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Author Topic: Is the drinking of alcoholic beverages a sin?  (Read 5578 times) Average Rating: 0
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Kuriakose
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« on: July 15, 2010, 10:31:17 AM »

Hello this is my first day as being a member to this forum,

Recently I had a discussion with one of my pentecostal friends about the topic of drinking and he refered drinking to 1 Corinthians 6:19, because alcohol causes damage ot the body it is a sin. I am now wondering is drinking a sin since it causes damage to oneself, and since our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost? What is the Orthodox Church view on drinking, I know we use wine during the service, but is there any other uses of alcohol in our services?

Thank you all!
May God's abundant mercy be upon all of us.
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« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2010, 10:39:40 AM »

I'll leave it to the more educated but I just want to point out that a protestant is more than likely to come up with that point, since the devil hides under every rock according to them  Wink. Our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, but must we then abstain from going out into the sun, from eating anything that isn't 100% healthy (and nothing is), from playing sports, etc... all of which damage our body???

The key concept from a logical point of view is moderation. Everything in moderation. A glass of wine can in fact be good for you, with all the anti-oxidants and pallates.

As for other services, yes. As a Serb Orthodox I celebrate my patron family saint, St. Archangel Michael on Nov. 21 and we made a Slavski Kolac (Slava Cake?), of whatever type, it is taken to church where the priest blesses it, which usually results in wine being added to the cake.
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« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2010, 10:53:15 AM »


Welcome to the Forum!

No, drinking is not a sin.  Too much is.  There are times in the Church when we fast from wine to spiritually prepare ourselves, but there is no absolute ban.

Below are a few selections from the Old Testament, but do not forget that the Lord Himself offered a cup of wine as His blood.  There are revisionists who try to say He only used 'grape juice,' but such a thing was unknown in that time: all grape juice was fermented as a means of preserving it.  Grape juice alone would not have lasted without refrigeration, nor even been available at the time of the Last Supper, when the grapes had not yet matured.

Genesis 27:25 - So he said, "Bring it to me, and I will eat of my son's game, that I may bless you." And he brought it to him, and he ate; he also brought him wine and he drank.

Proverbs 23:20-21 - Do not be with heavy drinkers of wine, Or with gluttonous eaters of meat; For the heavy drinker and the glutton will come to poverty, And drowsiness will clothe one with rags.

Ecclesiastes 9:7 - Go then, eat your bread in happiness and drink your wine with a cheerful heart; for God has already approved your works.

Psalm 103:13-14 - He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for man to cultivate— bringing forth food from the earth: wine that gladdens the heart of man, oil to make his face shine, and bread that sustains his heart.










Hello this is my first day as being a member to this forum,

Recently I had a discussion with one of my pentecostal friends about the topic of drinking and he refered drinking to 1 Corinthians 6:19, because alcohol causes damage ot the body it is a sin. I am now wondering is drinking a sin since it causes damage to oneself, and since our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost? What is the Orthodox Church view on drinking, I know we use wine during the service, but is there any other uses of alcohol in our services?

Thank you all!
May God's abundant mercy be upon all of us.
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« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2010, 11:05:05 AM »

Welcome to the forum Kuriakose!

Remember also that the first miracle, recorded in holy scripture, performed by Christ was to create wine out of water at a wedding when the guests had already drunk everything the house had to offer.
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« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2010, 11:12:13 AM »

Hello...

Hello and welcome to the forum.  Smiley

Recently I had a discussion with one of my pentecostal friends about the topic of drinking and he... [said] ...it is a sin.

 Since your question has already been answered, I'll speak to how important it is that we use caution and discernment when choosing friends.  If not careful, our friends can lead us away from the Church.
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« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2010, 11:17:43 AM »

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.
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« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2010, 11:32:39 AM »

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.
Let's not go quite that far. If I abstain from eating chocolate-covered locusts, am I spurning God's creation? Sometimes there are valid reasons to avoid the use of alcoholic beverages. Yes, I know my illustration is silly and exaggerated. But please don't condemn those who make the choice to abstain. The Apostle Paul has some rather pertinent things to say about the relationship between conscience and what we consume in his first letter to the Corinthians.

