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Wine or Welch's? Let's do this one more time
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Post Re: Sooooo...... spartanfan
FLRon wrote:
spartanfan wrote:
Link wrote:
spartanfan wrote:
Dave Dorsey wrote:
I'm not asking what French Arrington's answers to the questions are, I'm asking what yours are. Here they are again for your convenience:

True or false:

1) It is a sin for any believer to drink, even if they are doing so in what they believe is moderation

2) Ministers who teach that drinking in "moderation" is permissible, or practice it themselves, are not fit for ministry

Please respond with two words.


Sooo my opinion is more valuable than French's? Thank you for the compliment but I don't think so. As a Church of God minister I totally subscribe to and promote the Church of God position on the subject. If you want to know exactly what that is then you must simply read the Bible concerning it or to "cut to the chase" just read the doctrine and polity position paper on the subject by French Arrington (my favorite teacher by the way).


I've never read the French Arrington paper, but if we can simply read the Bible concerning your position, are we to understand that you are in favor of a little wine for the stomach's sake, not being drunk with wine, and deacons not being given to too much wine? That you find it acceptable that the Son of Man came eating and drinking?


Read the French Arrington paper and then you'll understand the proper way to interpret those few pet scriptures that y'all keep regurgitating a false impression of. He is one of the greatest Theologians in CoG history. We can all learn a lot from him.


How sad that you would think any man's private interpretation of scripture would be elevated above the Word itself. French Arrington is absolutely wrong in his paper because he has rejected the Word in favor of his own interpretation. That you would promulgate his error says to me that you love to have your ears tickled. No thanks,I'll stand firmly on God's truth as revealed in the scriptures. You can have the false teaching of Arrington and his ilk and go on blindly following the blind.


So you are now qualified to label one of the best Theologians in Church of God history as a "false teacher." You are too funny! You call his summary of a lifetime of study his "private interpretation" when in fact it is the interpretation of the General Assembly of the Church of God and even beyond that the Assemblies of God who in their topic papers under Total Abstinence say.... "These passages reflect the viticulture and wine consumption of first-century societies which had little change since Old Testament times. Typically, they describe such actions as John the Baptist’s abstinence from wine (Luke 1:15; 7:33), Jesus’ refusal from the cross of wine mixed with gall/myrrh (Matthew 27:34; Mark 15:23), the antiseptic use mentioned in the Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:34), and Jesus’ apparently oft-repeated saying about new wine bursting old wineskins (Matthew 9:17; Mark 2:22; Luke 5:37–3Cool, undoubtedly a truism of wine production and storage at the time. The overall impression is that of a largely agrarian society utilizing the products of the vineyard that played such a key role in life and commerce. And, as often documented in the writings of that era, the wine as usually consumed was commonly diluted by several parts.

Almost a third of the occurrences of oinos are concentrated in the record of the miracle at Cana where Jesus turned the water into wine (six times in John 2:3, 9, 10; 4:46). This miracle, the first “sign” in John’s Gospel, lay in that Jesus instantaneously turned demonstrably potable water into large quantities of what was judged by the unknowing master of the wedding feast to be the “best” (kalos) wine. The text is silent on the meaning of oinos in the John 2 passage. We believe the larger contextual interpretation is that Jesus would not have made a product that would be detrimental to the wedding guests.

The Last Supper narratives (Matthew 26:17–30; Mark 14:12–26; Luke 22:7–38; John 13) are also considered to be important texts in the study of wine use in the Gospels. Like other observant Jews, Jesus participated in drinking from the cup passed at those traditional Passover celebrations. Note Mark’s description of the event, “Then he [Jesus] took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it” (Mark 14:23). After this Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine [tou genēmatos tēs ampelou] until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God” (Mark 14:25). In this instance, rather than the usual term for wine (oinos), the phrase “fruit of the vine” is consistent with the prohibition against yeast or fermentation during the Passover week (Exodus 12:15,19–20; 13:7).

All the Gospel references to wine are historical accounts of events or sayings the writers were inspired to include in their writings. While the Gospels reflect practices of the period, there are no commands from Jesus that teach His followers to drink wine (unless His instructions to repeat the Last Supper are taken as such [Luke 22:17–20; 1 Corinthians 11:25–26]).

