Monday, 7 September 2009

Good Wine & Glad Hearts

The thesis: Historically the church has excelled in producing good beer & wine .... and then in drinking it.

[Is it really true that John Calvin was given over 200 litres (or gallons?) of wine as part of his yearly stipend?]

Liberalism & feminism = no more wine

Alcohol is good (not on the job though)

Drunkenness is a sin. So serious that drunkards cannot inherit the kingdom of God. Unless repented of.

Being drunk leads to or is connected with ... brawling, mockery, sexual sin, poverty, violence, dumb drinking games (& then the bragging about the 'legendary' antics of last night), getting really loud, sleepiness, getting others drunk so as to see them naked, depression, futile attempt to escape from life's problems, sleeplessness.

We often read into drinking our past experiences (or of those close to us).

There are 3 perspectives:
prohibitionist (all drinking of alcohol is wrong, evil etc.), but this is silly, God created it to gladden the heart of man (and Jesus turned water into wine! 100-180 gallons of the good stuff). Jesus was accused of being a drunkard. Because he never drank? Come on! But he NEVER was drunk ... he was without sin. So are you holier than Jesus?

abstentionist (not a sin, but because so many people abuse it we should never drink alcohol), God gave Israel loads of stuff that they used for sin. Has God given you a tongue, or hands or mind that you have misused? Is there anything on planet earth that someone has not used to sin with? No! We'll have to absain from everything.
And then we'll line up with those who killed Jesus when he broke their rules.
Swearing. Speeding. Gluttony. Rape.
Speaking. Cars. Food. Women (or men!).
The Bible???!!!
Der! Just learn use them rightly to God's glory.
Did Jesus drink in a day when people abused alcohol and overindulged? Yes.
So are you holier than Jesus? And God makes evil things?

moderationist (drinking alcohol is not a sin, somepeople can drink, some can't - down to conscience)
distinguishes between universal and particular sins.
Universal sins: Murder, adultery, rape etc. are ALWAYS WRONG FOR EVERYONE.
But not all sins are like that.

So the key is to ask the right questions that make this distinction (like Scripture): Who is drinking it? Why? Where? How much? How often? With what effect? etc.

And then act in love with regard to those in the 'other' category to you. [Romans 14]


Marc Lloyd said...

Maybe the water wasn't safe to drink in Calvin's Geneva?

Tim said...

Driscoll recons Calvin had lots of parties.
not sure what his evidence for all this is ..! Annoyingly there is no 'handout' on-line (on the other hand it is wonderful to have all this audio available!)

Tim said...

Do you have a beer allowance?

Marc Lloyd said...

Sadly not, but if you'd like to write to the PCC it seems an excellent idea to me.

The elder must practice hospitality, after all.

Tim said...

wikipedia says: 7 barrels
Not that helpful then. How big is a barrel?
Source: Jim West (March /April 2000). "A Sober Assessment of Reformational Drinking". Modern Reformation 9 (2).