Summary: Even though drinking hits home with our families and friends, we must oppose it to stop it from destroying those whom we love.
INTRO: Do I have to try to impress you with the statistics? You already know them. Even unbelievers are alarmed at the rise in alcoholism, drunk driving, and broken homes.
The problem of drinking today is “staggering”. We need to be sympathetic with alcoholics who try to break their addiction, but we cannot justify alcoholism by calling it a disease. God will not judge us because of a “disease!” We must take responsibility for our actions.
I. PEOPLE HAVE MANY REASONS FOR DRINKING
B) Bitterness (Proverbs 31:6). They are angry and hurt in their hearts. Drinking drowns sorrows for some people.
C) Escape Problems And Forget (Proverbs 31:7). It brings a temporary relief, but cannot take them away permanently. Actually it makes them worse.
II. WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT DRINKING?
A) Drunkenness Is A Sin. “Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:19-21). Consider how many of the other sins in that list the drunkard is likely to commit!
B) A Drunkard Who Does Not Repent And Quit Drinking Will Be Lost (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). We cannot soft-pedal what the Bible says! Drunkenness is always condemned as being excessive, indulgent, uncontrolled, and sensual.
C) Social Drinking Is A Sin Too. It is part of the old life that Christians are to put off “For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles—when we walked in licentiousness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you.” (1 Peter 4:3-4). It seems strange to hear that those who sin will condemn those who take a moral stand against such sins—but they do.
D) Alcohol Will Mock And Destroy Us. We cannot allow ourselves to be caught under its spell “Wine is a mocker, intoxicating drink arouses brawling, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise... Do not look on the wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it swirls around smoothly; at the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like a viper” (Proverbs 20:1; 23:31-32). When God warns us to stay away, it is for our own good, not to deny us one of the good things in life.
E) Negative Effects Of Alcohol. Notice the negative effects of alcohol in Proverbs 23:29-35—It produces woe and sorrow (23:29), contention (23:29), physical problems (23:29), hallucinations (23:33), dulls the senses (23:34-35), and is addicting (23:35). Many people who drink say “Yeah, but I can hold my liquor.” Did you ever notice that no sober person ever makes that statement about that man when he is drinking??!!
III. ATTEMPTS TO JUSTIFY DRINKING
Many people try to use the Bible to justify drinking in moderation.
A) God’s Word Does Not Contradict Itself (1 Corinthians 14:33). When it appears to us that it does, then we are the ones who are confused!
B) Much Of The Wine Drunk In Daily Life Was Simply Grape Juice (Matthew 11:18-19; John 2:1-12; 1 Timothy 5:23; Titus 2:3). Even in their fermented state, alcoholic drinks in Jesus’ day were diluted from three parts water/one part grape juice to twenty parts water/one part grape juice. That is a far cry from any 90 proof alcoholic drink today!
C) Timothy Had To Be Convinced To Take A Little For His Stomach’s Sake (1 Timothy 5:23). He seemed to have such an aversion to drinking any wine that Paul had to convince him to drink a little for his health.
CONCLUSION: The problem of alcoholism won’t go away until we stand up against it and oppose it. Even though this subject hits very close to home, in some way, with most of us, that is all the more reason we need to oppose it—to stop it from destroying those whom we love!