Surprisingly, there are very few references to wine in the New Testament epistles. Oinos is found only five times in the Pauline and General Epistles (Romans 14:21; Ephesians 5:18; 1 Timothy 3:8; 5:23; Titus 2:3), to be followed by eight occurrences in Revelation (6:6; 14:8,10; 16:19; 17:2; 18:3,13; 19:15). Only one of these thirteen references affirms the use of wine, Paul’s directive to Timothy to “Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses” (1 Timothy 5:23). In this case oinos is urged only for medicinal use since Timothy clearly has been abstaining from oinos and drinking only water (probably impure). All other references in the Epistles are cautionary, as in Paul’s imperative to the Ephesians, “Do not get drunk [methuskomai] on wine, which leads to debauchery” (5:18a). What is startling in the Revelation is that, other than two neutral references to wine as vintage (6:6) or cargo (18:13), wine is used metaphorically for either human sin or God’s final eschatological wrath.

What is also striking is the semantic range of the terms used throughout the New Testament to express the risks and abuse of wine. There are eight different words having to do with “drunkenness” found a total of twenty times in the New Testament,13 sometimes immediately joined with oinos as its correlate (as in Ephesians 5:18) but often standing separately to denote the shameful behavioral condition attributable to abuse of wine. Thus Jesus warned, “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness [methē] and the anxieties of life” (Luke 21:34). Paul cautioned that neither “thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards [methusos] nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:10). Peter dramatically expressed his concern in the General Epistles, “For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do—living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness [oinophlygia], orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry (1 Peter 4:3). Certainly, neither Jesus nor the apostles assumed that all people fell into these categories but then, as now, alcohol abuse was a scourge that Christians must avoid and seek to alleviate.

Acts and the New Testament Epistles offer little insight into the use of wine in the early churches but do express a great deal of reserve about its potential for abuse. Paul severely chastised some of the Corinthian believers who were getting drunk at their love feasts where the Lord’s Supper was observed (1 Corinthians 11:20–21). In the Ephesians letter, he also pointedly charged, “Do not get drunk on wine [oinos], which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit” (5:1Cool.

Some have thought Paul’s previously noted admonition to Timothy, “Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine [oinos] because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses” (1 Timothy 5:23), to be approval of moderate drinking. However, Paul’s counsel was instead, as noted, a recommendation for medicinal use. Timothy was probably drinking only local water or other nonalcoholic liquids (likely impure). That he needed to be encouraged to take a little wine for his stomach’s sake certainly indicates that regular use of wine was not his lifestyle.

Some Basic Conclusions

The historic commitment of the Assemblies of God to abstinence is well founded, biblically and ethically. This paper has demonstrated the Scriptures overwhelming negative view of what the text clearly defines as a beverage with high alcohol content. The strongest drink possible in biblical times was not a modern fortified wine with 14–20 percent alcohol content, much less bourbon or tequila at 40–50 percent alcohol content, but naturally fermented wine or beer with a maximum possible alcohol content of 10–11 percent. A beverage with high alcohol content was identified by the Hebrew word shekar meaning strong drink. The Hebrew word for wine (yayin) could also be used to identify such a beverage when paired with shekar or when alcohol content is clearly in view (Proverbs 20:1; 23:29–33; 31:4–7). Scriptural warnings could be carefully observed through the common process of diluting fermented wine, which could produce a beverage that would have been categorized as subalcoholic by today’s standards. It is critical to note that the weakest wine or liquor available today has more alcohol content than the “strong drink” of biblical times; therefore, a strong biblical case can be made against even the moderate consumption of modern alcoholic beverages.

As all agree, drunkenness is always condemned in the Scriptures. Biblical stories of Noah and his sons (Genesis 9:20–27) and Lot and his daughters (Genesis 19:30–3Cool vividly show that intoxication often leads to tragic ends. God pronounces woe to those who run after their strong drink and are inflamed by wine (Isaiah 5:11,22). Drunkenness is listed by the apostle Paul among the “acts of the flesh,” and he declares that drunkenness will keep one from inheriting the kingdom of God (Galatians 5:19–21; 1 Corinthians 6:9–10). He reminds the Corinthian believers that some of them were drunkards before they were washed and justified by Christ, implying that such behavior is to cease after salvation (1 Corinthians 6:11). The apostle Peter contrasts living the new life in Christ with running with former companions in drunken “wild living” (1 Peter 4:3–4). Drunkenness never has God’s approval and it is always a potential outcome of alcohol consumption.

