Wednesday, May 28, 2008

If Moderationists Really Cared about Drunkenness...

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:

  1. A vigorous discussion ongoing AMONG moderationists as to where sinful drunkenness beings. But not only is that conversation not vigorous, it is nonexistent.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.

54 comments:

Dave Miller said...

As one of the so-called moderationists you excoriate in this post, I can tell you two things.

First, I am a little resentful of the tone of the post itself.

Second, at least in my case, it is wrong. I preached through Ephesians recently, and talked about the debauchery caused by drunkenness. Second, I am teaching Proverbs to my youth group, and have warned them strongly about how alcohol can lead to making foolish choices, how it can depress inhibitions and lead us to do things we should not do.

This demeaning and condescending viewpoint of abstentionists grinds on me a little.

I have never taken a drink.
I recommend to my people, especially to young people, that drinking is dangerous.
But I also read scripture, and have become convinced by the reading of scripture and the reading of scripture ALONE that I would be wrong to condemn anyone who takes a glass of wine or a beer as sinful.

Even if I and others come under your condesencion and condemnation, I am convinced I am hnonoring the Word of God and that I will not receive HIS condemnation.

Baptist Theologue said...

Bart, there’s an interesting article by Michael Donahue in today’s Commercial Appeal (Memphis newspaper) about the connection between popular culture, sex, and alcohol. A few excerpts:

“Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte drank Cosmopolitans and other pink cocktails when they did the town on TV's ‘Sex and the City.’ Countless women who tuned in each week began copying them, ordering the colorful sweet drinks in martini glasses at their local bars. The last episode of the show, which had a six-year run, aired in February 2004, but ‘Sex and the City: The Movie,’ opens Friday. Will the characters played by Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis still be drinking Cosmopolitans, or will they be drinking some of today's ‘girlie drinks’ -- The Diva, Passionate Lady and Pink Panties? Lea Clark, a server at Encore Restaurant and Bar, was a bartender at By the Tracks Bistro in Knoxville when ‘Sex in the City’ was on prime-time TV. ‘The whole dainty feminine cocktail rage came from “Sex in the City,”’ Clark believes. ‘Girls, guys, everybody was watching that show.’ He served Cosmopolitans, which are made with vodka, Cointreau, cranberry juice and lime juice, as well as fancy drinks with names like ‘Wedding Cake’ to men, but it was ‘mostly women that ordered some sort of varying color in a martini glass. I think they did want to get tipsy or whatever,
but it almost seemed like a “I want to re-create the life of Carrie” or something. “Go have brunch with my friends every Sunday and have cocktails and be really brazen about our relationships.”’ . . . ‘I think a lot of times maybe they like girlie drinks (because) they don't drink a lot or aren't used to the taste of alcohol. They like the fruity drinks. They come in pretty colors. They get to drink out of the martini glass. It makes them feel cosmopolitan.’ . . . ‘The “Cougars” -- the older women who go for the younger men -- are drinking Tartinis these days. You know how Stolis (Stolichnaya vodka) have all the flavors? You use pretty much all of them. And then you use sour and cranberry and it makes kind of a little Sweet Tart Tartini.’ Blue Fin restaurant offers a variety of cocktails aimed at women, including chocolate martinis made with vodka, Godiva chocolate and sometimes a bit of white chocolate, said bartender Cyndi Sowell.”

http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2008/may/28/city-drinks/

Bart Barber said...

Dave,

If the points of the post trouble you, then I invite you to be a catalyst for change among your moderationist friends.

And I'm glad that you are preaching against drunkenness. As I said in the post, that puts you ahead of most abstentionists.

Bart Barber said...

BT,

Ahh....The Commercial Appeal...It has been a long time.

Great article.

Debbie Kaufman said...

My question would be where the Holy Spirit, which each of us as born again Christians have, comes into play. To control someone is not allowing the HS to teach or work, it's just controlling someone. Again, as weak as this may sound to you Bart, I cannot, will not, go further than scripture does on this subject.

Dave Miller said...

I think you are assuming facts not in evidence in your post and making generalize condemnation which is not accurate.

The very title of the post is a slanderous accusation against our motives.

Pastor Hilliard said...

"Sadly, neither moderationists nor abstentionists are preaching against drunkenness, which causes me to question the sincerity of both sides."

