Nov 24, 2012

Beer and the response

My dad's church where I grew up
Being the son of a preacher, I am asked, from time to time how I can love beer so much, while growing up in and around the church. I normally ask them to clarify their question, and I normally get the "well, the Bible says you can't drink...". Oh really? It does? My challenge to folks is, show me, or at least tell me, in the bible where it says I can not drink, and I will stop drinking. A quick explanation is that, the bible says a lot about drunkenness, but nothing about staying away from alcohol all together. One problem is, for a lot of non-drinkers, there islittle or no difference between having a drink, and getting drunk, and it is hard to convince them otherwise. I've stopped trying.

I can't, or at least haven't yet, found anything in the bible that says you can't drink (with the exception of a few referances to not drinking wine on the Sabbath) it actually tells us its OK, and may even encourage it. "Drink your wine with a merry heart" says Ecclesiastes 9:7, and in Psalms 104:14-15, it states that God gives wine "that makes glad the hearts of man". In a strong case for home brewing, Amos 9:14 even states that drinking wine from your own vineyard as a sign of god's blessings upon you! Besides, if God thinks drinking alcohol is wrong, then why was Jesus first miracle to produce it? (Wedding of Cana, John 2:1-12)
Now, I don't want to bore you to death siting bible verse after bible verse. What you believe is what you believe, and if you believe what I do is a sin, that's great, I could care less. I don't believe there is anything wrong with having a beer now and then, or a cigar for that matter. And before you go giving me that "but the body is a temple" crap, well then, McDonald's and chocolate ice cream should be held in the same regard as beer and cigarettes.

All I am doing here, is defending my position, and answering a question I get asked often enough. What I think is this; I don't think god has a problem with me drinking a beer, I think religion has a problem with me drinking a beer. Religion is a product of man, not god. If what the bible says is true, then there is nothing wrong with having a beer. Having too many may be a sin, but then again, so is being greedy, wanting what your friend has, and working on Sunday. I am quite sure most of us are guilty of at least 2 of these things....and many other things the bible says is wrong. It does mention to not let out bodies be "mastered" by anything ( 1 Corinthians 6:12, 2 Peter 2:19), which, one could make the case against addiction, but I think you would be hard pressed to find someone that thinks addiction is just fine.

Since we are coming up on a time of year where people either seem to find religion, or take it more serious then they normally do, keep this in mind. If you ask me, there is nothing wring with having a nice Christmas brew, or glass of wine, or egg nog at your holiday party. If someone tells you its a sin, just tell them so is judging others ("judge not, least you be judged yourself. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be used to measure you" Matthew 7:1). An easy reply to that accusation.
The Wedding Feast of Cana, where Jesus turned water into wine
If someone has a problem with it, finds drinking "offensive" that is their belief, and there is little you can probably do to change it. However, don't let it bother you, there is nothing wrong with having different beliefs. What I feel is wrong, is forcing others to conform to what you believe because you feel what they do is wrong. If you have a moral objection to me drinking, that's fine. I have a moral objection to you telling me not to drink in your presence (the only time I will not drink around someone that asks me not to, is if that person is a recovering alcoholic, I respect that, and couldn't live with myself if I was responsible for anyone relapsing). Now obviously, if you are at the home of someone that finds drinking offensive, I am not saying screw them, bring beer anyway, it is their home, and should respect their wishes.

Honestly, when you think about it. It really just comes down to being respectful, and responsible, and just being a good person. There is nothing wrong with drinking, there is nothing wrong with not drinking. What is wrong, is believing people's belief's and values to be wrong, and thinking less of them for it. Respect others beliefs, and values, but you shouldn't allow their beliefs and values to dictate how you feel you should, or do live your life.

So, don't feel guilty, enjoy a drink for your holidays, after all, the bible tells you so! Drink your wine with merry heart!

Until next time
Bottoms up my friends
The Beer Czar

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