Before I was a Christian I fooled around with drinking. Sometimes I did much more than fool around with it.
I have suffered at times from allergies. Some of my allergies apparently were the chemicals used in making alcoholic beverages. It didn*t seem to matter if I drank 1 beer or 5 beers. I would get a headache. It wasn*t a hangover since I would get the headache about an hour after I began drinking. The next morning the headache would usually be gone.
Since I have become a Christian I thank the Lord for those headaches. They helped keep me from becoming an alcoholic. Since I have become a Christian the Lord has given me quite a bit of information about how devastating alcohol is and how many lives it ruins. I am increasingly grateful for those headaches!
I will share some of the facts about alcohol in the hope that you will avoid it. Some of the facts are from some knowledgeable people and some are from the Bible:
Some medical experts claim there are health benefits to drinking alcohol. They sometimes fail to mention that you can get about the same amount of anti-oxidents in Concord grape juice as in wine. They also often fail to mention the other benefits can be gotten from other sources without any of the risks of alcohol. One in sixteen people who drink will become an alcoholic. If there was a one in sixteen chance of an airplane crashing, you would not get on it.
Dr. S. I. McMillen:
Surveys show that between 50% and 79% of traffic fatalities involve alcohol.
Auto insurance rates could be cut 40% if drinking drivers weren*t such a problem.
Middlesex County, N.J. Medical Examiner:
In 40% of violent deaths alcohol is a factor.
Alcohol is involved in 25% of suicides.
Delirium tremens kills 1 in 25 of its sufferers.
Ten percent of admissions to mental hospitals are directly or indirectly caused by alcohol.
Because alcohol produces areas of atrophy in the brain, a large percentage of drinkers are actually committing a slow suicide of their personalities.
O God! That men should put an enemy in their mouths to steal away their brains. . . .
Alcohol causes ballooning of the veins in the esophagus. These thinned out veins are prone to rupture when food is swallowed and can cause serious or fatal hemorrhage.
Forty-eight percent of industrial accidents with injuries involve drinking.
Alcoholics are deprived of the superlatives in life. Enjoyment is blurred or absent in areas of real living, such as recreation, music, art, eating, sex, sight and conversation.
Peter Marshall, Chaplain of the Senate in the 1940s:
The city of Washington has but one reason for being. It is exclusively devoted to the business of governing the nation. If clear heads are needed anywhere on earth, it is here. Yet, it is shocking to discover that the per capita consumption of alcohol in the District of Columbia is more than twice that in the next wettest state in the union -- And the consumption figures are still rising.
Ephesians 5:18: And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
This verse teaches that there is a conflict between drinking alcohol and being in the Lord*s will. When one is under the influence of alcohol he is not under the influence of God.
Proverbs 23:29-32: Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.
We all like a happy ending. Drinking will never cause a happy ending.
Proverbs 20:1: Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.
Booze will make fools of us and deceive us and if we are deceived by it we are not wise.
Isaiah 5:11-12: Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflame them! And the harp, and the viol, the tabret, and pipe, and wine, are in their feasts: but they regard not the work of the LORD, neither consider the operation of his hands.
The Hebrew word for regard means to look intently at or to have respect for, therefore they regard not the work of the Lord means they don*t look intently at the work of God or have respect for it. They are not seeing the worth of God. They are not worshipping Him. The word worship comes from two words worth and ship. It has been shortened from worth-ship. What is God worth to you? You will demonstrate what God is worth to you by your actions.
Hosea 7:5: In the day of our king the princes have made him sick with bottles of wine; he stretched out his hand with scorners.
Habakuk 2:15: Woe unto him that giveth his neighbour drink, that puttest thy bottle to him, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness!
Isaiah 28:7: But they also have erred through wine, and through strong drink are out of the way; the priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink, they are swallowed up of wine, they are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision, they stumble in judgment.
Erred, out of the way, swallowed up, stumble. That is a list of fringe benefits (perks) you get from drinking.
Proverbs 23:20-21: Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh: For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags.
Poverty, drowsiness and rags. Are those the things you want?
Romans 13:13: Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.
We accept the fact that dishonesty, rioting, strife and envying are wrong. God puts drunkenness in the same list with those things.
Hosea 4:11: Whoredom and wine and new wine take away the heart.
The context of this verse is God listing Israel*s unfaithfulness to Him and the results of that unfaithfulness. One of the ways they were unfaithful was their indulgence. This verse alone ought to be enough to keep a Christian from alchohol.
Proverbs 31:4-5: It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink: Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted.
Drinking will take away our memory and proper judgment. My memory and judgment are bad enough without my giving away more of them by drinking.
Proverbs 31:6-7: Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts. Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.
These two verses give the only two circumstances mentioned in the Bible when it may be appropriate to have or give alcoholic beverages. One is on his death-bed. (There are better pain-relievers than alcohol available today.) The other is a person with a heavy heart. For a child of God a heavy heart should be temporary, an abnormal aberration. A Christian has a constant source of peace and joy.
Isaiah 26:3: Thou shalt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.
John 16:24: Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.
James 1:2: My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
Matthew 5:12: Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Romans 14:17: For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
Joy and peace are to be the normal state of a Christian. For a Christian there are better ways to be joyful and peaceful than using alcohol with none of the dangers.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon:
The wine pressed from the grapes of Sodom may sparkle and foam, but it is bitterness in the end, and the dregs thereof are death; . . . The joy of sin is a fire-fountain, having its source in the burning soil of hell, maddening and consuming those who drink its fire-water; . . .
If you have been dabbling in drinking, stop before you do any more damage. You can stop.
Philippians 4:13: I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.