Watch the first three parts here
- How addictions damage the brain (Part 1 of an ongoing series- from a Christian perspective)
- How addictions damage the brain (Part 2 )
- The Invisible Side of an Addiction (Part 3)
Ephesians 5:15-18 See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, 16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit
“Now if I’m reading that in this English translation, it sounds like “drink” as long as you don’t get drunk. However, the literal translation is ‘Do not get drunk on wine which leads to debauchery, instead be filled with the Spirit. What Paul is saying here is not, “Go drink a little bit and have a good time”. He’s comparing it, saying, “If you go in this direction it’s gonna lead to debauchery, but you need to be filled and continually controlled by the Spirit”. If you become totally enamored, controlled and filled with the Holy Spirit, here is what you’ll discover: That the substances, the chemicals, even the alcohol that you have or you’re using, you’re not going to need, because the presence of the Holy Spirit and the peace of God and the oy of the Lord is going to fill you to the point that you will not need other substances.
There is confusion when it comes to alcohol and strong drink. There are 3 groups that you deal with in any kind of a church setting:
- There are those who totally prohibit alcohol of any kind- total abstinence.
- There are those who teach that you should abstain in this sense: It was (ok) in biblical times but culturally it’s not good for us today.
- Then there’s a third and growing group that seems to say: Moderation, Christians can drink alcohol in moderation
Years ago there was no issue about this. Most Baptists, Pentecostals, Methodists would never consider drinking alcohol in any form. It was considered, when we grew up, something that was ungodly, or something that was carnal or worldly. It was preached that it could destroy you, your family, your walk with Gos. Then came what was called “the social drink” and the cosial drink was presented in such a way, that as ‘business people’, as they had to travel, as they had to meet with people, etc., it was something that you had to do in order to meet people and socialize.
I want to show you in the Bible what would happen when people would drink wine or strong drink. In Genesis 9:18-27 Noah’s grandson ended coming under a curse as a result of the incident. In Genesis 19:31-38 Lot committed incest with both of his daughters after becoming drunk. When Israel began to worship the golden calf in Exodus 32:6,25,28,35 the people took all their clothes off as they began to drink and got into ideal worship and Amnon was a wine drinker in 2 Samuel 13:28 and if you read in 2 Samuel 13:8-14 he is the one who raped his half sister, after what he did he got drunk. There are more examples.
When you begin to study the examples that are in the Bible, here’s what happens when people drink strong drink, that strong drink being something with alcohol content:
- When they became drunk, their judgment becomes totally perverted, their judgment becomes blurred.
- When they become drunk, it usually leads to sexual immorality.
- As they began to drink strong drink, their clothes come off
Now let me give you a good example: American spring break in March. What do they do in spring break? Drink, drink, drink. What happens when they start drinking? The clothes come off. And what happens when clothes come off? It leads to acts of fornication.
The Bible, in the New Testament says- a minister, a bishop is not to be given to wine. I want to make a statement carefully, “I know of five ministers over my lifetime (since I have been in ministry) who were raised in churches that taught total abstinence. These men started drinking alcohol and when they did, things began to fall apart. All 5 have lost their companion, some of them have totally lost their ministries and some of them are struggling even as I am speaking right now. This (alcohol consumption) may not be the only root of their problem, but I do believe, when men who are men of God, I am speaking specifically to ministers, what happens is that when you begin to compromise in this area. There’s restraint that the Holy Spirit gives you, but (with alcohol consumption) inhibitions are lifted, judgments you normally have of putting up a wall goes- the wall begins to come down and so in the Bible, definite difficulty started with people who were given strong drink.
The Kings and priests of the Old Testament, the priests were to be sober and avoid strong drink at the tabernacle ministry Leveticus 10:8-10. The Kings were instructed not to drink strong drink Proverbs 31:4-5. In Isaiah 5:11-13 the Lord is rebuking prophets for prophesying false prophecy because they were drunken. The Old Testament had 3 mani leaders: the prophet, the priest and the King. The priest was man’s contact with God. The prophet was the voice of God speaking to the people the oracles of God and the King was the spiritual authority over the nation. In the Old Testament there are many verses that reveal to you that a prophet, a priest or a King is to avoid strong drink because of the impact it will have not only upon them, but it will impact the rest of the people.
There are a lot of people who watch you and will pattern after you if you are a person who says you are a Christian. Someone once told me: The next generation is going to be more liberal than the previous generation.
There were people in the Bible that were committed not to drink strong drink: Nazirites – Numbers 6:1-3. such as Samson in Judges chapters 13-16. Read Jeremiah 35 on the Rechabites. This is where Jeremiah places a special blessing on the Rechabites, as strangers in the land because they made a commitment and a vow to God to abstain from any strong drink whatsoever.
WHY was it in the TEMPLE?
Numbers 28:7 - in a holy place you shall pour out the drink to the Lord as an offering. Leviticus 6:16 And the remainder of it Aaron and his sons shall eat- In other words, the grape harvest, which was wine, there were drink offerings that were poured out in the temple. Daniel, in Daniel 1:18 is sitting at the king’s table in Babylon and he says, “your meat was sacrificed to idols; that breaks the law. I’m from a priestly family. I can’t drink strong drink; that breaks the law”, and he refused to go either way. This is why I believe God raised him up and God gave him revelation to see the future. Because Daniel was not willing to compromise at a table with people. He could have said, “Hey, I’m not in Jerusalem, I am in Babylon; do like the babylonians”. That is what most Christians would do today if in a foreign country on a trip. But He said, “I am not going to defile myself that way”.
How close do yo want to live in the presence of God?
- 1 Thessalonians 5:22 Abstain from every form of evil.
- Romans 14:16 Therefore do not let your good be spoken of as evil
Next video (Part 5) the difference between the wine in Jesus’ day and what is served at table and restaurants.
Published on Jun 29, 2012 by perrystonevoe
- 8% of Pregnant Americans Booze (newser.com)
- Drinking alcohol, even in moderation, ‘a dementia risk’ – BBC News (bbc.co.uk)
- FAQs on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (education.com)
- CDC: 1 in 13 pregnant women say they drink alcohol (onlineathens.com)
- Drinking Alcohol, Even in Moderation, “a Dementia Risk,” Study (biospace.com)
- Rethinking Everything We Thought About Addiction (psychologytoday.com)
- Drinking Alert: Are You An Alcoholic? (links4lifealerts.com)
- Henry Gornbein: Addiction and Divorce (huffingtonpost.com)
- Romancing the drink – Articles (wilmingtonfavs.com)