I would be labeled a "moderationists" and I preach against drunkenness and I also preach why I believe we should completely abstain.

So, maybe there is hope...

Bart Barber said...

Dave,

Perhaps I am. I am open to correction point-by-point. The point at which you offered correction, #3, is one where I pointed my generalizing finger at both my camp and yours. I did so based upon the results of a polling type of post that I put up a long time ago. Follow the link. The comments revealed very little evidence of preaching on the subject of drunkenness.

So, I am not making the claim without any evidence at all, nor do I claim to have all of the evidence. I am glad to receive more.

Pastor Hilliard said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pastor Hilliard said...

For the record, the last time this "moderationist" preached and touched on the subject of alcohol was May 11th (Mother's Day). I was preaching from Proverbs 31. Bart, when am I due to preach on it again? I don't want to get behind.

Debbie Kaufman said...

Bart: The title of your post is if "Moderationists Really Cared About Drunkness..." which I think by reading the posts shows that we do. But I also care about anything that is overdone or abused. It is preached about, but so is what the Bible says concerning moderation. Isn't it moderation in all things? Isn't that the message of the Bible? All of the Bible pointing to Christ?

Granted I can also become legalistic in freedom as well, requiring you to believe personally as I do. That is also something that is wrong. Something I'm studying scripture on, as Alan pointed out in the passage he gave, Joel Rainey pointed out in his post on Romans 14 and Steve Brown pointed out in his series on freedom. That to me is convicting and God trying to say something in this area.

Big Daddy Weave said...

as one who enjoys what i call B.Diddy Lite (half PBR [Pabst], half fresh lemonade) on occasion and a glass of wine when enjoying some elite dining with the lady or a distinguished guest, i'm curious as to whether there exists in the baptist blogosphere a theological moderationist who is not also a tee-totaler?

Bart, you wrote:

"Make no mistake about it: Moderate consumption really equals moderate drunkenness."

That's like saying:

Make no mistake about it: Moderate consumption OF FOOD really equals moderate OVEREATING.

I just finished a small Wendys chili and I hate to tell ya but i'm no where close to moderate OVEREATING. i may very well eat this cast off my left wrist if i don't find some eatable food soon!

To be honest, I'm 1000 times more impaired by a Sudafed or Benadryl than I am a B.Diddy Lite. And when I need a "buzz," I chug a MONSTER or CRUNK energy drink. :-)

Jonathon said...

I know Mark Driscoll is not one who abstains yet I hear him ring the bell very clearly as to the sin of drunkeness.

One other issue: the statistics prove it....more people die of obesity related problems each year than alcohol related problems.

I am not making a case to say there shouldn't be something said about alcohol, but why do we make it an issue and are afraid to tell our overweight pastors and deacons to start taking care of their body.

I believe it was a present seminary president, who I will not name, that was leading a Preaching Seminar, when he told the man that his sermon was great, but he was fat.

I myself abstain, but, still hasing the issues out in my own head and heart with a desire to be true to the Word of God.

Bart Barber said...

As an answer to Jonathon and a FYI to all:

I have posted on this topic before. Perhaps it would shed a bit more light if you were to read my longer post: A Theology of the SIn of Drunkenness from two years ago. Again, the comments were trashed when I blew up my blog a year and a half ago.

Dave Miller said...

Big Daddy,

I think you will find that for most of us, the discussion of alcohol is in terms of whether I will preach that my people are in sin to take a glass of wine.

If I were to take a glass of wine (and it were known) I would be immediately relieved of my pastoring duties.

And I tend to preface my comments with "I have never actually had a drink" because of the tendency of abstentionists to accuse moderationists of not caring about drunkenness or being secret alcoholics.

Rick said...

Bart,
This is my first time to post on your blog.

I am a non-drinker. I come from a very long line of alcoholics. I chose not to drink because I think I would have a tendency towards getting drunk, not because of Biblical principles.

However, I do have a donut problem. I think that gluttony and drunkenness are in the same boat. In fact, Jesus was called a glutton and a drunkard. So, how many donuts do I need to eat before it is gluttony? Clearly a dozen would make it gluttony, but how about 4? What about 5? Surely one more, at 6, wouldn't be would it? This argument can be used for AND against drinking in moderation.

