ISSUE: 2009, Volume 6, Issue 3
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He is the sort of chap, along with his twin sister Miss Tipsy, who knows that the best solution to the problem of drinking too much alcohol is to be a teetotaller – to leave it alone completely - but has all sorts of reasons for thinking that drinking alcohol is good. His usual argument is that he does not see anywhere in the Scriptures that forbids the drinking of alcohol and he is probably right - the Bible warns us against excessive drinking but not drinking itself.This is because the consumption of wine and ‘strong drink’ was a fact of life for Old and New Testament cultures where good, fresh drinking water was not available. His second argument, which is less reliable, is that it is good to drink with non-Christian friends and to be like them in order to win them for the Lord. This means that Mr Smashed and Miss Tipsy see no reason why they should not go pubbing and clubbing. The trouble is that, in that sort of an environment it is actually very difficult to witness for the Lord. Instead, a ‘good time’ is had by all, but not much witnessing is done and poor Mr Smashed finds himself the worse for wear more often than he should.
‘Wine is a mocker, strong drink (beer) is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise’ says the wise man in Proverbs 20. 1. ‘Be not among winebibbers’ is the advice given in Proverbs 23. 20-21. Mr Smashed should note that the advice given here is not to keep company with those that frequently drink too much. It is best to keep away from that environment, but not from those people. Why? Because alcohol is not a stimulant, it is a depressant. It will not sharpen your wits, it will dull them. ‘It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink: Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted. Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts. Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more’, Proverbs 31. 4-7. Miss Tipsy aught also to remember that drunkenness often brings moral misery and compromise (Gen. 9. 20-21; Gen 19. 32-33).
‘Who hath woe? who hath sorrow?’ (emotional problems) ‘who hath contentions? who hath babbling?’ (problems with relationships) ‘who hath wounds without cause?’‘who hath redness of eyes?’ (physical effects). ‘They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it gives his colour in the cup, when it moves itself aright. At the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like an adder’ (hangovers and regrets). ‘Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things’ (psychological problems and lack of discipline). ‘Yea, thou shalt be as he that lies down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lies upon the top of a mast. They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not:’ (confusion and loss of self-control) ‘when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again’ (addiction), Proverbs 23. 29-35. The clear teaching of Scripture is ‘be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess’, Eph. 5. 18. Only fools mess around with alcohol.