Alcohol is bad!
Except, ok—it’s not. It’s actually inherently good. Even Jesus was a fan. We see him drinking wine as part of the Jewish feasts and even performing a miracle transforming water into wine at a wedding (taking “open-bar” to a whole new level). There’s no basis anywhere in Scripture for a Christian to say that God is against people enjoying alcohol.
That being said: there are many places in Scripture that condemn drunkenness.
Unfortunately, the reality for our age group is that knowing that getting drunk is “a sin” is not usually enough to keep most of us from putting ourselves into situations that tend towards drunkenness, i.e. – that party on Saturday night, “Thirsty Thursdays,” or sneaking out into the woods to drink if your college has a dry campus. These are just things people our age do—and God understands, right? For the most part, we’re not hurting anyone by getting more than a little bit tipsy, or even a little bit drunk, when out with our friends.
So then why is getting drunk “wrong,” if we’re just having fun?
The fact of the matter is: if you’re getting drunk and somehow don’t end up doing anything [else] “wrong,” there is very little separating you from the girl who wakes up with a tattoo the next morning besides chance.
When you choose to get drunk, you choose to reject your ability to reason. And, in a nutshell, this is why it is a sin. God gave us our intellect, our judgment, and the ability to control our desires. Alcohol in excess removes this God-given power, slowly but surely. A creature that lacks the ability to speak clearly, control his tongue, or even stand erect sounds more like an animal without motor skills than a man with the power of intellect and will. And even though you might have that friend at the party that you have hired to take care of you, it’s not supposed to be anyone else’s responsibility to make your decisions for you.
When you get tipsy, that’s a good indicator that you need to stop. If you’ve lost the ability to converse with God, you’ve had too much.
Besides, even if you may not wake up the next morning with a stranger in your bed, or you may be able to miraculously avoid bad decisions when you’re trashed, that doesn’t mean your friends or other people at the party are so lucky.
I’m not saying we should all quit drinking because other people have problems handling their alcohol intake. I’m saying that we should stop letting it be “normal” behavior to get wasted and blackout on a regular basis (or ever). It’s not normal behavior. In fact it’s a sign you have a problem (contrary to popular belief: it most certainly can be alcoholism before graduation).
If you think that you or someone you know may have an alcohol problem (or if you’re just plain curious as to what one looks like), check out this questionnaire from Alcoholics Anonymous. As they say, only you can make the call as to whether or not you have a problem. But from experience, they say that answering, “yes” to 4 or more of the questions typically indicates a problem.
Sin is sin because it hurts us and the people around us. Don’t reject your own ability to reason; and don’t be the reason someone else thinks it’s normal to have an alcohol problem. It’s just not worth it.