Southern Baptists reaffirm prohibition against alcohol

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Ben W, Jun 22, 2006.

  1. Ben W

    Ben W
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    19 June 2006

    Southern Baptists reaffirm prohibition against alcohol
    http://www.eni.ch/articles/display.shtml?06-0484

    Chris Herlinger
    New York (ENI). The Southern Baptist Convention, the biggest Protestant denomination in the United States, has said no one who drinks "alcoholic beverages" should belong to any denominational trustee board.

    "The use of alcohol as a beverage can and does impede our testimony for the Lord Jesus Christ," said Jim Richards, executive director of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, at the denomination's 13-14 June annual meeting in Greensboro, North Carolina.

    An amendment successfully moved by Richards at the Greensboro meeting urged the exclusion of Southern Baptists who drink from election to the convention's boards and committees. The resolution is not binding on the 16.2-million-member denomination. Supporters of the action contended it was necessary because some Christians wrongly believed that Scripture allowed them to drink, the Baptist Press news service reported.

    But the Rev. Tom Ascol, opposing the action, referred to a New Testament account of Jesus at a wedding. "Christ turned water into wine," he said.
     
  2. DeeJay

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    One reason I am glad we are ruled by scripture, and not councles and men in high positions. Because, like in this case, men can be wrong and be caught up in the traditions of men.
     
  3. RockRambler

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    I do hope they also excuse from serving those who smoke or are overweight. Both of those could give the wrong impression to some non-Christians.


    Or maybe the SBC could worry about things that really matter!!!
     
  4. saturneptune

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    This issue seems to have haunted Baptists for years. The way I have always taught my Sunday School class is that no, there is no where in the Bible that technically says you cannot drink. However, there are plenty of passages about drunkedness (and glutony). From what I have seen in life, the reason an overwhelming percent of people drink is to get drunk. Also, I will bring up the point about our body being the temple of the Holy Spirit, a witness to a weaker brother, and would you want to witness to someone with a beer (or cigarette) in your hand. So, my conclusion on the matter is that the Holy Spirit guides in all things, but from the above evidence, abstainance is the only conclusion I can see.

    As far as the op goes, in the Bible, there is a vow against drinking for a Nazarene. So maybe one could interpret that to mean higher leadership posts require a higher standard because of being more visible.

    This almost gets back to the baptism issue. If you want to be a Baptist and drink, I am sure there are churches where the local congregation has voted in such a policy. If you want to belong to another denomination that allows it, join. Otherwise, if you are going to join a church that believes in abstainance, abstain.
     
  5. mcdirector

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    I've been SBC all my life and this one has always bothered me. I grew up in a church where people literaly stood outside the sanctuary doors to get one last puff before the service started and that was always ok.

    It's not scriptural to say don't drink. It is scriptural to say don't get drunk. I've just never understood why this particular issue is the poster child for the SBC.
     
  6. Psalm 100

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    There is no biblical support for universal abstinence, however, I do agree with Mr. Richards statement that it does affect our testimony.

    I used to enjoy a cold one with the combination plate at El Chico's, but my wife works for an alcohol and drug rehab program. She pointed out one day that one of her former patients was in there also with his family. It made me realize that we don't know who is sitting next to us, or what problems they are having. Also, how can I help someone who has alcohol addiction, if I say, "oh, it's only one drink, it won't hurt".

    As I said, I don't think there's any biblical prohibition, but I would rather abstain than cause a brother or sister to stumble. And I think people in leadership positions should feel the same way.
     
  7. webdog

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    If you go back and read about the Nazarenes, the abstinence was not a life long thing, but temporary.
     
  8. webdog

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    While I respect your position, the same could be said about many things. do I not take my child out to dinner because I might make a child molester stumble? Do I not eat the dessert, because I might make someone with an addiction to food stumble? Does my wife not wear pants, because there might be an IFB member there that would stumble? We are not responsible for the sin of others. If we are going to dinner with someone with an alcohol problem, that's one thing. To totally avoid alcohol in public just because "you never know who might be offended" is silly. People can get offended at just about anything. Jesus made wine for the guests at the wedding in Cana. He would not have been guilty of causing the drunkeness of others, because each persons sin is accounted to themselves. Same when He fed the multitude from the five loaves and two fish. If someone ate too much, Jesus would not have contributed to that either.
     
