I was recently invited to a Facebook Reformed group. I joined with much excitement. In hopes that I can be a valuable asset with others and be Salt and Light with those who have the same thinking in Theology.
The Fellowship is very tightknit and full of Gracious Believers.
But…here is my beef…
Never have I seen such promotion of drinking and cigars.
This group reminds me of The Reformed Pubcast. A podcast I don’t listen to because of just that. Promotion of alcoholic beverages is something that doesn’t sit well with me.
Notice I said promotion and not drinking in of itself. I realize that drinking is not the sin but that of drunkenness.
That is the sin that is forbidden and not tolerated by God.
Let me share why I feel this way.
Growing up with parents who went out to the local Moose Lodge every weekend while leaving their children home and coming home so drunk that I’m picking up my father out of tub after he fell in because he couldn’t keep his balance while urinating. Or when I had to tend to my mother’s wounds after she crashed her bicycle while on a beer run. A grade school child should not be expose to such foolishness. And I viewed it as such. Foolishness.
Now before you get all up in a tizzy, I know what Scripture says about alcohol.
- “Give strong drink to him who is perishing, and wine to him whose life is bitter, 7 Let him drink and forget his poverty, and remember his trouble no more,” (Prov. 31:6-7).
- “He causes the grass to grow for the cattle, and vegetation for the labor of man, so that he may bring forth food from the earth, 15 And wine which makes man’s heart glad, so that he may make his face glisten with oil, and food which sustains man’s heart,” (Psalm 104:14-15).
- “No longer drink water exclusively, but use a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments,” (1 Tim. 5:23)
Even Paul gives a good reason to drink wine for medicinal purposes. There are verses within Scripture that supports the drinking of alcohol. But there are plenty more verses that give warning to the dangers of it.
“Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler, and whoever is intoxicated by it is not wise,” (Prov. 20:1).
“Woe to those who rise early in the morning that they may pursue strong drink,” (Isaiah 5:11).
“Woe to those who are heroes in drinking wine, and valiant men in mixing strong drink,” (Isaiah 5:22).
Clearly, the Scriptures teach against intoxication. Again, the reason is that we are to be responsible for our actions. The misuse of alcohol impairs judgment, and this can have dire consequences upon our families, ourselves, and others. This is why intoxication is bad. However, there are some verses in the Bible which may shock a lot of Christians regarding the proper use of alcohol.
It seems nowadays more Reformed Christians are promoting more of their Freedoms in Christ than Christ Himself…
But why is it that it is the Reformed Camp that seems to cling to this image? The image of drinking and smoking cigars.
Look, I get it. Spurgeon smoked cigars. Great. He felt he had the freedom in Christ to do so. That doesn’t necessarily mean that every Reformed Christian needs to practice the same and tout that they do such because they are Reformed. It’s promotion of an image that not everyone should follow. Especially drinking.
Let’s suppose a new Reformed Christian sees such a group who are free to drink and smoke cigars and claim they have such freedoms in Christ. And let’s suppose such new Reformer decides to join in. And through that decision, the Reformer becomes drunk and causes another Christian to think “Well, if he’s a Christian and can live as such, so can I.”
Or, said Reformed Christian gets drunk at a restaurant and someone else from their Church notices this and causes that person to spread gossip about that other person.
Do you see the issues that it could bring? I thought we as Christians are to be “little Christs” and yet I’m getting the picture that many Reformers want to be “little Worldly Super Christians who think they are above the snare of sin.” (too long?…)
I’m all about exercising our Freedoms in Christ. If you have the ability to drink alcohol while promoting it without the worry of offending others, be my guest. I will choose to not live in such a way.
For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. 1 Peter 4:3