Also, don't we offer to God at our Divine Liturgy bread and wine, both of which have been processed (created) by man out of what He has given to us? Bread and wine are not part of God's creation in the way that wheat and grapes are. That's what makes it our offering to God.
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« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2010, 12:54:34 PM »

Besides the example of Christ's miracle at the wedding at Cana, does not the Psalmist praise God for wine, which "gladdens the heart of man"? (Something we hear every vespers.)
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« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2010, 01:07:29 PM »

Proverbs 20:1 says:

"Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise."

So the Bible is not without its words of warning against strong drink.
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« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2010, 01:32:27 PM »

 Grin Thank you for providing some balance Rosehip. I don't think anyone here is promoting uncontrolled drunkenness by the passages quoted.
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« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2010, 02:06:42 PM »

its not a sin to drink, if not done to excess. however, at the same time,you will find some Fathers/Mothers and Saints who made it a point to wholly abstain (Eldress Rachel of Russia -- if I have the name correct ...) and some praised those who abstained altogether (St. Clement of Alexandria). Also, St. Luke makes the point in his Gospel that as St. John the Baptist is wholly dedicated to God he will not drink strong drink or wine. but again, drinking in moderation is not a sin.
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« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2010, 02:35:19 PM »

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.
Let's not go quite that far. If I abstain from eating chocolate-covered locusts, am I spurning God's creation? Sometimes there are valid reasons to avoid the use of alcoholic beverages. Yes, I know my illustration is silly and exaggerated. But please don't condemn those who make the choice to abstain. The Apostle Paul has some rather pertinent things to say about the relationship between conscience and what we consume in his first letter to the Corinthians.

Also, don't we offer to God at our Divine Liturgy bread and wine, both of which have been processed (created) by man out of what He has given to us? Bread and wine are not part of God's creation in the way that wheat and grapes are. That's what makes it our offering to God.

Yes, let's not even get close to that. Research has shown two contradictory results:

a. Red wine (and in some research studies, other types of alcohol, beer and spirits) do have a benefical impact on one's health IF only small amounts are ingested.

b. For some folks with the predisposition to alcoholism, any amount of alcohol is harmful. (For those individuals taking immunosuppressive medications, use of alcohol may pose a special risk)

Alcoholism, of course, is a tragic addiction that usually has awful consequences for the sufferer, his/her family, fellow workers, neighbors, community and the nation. Thus, alcohol consumption is a risk that each one of us must undertake with due deliberation. In some cases, it may also be best if the decision is made in conjunction with one's physician.
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« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2010, 03:11:32 AM »

It is also important to consider the context of drinking- with whom are we drinking, why we drink, and whether or not our drinking poses a stumbling block to others. If we know someone is an alcoholic and we drink in their presence while justifiying our action as our "Christian liberty," then I think that is sinful and selfish.

I drink beer in moderation, but I don't patronize bars or casinos which I believe encourage immoral actions like drunk driving and gambling. I also prefer not to spend 5 dollars for one beer!


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« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2010, 06:13:11 AM »

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.

How do you explain the Nazarite vow?
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« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2010, 07:46:38 AM »

It is also important to consider the context of drinking- with whom are we drinking, why we drink, and whether or not our drinking poses a stumbling block to others. If we know someone is an alcoholic and we drink in their presence while justifiying our action as our "Christian liberty," then I think that is sinful and selfish.
Good point.

