Saturday, April 1, 2017

What Does The Bible Say About Consuming Wine?

  • Defining The Issues:
          -Whether drinking wine is morally permissible or not is controversial subject matter among different Christian circles. Some maintain that drinking wine is absolutely forbidden by God. Others would beg to differ. Others choose a neutral stance. In short, there is a wide diversity of opinion within Christianity as to whether drinking wine is biblically acceptable. This is a matter in which discernment is needed.
  • All Food And Drink Has Been Declared Clean By God:
          -Issues pertaining to food and drink are of secondary importance according to the New Testament Scriptures (Romans 14:1-14). These were all given by God so as to nourish our bodies and are to be received with thanksgiving (Acts 10:10-16; 1 Timothy 4:1-4).
          -If we are going to view professing Christians who dogmatically condemn the consumption of certain meats as being legalistic, then the same must also be true of those who dogmatically oppose the consumption of wine. Anything can be misused and abused.
          -We should take measures to prevent becoming a stumbling block to fellow brethren in the church (Romans 14:15-21). Moreover, there is nothing wrong with refusing to drink wine for the sake of conscience.
  • The Bible Does Permit Christians To Drink Wine:
          -The Lord Jesus Christ Himself turned water into wine during the wedding feast at Cana (John 2). He did indeed partake of fermented wine (Luke 7:33-44). This argument is proof that drinking wine is morally acceptable within the reasonable boundaries of consumption, since the inspired Scriptures record Jesus as being sinless (1 Peter 2:22). If the act of drinking wine in itself is sinful, then Jesus would be sinful just like we are and thus disqualified from redeeming us from sin.
          -The Apostle Paul instructed Timothy to drink some wine to help with his frequent stomach illnesses (1 Timothy 5:23). The biblical view of wine is that it has been given to us by God as a gift to enjoy (Psalm 104:14-15). Drinking wine is not in itself sinful.
          -The only group of people whom God forbade (in the Old Testament) from consuming alcoholic wine were those who took the Nazirite vow (Numbers 6:1-21).
  • Is The Greek "Oinos" To Be Translated As Wine Or Grape Juice?:
          -"The Greek word translated "wine" is oinos, which was the common Greek word for normal wine, wine that was fermented/alcoholic...Everything, from the context of a wedding feast, to the usage of oinos in 1st century Greek literature (in the New Testament and outside the New Testament), argues for the wine that Jesus created to be normal, ordinary wine, containing alcohol. There is simply no solid historical, cultural, exegetical, contextual, or lexical reason to understand it to have been grape juice." (https://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-water-wine.html)
  • Alcoholism Is Morally Wrong (A Few Comments On Gluttony Included):
          -Just as orally consuming too much of any food is gluttonous, the same is equally true with wine or any other drink (Proverbs 20:1; Romans 13:13; Ephesians 5:18; 1 Peter 4:13). Addictions are a sin, which includes alcoholism (1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Galatians 5:19-21). Quite simply, eating and drinking too much involves selfishness. We also know that gluttony is unnatural because it leads up to potentially fatal health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and high-cholesterol. Becoming an alcoholic can be fatal, for it can raise blood pressure (and thus cause a heart attack), cause liver disease, and lead up to the formation of cancer. Becoming an alcoholic ruins good morals. Consuming too much wine is morally wrong and can damage our bodies. Material substances such as bread and wine are not evil in themselves.

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