Saturday, August 5, 2017
Building People of Substance for Works of Power
Love your brother, Amigos.
I read again this week of a man, a minister, who fell back under the power of alcohol addiction while in the company of other Christians. In fact, another minister insisted on wine with dinner. As usual, the argument is that we are free to drink, and if you are a “new creature,” then you can do so with impunity even if you suffered from alcohol addiction in the past. The result of such logic is predictable (Proverbs 26:11). With the current attitude in church-world regarding alcohol, I know we will be seeing many more of these preventable tragedies. There are a couple of things you should know. They may not fit your theology, but then, your theology should be subject to change, anyway.
1. Drinking is not a sin. The New Testament makes this pretty clear: John 2:9 / 1 Thessalonians 5:23
2. Drunkenness is a sin. Galatians 5:21 / Ephesians 5:18
3. Alcohol is a drug. Alcoholism is dependency on drug alcohol. Drunkennesss is one obvious characteristic of alcoholism.
4. Once dependency is established, the body and mind will always react abnormally to the ingestion of alcohol, often bringing about a craving for more alcohol. The alcoholic should never drink again. It is a game of roulette.
5. As a leader, I have an obligation to live in a way that does not cause my brother to stumble. My example may actually be followed! God takes this very seriously. Romans 14:12-21 / Matthew 18:6-7
6. Jesus has made us kings and priests unto our God. In that role, is it advisable that we cloud or minds with chemicals? You choose. Revelation 1:6 / Leviticus 10:8-11 / Proverbs 31:4-5
Whatever your doctrinal prejudice regarding drinking, please think of those who cannot safely put alcohol in their bodies. If exercising your liberty offers them license, that is on you when you stand before God. I call it voluntary manslaughter.
Somebody Said: I’m glad now, at age 66, that I never used alcohol or tobacco… I’ve buried a lot of friends who used tobacco or alcohol. Jerry Falwell
Scripture Reading: Don’t gaze at the wine, seeing how red it is, how it sparkles in the cup, how smoothly it goes down. For in the end it bites like a poisonous snake; it stings like a viper. (Proverbs 23:31-32 NLT)
As you may know, I am a recovered alcoholic and drug addict. Over time, God took away my desire for intoxicating chemicals and gave me back the power of choice. I choose not to drink. I was employed in two different treatment facilities for addiction before I went to Bible School. I listened to hundreds of disaster tales. Since being in ministry, I have listened to hundreds more. I passionately hate addiction for the lives it destroys. These are avoidable tragedies. Please, Preacher and church leader, put the plug in the jug. It’s not about your warm glow, it’s about the lives of these little ones.
Pastor Virgil L. Stokes
Faith Christian Fellowship of Tucson
3141 W. Ironwood Hill Dr.
Tucson, AZ 85745
We have many resources available for those who want to be more effective in helping addicts. We can also make referrals for those who need help. Call our office for more info: 520-792-3238, or visit us online at www.fcftucson.org.