What Does The Bible Say On Drinking
The Bible is chock full of passages on drinking. From Old Testament teachings to New Testament advice, the Bible offers up a great deal of wisdom and insight on the topic of drinking. In the Old Testament, there are several stories that demonstrate the dangers of drinking, such as the story of Noah’s drunkenness and the warning of the vine-growers in Proverbs. The New Testament goes further, and offers up clear advice for those who are considering drinking. All of these passages should be taken with an open mind and an open heart, so that we can make wise and loving decisions when it comes to enjoying beverages.
The Bible mostly speaks to abstaining from alcohol entirely, as this is seen as a way to show commitment to God and exhibit self-control. For example, Paul in his letter to the Corinthians stated, “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery.” This passage is indicative of the overall tone of the Bible, which is that excessive drinking should be avoided, and abstinence is the ideal form of behavior.
Of course, there are many passages that speak of drinking in moderation. In 1 Timothy 5:23, Paul speaks of wine as being “for the stomach and the circulation of the blood”. This verse is often seen as a way to allow wine in moderation. Furthermore, in Proverbs 31:6, it states that “Give strong drink to those who are perishing, and wine to those who are in bitter distress.” This passage is seen as an allowance to provide relief to those in need and to serve wine as a sacrificial means of providing comfort.
Despite these allowances, it is clear that excessive drinking is seen as damaging and contrary to living a life of faith. As Proverbs warns, “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raving: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise”. The ever increasing rates of alcoholism, domestic violence and abuse make it clear why the biblical authors had such a hard line stance. Abusing substances or allowing substances to take control of your life can bring destruction and ruin in its wake.
One of the best forms of guidance that the Bible gives us is to use one’s discernment. The Bible is clear that there is nothing wrong with a person drinking in moderation and enjoying beverages. As Proverbs 31:6 states, wine can be used to provide relief to those in need. But it also warns strongly against excessive drinking and indulging in too many alcoholic drinks. As long as one is following the wisdom of using discernment and self-control, there is nothing wrong with enjoying a drink or two.
The Bible emphasizes the importance of drinking in moderation. Proverbs 22:5 says, “Wisest of men shall be cautious, and watch his step that he stumble not”. The point here is clear – if you’re going to drink, you should be mindful of the quantity that you’re consuming. While this verse might not lay down an exact amount, it’s clear that the Bible regards excessive drinking as something that is to be avoided. So, if you’re going to enjoy a drink, it’s important to do so in moderation.
Dangers of Excess
Excessive drinking can lead to a host of dangers, especially when it comes to social encounters. In Proverbs 23:20-21, it says, “Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh: For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags.” This is a clear warning against drinking too much and getting wrapped up with gluttonous and licentious activities. When abused, alcohol can lead to poor decision-making, destructive behavior, and other risks.
The Bible speaks often to self-control, and this includes in regards to drinking alcohol. Galatians 5: 23-24 says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith. Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” The word “temperance” here is a Greek word that means moderation and self-control—a trait that should be centered in our lives when it comes to alcohol.
A Higher Calling
At the end of the day, the Bible calls on us to be focused on a higher purpose. Romans 12:2 instructs us to “be not conformed to this world”. This is an instruction to focus on serving God and to not get wrapped up in the worldly activities that can lead to destruction. Drinking, in excess, can be one of those things. So, if you’re considering enjoying a drink or two in your life, it’s important to always stay mindful of the greater purpose that God is calling on us to fulfill.
Setting an Example
Even if you choose to partake in drinking alcohol in moderation, it’s important to consider the way that your presence reflects on you. In 1 Thessalonians 5:22, Paul calls on us to “Abstain from all appearance of evil”. This includes anything that could lead someone away from God or cause them to question their faith. In this way, being aware of the way that you interact with alcohol is key to ensuring that your faith remains firmly grounded in God.
One of the best ways to stay true to the biblical warnings against excessive drinking is to stay connected to your community. In Titus 3:8, Paul says “He that does good is of God: but he that does evil has not seen God.” By doing good within your community, you can stay connected to God and focus your efforts on the wellbeing of others. Find ways to serve your community, whether at a soup kitchen, homeless shelter, or another charitable cause. Stay engaged with your faith, and remember that God’s love is all around.
Another argument in favour of abstaining from alcohol comes from a health perspective. Drinking excess alcohol brings physical and mental health risks and can damage the body over time. The Bible shows us that the body is a temple and that we should take care of it in all areas of life. So, by abstaining from drinking alcohol or restricting ourselves to moderate consumption, we are showing ourselves and others that our health is important and valuable.
Overall Summary and Conclusion
Ultimately, the Bible has a lot to say about how we should relate to alcohol. It’s clear that excessive drinking should be avoided and that we should drink in moderation, if at all. By staying focused on God’s calling and staying engaged with our community, we can remember that there is always something greater than our own urges. And by always taking into account the risks and dangers of drinking, we can stay true to God’s teachings, while still enjoying the pleasure of a delicious and refreshment beverage.