There are specific dangers inherent in alcohol, against which the Bible gives clear warning. Alcohol tends to alter one’s judgment (Proverbs 31:4–5), frequently brings woe, sorrow, and strife (Proverbs 23:29), and can cause physical harm (Proverbs 23:29,35). It can lower one’s inhibitions, leading to shameful behavior, loose speech, promiscuity, and violence (Proverbs 20:1; Isaiah 5:11; Romans 13:13). Alcohol is a mocker, a deceiver that leads people astray. “It goes down smoothly,” but “in the end it bites like a snake and poisons like a viper” (Proverbs 23:31–32). So deceptive is it that one tends at first not to realize the harm it is doing (Proverbs 23:35).

While the Scriptures approvingly recount the stories of different individuals and groups who abstain from alcohol, they especially set a high standard for spiritual leaders (Judges 13; Jeremiah 35). The clear prohibition of Old Testament priests drinking wine while serving in the tabernacle/temple (Leviticus 10:8–9), the vow of the Nazirite not to drink wine (Judges 13), the tradition of the Rekabites (Jeremiah 35), the examples of John the Baptist and Timothy—all have deep spiritual significance for today’s Christian leaders.

Abstinence is relevant to the whole priesthood of believers; those involved in the holy calling of ministry bear a special responsibility of example. In instructing his coworkers Timothy and Titus on the appointment of elders, Paul emphasized to both that Christian leaders are “not [to be] given to drunkenness” (1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7). The Greek noun Paul used is paroinos which denotes “one who is given to drinking too much wine,” hence “addicted to wine” or “drunkard.”14 Obviously, this is an area in which the Christian leader must exercise great discipline, setting a good example for all believers to follow and nonbelievers to respect."

So you have elevated your own private interpretation above the real scholars of the Assemblies of God and the Church of God - and say "How sad that you would think any man's private interpretation of scripture would be elevated above the Word itself." I never said that or implied it but I will say for sure that I would never elevate yours (or the likes of yours) interpretation above the Assemblies of God and Church of God theologians, or any other persons "private interpretation" of the Word above the Word itself. You have positioned yourself now as being in violation of what you accuse me of and have really blown away any possibility of having respect in this matter here by attacking French Arrington by calling him a "false teacher." When someone reacts the way you just did they might as well say, "I lost this debate so I am going to attack those responsible for me sounding like I don't know what in the world I'm talking about." Your knowledge of the Scriptures above French Arrington's - not here. But thanks for the laugh!
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12/17/18 11:49 am


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Post Dave Dorsey
spartanfan - I would also observe that your style of communication throughout this exchange has been very abrasive, insulting, and rude. Perhaps you should consider what the Bible says about these things. But it is not at all unusual for people who preach asceticism as doctrine to be deficient in charity.

Last edited by Dave Dorsey on 12/17/18 12:25 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post My apology.. spartanfan
Oh lort, I feel so bad that I have stirred up doze demons of alcohol and frustrated dem amateur debaters to the point that they would start calling French Arrington bad names. I will quit (or at least do it in moderation) from now on. Golf Cart Mafia Underboss
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12/17/18 12:25 pm


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Post Re: My apology.. Dave Dorsey
spartanfan wrote:
Oh lort, I feel so bad that I have stirred up doze demons of alcohol and frustrated dem amateur debaters to the point that they would start calling French Arrington bad names. I will quit (or at least do it in moderation) from now on.

See above. If this is the best you can do, it is no wonder people stop engaging with you and you are misled to believe that constitutes victory on your part.

