John MacArthur On Alcohol

I’m listening to John MacArthur talk about drinking and if it is allowed Biblically.  Very interesting and you can download the mp3s free at

As somebody who, up until recently, would have defended drinking I need to give my testimony on this.  Up until about five years ago I drank socially and only occasionally to excess, then I found out that there was diabetes on both sides of my family.  I started to cut back and also started to notice that my gut would hurt when I had a drink so I stopped completely.  Notice that I only noticed the pain when I started to cut back as it would go away if I kept drinking but it was probably there all along.

Now, MacArthur mentioned the excuse that, if everyone else is drinking you have to just to fit in.  He calls it as he sees it, that’s no excuse at all, yet that is the way I felt after I stopped.  I was uncomfortable and avoided going out and this is the part of my testimony that may be helpful to somebody going through that stage.  I am now perfectly comfortable in a setting where the bulk of the people are drinking and I am not.  I order a coke or a sweet tea and nobody blinks an eye, they really don’t care the peer pressure I thought was there was all in my mind.  So if you are holding on to that as an excuse for having a beer with the boys, give it up, they won’t even notice if you order a coke.  Even if they do, you’re not a teenager who needs to defend yourself just say that’s what you want to have.

Now, here’s the other side of the coin for those who are not fully mature adults (anyone who has not lived on there own for at least five years – college doesn’t count as living on your own), teenagers and college kids are still impressionable and for them peer pressure is real.  This is not an excuse for them to drink but a reality they face and if the adult figures in their lives drink they are very likely to also. 

I recommend listening to the MacArthur series but if you must know the Biblical legality of drinking.
– Getting drunk is outright prohibited
– Strong drink, which includes modern wine, is prohibited (they mixed it with water)
– Drinking wine when it is the only thing available is allowable but caution must be used
– Those of a higher spiritual calling are prohibited from drinking
– Any action that might cause another to stumble is prohibited (parents this is you, your children heed the example you set much more than the words you say)
– If you drink it is by choice not mandate and if your conscience is clear than it is allowed but may not be the best choice

I’m trying to compress several sermons into a few bullet points so please listen to the source.

Heavenly Father,
You are wise beyond human understanding and have provided for us all we need.  Help us to understand all that is available to us and to make wise choices that honor your name.  In Jesus’ name we pray.


2 Responses to “John MacArthur On Alcohol”

  1. Good post sir. I appreciate your willingness to share. I’m not sure I agree with all of your bullet points but they have challenged me to further study.

    Grace and Peace,


  2. Very Interesting post! I like it!

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