The short answer to the question: Does The Bible Condemn Drinking Alcohol? Is yes it does, but not in every situation.
Please come and join me in a bible study regarding this interesting topic.
Today, while studying the bible, I was reviewing the story of an important man who made a serious mistake as a result of drinking alcohol and getting drunk.
After meditating a bit on the story, I thought it would be worth trying to answer the question Does The Bible Condemn Drinking Alcohol, and the consequences that getting drunk brings to our lives.
What the Bible says about drinking alcohol
Although it is true that in the Old Testament, the Bible sometimes speaks tolerantly about the moderate consumption of wine, the word of God, in general, is emphatic in condemning drunkenness and the consumption of liquor.
In addition, very possibly, at that time wine was a more natural and less aggressive alcoholic beverage than those currently consumed.
Instead of endorsing the consumption of liquor, there are numerous biblical stories that make it clear that the end of those who love the consumption of wine is tragic, to say the least.
Noah –Genesis 9:20-27
Amnon –2 Samuel 13:28
Belshazzar — Daniel 5
The gluttonous and drunken children -Deuteronomy 21: 18-21
The many proverbs that condemn alcoholism — Proverbs 20:1
The Bible is emphatically clear that drunkards will not inherit the kingdom of heaven — 1 Corinthians 6:10.
Therefore, the most advisable thing for Christians is that we abstain from alcoholic beverages, since we will fall into sin and very surely, we will ruin our lives as a result of its consumption.
Also, for those who are not Christians and drink alcohol, it is important that they try to leave it and seek help if necessary.
It is essential to keep in mind that as Christians we are nobody to judge those who consume alcohol, on the contrary, we are called to love them and feel compassion for these people.
We are called to lovingly and patiently seek to help them let go of their problem and be fully reconciled to God.
Story About Alcohol Drinking in the Bible
Let’s continue to answer the question: Does The Bible Condemn Drinking Alcohol, by considering a very interesting bible story and making a short bible study about it.
The story with which I would like to illustrate the theme of what the Bible says about people who drink alcohol is the story of King Belshazzar, grandson of King Nebuchadnezzar.
During his reign, this king gave himself over to alcoholism and profligate life, instead of learning from his grandfather’s mistakes.
Let’s see what happened once:
King Belshazzar gave a grand banquet to a thousand members of the nobility, and drank wine with them until he was drunk.
As they toasted, Belshazzar had the gold and silver cups brought to him that Nebuchadnezzar, his father, had taken from the temple in Jerusalem.
And so it was done.
The cups were brought to him, and from them the king and his nobles drank, together with his wives and concubines.
Already drunk, they were full of praise to the gods of gold, silver, bronze, iron, wood and stone.
| Daniel 5: 1 – 4
After this event, a hand appeared in front of the king and wrote on the wall a message in a strange language which no one could decipher; only Daniel, who had already been forgotten as a royal advisor.
It was a divine sentence in response to his unholy attitude that, in the midst of his drunkenness, he dared to dishonor God by profaning the utensils of his holy temple.
Ironically, this action was the straw that overflowed the cup of the Lord’s patience with him.
That same night Belshazzar, king of the Babylonians, was assassinated, and Darius the Persian seized the kingdom.
| Daniel 5 : 30
I would like us to meditate a little on this story, to delve into what the Bible says about drinking alcohol and the consequences that this practice brings to our lives.
Is drinking alcohol a sin in the Bible?
As we continue to evaluate the question: Does The Bible Condemn Drinking Alcohol, we need to come to the point to understand if it is a sin or not.
If we look at the Bible, including the story we just read, many of those who used to drink alcohol committed tremendous sins while being drunk.
Let’s have a look at the sins we can commit due to drinking.
#1 We become libertines
When we drink, we weaken our cognitive and moral faculties. Gradually, we live our life, less interested in what is important, and more in supplying the neurochemical dependence that alcohol addiction causes us.
As we see in today’s story, and as the word of God and modern science testify, the consumption of alcoholic beverages has negative effects on our brain and our behavior.
#2 We become incompetent
Alcohol consumption causes our brain to prefer to produce dopamine through drinking, so it demands it from us, instead of producing it naturally as a reward for performing important tasks.
Just as the character in our story had become unfit to lead the Babylonian kingdom as a result of his lifestyle, the consumption of alcoholic beverages makes us incompetent to carry out our daily responsibilities.
#3 We forget God
When we let drinking alcohol gain ground in our lives, we move away from God’s will for us, which is our integral well-being. We ended up voluntarily walking away from Him.
Belsasar knew everything that God had done in Babylon. He had listened to the way in which he had revealed himself to his grandfather, and even so, as a result of his predilection for alcohol, he preferred to turn his back on the Lord.
#4 We desecrate the holy things
Drinking produces in us a state of altered consciousness that leads us to do the most stupid and unimaginable things, among them, to pay little attention to the solemnity of holy things.
Our character of the story got so drunk that he foolishly wanted to challenge God by profaning the holy utensils in His temple.
Something that neither his father nor his grandfather, although they had kept them in the temple of a pagan God as trophies of war, had never dared to do.
Even though we have clearly answered the question: Does The Bible Condemn Drinking Alcohol, let’s continue to study the dangers we face when doing that.
#5 We encourage others to sin
Drinking has always been a group activity. When we fall into this terrible vice, we are encouraging those who drink with us to perpetuate their denigrated state, and to participate in our foolishness and sins.
Such was his foolishness, as a result of alcohol, that led Belshazzar to make others commit the same affront against the eternal God.
#6 We fall into idolatry
When we drink, we sacrifice our life, our family, our finances and our health on the altar of Satan. Instead of making our bodies living sacrifices to almighty God.
The entire group of drunks in our story today collectively dedicated themselves to using the temple utensils to worship pagan gods.
In an analogous way, drinking also leads us to idolatry.
#7 We condemn ourselves to eternal death
When we play with the monster of alcohol, we are playing with something that we cannot control. It is not just drinking that condemns us, but what we do or do not do as a result of indulging in this harmful practice.
With his actions that day, Belshazzar placed upon himself the sentence of death, and brought about the fall of the Babylonian Empire at the hands of the Medo-Persians.
In all these events, drunkenness and debauchery were elements that quickly triggered the situation of this king and that led to his fall.
If he had had a sensible and prudent attitude, his story would have had another end, and his eternal destiny might not have been eternal death.
In conclusion, Does The Bible Condemn Drinking Alcohol? Yes.
Is drinking alcohol a sin? In most cases, it is.
If you struggle with drinking, I recommend that you read the book: Addiction and Grace: Love and Spirituality in the Healing of Addictions by Gerald G. May
Also, have a look at our post about the 19 Bible Verses Against Drinking Alcohol.
What do you think? What do you think Does The Bible Condemn Drinking Alcohol? What is your experience? Share in the comments.
A hug, God bless you.