When I was a Catholic my mother told me that there was a special AA program for Catholic priests because there were so many priest abusing the communion wine, so how about it, what does the bible say about alcoholic wine?
In one bible study I recently gave we read Dan. 1:8 and it was suggested that this was strictly a ceremonial move on Daniel’s part for both the unclean meat and the wine but was it?
Dan 1;8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.”
Notice how Dr. Luke separates body, mind spirit in the context of eating in Acts 15:20 “Instead, we should write and tell them to abstain from food polluted by idols (spirit/ceremonial), from sexual immorality, from the meat of strangled animals, and from blood (body, mind).”
So food (and drink) offered to idols is one reason one would not eat the animal and likely why Daniel didn’t but what are the other two reasons and why according to Acts 15;20? “abstain …from the meat of strangled animals, and from blood” why? The blood of an animal contains impurities that shorten life.
Blood might have pathogens (such as the many blood-borne diseases that can be deadly, also blood is so rich in iron — and because the body has difficulty excreting excess iron. While iron is necessary for all animals (and indeed most life), in high doses it can be toxic. This condition, called hemochromatosis, can cause a wide variety of diseases and problems, including liver damage, buildup of fluid in the lungs, dehydration, low blood pressure, and nervous disorders. https://www.livescience.com/15899-drinking-blood-safe.html
How does Leviticus 11:47 put it?
“to make a distinction between the unclean and the clean, and between the edible creature and the creature which is not to be eaten.”
Why does God call unclean animals inedible? It is bad for ones health as pointed out above/earlier, also Proverbs 23:3 puts it this way “Do not desire his (kings) delicacies, For it is deceptive food.”
What does deceptive mean? It tricks you into wanting more, overeating and therefore getting the diseases of indulged appetite such as heart disease, stroke, obesity etc…
So that’s the food that Daniel refused to eat, that had ceremonial as well as health implications, does this apply to the alcohol as well?
e.g. what happened in Daniel 5:4 “They drank the wine and praised the gods of gold and silver, of bronze, iron, wood and stone.”
And what happened? He lost his life and his kingdom that night. Is that because the alcohol was ceremonially unclean or does it affect the person no matter if it’s offered to idols or not? Of course anyone with half a brain knows the dangers of alcohol, car wrecks, families destroyed, abuse etc…
Let’s read about Nadab and Abihu:
Lev. 10:1 - And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not. 10:2 - And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD.
10:8 - And the LORD spake unto Aaron (the high priest), saying, 10:9 - Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: [it shall be] a statute for ever throughout your generations: 10:10 - And that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean;”
Contextually speaking is alcohol holy or unholy, clean or unclean and was that because the alcohol was offered to idols or for the chemical effect it had on their body, mind and spirit? Of course for its terrible effect on body, mind and spirit. How does Paul put it in 1 Corinthians?
1 Cor. 10:31 - Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
1 Cor. 6:19 - What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost [which is] in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 6:20 - For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
1 cor. 3:16 - Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and [that] the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 3:17 - If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which [temple] ye are. 3:18 - Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise.”
The bible is very clear that food and drink not only affect us spiritually but physically and mentally as well and that since God loves us so much he wants us to be healthy in all areas of our being or as Jesus put it in Mat. 22:37 “…Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 22:38 This is the first and great commandment. “
Daniel Mckibben, Pastor, Chaplain Terre Haute, Lewis, Greencastle Indiana