Quote
I drink beer in moderation, but I don't patronize bars or casinos which I believe encourage immoral actions like drunk driving and gambling. I also prefer not to spend 5 dollars for one beer!
I've never seen a bar that encouraged drunk driving. Every one that I've been to encourages having a designated driver and will call a taxi if a patron does not have one, or if the designated driver has also been drinking. It makes good business sense, too. The worst thing that can happen to a bar is for their name to be on the news in association with a drunk driver. So it's better to pay the $20 to get the patron home; after all, he's probably spent enough that even with the taxi ride, the bar still profits from him.
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« Reply #15 on: July 17, 2010, 09:00:43 AM »

I've never seen a bar that encouraged drunk driving. Every one that I've been to encourages having a designated driver and will call a taxi if a patron does not have one, or if the designated driver has also been drinking. It makes good business sense, too. The worst thing that can happen to a bar is for their name to be on the news in association with a drunk driver. So it's better to pay the $20 to get the patron home; after all, he's probably spent enough that even with the taxi ride, the bar still profits from him.

I think this is generally correct, but not always. I have a relative that is one DUI away from going to jail. He goes to the same bar in his small town, and the bar seemed to not stop him from driving even when he was clearly drunk (though now he finally has a designated driver). Was the bar afraid of losing a regular--and possibly some of his friends--by offending him? I don't know. It took quite a while for any of them to come to their senses, though. Thankfully no one was hurt while this went on.
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« Reply #16 on: July 17, 2010, 11:08:45 AM »

I also prefer not to spend 5 dollars for one beer!

Selam

Paying $5.00 for beer is truly a sin!  Now, paying $15.00 for a dram of double malted, well aged Lagavulin is another matter entirely . . .
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« Reply #17 on: July 17, 2010, 11:21:20 AM »

Quote
It is also important to consider the context of drinking- with whom are we drinking, why we drink, and whether or not our drinking poses a stumbling block to others. If we know someone is an alcoholic and we drink in their presence while justifiying our action as our "Christian liberty," then I think that is sinful and selfish.


I agree. Recently, I saw someone's photos of their pilgrimage to Russia, and was shocked to see how the people in this group were drinking beer/alchohol a great deal. After having spent so many years in an Eastern European country and seeing the terrible ravages of rampant alchoholism, I don't think I would be able to drink alchohol at all in such a setting-out of sadness and respect for those countless hoards who are drinking themselves to an early death and unable to control their addiction. The terrible memories of drunken, wasted men lying in the snow, or dead in the middle of the highways, etc. is still too fresh and painful.
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« Reply #18 on: July 17, 2010, 12:34:41 PM »

I also prefer not to spend 5 dollars for one beer!

Selam

Paying $5.00 for beer is truly a sin!  Now, paying $15.00 for a dram of double malted, well aged Lagavulin is another matter entirely . . .

Cheers!  Grin
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« Reply #19 on: July 17, 2010, 12:38:00 PM »

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.

How do you explain the Nazarite vow?
I don't explain it. Why should I?
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« Reply #20 on: July 17, 2010, 02:46:05 PM »

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.

How do you explain the Nazarite vow?
I don't explain it. Why should I?

Because you're saying that it's a sin to abstain from drinking but one of the stipulations in the Nazarite vow (which Paul followed once btw) is to abstain from drinking.
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« Reply #21 on: July 17, 2010, 02:49:22 PM »

Because you're saying that it's a sin to abstain from drinking but one of the stipulations in the Nazarite vow (which Paul followed once btw) is to abstain from drinking.

What portion of the Holy Scriptures indicates that St. Paul took the Nazarite vow? I have heard this referenced many times but have never seen the source.
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« Reply #22 on: July 17, 2010, 03:17:46 PM »

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.
I think there's more to this condemnation than you're putting forward.  It's a sin to abstain from drinking alcohol (and from eating meat, and from enjoying marital relations, etc.) only if your motivation is the total disdain for the things of this material world that the Gnostics and Manicheans taught.
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« Reply #23 on: July 18, 2010, 10:16:48 AM »

Because you're saying that it's a sin to abstain from drinking but one of the stipulations in the Nazarite vow (which Paul followed once btw) is to abstain from drinking.

What portion of the Holy Scriptures indicates that St. Paul took the Nazarite vow? I have heard this referenced many times but have never seen the source.

