Without a proper study of the Word of God, man has eased his conscience by intentionally excusing sins, resulting in heresy and false doctrine, and even the foundation of cults.
“not given to much wine” is a phrase given to us in a list of sound doctrines in Titus 2 (KJV). On the surface, and I mean out of context where deception is clearly found, one would say they can have little wine. Without being grounded in sound doctrine, many have taken this phrase as this exact approval of the sin of drinking wine.
Determining sound doctrine in scripture is not a mystery, but it does take work and study. Thankfully, taking scripture upon scripture with all the counsel of the Word is sufficient with the leading of the Holy Spirit. Why? Because God does not contradict Himself. So, when there is an apparent contradiction, it IS NOT God who is wrong. Contradiction is what surfaces every single time those who excuse the sin of wine through scripture.
The Bible, as God’s Holy Word, is our guide into all truth. Since God will not contradict Himself, we will walk through a few passages before giving a logical and contextual explanation of “not given to much wine.”
wine and drunkenness started in the 1st book of the Bible
“And he [Noah] drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.”
wine is a mocker and deceiver
“Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.”
wine is condemned as 1 of 6 sins that provoke God
“Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflame them! … Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink.”
wine causes erroring and stumbling in judgment
“But they also have erred through wine, and through strong drink are out of the way; the priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink, they are swallowed up of wine, they are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision, they stumble in judgment.”
wine lowers moral standards
“Woe unto him that giveth his neighbour drink, that puttest thy bottle to him, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness!”
wine effects the entire body, soul and spirit
“Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. … Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the top of a mast. They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again.”
- Wine causes sorrow and contentions
- Wine causes a babbling tongue and redness of eyes
- Wine is a deadly poison, it stingeth like an adder
- Wine causes you to do things you would never do
- Wine causes you to be injured and not feel or recall it
- Wine is addictive, after all of this, I will seek it yet again
- Man will do anything to satisfy their addictions:
“And they have cast lots for my people; and have given a boy for an harlot, and sold a girl for wine, that they might drink.”
Having looked as at the whole counsel of the Word of God, seeing how God condemns wine, the context of Titus 2:3 can have nothing to do with allowing any portion of intoxicating wine.
Think about the phrase “not given to much wine” in comparison to our speech today. We will tell our children “Don’t get addicted to drugs.” Does this mean that they can do drugs as long as they are not getting addicted? Not at all. Paul is speaking in this same manner, as when he said “henceforth we should not serve sin” (Romans 6:6). Here, is Paul saying it is OK to sin as long as you are not serving sin or letting sin be your master? Not at all. Paul says a few verses later in 6:15, “What then? shall we sin … God forbid.”
Solomon spoke in the same manner in the Old Testament concerning sin, “Be not over much wicked” (Ecclesiastes 7:17). This is not saying we can sin a little as long as it is not too much!!!
We have clear scripture upon scripture, simple logic and common sense. It should be absolutely clear that “not given to much wine” is not saying “not given too much wine.” If it is, then God is in clear contradiction with Himself and His warnings about wine and drunkenness. Some things may not be easy to understand, but is that not where faith steps in? If you are struggling to understand this, then you are actually agreeing there is something not right, something is in contradiction. That something is not God but man, and it is called sin.
This sound doctrine of wine is a challenge to Christian maturity
What moral decision will you make?