Your style of engagement is ineffective, disappointing, and beneath your calling as an ambassador of Christ. You are the only person in this thread who thinks you are making good points.
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12/17/18 12:26 pm


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Post Da Sheik
At some point in almost every faith journey with Christ, the Holy Spirit, through the lens of scripture, will bring you face-to-face with the veracity of your deeply-held traditions and personal convictions. At that moment, you can humble yourself under the mighty hand of God, or you can follow the example of the Pharisees and become hardened. This hardening will manifest in vitriolic speech and gross exaggeration.

The Pharisees saw Jesus’s grace and truth as a threat to their establishment. In an attempt to discredit him, they resort to extremes. It wasn’t enough to accuse Christ of being a false teacher, they had to resort to Beelzebub. Since Jesus did not follow in John’s footsteps of asceticism (they hated John too, and said he had a devil in Matthew 11:18), they accused Jesus of being a glutton and a “winebibber”.

For the Pharisee, there are no “disputable matters”. And yet Romans 14 is devoted to this very thing. Ironically, the “weaker brother “ thinks he is the stronger brother.
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12/17/18 7:35 pm


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Post UncleJD
Ironically, it was through an EXCELLENT professor at Lee University (and unlike most today, this one was actually Church of God), that my rude awakening was administered by. He very bluntly stated when teaching on Jesus' first miracle, "and despite what your preacher back home told you, this wasn't Welch's grape juice". I was shocked, I was incensed! I was outraged! I was wrong! Golf Cart Mafia Capo
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12/17/18 8:46 pm


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Post Cojak
UncleJD wrote:
... "and despite what your preacher back home told you, this wasn't Welch's grape juice". I was shocked, I was incensed! I was outraged! I was wrong!


I did not hear that professor say it, but when I did hear it in the '60s, my reaction was exactly yours. Cool

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12/17/18 8:53 pm


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Post Da Sheik
UncleJD wrote:
I was shocked, I was incensed! I was outraged! I was wrong!


This describes almost my entire first semester in seminary. Then when I returned home to share what I had learned...they experienced the first three you mentioned...but never admitted the latter. Embarassed
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12/18/18 3:46 pm


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Post sheepdogandy
I'll be your huckleberry.

TRUE
TRUE

There you go....... Cool
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12/18/18 4:14 pm


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Post Nature Boy Florida
Again - any church that isn't leading the way to call for abstinence for it's members - is dooming its young people to misery and mistakes.

We have an epidemic in America - and the church wants to fight for your right to party.

It's a sad day.

I literally attended a funeral last week for a 24 year old that destroyed his liver drinking - and died before getting a transplant.

Why couldn't his Episcopalian minister have taught him the dangers of drinking any alcohol? A young person simply doesn't have the same capacity as an older person to say "when". The statistics show us this. If one drink is good - 20 are better - to them.

Go to a Saturday university football game - and cry your eyes out for our young people.

The old fences were erected for good reason. We are tearing them down without understanding why they were put there. We don't have any wisdom anymore.

It's a sad day for the ineffective, powerless, miserable, poor, blind, and naked church.
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12/18/18 4:34 pm


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Post Dave Dorsey
sheepdogandy wrote:
I'll be your huckleberry.

TRUE
TRUE

There you go....... Cool

Well, I think that's ridiculous and biblically indefensible, but I do appreciate you having the guts to shoot straight and be clear about what you believe. That's all I was asking for.
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12/18/18 5:35 pm


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Post Uh oh Dave! spartanfan
You said to me.... "You are the only person in this thread who thinks you are making good points." And then NBF makes another post that goes right along with my expert analysis. How many times will you be proven wrong before this thing is over? But will you admit that you posted yet another false statement? Hmmm... we'll see. And I'll leave it simply at that as I exercise self-control, restraint, self-discipline, self-possession, self-command, willpower, and temperance in my response to his opinion that is sideways against yours (like I said I would try to do). Laughing Golf Cart Mafia Underboss
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12/18/18 5:39 pm


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Post Okay, one more thing.... spartanfan
The funniest thing you said is: "....your style of communication throughout this exchange has been very abrasive, insulting, and rude. Perhaps you should consider what the Bible says about these things. But it is not at all unusual for people who preach asceticism as doctrine to be deficient in charity." I was really feeling the Bible kind of "love" from you in that condescending but charitable observation Laughing Golf Cart Mafia Underboss
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12/18/18 5:45 pm


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Post Dave Dorsey
spartanfan, you are acting like an absolute child. Da Sheik nailed it earlier concerning the character that your commitment to preaching conscience as commandment has wrought in you. Now 67% friendlier!
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12/18/18 5:46 pm


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Post I feel that love you were talking about.... spartanfan
Dave Dorsey wrote:
spartanfan, you are acting like an absolute child. Da Sheik nailed it earlier concerning the character that your commitment to preaching conscience as commandment has wrought in you.


