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The Foolishness of Drunkenness

Compared to the Wisdom of Following God


‘Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise’ (Proverbs 20:1).

‘It is not for kings, O Lemuel—not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer, lest they drink and forget what the law decrees, and deprive all the oppressed of their rights. Give beer to those who are perishing, wine to those who are in anguish’ (Proverbs 31:4-6).

‘Woe to those who rise early in the morning to run after their drinks, who stay up late at night till they are inflamed with wine. They have harps and lyres at their banquets, tambourines and flutes and wine, but they have no regard for the deeds of the LORD, no respect for the work of his hands’ (Isaiah 5:11-12).

‘Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine and champions at mixing drinks’ (Isaiah 5:22).

‘They are dogs with mighty appetites; they never have enough. They are shepherds who lack understanding; they all turn to their own way, each seeks his own gain. “Come,” each one cries, “let me get wine! Let us drink our fill of beer! And tomorrow will be like today, or even far better” (Isaiah 56:11-12).

‘Wake up, you drunkards, and weep! Wail, all you drinkers of wine; wail because of the new wine, for it has been snatched from your lips’ (Joel 1:5).


Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has strife? Who has complaints? Who has needless bruises? Who has bloodshot eyes? Those who linger over wine, who go to sample bowls of mixed wine. Do not gaze at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it goes down smoothly! In the end it bites like a snake and poisons like a viper’ (Proverbs 23:29-32).

The devil is often referred to as a snake and that’s why I call alcohol the devil’s poison. In the end drinking alcohol will bite you like a snake.


God gives nations over to the sin of drunkenness so that He has to judge those nations. When the people of Israel were totally backslidden and had forsaken the LORD by turning to idols, God gave them over to the sinful desires of their hearts. Kings, unfaithful priests, false prophets, fathers and sons all sat around drinking (Jeremiah 13:12-14). It became the culture of the nation.

The Bible says, ‘Give beer to those who are perishing’ (Proverbs 31:6). If you want to perish and die in your sins, then drink all the beer you want, but realize there are no parties in Hell (Mark 9:42-48). When a nation is being handed over to the sin of drunkenness you know that judgment is not too far away.

There are many examples in the Bible of how wicked men were in great danger of judgment, but instead of seeking God they went and got drunk (1 Samuel 25:36-38; 1 Kings 16:8-13; Daniel 5:1-31). Drinking alcohol is what destroys people.


The Apostle Paul warned the people that no drunkard will enter the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:10). Drunkenness is an obvious act of the sinful nature and whoever lives like this will not inherit God’s kingdom (Galatians 5:19-21).

Jesus told a parable where the wicked servant began to eat and drink with drunkards, but when the master returns he will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 24:48-51). This strong warning is to save drunkards from going to the fires of Hell, for drunkenness is an aspect of pagan revelry (1 Corinthians 10:7).

The apostle Peter warns us to avoid those who live for evil human desires—living in debauchery, lust and drunkenness—for they will have to give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead (1 Peter 4:2-5).


There are times when God specifically commands total abstinence from all strong drink. Men of God had to follow these principles:

Required Of The Priests‘You and your sons are not to drink wine or other fermented drink whenever you go into the Tent of Meeting, or you will die. This is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come’ (Leviticus 10:9).

Law For The Nazirites‘The LORD said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘If a man or woman wants to make a special vow, a vow of separation to the LORD as a Nazirite, he must abstain from wine and other fermented drink and must not drink vinegar made from wine or from other fermented drink. He must not drink grape juice or eat grapes or raisins’ (Numbers 6:1-3).

Required Of Israel During Their Wilderness Journey – ‘During the forty years that I led you through the desert, your clothes did not wear out, nor did the sandals on your feet. You ate no bread and drank no wine or other fermented drink. I did this so that you might know that I am the LORD your God’ (Deuteronomy 29:5-6).

The Law Of The Recabites ‘Then I set bowls full of wine and some cups before the men of the Recabite family and said to them, “Drink some wine.” But they replied, “We do not drink wine, because our forefather Jonadab son of Recab gave us this command: ‘Neither you nor your descendants must ever drink wine’” (Jeremiah 35:5-6).

The Prophet Daniel‘But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself in this way’ (Daniel 1:8).

John The Baptist‘He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth’ (Luke 1:14-15).

All Believers In Certain Circumstances ‘It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother to fall’ (Romans 14:21).


Drinking alcohol is the culture of the world. You are not called to follow the world. You are called to deny yourself, take up your cross and follow Jesus (Matthew 16:24-27).

Our beer drinking culture is headed for severe judgment, yet God will have a people who are fully committed to Him and He will raise up mighty men and women who can do great exploits. They will be those who have overcome the world, the flesh (the sinful nature) and the devil. Consecrate yourself to the Lord.

The good news is that Jesus was a friend of sinners (Matthew 11:19). He was tempted in every way, yet was without sin (Hebrews 4:15). He loved righteousness and hated evil (Hebrews 1:9). Jesus came to change people’s lives. If you have been a drunkard, open your heart to Almighty God and pray this prayer:

“Heavenly Father, I confess that I have sinned against You and have wasted my life with alcohol. I ask You to forgive me and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I take Jesus as my Lord and Saviour.”

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