Summary: How to break free form that which controls you.
Prov 23, Jer 2:13, Prov 14:27, 1 Cor 6:9-20, Eph 5:15-18, John 7:37
Audio is available at
This chapter is about discipline – children mentioned in there but we can only discipline our kids to the extent that we are disciplined ourselves.
We see here that far from the modern advice to let it all hang out and pursue our rights for pleasure the writer is telling us to be careful of our appetites – and to tame them – to discipline them. He uses drink as an illustration of this –
The Evils of drink
The writer of proverbs asks us to consider what one must pay for excessive drinking -
Woes, pain, confusion, bruises, desperation – “give me one more drink”!
22% of UK men and 9% of women drink over the recommended amounts and are at risk of alcoholism and alcohol related sickness
Deaths due to Alcohol in the UK doubled in the last few years –
4,144 in 1991 to 8,380 in 2004 plus road deaths
What are you drinking?
Its not just drink….
-88,800 deaths due to smoking in 2004
In Great Britain in 2005, 72 per cent of current smokers aged 16 and over reported that they wanted to give up smoking, with health reasons being the most common reason given for wanting to stop.
Almost 1 in 5 teens have taken drugs in the last year – significantly more than smoke, and just a little less than drink
BUT ALSO seeking after anything other than God for ultimate fulfilment and pleasure:-
“for my people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water. (Je 2:13).
What is it that I believe I cannot be happy without?
What is it that I crave?
What is it that I believe I must have?
What is it that I spend most of my spare time thinking about?
What is it that I most worry about losing?
What is it that I seek my happiness in the most? (or to use older language delight in?)
What do I love more than God?
(Taken from John Piper) I added one more
What is the one thing I am thinking of right now that he cant possibly mean
What keeps us drinking?
-Sense of need – the wine/cigarette/whatever is my friend- HAS A CONVERSATION WITH US – some friend! Give it a chance and it will steal all your money, take all your time, break up your marriage, cause others to look at you with contempt, make you stink, give you diseases, kill you and condemn your soul to hell!
"Be killing sin or it will be killing you." John Owen
How to STOP drinking
-recognise the extent of the problem
-Turn to Jesus - AA "higher power … helpless..."
Prov 14:27 “The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death”
1 Cor 6:9-20
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
"All things are lawful for me," but not all things are helpful. "All things are lawful for me," but I will not be enslaved by anything. "Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food"—and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. … Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
CAN YOU GLORIFY GOD WHILST WATCHING PORN WHILST DRINKING TO EXCESS WHILST SMOKING?
WRATH IS COMING – TURN TO GOD TO HIDE FROM HIS WRATH IN HIS SON
Then, having believed in Jesus, then what?
-just DO IT or rather DON’T DO IT!
- practical steps - flee, etc.. you CAN stop as you aren’t doing it right now!
God COMMANDS US to repent!
Legalism vs fleeing from sin – the decision needs wisdom for the alcoholic it is obvious….even for some who have not been alcoholics…
2 christian approaches to drink that are acceptable depending on the individual, their personal beliefs and situation – abstinence and moderation. Asked Tope and Stuart, both happy as our elders for people to hold either position – just NOT to be drunk or addicted!