Nevermind. It's been fun - thanks!
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12/18/18 6:05 pm


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Post Dave Dorsey
spartanfan wrote:
You tried to make out like I was the only one on here who thought any of my points were valid - and you were wrong. I point that out in a very mature adult-like manner and you say I am acting like an absolute child. When people are proven wrong they start attacking the people they feel are responsible for them looking like a loser (good people like me and Frenchie). These are the ones who say that a lack of love accompanies holding true to ones God-given convictions. Maybe a lack of love would cause one to behave in a way that is detrimental to their fellow man. But I can really feel that love you were talking about - before you said I was acting like an absolute child. Just because you lost the debate is no reason to belittle your conqueror- some might consider that rude (and childish). And don't go pour yourself a cold one before you respond because you'll have less restraint and control if you do and might say something you'll regret when the drug wears off

Bless your heart. If it makes you feel better to think you somehow conquered the many people in this thread who have largely given up discussion with you because you are not only impenetrable to reason but also incredibly rude, please do whatever you need to do.
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12/18/18 6:09 pm


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Post You are hillarious! spartanfan
In support of my points I posted the position papers of the Assemblies of God and Church of God - who agree with what I said 100% and you act like my points are totally invalid. Can't you see how ridiculous you sound by acting like the opinion of your few Actscelerate beer and wine promoting cronies outweigh the opinions of the majority of the millions of the Assemblies of God Theologians and members and the majority of the members of the Church of God around the world? You play the "lack of love" card on those who have convictions against sin and then start being "rude" yourself and name calling. You are obviously whipped in every way - and the opinions of my multiple millions from the two largest Pentecostal Denominations in the world outweigh those of you, Moe and Curley any day of the week. Shalom Larry. Go lick your wounds - oh wait, you have alcohol nearby to pour in them Laughing Golf Cart Mafia Underboss
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12/18/18 6:30 pm


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Post Well, Da Sheik... spartanfan
You started this because you knew it would create some spirited debate and interest in a dying "has been" forum. Congratulations - like me, you completely accomplished what you set out to do! Golf Cart Mafia Underboss
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12/18/18 6:38 pm


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Post Re: Sooooo...... Link
spartanfan wrote:

So you are now qualified to label one of the best Theologians in Church of God history as a "false teacher."


Those were not FLRon's words.

Quote:
You are too funny! You call his summary of a lifetime of study his "private interpretation" when in fact it is the interpretation of the General Assembly of the Church of God and even beyond that the Assemblies of God who in their topic papers under Total Abstinence say.... "These passages reflect the viticulture and wine consumption of first-century societies which had little change since Old Testament times. Typically, they describe such actions as John the Baptist’s abstinence from wine (Luke 1:15; 7:33), Jesus’ refusal from the cross of wine mixed with gall/myrrh (Matthew 27:34; Mark 15:23),


Jesus said that John came neither eating nor drinking and ye say he hath a devil. The Son of Man came eating and drinking and ye say Behold a Man gluttonous and a winebibber.

Jesus turned down the drink they gave him on the cross, but He admitted He came drinking. His opponents twisted the facts and accused Him of excess.

Quote:
And, as often documented in the writings of that era, the wine as usually consumed was commonly diluted by several parts.


That's not a teetotaler position there. We are talking about drinking alcohol, just in small quantities, not grape juice.

Quote:
The text is silent on the meaning of oinos in the John 2 passage. We believe the larger contextual interpretation is that Jesus would not have made a product that would be detrimental to the wedding guests.


The text is not silent. It calls it oinos. The governor of the feast said that they usually brought out the bad wine after the men had gotten drunk.

