Monday, June 10, 2013

The Art of Daily Battle against Alcohol

'Drunkenness of Noah' by Giovanni Bellini
The other day I read about Diogenes, a Greek philosopher, was giving a large goblet of wine. He threw it on the ground. When blamed for wasting so much good liquor, he answered, “Had I drunk it there would have been double waste. I as well and also the wine would have been lost!”

Could the story be true? I’m not sure, but the point is crystal clear. If I am to interpret it in our 21st century setting, I will say it this way; getting drunk is a waste of life! Take note, I’m not saying that drinking alcohol or wine is wrong but being drunk by it is a sin against God because it wasted away the only-precious-life that God had given you.

So how not to get drunk? Self-control.  It’s all about self-control. If you can’t control yourself, better not consume it. If you can, take it wisely and resist it if you must. Know your limit. Remember the negative consequences if you get drunk. Noah’s drunkenness led to shame (Genesis 9:21); Lot’s drunkenness led to confusion (Genesis 19:33); Ahasuerus’ drunkenness led to folly (Esther 1:10-11); Benhadad’s drunkenness let to defeat (1 Kings 20:16-20); Belshazzar’s drunkenness led to sacrilege (Daniel 5:1-5); and some of my close family members and friends’ drunkenness during Gawai celebration recently (Harvest festival) led to conflicts and bad examples for children. Think about it.

I don’t need to quote hundreds of Bible verses to prove that God detest drunkenness. He is. But let me just quote one verse: “We must live decent lives for all to see. Don’t participate in the darkness of wild parties and drunkenness” (Romans 13:13, NLT). Why? Because God wants you to exercise self-control over what you think, what you say, and what you do. Why? Because He wants you to live as His child, not as someone who mindlessly follows whatever your evil heart’s desires. Why? Because He don’t want you to settle for something less but to “live decent lives for all to see” that people may see Christ lives in you.

The Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in your lives: Love, joy, peace… and self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23). Brothers and sisters, when alcohol comes and wants to have control over you; say no, have self-control and led the Holy Spirit work within you and empower you to resist it. Amen.

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