I completely agree that drunkenness is sin. But that is not why I don't drink. After having lived overseas for 10 years, I can say that this is an American cultural argument not a religious one. It has taken on the guise of being a religious issue because of our cultural heritage. In Hong Kong, for instance, where their HK Baptist Convention is a perfect picture of the SBC in the 1940's, you will find many deacon meetings include a bottle of cognac!

I'm as conservative as they come. I don't drink. I don't chew. I don't smoke. I don't think we'd be having this argument when the SBC was first conceived. Alcohol wasn't evil until the Temperance Movement made it so. I would venture to say that in many conservative Christian circles (outside the USA) drinking is a non-issue. The issue is simply getting drunk.

(I'm going to cut and paste the above comment over at SBC Today as well)

Anonymous said...

Dr. Barber,
Amen to your post.

There certainly has been a dearth of preaching and teaching about the Bible and alcohol in our churches and seminaries. I think we are now reaping some of those results.

You asked whether we preach about this subject. I’m by no means a prominent pastor and I pastor a small church. But about once every year or two I preach an entire Sunday morning sermon on the subject of alcohol. I hit it from time to time in other sermons.

The last Sunday I preached on it I also passed out a flyer that included most of my sermon.
I usually include a quote at the bottom of our church bulletin and occasionally include a quote about alcohol. This Sunday’s quote: “I have a sincere conviction that liquor is one of the chief causes of unhappiness, both to the people who drink and to those who are near and dear to them. Early in my life I decided not to touch liquor even in moderation, and I have adhered to this resolution. I am grateful for God’s help during periods of stress when I might have been tempted to drink had I relied on human strength alone.” -J. C. Penney, founder of the department stores that bear his name.

The book I wrote about my dad, “The Wit & Wisdom of Pastor Joe Brumbelow,” includes a little of his convictions against drinking.

We also include the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission’s pamphlet in the church bulletin on Substance Abuse Prevention Sunday. In case someone hasn’t yet figured it out, I’m against drinking any amount of beverage alcohol.

Some of your posts make me look bad :-). But I can truthfully say that on this subject I practice what I preach.
We desperately need more preachers to do the same. Thanks for your stand on this important issue.
David R. Brumbelow

Bart Barber said...

Cognac is exponentially more alcoholically potent than the "strong drink" condemned in the Bible. I'm sorry, that's just not right. I don't care who does it in what country.

Dave Miller said...

I will take one more crack at this, then leave it alone. I read your previous, more extensive post, and it is some of the better written and reasonable arguments I have read.

The problem I have with this post is that it does not deal with evidence, it deals with motives.

The title assumes that we (moderationists) do not actually care about drunkenness.

While you include abstentionists in the condemnation later, your title directs the accusation of moral indifference at those of us who were arguing for moderation.

I feel like you when you confronted Nathan Finn on the phariseeism issue on his recent post.

You argue well for your position. I just wish you wouldn't question the motives and morality of those of us who disagree with your position.

With that, I am done with this topic.

Bart Barber said...

Dave,

I understand and can relate to the feeling.

Here's what I meant to do: Demonstrate some measurable, common-sense things that moderationists might do to put feet to their stated concerns about drunkenness. There's some sensationalism in the title and the style of writing, not out of ill will toward you or any other moderationist, but to be provocative.

My ultimate argument and hope is that any serious campaign to combat drunkenness will, inevitably, lead a person to the abstentionist position sooner or later. But I could be wrong.

You know, Dave, maybe I'm just doing this to prove that I was right way back whenever when I told you that you just hadn't been around long enough to read the worst of my stuff.

:-)

Debbie Kaufman said...

So do you all think that if you do not tell Christians exactly what to do they will go out and do it? Do you really not think that Christians know that drunkeness is wrong unless you tell them?

Adultry is preached about, yet it is not only happening in the congregation but in the pulpit as well. Do you think not enough sermons were preached? How about when the minister commits the adultery.

This is just one example, but I think we have worse problems in our church than drunkeness. And don't say alcohol is to blame, because most of this is from teetotalers who were in fact preaching against the very thing they themselves were doing.

peter lumpkins said...

Dear Bart,

Well, brother it finally got to you, didn't it...The 'condescending' charge. You are a low-down condescending rascal and everybody knows it now!

Do not feel bad, though. I was accused of blasphemy against God on my site during my series last January. Keep up the fight, brother.

