To drink or not to drink, that is the question so many Christians have. As a recovering strong black woman who likes to make her own decisions, I wrestled with this question for awhile. People I know would invite me to mix and mingles and without exception these events would have beer, wine and alcohol. Or maybe I would attend a wedding reception, and they would have an open bar and a champagne toast. Should I participate? And if I could, what could I drink and how much could I drink? Outside of mix and mingles and wedding receptions, where should I drink, around whom could I drink, what would people think about me if I drank, and should I care what people thought about me if I drank? Maybe you, too, want to know as a Christian whether or not you should drink and what may be the stipulations of doing so. I believe after reading this series of posts on being sober, you will have an educated biblical response regarding whether or not Christians should drink beer, wine or alcohol.
Scripture gives us the positive and negative side of drinking:
Positive sense—Paul tells Timothy to use wine medicinally (1 Tim. 5:23). We also see that people drank wine at a wedding. So they drank at a time of merriment, to celebrate (John 2:1-10).
Negative sense—Wine has the power to make you talk rough and alcohol makes you walk tough, causing you to argue and fight people. They both cause you to be under their power (Proverbs 20:1). Titus 2:3 puts it this way: The biblical woman “is not given to much wine” which means that she doesn’t allow the drink to control her.
So God’s vision of a biblical woman is for fermented drinks not to control her with their intoxicating effect. Even if you don’t get sloppy drunk, where you’re stumbling and cussing out and fighting people, fermented drinks control you if 1) you have to drink to have a good time; 2) you have to have a drink to become calm; or 3) you can’t stop drinking until you get drunk. All of these instances make you a slave to the bottle, and you are out of control.
Am I saying you can’t get your drink on? Maybe. It depends on you assessing yourself according to who God wants you to be as I laid out here and as I will further do next time. Until then, I welcome your stories of struggle and success with beer, wine and alcohol.
Copyright 2009 by Rhonda J. Smith