And after Paul was there many days, he gave a farewell to the brothers and journeyed by sea to go to Syria. And Priscilla and Aquila went with him, after he had shaved his head in Cenchrea, because a vow was vowed by him. (Acts 18:18)

Stipulations of the Nazirite vow...

YHWH spoke to Moses, saying: Speak to the Israelites and say to them: If anyone, man or woman, explicitly utters a nazirite's vow, to set himself apart for YHWH, he shall abstain from wine and any other intoxicant; he shall not drink vinegar of wine or of any other intoxicant, neither shall he drink anything in which grapes have been steeped, nor eat grapes fresh or dried. Throughout his term as nazirite, he may not eat anything that is obtained from the grapevine, even seeds or skin. Throughout the term of his vow as nazirite, no razor shall touch his head; it shall remain consecrated until the completion of his term as nazirite of YHWH, the hair of his head being left to grow untrimmed. Throughout the term that he has set apart for YHWH, he shall not go in where there is a dead person. Even if his father or mother, or his brother or sister should die, he must not defile himself for them, since hair set apart for his God is upon his head: throughout his term as nazirite he is consecrated to YHWH. (Numbers 6:1-8)

*No alcohol or fermented drink
*No grapes or anything derived from grapes
*No cutting or shaving of the hair
*No physical contact with a corpse

...for the duration of the vow. The Nazirite vow is temporary unless parents vow to make their children Nazirites for life (Samson, Samuel & John the Baptist).

It is rather a sin to abstain from drinking, spurning God's creation. Those are anathemized with the Gnostics and the Manicheans.
I think there's more to this condemnation than you're putting forward.  It's a sin to abstain from drinking alcohol (and from eating meat, and from enjoying marital relations, etc.) only if your motivation is the total disdain for the things of this material world that the Gnostics and Manicheans taught.

Thank you for the clarification PTA, yes if that's the reason for the abstinence then I agree that it is sinful.
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« Reply #24 on: July 18, 2010, 10:53:36 AM »

Because you're saying that it's a sin to abstain from drinking but one of the stipulations in the Nazarite vow (which Paul followed once btw) is to abstain from drinking.

What portion of the Holy Scriptures indicates that St. Paul took the Nazarite vow? I have heard this referenced many times but have never seen the source.

And after Paul was there many days, he gave a farewell to the brothers and journeyed by sea to go to Syria. And Priscilla and Aquila went with him, after he had shaved his head in Cenchrea, because a vow was vowed by him. (Acts 18:18)
What is there in this passage that indicates that it was specifically a Nazirite vow that St. Paul vowed, and not just any old vow?
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« Reply #25 on: July 18, 2010, 11:43:52 AM »

But of course no! There are lines in Holy Scriptures, e.g. in Psalms, that cannot be interpreted in any other way except that drinking wine is a joy, a wonderful gift to people. I would posit that re-opening threads like this one is a sin, because it is so irrational.  Grin How many more times should it be said that no, drinking alcohol (no exact amount as in "one size fits it all" specified) is not a sin - although yes, being drunk is?
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« Reply #26 on: July 18, 2010, 07:17:23 PM »

I'm sure there would be a limit though. I'm not entirely sure how Marijuana works, but with Alcohol, we all know there is a certain limit we shouldn't cross, and once we cross that limit, it becomes a sin. As for other substances, I think it depends on how fast they affect you.

How much "affect" is too much, in your opinion?

For alcohol, drunkenness. For drugs, it would be the equivalent to drunkenness...
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« Reply #27 on: July 18, 2010, 07:26:47 PM »

I'm sure there would be a limit though. I'm not entirely sure how Marijuana works, but with Alcohol, we all know there is a certain limit we shouldn't cross, and once we cross that limit, it becomes a sin. As for other substances, I think it depends on how fast they affect you.

How much "affect" is too much, in your opinion?

For alcohol, drunkenness. For drugs, it would be the equivalent to drunkenness...

I guess what I'm curious about though is when is it no longer 'tipsy' or 'buzzed', but 'drunk'?

