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(#144) The Proverbs of Solomon 20:1-Make That “Toast” – Toast!

Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 20:1: “Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler, And whoever is led astray by it is not wise.”

“Wine” that’s “a mocker,” capable of causing “drunkenness,” is fermented. “New wine” expands by fermentation and could burst an “old wineskin” (Luke 5:37-39). Jesus Christ’s first miracle changed water into “good wine,” or “grape juice,” because the “master of the feast” was not expecting the fresh juice Jesus had made, because the guests had “well drunk” (John 2:1-11), that is, the grape juice they began with had been fermenting while they had been drinking. The only description of the Passover juice Jesus used to represent the blood of His sacrifice is “fruit of the vine,” depicting it as freshly squeezed as possible (Matthew 26:29; Mark 14:25; Luke 22:18). Knowing the risk of drunkenness (Ephesians 5:18), Paul advised “a little wine for your stomach’s sake and your frequent infirmities” (1 Timothy 5:23). Timothy must have been an abstainer that he would have to be told “a little” could have medicinal use.

“Strong drink” is that which is fermented to a greater degree, thus stronger in its effects, sometimes known as “liquor or spirits.” The obvious impact is not just drunkenness, but violence.

“Drunk” is a term referring to a loss of moral judgment, therefore “wine mocks” its user. Noah became drunk, lost his sense of shame, and exposed his nakedness (Genesis 9:20-28); Lot lost his sense of sexual purity and committed incest with his daughters (Genesis 19:30-38); alcoholics  who “linger long at the wine,” and “go in search of mixed wine” lose control of their words, bodily injuries, and memory (Proverbs 23:29-35); government officials lose control of their sense of duty, law, justice and pervert and ignore the laws of the land (Proverbs 31:4-5); religious leaders err in knowledge of God’s Word, and vomit on their tables (Isaiah 28:7-8). In spite of the damage it causes, wine and spirits are freely sold and consumed—how unwise is that? One of the areas of the United States that consumes the most alcoholic beverages is Washington, D.C.! No wonder that government perverts Constitutional Law, because those drunk on power lose their inhibitions by being drunk on alcohol!

Alcohol is a drug, but other drugs that are abused for their power over a human being are certainly included in the term “sorcery or witchcraft” (the Greek word is “pharmakeia,” a dispenser of drugs). All substances that chemically control a person are included in this discussion, and must be sparingly used, not for “social” purposes!

All “drunkenness” will be punished on the Judgment Day (1 Peter 4:1-5), because it is a “work of the flesh” that keeps a person from inheriting the “kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19-21). “Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit’” (Acts 2:38). Clear your mind from the effects of drugs, and cleanse your soul by coming to Jesus Christ.

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version,unless otherwise noted.

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