People argue over whether we should drink alcohol or not. The debates get quite heated and it’s enough to drive a bloke to drink! Seriously though, it is a polorised argument and needs serious consideration.
If you have been the recipient of an abusive alcoholic father who took to you with his fists or tried to shoot you with 18 rounds whilst in a drunken rage, it would be enough to put you off drinking. And you could well be forgiven for speaking against anyone drinking alcohol! And really, who could blame you?
Then you may have been one where alcohol was a way of life. I have known some Italian families that had a glass of wine with the main meal everyday. It is not unusual for the kids to have a sip when young and to have half a glass when a bit bigger. All done regularly and in moderation. The fond memories of those family meals remain real treasures. And taking that glass of wine away from them …well, it just wouldn’t be the same. “My dad did it before me, and I do it with may family now” is the mantra… and really, who could blame you?
So here we have two complete opposites. Both legitimate and very real.
The Holy Bible gives us an insight as to how to handle this situation:
Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall. So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed are those who do not condemn themselves by what they approve.
If you do drink wine, don’t judge or insist that others do. And if you don’t drink wine, don’t judge or insist that others do not as well. And regardless of which view you take, excessive drinking or drunkenness is always unacceptable to everyone.
See, we all have the right to choose to drink, or not. But it isn’t about our Rights. For that by itself is selfish and self centered. God teaches us a better way. Considering others, before yourself, is a better way. It is a foundation of love. Jesus said:
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.
Consider others…and may they consider you. Now that’s worthy of a toast! …and the contents of your glass? Well, that’s up to you.