Ralph's Daily Devotional - Tuesday, February 13

Proverbs 20:1 is a popular Proverb that's often taken to extremes.  The passage is not forbidding the consumption of wine, but rather restricting the improper use of it in which it is consumed to the point of being led astray or literally "under the influence," when our reasoning and behavior is negatively affected.

Jesus made wine (John 2).  It was consumed not for blatant intoxication but in joyful celebration.  There are obviously times when one should refrain or carefully limit their intake of alcohol, such as when driving or when involved with an important issue or task.  Certainly excessive drinking is not good for anyone.  Some people cannot drink without going to excess and should therefore refrain totally.  Perhaps we know someone who has an addiction problem.  In such cases, we are to refrain from drinking in their presence if it is a temptation for them (Romans 14 deals with this).

It's important to realize that many good gifts from God can become abused.  Wine is one of them.  So is food, and many Christians who condemn wine seem to have no issue with being obese!  The answer is not always denial but discipline.

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