Dear Pastor Gallups, "Is it a sin to drink a moderate amount of alcohol?" G.D., Pace
(READERS - please read this article ALL THE WAY THROUGH before making a judgment on my answer to this important question!)
The Bible nowhere teaches complete abstinence from alcohol. However, there are strong warnings against its abuse and the excess of alcoholic beverage consumption. The Bible condemns "drunkenness" and forbids this activity for God's People. The evil that can result from abusive or excessive drinking is clearly spoken of and condemned in God's Word.
The argument that I often hear in the Christian world about how the wine that Jesus drank was not really alcoholic...is ridiculous. Yes...the wine was alcoholic! Jesus spoke a lot about the new wine and old wine and wineskins. The Hebrew life and customs included the consumption of wine. I think it is time that Christians were honest about the Bible truth.
Now...why do I not consume alcoholic beverages and why do I encourage other Christians not to consume ANY alcoholic beverages? My answer is simple and BIBLICAL.
Our culture is "alcohol obsessed". Alcohol is responsible for over 50% of all crime and deaths caused by automobile accidents. This one substance has ruined more lives, homes, families, children and brilliant minds than any other substance. Think of the industries that thrive off of alcohol consumption...gambling, pornography, liquor establishments, strip-bars, etc.
As a Born-again Christian, I have a witness to maintain. I refuse to consume ANY alcohol because I do not want to associate my life or money with the substance or the sin and destruction that it produces. I encourage other Christians to do the same.
I do not want to have any area in my life that might cause me to not be able to win someone else to Jesus. Jesus is very clear that our WITNESS is the most precious commodity we possess after we are saved. We are held accountable for how we maintain that witness.
If a Christian wants to consume a “moderate” amount of alcohol, that is between him and God. I personally would think less of a person’s Christian “maturity” if he felt the need to do that – in spite of the harm it might cause his life and witness.