"Do not be drunk with wine but be filled with the Spirit."


#1

Given this scripture, what is the church’s definition/guidance on how many pints qualify to disobedience? I am guessing the apostles weren’t doing breathalyzer tests. Is there a difference between legally drunk and morally drunk? This question is about perspective. I am not looking for an excuse to get as soused as morally permissible. For example, if someone has had a few too many to drive but he is not being rude or falling into the works of the flesh but behaving in a good way, is he drunk in the context of scripture?


#2

Hi!

…what we must understand is the context of those passages that speak on not getting drunk…

…while there’s no passage on other drugs (yes, alcohol is a drug–yep, even rubbing alcohol), the Command is the same: “do not use/abuse something that will impair your abilities.”

When a person is under the influence of drugs he/she will be vulnerable to myriads of errors (unrighteous activities), including being susceptible to suggestions… these suggestion could come from both the physical and spiritual realms.

The problem with humans is that, regardless of the countless bad encounters/experiences with drugs, they would risk their own lives and, even more astounding, the lives of those who they *claim *to love–all for the cheep thrill of a bump/high or whatever it’s called.

God’s Concern is that we do not lose our self-control and through sheer stupidity commit ourselves to unrighteous and unsafe acts.

Maran atha!

Angel


#3

Eph 5:18 “do not get drunk”

Per the Ignatius Study Bible

Christians are called to live sober and respectable lives. For drunkenness opens the door to all kinds of dissipation (Prov 20:1), but sobriety enables us to live under the influence of the Spirit (Rom 8:5-11). Note that Paul advocates temperance and not strict abstinence from alcohol (1 Tim 5:23; CCC 1809). • The command is taken from the Greek version of Prov 23:31.

God Bless


#4

I think you should look up the “heap of sand” paradox. Asking how much alcohol counts as drunk is like asking how many grains of sand count as a pile. There’s not necessarily one right answer because it can depend on circumstances, intention, duration, and body weight. I don’t Think it’s always wrong to get a buzz, but on the other hand you can’t get drunk even if you’re a “nice drunk.” The best advice I can give is to google the heap of sand paradox for more information. I hope that helps.


#5

Practically speaking,

I get drunk on half a glass of wine. You might be able to have 2 glasses :innocent:


#6

I don’t think it means not to drink,just don’t go ridiculous about it and be a “drunkard”.
I live in Australia but come from a Slavic European background where people are predominantly Catholic and happy social drinking is one of the greatest “past times” and the majority of people drink alcohol.
I think the Irish are somewhat similar?
That said,if a person is prone to acting immoral,violent,aggressive or stupid when drinking then they very probably shouldn’t drink and of course not when pregnant too.

Pope Benedict drank beer as far as I’m aware.


#7

Consumption of alcohol must be guided/limited by the virtue of temperance:

1809 Temperance is the moral virtue that moderates the attraction of pleasures and provides balance in the use of created goods. It ensures the will’s mastery over instincts and keeps desires within the limits of what is honorable. The temperate person directs the sensitive appetites toward what is good and maintains a healthy discretion: "Do not follow your inclination and strength, walking according to the desires of your heart."72 Temperance is often praised in the Old Testament: "Do not follow your base desires, but restrain your appetites."73 In the New Testament it is called “moderation” or “sobriety.” We ought "to live sober, upright, and godly lives in this world."74

To live well is nothing other than to love God with all one's heart, with all one's soul and with all one's efforts; from this it comes about that love is kept whole and uncorrupted (through temperance). No misfortune can disturb it (and this is fortitude). It obeys only [God] (and this is justice), and is careful in discerning things, so as not to be surprised by deceit or trickery (and this is prudence).

#8

That is all along the lines of what I have been thinking. On the one hand, don’t be under the control of the intoxicant, on the other hand the beverage itself is made with properties of nature which God created with the intention of man’s enjoyment. Psalm 104. So the mild affects as well as the taste of controlled drinking are to be enjoyed by those who are under control, but the dissipation of abuse is to be avoided by those who are tempted with the excessive use.