Or in more biblical terms, when is man's heart overly gladdened?
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« Reply #28 on: July 18, 2010, 07:40:45 PM »

To me, all three terms indicate that a person is drunk. 
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« Reply #29 on: July 18, 2010, 07:42:00 PM »

I'm sure there would be a limit though. I'm not entirely sure how Marijuana works, but with Alcohol, we all know there is a certain limit we shouldn't cross, and once we cross that limit, it becomes a sin. As for other substances, I think it depends on how fast they affect you.

How much "affect" is too much, in your opinion?

For alcohol, drunkenness. For drugs, it would be the equivalent to drunkenness...

I guess what I'm curious about though is when is it no longer 'tipsy' or 'buzzed', but 'drunk'?

Or in more biblical terms, when is man's heart overly gladdened?

For me it's when I can't walk straight, see straight, talk incoherently and laugh at everything. That's only happened to me once (back when I was young and stupid) but it took a LOT of Vodka to get me to this point. The funny thing though is that it took only one drag of Swiss Skunk to achieve the same effect (again when I was young and stupid).
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« Reply #30 on: July 18, 2010, 07:52:36 PM »

To me, all three terms indicate that a person is drunk. 

Then what is heartgladness like, as opposed to buzzedness?
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« Reply #31 on: July 18, 2010, 08:09:22 PM »

For me it's 3-4 drinks, for others it might be more. I measure it as when I lose control of how much I'm taking in. Theres a certain point where you really stop caring, and to me, thats about the point of being drunk.
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« Reply #32 on: July 18, 2010, 08:12:02 PM »

To me, all three terms indicate that a person is drunk. 

Then what is heartgladness like, as opposed to buzzedness?

I'm not familiar with the term "buzzdeness" but I would liken "heartgladness" to being "tipsy". I'm not the life of the party, "tipsy" is when I become the life of the party, I become louder and more daring but not to the point where I don't know what I'm doing or make an ass of myself. But that's the point when I stop drinking.
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« Reply #33 on: July 18, 2010, 09:02:25 PM »

Does one need an "official word" from the hierarchy to know what is a sin and what is not?
I'm sure one does need an "official word" .. it makes things easier.

But what frustrates me about my original question is that there seems to be no official stance on it... its like I just want to speak to Christ Himself and ask Him directly.
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« Reply #34 on: July 18, 2010, 09:35:49 PM »

Does one need an "official word" from the hierarchy to know what is a sin and what is not?
I'm sure one does need an "official word" .. it makes things easier.

But what frustrates me about my original question is that there seems to be no official stance on it... its like I just want to speak to Christ Himself and ask Him directly.
A sufficiently spiritual person could discern what is sin and what is not. The rest of us need some help. I do understand the basics of what is sin and what is not; hence, I have discerned on this matter as I have described above. I feel reasonably certain that my definition is at least not going to cause my soul any harm. However, it does stand as a matter of personal opinion, and as I have no authority on this matter, I wanted it to be very clear that others may have a different, yet equally spiritual, opinion, having derived theirs in the same manner as I derived mine, yet coming to a different conclusion.
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« Reply #35 on: July 18, 2010, 10:35:20 PM »

From the Bases of the Social Concept of the Russian Orthodox Church:

XI. 6. The Bible says that «wine maketh glad the heart of man» (Ps. 104:15) and «it is good... if it be drunk moderately» (Sir. 31:27). But we repeatedly find both in Holy Scriptures and the writings of the holy fathers the strong denunciation of the vice of drinking, which, beginning unnoticeably, leads to many other ruinous sins. Very often drinking causes the disintegration of family, bringing enormous suffering to both the victim of this sinful infirmity and his relatives, especially children.

