Too often, the Christian take on alcoholic beverages is simply, “don’t.” The reasoning is usually presented thus: there’s no real upside to drinking, and there’s a huge downside. You might get drunk yourself, or cause someone else to stumble, and for what? Drinking is optional anyway, so why not just steer clear of the whole thing?
To hell with that cramped and lifeless pseudo-theology! Let it scurry back to the Pit whence it came. In its place, I offer you a look at the goodness and fruitfulness of God’s good alcoholic gifts, thus:
Psalm 104 says that God gave wine to make man’s heart glad. Proverbs 31 endorses its use to help a grieving man forget his troubles. Jesus made wine — and He made the good stuff, too.
Thesis #1: If we write off alcohol as potentially harmful, with no upside — then our viewpoint is not biblical, however “wise” we think it. Alcoholic beverages are one of God’s good gifts.
Ephesians 5 says not to get drunk. (For those who want a definition of drunk…really? But ok: If someone wants to praise or censure you for what you did last night, and the first thing that comes to mind is, “Well, I’d had a lot to drink…” — that. Don’t do that. Read Ephesians 5. If it was the liquor talking instead of the work of the Spirit, you’re doing it wrong.)
Thesis #2: If you get drunk, you’re in sin.
Romans 14 forbids causing our brother to stumble, and also forbids holding our brother in contempt.
Thesis #3: We may neither look down on someone for what they do (or don’t) drink, nor tempt someone down a path that leads to drunkenness.
Colossians 2 says no one should judge you regarding what you drink (or don’t). There’s nothing wrong with taking good counsel, but ignore condemnations. If you don’t drink, there’s always someone who will tell you that you’re missing out. If you do, there’s always someone that will tell you it’s “just wiser not to.”
Thesis #4: Ignore other people’s condemnations about what you drink. Be fully convinced before God, and stick to your guns.