the decisions that those people around him make in the coming days of their lives?
    I personally would rather put aside the simple pleasures of drinking alcohol if it means that some observer of my actions made a decision to accept the Jesus that he/she saw in me.
    Does that help you understand where im coming from?

  4. I moved this Comment Ty left over to this blog cause for some reason Myspace posted my blog 10 times…

    “So, just out of curiosity, do you then believe that when Jesus drank wine and even supplied it for a party, it was non-alcoholic?”

  5. Ty: I believe that alcohol and its effect on the world was a lot different back then. Jesus supplied the wine at a party but was he partying with people who were to young to be drinking or with people who should not be exposed to that? Would he have drank wine in front of several people who were looking to him as an example and if so would he have had more then a glass? I do not know all the answeres, all I know is that I do not want to be the reason that a person looks forward to drinking when they turn 21. The world associates drinking with partying. If you see a person drinking in public you assume that they party. What kind of example of Christ am I setting if I do that? If I did not care about how others saw Jesus in me then I would drink all the time and Im sure other things would follow.

  6. Tim left this comment on myspace:

    Tim’s Comment:

    “I believe that alcohol and its effect on the world was a lot different back then.”

    I also think that alcohol was not as strong back then as it is now. That is to say, the alcohol content of wine back then was much lower than today due to the fact that in Jesus’ times the wine was often mixed with water. So, I think it is much easier today to get drunk than 2,000 years ago. Thus, it is important that Christians who do drink are very careful in the amounts they drink. Further, it is important for Christians to analyze their motives for drinking.

    Do you drink because you think it is rebellious? Do you drink because you are 21? Do you drink because you like the buzz? Do you drink because you think it is a cool thing to do or because others are? Do you drink because it helps you relax? Do you drink to escape problems in your life?

    How a Christian answers these questions will show you if their motives to drink are righteous or not. As for me, I will not drink until I am 21….it is not that big of a deal. If I do drink, it will probably be wine becasue it is healthy for you. And, if I decide that I don’t like the taste, I don’t need to continue. I think it is that simple.

    Also, the other points that have been made were excellently. I think we need to do more of these types of blogs. Maybe the next one could be about “swear words.” That is a very interesting topic.

    God bless!

  7. An email I received this morning on myspace:

    Awesome Blog…makes a lot of people think, I personnally will not taste alcohol again my entire life(just something I am convicted of) I am not against it, but I am not like for it.

    It is just like the Old Testimate Jewish Law about not eating pork, God told them not to eat pork for their own good. As we look back at history, because of a lack of sanitary understanding, eating pork could have caused outbreaks of various diseases(salmonilla, foot in mouth…etc)

    I believe Alcohol is like this. Well back in the time of Jesus, because of just unsanitary practices, the fermenting of wine allowed for the drinking of something safe, the water was very dirty and more than likely contained a lot of various diseases. The fermenting of wine killed most of those bacteria and gave them something safe to drink.

    Just like God telling Israel in the Old Law not to eat pork for a reason, God tells us to not become drunk or to drink a great deal. First, drunkenness leads to debauchery(old testimate historical recording of two daughters getting their father drunk so that he could impregnate them). Secondly, God knows about drinking in access can lead to liver problems, so he is protecting us. Third, God knows that it can be addicting and a disease for some people, and he does not want to see them hurting or in some way hurting their families. God also knows that there are some perks to drinking very modestly, being good for your health.

    Society is the one that tells us it is okay to drink from an early age(and Society is the work of the devil, don’t believe me look at how immoral girls dress these days)

    Just putting in a little thought that I had…I coudlnt’ post a comment because I am not one of your friends…

    HAve a blessed day and an Amazing Christmas

  8. Another email I received:

    Hey Jerad!! Man i just got to say that you bless my socks off!! I totally appreciate you taking the time to write me back you rock!! “When you ask them if they want to be a Christian you are really asking them if they want to be like you.” OUCH…ha!ha! Yeah we have a lot to live up to and it just blows my mind to think that God would even chose me to be one of His children much less use me in someone else’s life. Thanks for talking about this and challenging me and im sure many others in our walk. Thats what its all about my friend helping each other along in this crazy world. I always forget about your other blog so im sure i have missed out on lots of other great stuff i will have to remember to go check it out more. Hope you have a great Christmas!!
    Serving HIM,
    Meredith

  9. Here is the consensus I have came to. Being that this thing I wrote was posted on Xrds, on myspace and in a group on myspace where it attracted now over 100 responses. Those who have a ideas that are more along the lines of why should I have to watch what I do or how can one be 100% sure a person does not think there is alcohol in the drink. Basically the defensive responders to my writing are the following people:

    1. Young and unexperienced in the world, which is good because people like me who have set a bad example in his earlier years led several who were paying attention to his actions to fall.
    2. Not experienced drinking and having someone confront them on how it effected them as having observed them drink in public.

    Now about what was said earlier about how people can make the assumption that your drink is alcoholic. Well if that person thinks your drink is alcoholic and it is in fact not then that is their problem. At least you know that you did the right thing in Gods eyes. God knows the situation. God knows that the person looking at you and your drink is either likely to stumble because they saw your Christian self drinking or more likely not to care at all. The fact is that you do not know what the other person is thinking so why leave it up to chance.

    Us as Christians are being watched by people we do not even know. People who saw us in church from a distance whom we have never met not seen but they see us because it was one of their first few times in church.

    I can just see how this post is going to get taken so let me confirm that I know what is going through all of your heads already and there is no need to get all crabby and post nonsense. If you want to know what my point of view feels like then step away from your walk with God and start partying. Start throwing parties and make sure there is enough alcohol to get all your friends drunk. Let it get to the point where this becomes what you are known for. People will call you all the time asking what you are doing that night, not really caring about what you as a person is doing but hoping that you are throwing a party. This will become your reputation and your name will only come up when its time to talk about where the party will be at.
    This was me from about age 19-21. Then I started to realize that this is what I was known for and I did not like that. Once the parties stopped and none happened for a few months, I did not get many phone calls. I stopped going to parties and did not do much drinking at all. When God got a hold of me I decided that I was not going to drink any more at all. I knew what it meant to be a Christian in public and how my actions reflected on all other Christians from when I was a Christian in high school. I wanted to do it right this time. I might not get it right 100% of the time but I am not going to let a selfish thing like drinking an alcoholic beverage that is going to do not one positive thing for my life get in the way of my witness. I have not even held an alcoholic beverage in over a year now and I do not plan to start. There is not one thing that will benefit me out of drinking alcohol. Even though wine helps the heart, so does chereos. That only leaves it good for one thing which is to supress. I have supressed enough of my life and when God broke me he turned on a light that I never want to put a shade over.

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