The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Christians And Alcohol

In my original essay to launch this thread, I suggest Timothy’s actually motive for abstaining from “wine” (perhaps Hero’s motives were the same?):

It is certainly not clear to me that it is alcoholic wine that “makes glad the heart of man.” Makes “goofy,” or “raucous,” or “uninhibited,” perhaps. But, yes, *unfermented *wine—and giving thanks for a good harvest—would make glad the heart of man.

As to the marriage feast at Cana, I can certainly believe that Christ partook of “wine,” but as to people being drunk, or Christ making fermented wine to help people become drunk, I already addressed that with you earlier, here:

More blessings :smiley:

It strains credulity to assume that Paul was talking about grape juice, when he said to drink “a little” and criticized the behavior of those who drank “much wine”.

Whether or not Timothy subsequently drank wine is irrelevant.

Regarding wine making the hearts of men glad, that is how wine is described in the Apocryphal book of Sirach, where it is clearly talking about wine, not grape juice.

EXACTLY qaz… Paul, the one with regards to the law considered himself “blameless”, understood the medicinal therapeutic value of “a little wine”, hence his instruction to Timothy. He obviously knew Timothy was not in danger of becoming a “winebibber” because he exercised self-control — not all have this self-control, thus the copious injunctions NOT to OVER imbibe. It is indeed a stretch to take this beyond that point in terms of implied abstinence being in and of itself a Christian virtue. The accusation was falsely brought against Jesus (Lk 7:33-34) of being “a gluttonous man and a winebibber” BECAUSE, unlike John, He ate and drank with others. It is fair and reasonable to conclude that Jesus exercised responsible moderation.

And I can only point out again that Scripture is CLEAR… “new wine” COULD and was OFTEN understood to be alcoholic

Again, according to the above texts… new wine could either “cheer” or “enslave” — these texts can be ignored, but they cannot with any degree of Christian honesty be explain away.

Practically speaking, it is wise for most people to abstain from alcohol. Look around, people have self control issues. Food and drink is a great example. Now, the consequences of overconsumption of food is far less harmful than that of alcohol. One can kill not only themselves, but others. Many crimes are committed due to alcohol misuse. You do not need alcohol to live, unlike food and the misuse of the former is detrimental to all, not just oneself.

That said, I do not believe alcohol is evil. Nor is in sin to consume it. But, frankly, it just isn’t wise for most people. Often it is associated with young and unruly. Highschool, college parties, etc… I’d wager that 90% of alcohol consumption is misused and unrestrained and is a coping mechanism for many.

Again, the way it see it isn’t sin vs not sin, that is missing the point. The question is, is it wise? I’d say no. It can cause a lifetime of struggle for something that was never required for a full life. Drugs, I feel the same about. Who the heck would risk taking heroin hoping they could use it with self control? Seems short sighted and not so wise. Still, I judge no one. If I see a Christian drink a beer, I think nothing of it. But many do not feel that way. One could argue that it is a stumbling block for others… And we know what Christ said about that.

[size=100]Any and every attempt to persuade Hermano concerning the wine being alcoholic, seems hopeless. Even if he were convinced, I suspect that the following cliché might still apply:[/size]

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I shared this link before:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alcohol_in_the_Bible

I pointed out that there are scholars, who argue for the “two-wine” theory. I pointed out, for example, that

I don’t mind someone here, taking a certain position:

No free will
Creationism (as a science) is true
The “two-wine” theory
The garden of Eden had smoking herbs
The OT Nephilim were space aliens
The devil really caused the flood
Trump is the anti-Christ
The non-Christian bad folks, temporary become zombies - during the tribulation
Etc.

  • especially if it’s an established position. The problem with Hermano, is that he is on a crusade - to convince others.

And sometimes I am helping him out a bit here, like this cartoon illustrates :exclamation: :laughing:

That Gabe IMO is level-headed and common sense and I suspect most here from all sides of the argument would give a hearty cheer. :sunglasses:

I wouldn’t say it is wise for MOST people to abstain. It seems to me that most people who consume alcoholic beverages are not harmed thereby.
Rather, I would say this it is unwise for SOME people to consume alcoholic beverages.

Paidion, you’re quoting Gabe, not me.

And I agree with what you said. :slight_smile:

You might well be right. Thanks :smiley:

Qaz, please forgive my 79-year-old brain.

:smiley:

Hum. You say you are 79. But your avatar says 76 going on 78. Who is right :question: :laughing:

I’m referring to this quote:

Interesting article on Arstechnica today…

Neither. I will have completed 79 years of life in February.

Congratulations :exclamation: My mom turns 80 this very month. Thanks Paidion for your contributions. I wish I knew your real name. :smiley:

Thanks for what you do, even if we disagree some times.

Chad :slight_smile:

Hi Chad. My mother gave me the good Scotch name “Donald.” Her mother was born in Scotland on the Isle of Skye.

(Kaiser Health News) Sobering Up: In An Alcohol-Soaked Nation, More Seek Booze-Free Social Spaces. A national trend of boozeless bars is cropping up nationwide to create social spaces without the hangovers, DUIs and alcoholism culture. It’s part of a new push for sober options.

I enjoy a glass of good stout wine now and then, and a good friend gifted me a bottle of Dramboughi which is delightful.
No drunkenness in this household.

As I stated in a post on this thread three years ago:

Personally, I have never had the desire to go overboard and get out of control. Even in my old age (78) I drink 2 ounces of rum in a can of coke zero, twice a week. I never vary the weekly quantity, and I see no evidence of being harmed by this practice.

I have continued this practice until this day. I am now 81. I have always stuck to 2 oz. of Bermuda dark rum in a can of coke zero, twice a week. That is the extent of my drinking.