A Moral and Biblical Case Against Alcohol

Years ago, I looked forward to having drinks. Nowadays, I consider myself a teetotaler. I’ve seen firsthand the devastation alcoholic beverages can bring. 

During my twenties, I frequented nightclubs and beer parties. One night, I got arrested for drunk driving. Eventually, I plea-bargained to lesser charges but still had to pay over $400 in towing charges, fines, and court costs. Two other times, I went to the hospital for stitches after being attacked by men who were intoxicated. One of them was my then-roommate.

Family and friends have also been negatively affected by drinking. My mother grew up in a home where her father physically abused the family when drunk. One of my uncles died from alcoholic poisoning. Another former roommate of mine got killed when his car collided with a drunk driver going the wrong direction on the freeway.

A few months after giving my life to the Lord in 1991, I made the decision to shun alcohol completely. For those of you who think I’m being religious or legalistic, the Bible has accounts of ruined lives resulting from the consumption of intoxicating drink:

  • Noah became uncovered in his tent and pronounced a curse upon one of his sons. (Genesis 9:20-25)
  • Lot had incest with his two daughters and produced races of people that caused future problems for Israel. (Genesis 19:30-38)
  • Amnon raped his half-sister and got killed by his half-brother. (2 Samuel 13:28-29)
  • Belshazzar drank from temple treasures and lost his kingdom and his life. (Daniel 5:30)

Some will argue, “But Jesus drank wine!” One person emailed me claiming “the wine Christ made from water [in John chapter 2] was not grape juice.” On the contrary, the wine drunk in Bible times was often unfermented (Hebrew word “tîyrôsh”) and diluted with water. It had far less alcohol content than most of the wine manufactured today.

New wine takes up to eight weeks to ferment. Therefore, I can’t imagine Jesus instantly adding alcohol to wine. Otherwise He would have produced approximately 160 gallons of a destructive drug to launch a new marriage with slurring lips and staggering feet. The Lord would violate His own Word by doing that (see Leviticus 10:9-10, Habakkuk 2:15; Luke 12:45-46, and 1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

A fellow missionary told me he visited Spain and drank one glass of wine at somebody’s house. Afterward, he noticed it took away his spiritual discernment. For a while, he felt totally lost. I remain convinced nothing good comes from drinking booze, especially for those aspiring to be in Christian leadership. 1 Timothy 3 warns against bishops and deacons “given to wine.” Romans 14:21 says, “It is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak.”

Instead of looking for loopholes to justify moderate drinking, I exhort all sipping saints reading this to sincerely seek the Lord as to whether or not He wants you drinking alcohol. Would you be willing to give that up if He asked you to? Isn’t being filled with the Holy Spirit enough?

“And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit.” 

- Ephesians 5:18  


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