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  • Joe Norton

Avoiding Intoxicating Drink (3/3/2024)

A Study of the Woes of Isaiah 5


Woe to those who rise early in the morning,

“That they may follow intoxicating drink;

“Who continue until night, till wine inflames them!” (Isaiah 5:11).


Few verses give a clearer picture of God’s attitude toward intoxicating drinks than this one by the great prophet Isaiah. A “woe” is a denunciation, indicating that God considers such a sin. Isaiah gives the frequency, the practice, the extent, and the consequences in this short passage.


Isaiah joins Solomon who taught, “Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler, And whoever is led astray by it is not wise” (Proverbs 20:1).


Even though these passages are found in the Old Testament, several verses in the New Testament teach the same principle. Jesus, for example, teaches His followers not to allow any activity to weigh them down: “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that they come on you unexpectedly” (Luke 21:34).


God’s people are not to involve themselves in any activity that would lead to their losing control of their faculties. To do so would not allow them to make decisions that are in accordance with sound Christian principles.



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