Quote:
The Last Supper narratives (Matthew 26:17–30; Mark 14:12–26; Luke 22:7–38; John 13) are also considered to be important texts in the study of wine use in the Gospels. Like other observant Jews, Jesus participated in drinking from the cup passed at those traditional Passover celebrations. Note Mark’s description of the event, “Then he [Jesus] took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it” (Mark 14:23). After this Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine [tou genēmatos tēs ampelou] until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God” (Mark 14:25). In this instance, rather than the usual term for wine (oinos), the phrase “fruit of the vine” is consistent with the prohibition against yeast or fermentation during the Passover week (Exodus 12:15,19–20; 13:7).


It does not say wine. But Jesus was talking about His blood. 'He may have said 'fruit of the vine' for theologicla reasons. The Jewish custom was to drink four cups of wine-- which had to be fully fermented to be kosher for passover. Unfermented wine was not kosher. The yeast had to be killed by fermentation and removed from the top of the wine to be considered kosher for Passover. The wine was mixed with man parts water.

Quote:

All the Gospel references to wine are historical accounts of events or sayings the writers were inspired to include in their writings. While the Gospels reflect practices of the period, there are no commands from Jesus that teach His followers to drink wine (unless His instructions to repeat the Last Supper are taken as such [Luke 22:17–20; 1 Corinthians 11:25–26]).


Historically, they have been. The RCC removed the practice of the congregation drinking wine, but Protestant's restored it. Then, just over 100 years ago, some churches began to replace 'real wine' with grape juice developed by new technology.

Quote:

Surprisingly, there are very few references to wine in the New Testament epistles. Oinos is found only five times in the Pauline and General Epistles (Romans 14:21; Ephesians 5:18; 1 Timothy 3:8; 5:23; Titus 2:3), to be followed by eight occurrences in Revelation (6:6; 14:8,10; 16:19; 17:2; 18:3,13; 19:15). Only one of these thirteen references affirms the use of wine, Paul’s directive to Timothy to “Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses” (1 Timothy 5:23). In this case oinos is urged only for medicinal use since Timothy clearly has been abstaining from oinos and drinking only water (probably impure). All other references in the Epistles are cautionary, as in Paul’s imperative to the Ephesians, “Do not get drunk [methuskomai] on wine, which leads to debauchery” (5:18a).


Aside from Nazarites, John the Baptist, people fasting, and individuals in Daniel abstaining from defiled food and drink, Timothy might have been the first tee-totaler in the Bible. Paul apparently considered Timothy abstaining from drinking wine to be bad for his health. Paul told Timothy to keep himself pure. Maybe he considered Timothy's abstaining from wine as 'overkill' on trying to be 'pure.'

Quote:

What is also striking is the semantic range of the terms used throughout the New Testament to express the risks and abuse of wine. There are eight different words having to do with “drunkenness” found a total of twenty times in the New Testament,13 sometimes immediately joined with oinos as its correlate (as in Ephesians 5:18) but often standing separately to denote the shameful behavioral condition attributable to abuse of wine. Thus Jesus warned, “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness [methē] and the anxieties of life” (Luke 21:34). Paul cautioned that neither “thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards [methusos] nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:10). Peter dramatically expressed his concern in the General Epistles, “For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do—living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness [oinophlygia], orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry (1 Peter 4:3). Certainly, neither Jesus nor the apostles assumed that all people fell into these categories but then, as now, alcohol abuse was a scourge that Christians must avoid and seek to alleviate.


So we see a balance in the apostles writings. Paul wanted Timothy not to totally abstain from drinking wine, but the apostles clearly taught against drinking too much wine.

Quote:

Some have thought Paul’s previously noted admonition to Timothy, “Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine [oinos] because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses” (1 Timothy 5:23), to be approval of moderate drinking. However, Paul’s counsel was instead, as noted, a recommendation for medicinal use. Timothy was probably drinking only local water or other nonalcoholic liquids (likely impure). That he needed to be encouraged to take a little wine for his stomach’s sake certainly indicates that regular use of wine was not his lifestyle.


It could have been a follow up comment to his instruction to Timothy to keep himself pure. Abstaining from wine was overkill.

