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Is drinking alcohol a sin? That’s what we’re going to talk about today.
Alright so this question comes up ALL the time. “Is it a sin to drink alcohol?” To answer this question people tend to go to one of two extremes. Either they will say, “A Christian should not drink wine under ANY circumstances.” Or they will say, “it’s not a sin; I can drink as much as I want as long as I don’t get drunk.” But what does the Bible have to say about this?
The quick answer to that is NO. (SCREEN: Wine is like money: Neither are inherently evil but it’s how you use it or abuse it that matters)
Interestingly enough the Bible has a lot of positive things to say about the use of wine.
1. Celebration – Jesus drank wine with His disciples but He made wine from scratch – Mt. 11:19; Lk. 7:34 – So if it’s a sin then Jesus sinned and caused a whole bunch of other people to sin. (they actually accused Him of being a drunkard)
2. Enjoyment – Wine was created by God simply to be enjoyed – Eccl. 9:7 (read with emphasis)
3. Wine was used for communion (represents Jesus’ blood – some use grape juice others use actual wine) – (see 1 Cor. 11:21) – So if it was a sin that means we could potentially sin each time we take communion.
BUT, there are times when it may not be wise to drink. The Bible says, “All things are permitted but not all things are profitable. Let me suggest to you 3 questions to ask yourself before you drink.
1 Cor. “All things are permitted but not all things are profitable.”
1. Will this damage my Christian image?
a. Non-believers – 1 Pet. 2:12 – “Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors…” Could my drinking in public cause other non-Christians to get the wrong impression about my lifestyle? People are looking for any reason to say, “You Christians are hypocritical! There’s no difference between you and me!” And so…
b. Even though you are drinking in moderation it could be perceived that you are getting drunk which sends the message that you are no better than them.
c. We must always be aware that we are a representation of Christ and Christianity
2. Will this encourage someone else to sin? Paul says in 1 Cor. 8:13, “I know I have the personal freedom to eat meat. But if I’m around someone who’s conscience convicts them about eating meat then out of respect for them I’ll refrain from eating meat.”
a. Let’s say you’re out with your friends…
b. Believers – Could believers who look to me for their example stumble into sin? You’d be surprised how many people look up to us and pattern their lives after watching ours. 1 Cor. 8. Let’s say you’re at a party and you’re drinking and someone with you who used to struggle with alcohol sees you drinking a lot. Because they look up to you they will see that as acceptable behavior and then may end up drinking too much because it’s a struggle for them. So out of respect for them, you refrain from drinking in that situation.
c. Are you causing someone else to stumble because they are watching you?
3. Is this becoming an addiction? “…even though I am allowed to do anything I will not become a slave to anything.” (explain this…)
a. But…when you get to the point where you can’t go very long without it…
b. Every time you go out you HAVE to have that wine or that beer…
c. You start to use this as a way of escape…It could be the early signs of an addiction.
d. (If you can’t drink in moderation it destroys blood vessels and brain cells.)
So, can a Christian drink alcohol? The quick answer to this question is NO! There is no scripture in the Bible that prohibits drinking but it does teach that getting drunk is a sin (Eph. 5:18). These questions can be applied to a list of questionable activities. Use wisdom as to when you should or shouldn’t drink.