by W. Albert Smith
Too long we have listened to the pious expression, heard from many quarters, which says, “Let the preacher stick to his Bible and leave the liquor question to laymen and politicians.”
One has only to examine the Bible to find abundant references condemning the drink evil. In fact, if the preacher is to preach the whole truth, and be fair with the Word of God, he must preach against sin.
I have taken Young’s Concordance and other helps, and have made a study of the Bible on the subject. It is indeed revealing! Here one finds scores of direct references comprising one hundred and sixty-two verses of Scripture. This is more Scripture than one will find on any of the subjects of lying, adultery, swearing, stealing, Sabbath-breaking, cheating, hypocrisy, pride, or even blasphemy.
Below Is a summary of these Scriptures for handy reference:
1. Genesis 9:20-26 – Here is the first mentioned drunkenness in the Bible. Note the concomitant immorality, – behavior ever since inseparably associated with alcohol consumption.
2. Genesis 19:30-38- In this instance drinking resulted in Lot’s debauchery of his own daughters.
3. Genesis 27:25 – Isaac was drinking wine when he blessed Jacob.
4. Leviticus 10:9 – Here is an express command not to drink.
5. Numbers 6:3 – No Nazarite should ever drink wine or liquor.
6. Deuteronmy 21:20 – Drinking leads to stubbornness, rebellion, and gluttony by young men; and brings dishonor to parents.
7. Deuteronmy 29:2-6 – Abstinence assures better knowledge of God.
8. Judges 13:4,7,14 – Samson’s mother; an example to all womanhood, was commanded to drink no wine. Was alcohol recognized even then as a protoplasmic poison, injuring posterity in the parents?
9. 1 Samuel 1:14-15 – Hannah, an example of all honored motherhood, practiced total abstinence.
10. 1 Samuel 25:36-38 – Nabal, a rich but churlish man who opposed David, died at the end of a drunken spree.
11. 2 Samuel 13:28-29 – Amnon, while in a drunken brawl, was murdered by his brother Absalom.
12. 2 Samuel 11:13 – Only by strong drink could David lead Uriah into a trap.
13. 1 Kings 16:8-10 – While a king was “drinking himself drunk” in his own home, one of his captains conspired against him and slew him.
14. 1 Kings 20:13-21 – No drinking army can hope to win battles. While Ben-hadad and thirty-two other kings were drinking themselves drunk in their pavilions, a small band of Israel’s men fell upon the Syrians and put them to flight.
15. Esther 1:5-22 – Drink wrecks homes and separates man and wife. At a drinking party which lasted a week, King Ahasuerus drunkenly subjected his queen to the beastly gaze of inebriated nobles and thus brought on the separation of the royal husband and wife.
16. Job 1:13-19 – The children of Job were drinking wine when blown away in a great wind.
17. Proverbs 4:17 – Through drinking the wicked become violent. They are bad enough at best, but drink leads them to violence.
18. Proverbs 20:1 – No wise man will take wine or liquor.
19. Proverbs 21:17; 23:21 – Strong drink leads to poverty.
20. Proverbs 23:19-21 – Young men should shun the company of drunkards.
21. Proverbs 23:29-30 – Strong drink produces woe, sorrow, contentions, babbling, wounds without cause, redness of eyes.
22. Proverbs 23:31 – We are urged not to look upon intoxicants.
23. Proverbs 23:32 – The Word of God says it hurts every one who drinks: it bites like a snake and stings like an adder.
24. Proverbs 23:33 – It fills men’s minds with adulterous and impure thoughts.
25. Proverbs 23:33 – It produces vain talk “every idle word” of which must be accounted for at judgement.
26. Proverbs 23:34 – It brings on insecurity.
27. Proverbs 23:35 – It brings on insensibility, which paves the way for every evil and dangerous act of the drunkard.
28. Proverbs 23:35 – It is habit-forming, one drink always calls for another.
29. Proverbs 31:4-5 – It is not for Kings, nor presidents, nor officials to drink.
30. Proverbs 31:6-7 – The only sanction given in Old Testament times for the use of strong drink was that it might be used as a medicine or anesthetic for those about to die. Let not one construe this as a command to take strong drink. We now have far better medicines and anesthetics than whiskey, wine or beer.