One note about those like BDW who continually hoe the garden about "OVEREATING." To equate overeating with overdrinking and come to the moral conclusion that the two are the same may be funny but is biblically ridiculous. That tactic seems always the first line of defense for those who'd rather ignore the issue.

Grace, Bart. With that, I am...

Peter

P.S. And please try not to be condescending in the future :^)

Big Daddy Weave said...

Petey,

I didn't equate overdrinking with overeating. As someone with a sorry alcoholic for an uncle, I wouldn't compare any person's overeating with his weekend binges.

Others might employ such language, I have not. Read what I wrote. I was merely commenting on Bart's logic that moderate consumption somehow, someway equals moderate drunkenness.

peter lumpkins said...

Dear BDW,

Thanks for the correction on you as an example. Others will suffice. Grace. With that, I am...

Peter

CB Scott said...

Debbie,

For the last three days I have been trying to understand what you are saying in your comments and have to confess I am a failure for my efforts.

cb

CB Scott said...

Big Daddy,

If you are with a distinguished guest and feel the need to drink beverage alcohol because of his or her presence, maybe it would be a good idea for you to just have rednecks for guest and maybe you will not feel the need to drink alcohol.

cb

Dave Miller said...

Peter's comment above shows why I like dealing with you, Bart, even when I disagree. I may not like what you say, but you always engage in thoughtful discussion, not bluster and insult.

I will continue to read everything you write.

Debbie Kaufman said...

CB: My point is this. It's as if we think that we must "be on top" of things all the time, or Christians will go out and get drunk. We must tell them to dress modestly or they will come dressed immodestly. The Holy Spirit is the one who convicts. I think if we would spend more time just preaching through the Bible, where the Bible speaks of drunkenness then addressing it, that we wouldn't have time to focus on drunkenness or immodesty so many times a year. The Holy Spirit needs to be trusted more in sanctification. I refer to the story Wade told of the newly saved man and the beer T_shirts as a good example of what I am talking about.

So, it may be that I am hard to understand as this is new to you. Not new, as I believe it's what the Bible teaches, but it may be new to you.

Debbie Kaufman said...

I might also add that my comment included the fact that we have had how many fallen ministers just in the SBC alone and there has not been one post, one resolution written, one thing(well maybe one) said about it. I say this not to condemn, but these men need help, need prayer, need us, yet where are we? Talking about the same thing we have talked about for the nigh three years I have been blogging, alcohol. There's something wrong to me in that. "For where your treasure is your heart will be also" is not just speaking of money or material things.

Colin McGahey said...

Bart,

Would you put abstinence in a church covenant as a qualification for membership?

Also, have you forgotten about your blogover? Might be time to hit the pavement, brother.

Tim Guthrie said...

Bart,
I see your point and though this post may be one of your more direct - I can see your heart in it.

It is this passion to warn people of the dangers and geath related to all the sin in the world that is needed today. I think Debbie is trying to say that alcohol is not the only things, but it is in the group and maybe we ought to remember that the specific issue relating to alcohol was one that was brought up to "condone" the partaking - thus the need to respond.

peter lumpkins said...

Dave,

For the record, my brother, you are the first horse charging through the pass bucking and kicking about condescension, condemnation, offense and slandering your motives.

One practice I try to continue to keep is to actually read my own comments. It may assist you in discerning what bluster is.

Grace. With that, I am...

Peter

CB Scott said...

Then, Debbie, don't talk about alcohol anymore. Your position is wrong anyway.

cb

Debbie Kaufman said...

:)

R. L. Vaughn said...

Bart, I usually enjoy commenting in support of your posts. I really hate to disagree with you, but this time I'm gonna.

You wrote, "Moderate consumption really equals moderate drunkenness." I have moderately consumed alcohol by way of medicine and by way of the Lord's Supper. Was I moderately drunken?

From your comments on SBC Today, I see that you agree with wine for the Lord's Supper or alcohol used for medicinal purposes. Maybe you should change your statement to "Moderate recreational consumption really equals moderate drunkenness?" But does the body know whether the alcohol consumed into it came medicinally, liturgically or recreationally, and thereby react in a different manner depending on the intent? Or is it just alcohol in the body, and therefore to whatever extent of alcohol that is, that much "drunk"?