I once had a beverage that was stronger than I expected and was feeling tipsy. I later asked a friend who was there and who has no guile if I was affected and he said my conduct was unchanged. That’s an example of why I was wondering about this. If one has a few extra in the joy of the moment or misundestimates the content of the drink, does that count as a sin of excess, gluttony or dissipation where the alcohol does not lead to immoral behavior?

One of the things I make a standard practice is to minimize temptations. I make sure that I won’t have to travel after I have my first drink and I am not in the company of people who are a bad influence. After that I have a specific stopping number that I stick by. Is this temperance? There are other things too that I don’t do. I choose not to drink around the opposite sex except my wife, although once I had drinks with a friend and his wife was there for a short time. I also don’t get into hard subjects that are going to bring temptations of attitude.


#9

Catechism:

1809 Temperance is the moral virtue that moderates the attraction of pleasures and provides balance in the use of created goods. It ensures the will’s mastery over instincts and keeps desires within the limits of what is honorable. The temperate person directs the sensitive appetites toward what is good and maintains a healthy discretion: “Do not follow your inclination and strength, walking according to the desires of your heart.” Temperance is often praised in the Old Testament: “Do not follow your base desires, but restrain your appetites.” In the New Testament it is called “moderation” or “sobriety.” We ought “to live sober, upright, and godly lives in this world.”

To live well is nothing other than to love God with all one's heart, with all one's soul and with all one's efforts; from this it comes about that love is kept whole and uncorrupted (through temperance). No misfortune can disturb it (and this is fortitude). It obeys only [God] (and this is justice), and is careful in discerning things, so as not to be surprised by deceit or trickery (and this is prudence). 

scborromeo.org/ccc/p3s1c1a7.htm#1809


#10

Drinking only within moderation.

Such is gauged though not only in terms of what other sins it may lead to…but the excess itself and the effects can already be yes sinful.


#11

Catechism:

1809 Temperance is the moral virtue that moderates the attraction of pleasures and provides balance in the use of created goods. It ensures the will’s mastery over instincts and keeps desires within the limits of what is honorable. The temperate person directs the sensitive appetites toward what is good and maintains a healthy discretion: “Do not follow your inclination and strength, walking according to the desires of your heart.” Temperance is often praised in the Old Testament: “Do not follow your base desires, but restrain your appetites.” In the New Testament it is called “moderation” or “sobriety.” We ought “to live sober, upright, and godly lives in this world.”

scborromeo.org/ccc/p3s1c1a7.htm#1809


#12

Interesting paradox. I see how drunkenness defined by counting drinks is like that. The other day I was at a fast food place and a man came in who had had something to drink. He did not appear clumsy and at first I didn’t even notice he had been drinking. But then he paid the young cashier an inappropriate complement, started to act too close to me at which point I physically recoiled. He started proclaiming obnoxiously that he wasn’t gay. All the customers were on edge because his behavior was so inappropriate. The manager called the police and he ran off. Obviously this guy was drunk. But what if he had the same BAC and didn’t make a scene? Honestly, I can think of other encounters with people much more intoxicated and much more dignified.


#13

If one wanted to live radically sober, I suppose one could say that zero recreational drinking would be ideal. However, scripture specifically mentions wine as a blessing from God. So, temperate drinking is receiving a blessing and intemperate drinking is dissipation and there is no specific BAC count that seems to create a clear line between–like the heap of sand paradox. So how does one know where to stop if their goal is to enjoy the gift of alcohol with temperance?


#14

The* virtue* of temperance, reason, prayer, guidance from others, the virtue of prudence, medical science etc…

the judgment of an informed and well formed conscience guided by prudence and temperance etc…

(And of course one must certainly avoid drunkeness (ie loss of ones reason…))


#15

Re:heap of sand paradox, I think I solved the hypothetical case. The question of removing one grain at a time is a misdirection of the quintessential characteristic of a heap. A heap is actually more a matter of orientation than number. If we say a heap is two or more particals of a substance oriented so that at least one is supported by the other, you have a heap. In the case of sand, now we have a practical definition by which we can make a logical rule as to where a sample ceases to be a heap. In the same way drunkenness is primarily a matter of orientation with respect to virtue. So a person who begins to be disordered on the fruits of the Spirit as a result of intoxicants is drunk. However suppose a person is coerced by a persecutor to drink extreme amounts of alcohol in an attempt to pin the conscience of the Christian and so motivate apostasy through moral injury is not drunk no matter the quantity of alcohol if his body soul mind and strength remain virtuously ordered in devotion to God. Does that work in catholic world view?


