Jesus as a highly addictive neurotoxic drug?

With all due respect, I’ve come to see alcohol for what it is: a highly addictive, neurotoxic, i.e., poisonous, drug. It has ruined millions of lives and enabled immeasurable sin. I wonder if there’s any worthwhile writings speculating why Jesus would choose it when instituting the Eucharist?

I understand my view might seem one-sided and most believe moderate alcohol intake is normal and healthy–but I believe there’s a real case that it’s nothing but bad and arguably evil.

Ethanol itself tastes horrible and half a pint of it would kill you. The only reason to drink it is for the dopamine hit, same as any other drug. Its inebriating effects dull the mind and senses. This might make one feel “happy” or “relaxed” but only on a superficial level. Enjoying the taste stems purely from association.

Meanwhile, it’s addictive, leading to cravings, which multiply as tolerance builds. It results in drunkenness, sin, destroyed marriages, families, physical damage, financial loss. Just because it’s socially acceptable–and encouraged–doesn’t mean it’s right.

I believe the most effective way to quit it is to demonize it–but that’s where the concept of the consecrated wine throws me off.

Any thoughts?

You are reading Twenty-first Century science into the culture of 2000 years ago. Wine was a table staple, more akin to tea or coffee today.


Alcohol is also a fuel and detergent. We should not demonize things. Gluttony is the disordered consumption of things that are, in and of themselves, good. The material world is good, or God would not have created it. If you are opposed to consuming alcohol in the Eucharist, must is also permissible. Because of its high sugar content, we could say (if we were so inclined) that it leads to diabetes and is problematic that way. Everything in moderation.


People drank beer, wine and other fermented drinks for thousands of years before the advent of reliably clean water supplies. Such drinks were often quite low in alcohol content. There are also numerous warnings all through Scripture about not overindulging in either wine or food.

There is no reason to demonize something because a subset of people misuse it, or cannot consume it. (We don’t demonize the wheat in the host because some people have celiac and can’t consume it.) For many of us, alcohol is a pleasant gift from God to be used in moderation or even sparingly, and we do fine with that. I probably drink 5 times a year or less at this point. For a few people, alcohol is something that triggers addiction, and these people, or anyone else who just doesn’t want to drink alcohol for whatever reason, are not forced to consume alcohol as part of being a Catholic (Unless they are the priest, in which case I understand there are special low-alcohol wines available to them for Mass use).

In any event, the Church has been using wine in its Mass for 2000 years and is not going to all of a sudden change because you personally have decided you disagree.


:neutral_face: Every month we either have the thread about alcohol or the thread about how woman should not wear pants.

I find them both almost equally absurd.


Maybe they didnt have tomato juice or many red drinks back then.

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The problem isn’t with the things of this world, but with us, who lack moral integrity or self-control over our use of them due -to our distancing from our Creator, but that’s another part of the story. Anyway, food is good, but it can also kill you; gluttony is not good.

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Everything in the right dose can be toxic and kill you. Even water.

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Oh really? The Church isn’t going to quit consecrating wine? No kidding. Obviously, Jesus knew what he was doing–I was asking if anyone knew of any good writings on the subject. I think it’s valid to question the contradiction of wine being used in the most sacred way possible while the same substance is, in essence, an addictive poison. (Obviously, not everyone has a problem with alcohol–that doesn’t change the fact that people drink it because it’s a drug that feels good.)

There’s the book Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist, but I don’t remember if the author got into why wine was used in the Jewish ritual meals. The use of wine goes all the way back to Melchizedek in the book of Genesis.

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I am not sure I really understand the OP’s concern.
We are free to not partake of either part of the Eucharist if one has an addiction or allergy.


It’s not a bad question given the problems associated with alcohol, back in Jesus’ day as well as now. I once attended a Pentecostal church where many people suffered from addictions, and the pastor assured everyone that the “wine” that Jesus used was actually grape juice (they always had plenty of esoteria on hand :smile:). But, again, food is addictive. Maybe we should question the host as well?

forgive me…

They offer a nonalcohlic wine at my church

Also back in the day wasnt wine a valuable drink, some only the wealthy could get… I’m guessing, I might be wrong

Hey there–I’m actually not concerned from a practical standpoint but am curious from philosophical/theological standpoint. Not to say it’s not a meaningful question for me.

Well, I did say I didn’t understand your question. :woozy_face:

No one is receiving the miniscule tiny sip amount of wine at Holy Communion because “it’s a drug that feels good”.

I have no idea what you hope to accomplish with this thread, especially given that as I and several other people have said, the communicants at Mass (Except for the priest, who has the low-alcohol wine option if he has an alcohol problem) are not forced to consume any alcohol at Mass, ever. At many Western Church parishes, the consecrated wine isn’t even made available to the laity for communion.

This is a non-issue.

There are all kinds of Scripture references supporting why wine is used in the Mass.
If this is a purely philosophical question concerned with demonizing material objects, you should have posted it in Philosophy.


There’s plenty of passages from the Bible about how alcohol is a gift from God. You can google them.

The fact that Christ utilized it in a sacrament is proof it isn’t evil.


See, thing is, we need food: food is sustenance. It seems natural that we crave it. And natural to look at those cravings as temptation of the flesh.

What’s the difference between wine and grape juice? Alcohol. What’s alcohol? It’s really nothing but a neurotoxic poison which is the opposite of sustenance. It’s bad for us. That’s why it strikes me as curious Jesus chose it.

That’s okay :slight_smile:

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