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Monday, 4 January 2016

Disciples of Jesus - and alcohol!

With the New Year now into its fourth day, there will be many who will, only now, be returning to "normality" after a round of parties and, in all probability, the consumption of more alcohol than is considered to be "reasonable"!   Among them will, I suspect, some who would claim to be "Christians" (aka disciples of Jesus).

It may be claimed that no-one knows alcohol better than a recovering alcoholic!  Such a person will have known the grip that alcohol - an addictive drug, albeit a legal one - can have on an individual.  Last week, I came across a list of "50 reasons to be teetotal".   As someone who is, himself totally teetotal, I was interested.  However, what made me even more interested was the discovery that this list had been compiled by a recovering alcoholic who has been saved by the grace of God, and who is now pastoring a Christian Fellowship!

Remember, this list (I am only printing the first ten on this post) is intended to be of special interest to those who would happily describe themselves as disciples of Jesus - or, at least, as "Christians" (which is not always recognised as being the same thing!).

1. I can't be sober-minded if I'm not sober.

2. Alcohol has an assignment: destruction.

3. Alcohol is a depressant. Anything that depresses should be avoided at all costs.

4. I don't want to make my brother or sister stumble in the name of exercising my "Christian liberties." My choice to drink could lead to someone's demise.

5. Alcohol skews my judgment.

6. Alcohol leaves me worse, not better.

7. What I do in moderation, my children will do in excess.

8. Even the unsaved know I shouldn't drink. Bible in one hand, beer in the other—any lost person could point this out as a confusing contradiction.

9. Alcohol doesn't bring others closer to the Lord when they see me drinking, but further away.

10. Alcohol doesn't bring me closer to the Lord when I drink, but further away.

You may not agree with any, or all, of the above points.  However, do please remember that they were written, not by teetotal me, but by someone who has experienced, all too clearly, the destructive aspects of alcohol consumption - and who probably started with just a little "social drinking".  I am not seeking to judge anyone on their alcohol intake - merely, I hope, providing some "food for thought"!

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