And where do we go with Jesus turning the water into wine? Really watered down as I was taught? But still a little bit of alcohol in it, right? Is that not recreational and at least some (however little) consumption of alcohol?

It seems that even if one takes your position, he still has to get to some point to decide that a little alcohol is OK.

By way of agreement, you've surely got it right that both abstentionists and moderationists often bluster a lot about alcohol on blogs and squeak about it in the pulpit.

Debbie Kaufman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ben Macklin said...

Bart -

I love you, brother, but this is classic Straw man.

Why would it be incumbent upon those who wish to have no limits to defend their position? The "moderationist" position, if there were one, would be something like this: let me have freedom of conscience before God about whether my alcohol consumption is sin (Rom. 14:22). Yes, I know that the chapter deals explicitly with unclean food, but the principle of a conscience before God is the issue. Nevertheless, how could you (or I) call sin what someone else says is just moderate consumption and not drunkenness? If they engage in behavior that violates their conscience, they are the ones who will have to stand before God and admit that they violated their conscience for the sake of fleshly lusts. But if they approve of their own moderate drinking, which is a defensible position in the Bible, then you act as their judge in something they don't seem to be struggling with before God.

Drunkeness IS the issue. What I believe you want, but I could be wrong, is an objective standard by which you can measure sinful consumption. But it can't be done. First, the principle of individual accountability applies. People need to be under conviction of the Holy Spirit, not a pastor, to change behavior in a way that is pleasing to God. Second, there is no objective standard; we only know when the line is crossed, but not where it is for anyone else.

This issue is only culturally charged for a few people; you must realize that. Moderate drinkers do not care what you or I think since they seem to be clear of conscience toward God about their own practice. This would only be an issue, as it was for Paul, if drunkeness were being defended in the name of liberty. You say that is the case, probably. I've never met a Baptist moderate drinker who believes drunkeness is okay.

Ben Macklin

volfan007 said...

Boy, is strawman an overworked fella. I'm tired of hearing people bring up strawman to try to discredit someone elses opinion.

From now on, let's leave "strawman" out of it.

ok?

He's tired.

David

Dave Miller said...

David,

I, for one, am more than willing to stop leveling the straw man charge if you are willing to stop using straw man arguments.

Someone who continually sets up straw men to argue against cannot complain when someone points out that he has set up a straw man.

Dave Miller said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dave Miller said...

David,

Your angry response to Alan on SBC Today is a great example of a "straw man." You ranted, but you did not respond to what Alan said. You responded to a point YOU made up, a misinterpretation of Alan's post.

It was, in my opinion, one of the least Christ-honoring comments I have seen on any blog.

I Mitchell said...

Bart,
Your post and comments just prover what Regenerate Membership is all about? We now know why there is a Problem in the Baptist Churches with people who don’t know anything about the Holy Spirit and have not experienced Trusting and Walking in the Holy Spirit for any kind of Conviction. We have posted a good example of this on our Blog. You will also notice that when confronted this person Claims Up in not understanding what is told to Him.

http://baptistidentitybloggercom.blogspot.com/

Galatians 5: 13-26

Wayne Smith

Ben Macklin said...

volfan-

Normally I wouldn't respond, but I couldn't pass it up. Do you have any idea what a straw man argument is? It is placing on the lips of a fictitious person the argument you wish they made, so that you can argue against their point. It is not a derogatory term; it is merely identifying a fallacious argument. I contend that in this post, Bart argues against a non-existent opponent; namely, one who advocates a "moderationist" position as normative for Christians. The point is, I haven't heard anyone interested in arguing teetotalers to an "all things in moderation" position. Those who hold said position generally leave others alone except to explain their position.

Ben Macklin

Bart - he's a good foil for you.

CB Scott said...

Vol,

If the Strawman (scarecrow) is tired we can get the Tinman to work for a while:

"cause Oz never did give nothing to the Tinman that he didn't already have."

:-)

cb

volfan007 said...

Dave,

You know, I consistently see you "getting onto" the so called BI people on blogs. You seem to always insinuate that we are mean and non-Christian. Yet, what about Rick and Alan's comments suggesting that our views were not true to the Bible...were based solely on culture and tradition... used bad hermeneutics...were narrow and wanting to get more narrow...not able to change us, nor convince us with the truth, etc.? I mean, Dave, we are constantly berated by the "other side" for sharing our views. And, even though I hear you say quite frequently that you are conservative, and you seem to think that you are kind of neutral in all of this....you really seem to be on the side of Enid, imho.