31. Ecclesiastes 2:3 – The writer of Ecclesiastes tried strong drink, but in the end was forced to acknowledge that it, too, is vanity.
32. Ecclesiastes 10:17 – Blessings are promised to the temperate and abstaining nation.
33. Isaiah 5:11-12 – Woe to the drunkards.
34. Isaiah 5:22 – More woes to them that drink wine.
35. Isaiah 22:13 – Drinking and carnality go together.
36. Isaiah 24:9 – Strong drink bitter to them that drink it.
37. Isaiah 28:1 – Woe to the drunkards of Ephraim.
38. Isaiah 28:3 – The pride of drunkards will be trodden down.
39. Isaiah 28:7 – Prophets and priests erred through drink.
40. Isaiah 28:7 – Prophets and priests put out of the way by drink.
41. Isaiah 28:7 – Prophets and priests finally swallowed up by wine.
42. Isaiah 28:7 – Drinking brings on spiritual blindness.
43. Isaiah 56:9-12 – Rebuke to drinking church leaders.
44. Jeremiah 35:5,6,8,14 – Total abstinence of the Rechabites cited as an example of obedience on the part of God’s people.
45. Ezekiel 44:21 – Priests are not to drink wine.
46. Daniel 1:5,8,16; 10:3 – God honored Daniel because he abstained from the king’s wine. Daniel, the man, was true to the home training he had received as a boy.
47. Daniel 5:1 – Belshazzar exhibited an example of a leader who drank and taught his people to drink. What of America’s leaders?
48. Daniel 5:2,23 – What becomes of a nation when its women resort to drinking?
49. Daniel 5:5-9, 26-29 – Ruin and downfall is certain to come to nations when their rulers and leaders cause them to drink.
50. Daniel 5:3 – Belshazzar’s sacrilege in using sacred temple vessels for liquor glasses.
51. Amos 2:8 – Wine of the condemned.
52. Amos 2:12 – Sin to give liquor to the priests.
53. Amos 4:1 – Oppressors of the poor and needy call for their liquor.
54. Amos 6:6 – Drinkers are not concerned about God, nor about the welfare of the people.
55. Hosea 3:1 – Part of the degradation of Hosea’s wife was induced by drink.
56. Hosea 4:11 – Strong drink and immorality go hand in hand.
57. Hosea 7:5 – King and people reproved because of their drinking.
58. Joel 1:5 – Drunkards called to awake from their drinking.
59. Joel 3:3 – Young womanhood sold for the price of strong drink.
60. Nahum 1:10 – Drunkards to be destroyed.
61. Habrews 2:5 – Strong drink is a transgression against God’s law.
62. Habrews 2:15 – It is wrong to give one’s neighbor strong drink.
63. Habrews 2:16 – Strong drink leads to shame and humiliation.
64. Matthew 24:49 – Drunkards warned against the return of Christ and His judgement.
65. Luke 1:15 – Greatness of John the Baptist linked with his total abstinence.
66. Luke 12:45 – Christ warns against becoming enmeshed in drink evils.
67. Luke 21:34 – Warning against drunkenness and the cares of this life.
68. Romans 13:13 – All are admonished to walk honestly and not in rioting and drunkenness.
69. Romans 14:21 – Drinking will cause one’s brother to stumble.
70. 1 Corinthians 11:22 – The Lord’s Supper no place for feasting and wine drinking.
71. 1 Corinthians 6:10 – No drunkard shall inherit the Kingdom of God.
72. Galatians 5:21 – Revelers in drunkenness shall not inherit the Kingdom of God.
73. Ephesians 5:18 – Here is a direct command not to become drunk.
74. 1 Thessalonians 5:7 – Sobriety, as opposed to drunkenness, is enjoined upon the Thessalonians.
75. 1 Timothy 3:8 – Deacons must not drink.
by W. Albert Smith