The ongoing discussion over alcohol at SBC Today really has legs. The comment count is at 117 and rising. I've contributed a few to that number. One of the comments that I made resonates strongly enough with me that I've decided to make it a post all unto itself, slightly modified and expanded. I've entitled it, "If Moderationists Really Cared about Drunkenness."
Make no mistake about it: Moderate consumption really equals moderate drunkenness. How drunk can I get before I’m “drunk”—what BAC? There’s a conversation that no advocate of “moderation” wishes to engage. If we were encountering people sincerely desirous to avoid intoxication, we would see:
- A vigorous discussion ongoing AMONG moderationists as to where sinful drunkenness beings. But not only is that conversation not vigorous, it is nonexistent.
- An extolling of the technology now in place to brew beverage alcohol that is less potent, the better to lessen the risk of drunkenness for those choosing to imbibe in moderation. But that conversation also is nonexistent.
- Serious preaching against drunkenness from moderationist pulpits. Sadly, neither moderationists nor abstentionists are preaching against drunkenness, which causes me to question the sincerity of both sides. I once put up a post asking about how much preaching my readers have heard against drunkenness in SBC churches. The comments were destroyed when I accidentally deleted my blog, but I can tell you that I heard a lot of crickets. This is the great debate where we roar on the blogs what we dare not squeak in our sanctuaries. I believe a greater responsibility falls upon those who proclaim the virtues of moderation. Bringing people to alcohol without giving frequent warning as to the dangers of drunkenness is like giving a four-year-old a Sigsauer without showing him how to set the safety. The absence of such preaching suggests that moderationists (among many of us) aren't very interested in combatting drunkenness.
- An effort to differentiate among alcoholic beverages based upon their alcoholic content. Several centuries after the last words of the Bible were penned, mankind learned how to distill alcoholic beverages to make them more effective at making people drunk. Like Pit Bulls bred and trained to maim, these are beverages chemically altered very carefully to make them make people drunker quicker. If moderationists were genuinely serious about avoiding drunkenness, they would be telling people not to drink whiskey or margaritas or mojitos or rum or any other distilled liquor. After all, all of these drinks are foreign to the Bible, are much more alcoholically potent than even modern undiluted wine, and start to cause profound drunkenness right off the bat. Instead of hearing this from moderationists, we hear about how their deacons are making margaritas.
I don’t doubt that our moderationist brethren are opposed to the idea of someone drinking until transformed into a sorry heap of puking flesh perched on a toilet lid somewhere, but I see no evidence of any serious opposition to a little buzz now and then—at least not any opposition serious enough to give rise to any careful thought or action.