Alcohol is one of the most widely used drug substances in the world. Alcohol use & binge drinking among America’s youth is a key public health problem.
According to the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion:
- Alcohol is used by more young people in the United States than tobacco or illicit drugs.
- Excessive alcohol consumption is associated with approximately 75,000 deaths per year.
- Alcohol is a factor in approximately 41% of all deaths from motor vehicle crashes.
- Among youth, the use of alcohol and other drugs has been linked to unintentional injuries, physical fights, academic and occupational problems, and illegal behavior.
- Long-term alcohol misuse is associated with liver disease, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and neurological damage as well as psychiatric problems such as depression, anxiety, and antisocial personality disorder.
- Drug use contributes directly and indirectly to the HIV epidemic, and alcohol and drug use contribute markedly to infant morbidity and mortality.
Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has strife? Who has complaints? Who has needless bruises? Who has bloodshot eyes? Those who linger over wine, who go to sample bowls of mixed wine.
Do not gaze at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it goes down smoothly! In the end it bites like a snake and poisons like a viper.Your eyes will see strange sights, and your mind will imagine confusing things.
You will be like one sleeping on the high seas, lying on top of the rigging. “They hit me,” you will say, “but I’m not hurt! They beat me, but I don’t feel it! When will I wake up so I can find another drink?” Proverbs 23:29-35
Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise. Proverbs 20:1
Is it so surprising that the use of alcohol and other drugs has been linked to unintentional injuries?
Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Ephesians 5:18a
Debauchery is defined as, extreme indulgence in sensual pleasures; dissipation. Debauchery earliest usage meant seduction from duty, allegiance, or virtue.
Is it also very surprising that drunkenness leads to academic and occupational problems, illegal behavior and gross immorality?
Who would seduce us away from our duty or virtue? Synonyms for seduce are beguile, allure, lure, deceive or tempt.
And the LORD God said unto the woman, “What is this that thou hast done?” And the woman said, “The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.” Genesis 3:13
The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Matthew 4:3
Who beguiled Eve? Who is the tempter? Who is the great deceiver? Satan is the profoundly evil adversary of God and humanity. Drunkenness is neither a bad habit nor is alcoholism merely a disease that needs to be treated; they are snares of the devil that lead to sickness and death. Alcoholism and other drug addictions are spiritual bondages that result in physical and mental illnesses.
Does it now make sense that since the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy that long-term alcohol misuse is associated with liver disease, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and neurological damage as well as psychiatric problems such as depression, anxiety, and antisocial personality disorder?
But what about controlled social drinking? Shouldn’t a Christian be able to have an occasional beer or two or some wine with dinner?
Then the LORD said to Aaron, “You and your sons are not to drink wine or other fermented drink whenever you go into the tent of meeting, or you will die. This is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, Leviticus 10:8-9
Israel’s high priesthood was forbidden to drink alcoholic beverages when ministering before the LORD.
It is not for kings, Lemuel – it is not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer, lest they drink and forget what has been decreed, and deprive all the oppressed of their rights. Proverbs 31:4-5
It is not good for kings to drink wine or rulers to crave beer.
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9
Born-again believers are not only adopted into the family of God but are the children of the King of kings. We are a royal priesthood and are to rule and reign with Jesus. Although the moderate intake of alcoholic beverages is not forbidden for believers, refraining from fermented drink is the better choice for those who which to honor God with their bodies.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
But didn’t Jesus drink wine?
The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is proved right by her deeds.” Matthew 11:19
Jesus was falsely accused of being a drunkard.
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Hebrews 4:15
Drinking is not prohibited in the Bible. It is uncontrolled drinking to drunkenness. The acts of the flesh include drunkenness and those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. Jesus in order to emphasize with our weaknesses drank wine, but resisted the temptation of becoming drunk with wine.
Public intoxication, also known as drunk and disorderly conduct, is a summary offense in many countries. In other words it is prosecutable without an indictment or full trial. “Driving While Intoxicated” and “Driving Under the Influence” also carry their penalties under the law.
It is obvious that the abuse of alcohol and other drugs have had a devastating impact on individuals, their families and their communities not only here in America but throughout the world.
Annually in the United States the alcohol beverage industry is grosses nearly $500 billion dollars in the sales of wine and beer as well as distilled spirits such as vodka, rum and whiskey.
The English word, “Intoxication” is from taken from the Latin words which mean to smear with poison. The medical definition of intoxication is poisoning by a drug or toxic substance. Intoxication is the condition of being drunk as the result of drinking alcoholic beverages and/or use of narcotics. Intoxication is mental and emotional stupefaction or excitement by the action of a chemical substance. To stupefy is to befuddle, confound, confuse, discombobulate or bedevil.
When you drink alcoholic beverages to the point of drunkenness you are bedeviled. You have not only poisoned your body, which leads to physical death, but have poisoned your mind and have been ensnared by the devil.
And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will. 2 Timothy 2:24-26
Those who are addicted have been taken captive by the devil. They must be gently encouraged to earnestly repent so that they can come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil.
Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. Ephesians 5:18
Alcoholism like any other drug addiction is a spiritual battle that must be fought with spiritual weapons. We are not to be intoxicated with alcohol but filled with the Holy Spirit.
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5
In order to become victorious over alcoholism and other drug addictions, a person needs the power of God manifested in their life so that they can be set free from the bondage of sin, find true deliverance and save their soul. The battle of the spirit is fought in the mind and our carnal thoughts must be taken into captivity to the obedience of Christ. We must submit our thoughts to Christ’s thoughts and our ways to God’s ways.
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James 4:7
When Jesus Christ is not only your Savior but the Lord of your life and you are in complete submission to Him, then when you resist the devil – he will flee from you!
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2
How do we renew our minds? How can we exchange our ungodly worldly thoughts and attain the holy mind of Christ? This can be accomplished, according to Ephesians 5:25, as we are cleansed by the washing of the water of the Word. We must replace our hunger and thirst for the strongholds that bind us, with a hunger and thirst for God’s divinely inspired Word.
The way we defeat addiction is to repent of our sins, place our trust in the finished work of Christ on the cross, renounce the work of the devil in our lives, seek God’s will and enablement through prayer and the reading of the Bible, and be filled with the Holy Spirit.