#16

Hi, Elena!

…yeah, the issue is not about not drinking… in Jesus’ time the water was not safe to drink so wine would be mixed in with the drinking water; Jesus enjoyed a cup of wine or two as he ate along with His Disciples and others… so there’s no condemnation of the spirits… (I think that a Monk or two dabbled in the industry of beer, wine, and other alcoholic drinks.)

…but as Rose mentioned, half a cup of wine tips her over… knowing that if she drinks in excess (for her it would be anywhere from a full cup to a bottle) she is going against God’s Commands.

I’ve known a few that would get drunk from just the fumes… the second that cap is opened they start with the loosening of the tongue and the infantile giggles… I’ve also known people who get so plastered that they can’t find their car in a parking lot containing a mere two or three cars… or get home without a wallet, watch, jewelry, coat… only to replay the experience over and over and over again…

…yet, we can get drunk on other things such as vanity, power, wealth, knowledge, ego, and even religiosity… so we must avoid these excesses as well!

Maran atha!

Angel


#17

Hi!

…I don’t think that you would be guilty of sinning if sample an alcoholic beverage that overpowers you… unless you take advantage of the occasion to act contrary to Scriptures or unless you knowingly seek to “enjoy” the experience again–upping the ante for a better high/effect.

People often use “under the influence” as a catch all excuse for immoral acts… have you ever heard of someone “under the influence” looking out for a widow or the elderly or dumping a load of cash at the local parish’s poor box?

The “influence” seems to always revolve around a sinful desire/act.

…I also hear the comment: “it’s social drinking…”

It seems that humans cannot be/feel good unless they are juiced up! :banghead::banghead::banghead:

Perhaps that’s why God wants us High on His Spirit and not on the spirits!

Maran atha!

Angel


#18

Hi!

…I have also heard of functioning drunks/addicts… these people, like the functioning illiterates, do seem to coast by… they even function in very stressful and demanding jobs… have you every thought about those train/plain/truck/car/boat accidents? …many of these, I suspect, are due to the abuse of alcohol and other drugs… the human body was Created in such a way that it adapts to various stresses… yet, there’s always a breaking point… the worst part is that the mind may be too far gone to actually understand this… as that depiction of the drunkard insisting on having “one more” over the objection of the bartender/waiter/waitress… as he/she slides down onto the floor, the hand is raised as the rebuttal is pronounced: ‘…I know my limitations!’

Maran atha!

Angel


#19

Hi!

…the less the better.

…why do you need alcohol/drugs to be happy?

…it’s like the teenage pregnancy “cure”: contraception.

…no, that didn’t work…

…ok, ok… abortion…

…no that still didn’t work…

…ok, ok, already… ‘here’s the morning after pill, OK!’

…actually, abstinence is the only thing that fully works 100% against pregnancy, stds, and all sort of immoral and compromising acts!

…so if you know that three beers/drinks make you “happy”… limit your intake to two.

…but don’t look to circumvent by “eating” before, during, and after the consumption of alcohol since your body might readily adjust and create a craving for alcohol as soon as you begin to eat or have a yearning for food.

Maran atha!

Angel


#20

Hi!

…now you are crossing boundaries…

Catholics, as any other Christians, cannot choose to sin in order to save face, property, valuables, or life…

If that were so, I, being a poor person, could well choose a life of crime to support myself: ‘poverty forced me to become a thief, robber, holdup artist…’

I don’t drink, smoke, dance… I’ve never been in the hospital because I do not engage in such rituals!

…for your example to work, that person would have to be physically restrained and forcefully fed/inject… if he/she can walk away or simply refuse the offer and does not, he/she is guilty of the choice made.

Maran atha!

Angel


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