So, Dave, I guess your comments towards me where just a "strawman" opinion. And yes, Ben, I know what a strawman is...and, he is used in a debate type tactic way, way, way, way too much.

David

Dave Miller said...

David, there is a huge difference between biblically-based argument, which is what Alan did, and angry rant, which is what you did.

Alan disagreed with you. If I disagree with you on an issue, by definition I think you are not properly interpreting scripture. To tell someone their hermeneutics are faulty is not an insult. It is analysis.

What you did was (again, in my opinion) an angry rant that twisted what had been said.

You will stand before God and give account for your words. You do not have to account to me. So, do as you please.

I think much of your conversation online is displeasing to God and destructive to his kingdom.

I do not lump all Baptist Identity people together into one category. There are some who will engage in reasonable debate (Bart, for instance).

You tend to flame those who disagree with you.

Again, that's my opinion. I am through engaging you on the blogs. It does not seem productive.

Dave Miller said...

David, my email is pastordave@cableone.net if you would like to discuss our differences privately.

Chris Johnson said...

Brother Bart,

Scripture never once makes an appeal to anyone to drink moderately, as if it is trying to arrive at a prescribed dosage. So your argument can stand on that ground. Scripture does command not to be drunk. So your argument to not be drunk on alcohol stands as well.

Scripture does acknowledge that wine was produced as a drink from the earliest of times through to the last New Testament letter that we have. The Word is consistent to condemn drunkenness.

Where do you find that when one drinks wine,… “and not being drunk or not being controlled by wine (fermented)”, that those persons are sinful and are harmful to the church? Is there any place in scripture that reveals such a reality?

Is it fair to say that the warnings of drunkenness lead you to the conclusion that wine (fermented) is in the state of evil?

As one (myself) that does not advocate moderate drinking...in other words I do not teach anyone to drink...I'm curious as to how you arrive at your conclusions that drinking wine (fermented) is sin.

Blessings,
Chris

Quinn Hooks said...

I really hammered drinking today in my sermon. I told them that if you have 6 pack abs and drink, you will soon be carrying a keg around your waist =D

Bart Barber said...

Well, I guess this discussion is a little stale by the time I return to it.

Allow me to re-summarize:

1. I believe that there is waning concern about the evils of intoxication on all sides among American Christians. I believe that it is evidenced in our pulpits.

2. I believe that there are specific things that moderationists could do or clarify to demonstrate that their calls for liberty to pursue booze as a recreational habit are not actually a part of an unwillingness to give any specific guidance to believers as to the sin of drunkenness. Is this a call to move the line or to erase it altogether? If the former, then there ought to be no problem in showing clearly, specifically, and objectively where the new line would be.

3. This topic is neither a "straw man" nor an unfair tactic. In some of the discussion on other blogs, people have pointedly asserted that Jesus made the wine at Cana KNOWING that people would get drunk in its consumption…were already drunk and would be more drunk because of what Jesus did. The obvious implication goes beyond an assertion that Jesus was laissez faire about the consumption of wine to assert additionally that Jesus really wasn't all that worried about whether people get drunk. I believe that our conversation does indeed have implications for what we will say about drunkenness.

I do want to thank each of you for stopping by and commenting, and I apologize that I have been so conspicuously absent of late.

Bart Barber said...

Chris,

To address your question specifically, if you'll look further up the comment stream, you'll find a link to an earlier, more exhaustive treatment of this subject from my hand. I think that it might answer your question of me.

Anonymous said...

Have you guys read G.I Williamson's article on this topic that can be found at his website?
http://www.all-of-grace.org/williamson/index.html

What do think of "the Weak and the Strong" article written by John Murray ?
http://www.the-highway.com/WeakandStrong.html

I look forward to hearing the thoughts from the different views.

Chris Johnson said...

Brother Bart,

Thanks for the reply,.... your right....the topic was quickly eclipsed by others....

I'll run out an read the other.

Blessings,
Chris

G. F. McDowell said...

War = Peace
Freedom = Slavery
Ignorance = Strength
Abstinence = Freedom