It is frustrating when a problem surfaces, especially among our young people, and parents, schoolteachers, and church leaders act like nothing is wrong. It indicates blindness or foolishness. The abuse of alcohol is not a new problem, and attempting to justify social drinking is old news. Only the victims are new, every precious soul that falls for its deceptive nature. “Do not look on the wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it swirls around smoothly; at the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like a viper” (Proverbs 23:31-32).

The Bible condemns beverage alcohol in several different passages (Proverbs 23:29-34; 1 Peter 4:3). “Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise” (Proverbs 20:1). Still, some try to justify imbibing with the 1 Timothy 5:23 passage where Timothy was told to “use a little wine for your stomach’s sake.” My friends, there is a massive spiritual chasm between the medicinal and recreational use of alcohol. A poem my dad wrote makes sport of such a weak defense.

He insisted on wine

For his “stomach’s sake,”

Though it often

Made him quiver.

I don’t know if it helped

His stomach or not,

But it sure did

Blow his liver.

It has been rightly stated that imbibing beverage alcohol has many defenders but no defense. Christian, do not follow the examples of those who allow the liquor to speak for them. Listen to the Lord and “keep yourself pure” (1 Timothy 5:22).