Drink Your Wine

I can just hear the rumors spreading as I type today’s follow-up post. (I often make posts after I receive some inspiration from my email or other discussions. This is no exception.) Today a friend of mine mentioned a wonderful idea for UBF: drink a little beer together! And I actually think this might help…

I think it would be healthy for UBF people to ask this “blasphemous” question: What is the Scriptural attitude toward beer and wine? For example, I wonder how this verse will be handled (or even discussed) in the upcoming 1 Timothy workshop? It was missing from the diagram…

1 Timothy 5:23 “Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses.”

Scripture warns against getting drunk or having much wine.

Ephesians 5:18 “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit,”

1 Timothy 3:8 “In the same way, deacons are to be worthy of respect, sincere, not indulging in much wine, and not pursuing dishonest gain.”

I do not advocate an eat, drink and be merry attitude. I do not think we should drown our sorrows in alcohol. I am sure that we need to be aware of our brothers and sisters who struggle with addictions or have a sinful past of partying too much.

But I think some people should just chill out a bit with some alcohol! None of us is really that holy. We are not really so pure. Our righteousness is filthy rags. We can only really depend on God’s righteousness, and that does not depend on whether we drink wine occasionally.

We should not drink out of sorrow. But Scripture seems to indicate we are allowed to drink wine out of joy:

Psalm 104:14,15 “He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for people to cultivate— bringing forth food from the earth: 15 wine that gladdens human hearts, oil to make their faces shine, and bread that sustains their hearts.”

And we could learn from the wisdom God gave Solomon. His proverbs warn against the dangers of wine and beer, but even Solomon wrote:

Ecclesiastes 9:7 “Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for God has already approved what you do.”

8 thoughts on “Drink Your Wine

  1. I remember listening to the UBF Sunday sermon about the marriage at Cana, where it was said that it was “unthinkable” that the host ran out of wine, and then the next week on a UBF wedding, nobody was given any drop of wine, and when I asked why they told me that was “unthinkable” for a missionary. Oh these holy inconsistencies in UBF! Even in Russia, they would have marriages without a drop of vodka or dancing which is really really unthinkable, but they were proud of it.

  2. Funny, on our wedding in UBF conference we was allowed to kiss during ceremony and even had traditional “Gorko!” and peoples (ubfers & guests) was drinking wine on our wedding. We insisted that it should be so :) But it is BIG exception. I don’t remember it was anymore with someone.

  3. Actually on one of our UBF weddings I was almost drunken :)

  4. Brian, I have mixed feeling on the drinking a little wine or beer. I grew up in the Assembly of God who frown on any drinking at all. I believe some people can drink in moderation if they desire. I can tell you the reason I don’t. The Bible says if we do something, even if we don’t think it is wrong, and it causes another christian to stumble we shouldn’t do it. Now I fast forward to my grandson. when he was a freshman at UIC he started drinking. First it was one drink, then one night he consumed so much alcohol he went unconscious. His friends got him back to his house and into the basement and left him with his young brother. He was out of it vomiting and choking on his vomit. Finally his brother got so scared he got his parents, they had to call the paramedics. He had alcohol poisoning. He could have died. Now I know that doesn’t always happen, but why do something that can bring such heartache to people. Now I believe if a believer would be with my grandson and have a drink it could give him a mixed signal.That is why I chose to not do it at all. This is a subject that each individual has to work out with his own fear and trembling. I don’t believe someone will lose his salvation if he drinks in moderation. I just chose not to, lest someone else would stumble in excess.

  5. Mary, you bring up some very valid points. It is painful to hear about your story, but glad to hear that event worked out. This is exactly why I would think it wise and necessary for a college Christian ministry to have a “no-drinking” policy, and keep it absolutely. I am thankful UBF does do this, although it is an undocumented policy.

    What I’m talking about is the treatment of older people (i.e. me), adults who are not college students. I fully know I should not cause others to fall in this area. But there is an equal danger in demanding adults to behave like single college students. I know so many married couples in UBF who are afraid to do “adult things”. They really should not be made to feel such shame.

  6. David and Andrew: I think UBF needs a healthy dose of Ukrainian and Russian influence!

  7. Oh yes Brian, I understand what you are saying and totally agree. From what I can see UBF tries to keep people in a child like state, always answering to them for everything. Again, I see nothing wrong with an adult having a drink or two. I do know UBF uses shame to control lives. I see now what you are saying. Keep on listening to the Holy Spirit to guide you in these blogs. I feel they are exactly what UBF needs to hear as well as any other believer reading this. I know since my grandson has been in UBF he seems so sad and afraid to be himself when he comes home on the week end. I am praying for your ministry, cause that is what this web site is.

    I believe the Holy Spirit is using you in a mighty way.