Quote:

The historic commitment of the Assemblies of God to abstinence is well founded, biblically and ethically. This paper has demonstrated the Scriptures overwhelming negative view of what the text clearly defines as a beverage with high alcohol content. The strongest drink possible in biblical times was not a modern fortified wine with 14–20 percent alcohol content, much less bourbon or tequila at 40–50 percent alcohol content, but naturally fermented wine or beer with a maximum possible alcohol content of 10–11 percent. A beverage with high alcohol content was identified by the Hebrew word shekar meaning strong drink. The Hebrew word for wine (yayin) could also be used to identify such a beverage when paired with shekar or when alcohol content is clearly in view (Proverbs 20:1; 23:29–33; 31:4–7). Scriptural warnings could be carefully observed through the common process of diluting fermented wine, which could produce a beverage that would have been categorized as subalcoholic by today’s standards. It is critical to note that the weakest wine or liquor available today has more alcohol content than the “strong drink” of biblical times; therefore, a strong biblical case can be made against even the moderate consumption of modern alcoholic beverages.


The arguments until the last paragraph are anti-teetotaler arguments. They are arguments in favor of moderation. I have heard Pentecostal preachers speak about wine and beer as if they were evil substances. But the LORD had Israel offer beverages with alcohol to Him as offerings. Paul even compared himself to a drink offering. Paul compared himself an alcoholic beverals. Do you think Paul was poured out like wine or beer?

The last sentence does not follow from the information prior. If saints in Biblical times drank wine mixed with water, then that's fine. You should encourage people to mix their wine with water.

Also, if it was permissible to drink four glasses of wine mixed with several parts water for Passover, shouldn't a glass or half glass of pure wine be permissible for believers?

I don't drink. But I do not have any Biblical reason not to, aside from the weak consciences of others. I also do not care for the smell. I will partake for communion. Church of God (GBI) congregations in Indonesia usually serve 'real wine'-- or mix a little in. One church I preached at mixed in some 'real wine' someone had brought back from a trip to Israel.

I used to go to church with Jimmy Swaggart. He told about going to Russia--back during the iron curtain days-- and refusing to partake of communion because they used real wine. I consider this a very, very sad thing about the traditional Pentecostal teaching he'd heard. It generates a weak conscience in people during a time when they need to have very pure hearts. You don't want to sin while partaking of the Lord's Supper. But some of the extreme Holiness and Pentecostal teaching on wine can cause the people who believe it to have a weak conscience.

Sometimes, American Pentecostal idiocyncracies do not get exported to other countries. Teetotalerism is an example. There is just no support for imposing it on all saints in scripture. The Bible clearly teaches against the excess.

Just think of how few commands that Jesus actually gave that we follow in church. But He did say, "Drink ye all of it."

Quote:
As all agree, drunkenness is always condemned in the Scriptures. Biblical stories of Noah and his sons (Genesis 9:20–27) and Lot and his daughters (Genesis 19:30–3Cool vividly show that intoxication often leads to tragic ends. God pronounces woe to those who run after their strong drink and are inflamed by wine (Isaiah 5:11,22). Drunkenness is listed by the apostle Paul among the “acts of the flesh,” and he declares that drunkenness will keep one from inheriting the kingdom of God (Galatians 5:19–21; 1 Corinthians 6:9–10). He reminds the Corinthian believers that some of them were drunkards before they were washed and justified by Christ, implying that such behavior is to cease after salvation (1 Corinthians 6:11). The apostle Peter contrasts living the new life in Christ with running with former companions in drunken “wild living” (1 Peter 4:3–4). Drunkenness never has God’s approval and it is always a potential outcome of alcohol consumption.


I could write a paragraph like that on the dangers of fornication and then conclude that we should all have total abstinence, and argue for imposing celibacy upon all believers. No marriage. Just celibacy. Fornication and adultery are so dangerous after all. I wouldn't do that because I am married myself, and because such a teaching is extreme. If someone wants to be celibate, that's fine. If someone wants to abstain from alcohol, that's fine-- except that partaking of communion could be an issue.