    #8 webdog, Jun 22, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 22, 2006
  9. webdog

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    "Impedes our testimony" to who? Other Southern baptists? What a ridiculous statement. Our perception of the "world's" view of Christians consuming alcohol is not accurate, and is used to take the moral "high ground" compared to other denominations. I would like to hear Mr. Richards tell this to Jesus, being jewish, that His consumption of wine at Passover "impeded His testimony".
     
  10. Friend of God

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    How about "Don't smoke, don't chew - don't go with girls that do" ?
     
  11. StefanM

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    1) Abstinence from alcohol can be a positive thing. You will never become an alcoholic, and you will save quite a bit of money!

    2) Abstinence from alcohol is not required by scripture.

    My personal approach is this. I do not plan ever to drink simply because I know that there are so many people (church people, that is) who believe it is wrong (plus I'm cheap). I think the "hindering your testimony" only comes into play when we are dealing with uber-zealous church members.

    There are some who believe doing pretty much anything will ruin your testimony. Do we need to cater to them? Absolutely not. Do we need gently to show them the truth of Christian liberty? Absolutely--so we should not flaunt our liberty in the process.

    But as for the world? The only reason the world would even make a big deal about it is because some Christians are. If it weren't a controversy in the church, I highly doubt anyone would care. The world doesn't so much care about the use of alcohol per se, but it does like to point out hypocrisy.

    I personally believe that all this concern about "testimony" comes more from a misapplication of 1 Thess. 5:22 than from the clear example of Jesus Christ--who associated (and drank) with prostitutes, tax collectors, and the average ne'er-do-wells.

    Luk 7:33 For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine; and ye say, He hath a devil.
    Luk 7:34 The Son of man is come eating and drinking; and ye say, Behold a gluttonous man, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners!

    No matter what you do, your testimony is probably going to be "ruined" in the eyes of a few.
     
  12. Friend of God

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    I totally agree with you Stefan.

    Kinda like Misery enjoys company isn't it?
     
  13. donnA

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    Most unsaved do not have a good opinion about christians and christianity when they see christians drinking alcohol. Christians drinking is a poor witness to the unsaved world, after that it doesn't matter what you say to them.
     
  14. webdog

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    That's opinion only. Most unsaved Christians do not associate abstinence with Christianity, as also does the Bible. Would you claim Jesus' drinking was a poor witness to the unsaved world?
     
    #14 webdog, Jun 22, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 22, 2006
  15. cindig2

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    The best explanation I have heard was by Adrian Rogers. He said nothing has caused more destruction than alochol. It has torn apart families and caused deaths. He said a Chrisitian needs to think long and hard about wheather they should drink socially. I personally don't wish to give any support to something that has caused so much destruction.
     
  16. webdog

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    I wonder if Adrian Rogers thinks throughout history if guns possibly could have caused more destruction than alcohol?

    These people amaze me with "the Christian needs to think long and hard about..." comments. Again, would he say this to Jesus Christ, who clearly drank alcohol? Would he warn Him about the destruction?
     
  17. StefanM

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    What about automobiles?
     
  18. webdog

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    ...and trans fatty foods?:smilewinkgrin:
     
  19. Tom Bryant

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    I usually agree with Dr. Rogers. It has been true in my life. But that has been the issue with drunkenness, which is expressly forbidden in Scripture, not moderation. Certainly it wasn't true when Paul told Timothy to drink some wine for his stomach, when it was to be used for medicine.
    It certainly wasn't true when Jesus made wine out of water.
    It certainly wasn't true when the Pharisees accused our Lord of drunkenness.

    Alot of this discussion is so American. In many foreign countries, "social drinking" doesn't carry with it the stigma it does in American Christian circles. I can never forget the first Lord's Supper I performed in Romania and tasted real wine. It was a bit of a shock.:eek:
     
  20. mcdirector

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    Tom, I wish I could have been there just to see your face!
     

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