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There are specific dangers inherent in alcohol, against which the Bible gives clear warning. Alcohol tends to alter one’s judgment (Proverbs 31:4–5), frequently brings woe, sorrow, and strife (Proverbs 23:29), and can cause physical harm (Proverbs 23:29,35). It can lower one’s inhibitions, leading to shameful behavior, loose speech, promiscuity, and violence (Proverbs 20:1; Isaiah 5:11; Romans 13:13). Alcohol is a mocker, a deceiver that leads people astray. “It goes down smoothly,” but “in the end it bites like a snake and poisons like a viper” (Proverbs 23:31–32). So deceptive is it that one tends at first not to realize the harm it is doing (Proverbs 23:35).


That's if you drink too much of it.

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While the Scriptures approvingly recount the stories of different individuals and groups who abstain from alcohol, they especially set a high standard for spiritual leaders (Judges 13; Jeremiah 35). The clear prohibition of Old Testament priests drinking wine while serving in the tabernacle/temple (Leviticus 10:8–9), the vow of the Nazirite not to drink wine (Judges 13), the tradition of the Rekabites (Jeremiah 35), the examples of John the Baptist and Timothy—all have deep spiritual significance for today’s Christian leaders.


But then there is the fact that beverages with alcohol were offered as sacrifices to the Lord in the tabernacle. Many godly men drank wine. The Psalms say wine is given to make man's heart merry. The Son of Man came eating and drinking. Jesus said, "Drink ye all of it." The Corinthians apparently interpreted that to refer to a beverage that had alcohol in it.

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Abstinence is relevant to the whole priesthood of believers; those involved in the holy calling of ministry bear a special responsibility of example. In instructing his coworkers Timothy and Titus on the appointment of elders, Paul emphasized to both that Christian leaders are “not [to be] given to drunkenness” (1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7). The Greek noun Paul used is paroinos which denotes “one who is given to drinking too much wine,” hence “addicted to wine” or “drunkard.”14 Obviously, this is an area in which the Christian leader must exercise great discipline, setting a good example for all believers to follow and nonbelievers to respect."


Except for that opening phrase there, that is a powerful argument against teetotalerism and in favor of only drinking alcohol in moderation.

But again, if you are going to demand abstinence, why not write a paragraph like this as it relates to sex, too-- how great abstinence is. Then you could try to enforce it on everyone and convince all the young people not to get married becuase of all the people who have committed sins related to sex... to be consistent.

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So you have elevated your own private interpretation above the real scholars of the Assemblies of God and the Church of God - and say "How sad that you would think any man's private interpretation of scripture would be elevated above the Word itself."


I spent many years in the A/G and I have good thoughts and feelings for the people in that movement. But It is only about 100 years old or so. The fact that godly men can drink alcohol in moderation was well established before the denomination came on the scene.
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spartanfan wrote:
You are obviously whipped in every way - and the opinions of my multiple millions from the two largest Pentecostal Denominations in the world outweigh those of you:


The appeal to authority logical fallacy here is kind of annoying. Of course Pentecostal denominations are going to be extreme on the alcohol issue. The arguments in article you quoted were in favor of moderation, though the author would comment as though they supported tee-totalerism. They were trying to make a tee-totaler argument, while honestly presenting the non-teetotaler facts that did not back it up. Teetotalerism is okay (aside from the communion issue), but not mandatory.

But I wanted to comment on this 'two largest Pentecostal denominations' comment of yours. I wasn't aware that the COG was the second largest in the world. But the last I read, the largest national general assembly for the COG is the Gereja Bethel Indonesia sinode in Indonesia. I've been to many GBI's which include a bit of wine in their communion. I've also been to Yoido Full Gospel in South Korea. They might not have been in the A/G when I visited. I'm not sure. But they did have some wine in their communion.

So you'd better check your facts and see if these other national-level assemblies are tee-totalers. Since the Bible doesn't back up the position, it isn't always going to stick when missionaries take a teaching out of its social context. The US had the temperence movement and prohibition.

I was surprised about the wine in communion at Yoido. I didn't really have a palate to taste it, but it seemed like it had some wine in it to me. My friend said he thought there was wine in it. I believe that was the case. What surprised me is that even Presbyterians in Korea tend toward teaching teetotalerism in everyday life. Excessive drinking is a huge social problem there.
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