«Drinking is animosity against God… Drinking is a voluntarily courted devil… Drinking drives the Holy Spirit away», St. Basil the Great writes. «Drinking is the root of all evils… The drunkard is a living corpse… Drinking in itself can serve as punishment, filling as it is the soul with confusion, filling the mind with darkness, making a drunk prisoner, subjecting one to innumerable diseases, internal and external… Drinking is a many-sided and many-headed beast… Here it gives rise to fornication, there to anger, here to the dullness of the mind and the heart, there to impure love… Nobody obeys the ill will of the devil as faithfully as a drunkard does», St. John Chrysostom exhorted. «A drunk man is capable of every evil and prone to every temptation… Drinking renders its adherent incapable of any task», St. Tikhon Zadonsky testifies.

Even more destructive is ever increasing drug-addiction — the passion that makes a person enslaved by it extremely vulnerable to the impact of dark forces. With every year this terrible infirmity engulfs more and more people, taking away great many a life. The fact that the most liable to it are young people makes it a special threat to society. The selfish interests of the drug business help to promote, especially among youth, the development of a special «drug» pseudo-culture. It imposes on immature people the stereotypes of behaviour in which the use of drugs is seen as a «normal» and even indispensable attribute of relations.

The principal reason for the desire of many of our contemporaries to escape into a realm of alcoholic or narcotic illusions is spiritual emptiness, loss of the meaning of life and blurred moral guiding lines. Drug-addiction and alcoholism point to the spiritual disease that has affected not only the individual, but also society as a whole. This is a retribution for the ideology of consumerism, for the cult of material prosperity, for the lack of spirituality and the loss of authentic ideals. In her pastoral compassion for the victims of alcoholism and drug-addiction, the Church offers them spiritual support in overcoming the vice. Without denying the need of medical aid to be given at the critical stages of drug-addiction, the Church pays special attention to the prevention and rehabilitation which are the most effective when those suffering participate consciously in the eucharistic and communal life.

http://orthodoxeurope.org/page/3/14.aspx

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« Reply #36 on: July 18, 2010, 11:05:01 PM »

Well, the above looks like the typical 1000 words to say nothing that is so common with official decrees.  We start with "the Bible says it's OK", move to the Fathers quotes on drinking (I would be interested in the actual word used is "drinking" or drunkedness), continue with discussion of the Church being here to help us (obviously within the context of drunkedness or addiction) without ever answering the question about whether or not it is a sin to have a glass a wine with the meal.  Of course, no mention is make of the fact that our sinless Lord changed water into wine, and was called a winebibber by the Jews (indicating that he at least drank wine).  So, as far as an official statement would be concerned, why not look at the obvious.  If Jesus drank, and if Jesus changed water into wine, wine cannot be evil and partaking of it cannot be sin.  If this is not the case, then the Lords creation is not good (since He Himself made the wine in the case of the wedding of Cana), and Jesus would have sinned by partaking of wine.  I really don't understand why this is still an issue.  Wine is good, Drunkedness is bad.   
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« Reply #37 on: July 18, 2010, 11:10:55 PM »

I seem to remember reading in Chrysostom that even drunkenness itself is not inherently sinful, but rather is to be avoided because it inflames the passions and makes one highly vulnerable to all manner of temptations to sin.
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« Reply #38 on: July 19, 2010, 03:47:27 AM »

Perhaps some brutal honesty will help.

I enjoy drinking beer. I believe I drink in moderation. I never, ever, drive even after having only one beer. I haven't had a hangover in 5 or 6 years. That being said, I honestly think that this "Christian liberty" of mine is more of a hinderance than a help to me spiritually. I am thankful for the many fast days and fasting periods throughout the year, or else I can honestly say that it could easily become a problem for me.

Now, whether or not this means my drinking is sinful, I do not know. I don't believe it is, or else I would quit. Years ago I used to drink hard liquor heavily, and that was a problem for me. I never learned how to drink liquor in moderation, and so I gave it up completely. But that's not to say others can't imbibe hard liquor moderately.


Anyway, those are just some of my honest thoughts.


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« Reply #39 on: July 19, 2010, 06:55:38 AM »

Hello this is my first day as being a member to this forum,

Recently I had a discussion with one of my pentecostal friends about the topic of drinking and he refered drinking to 1 Corinthians 6:19, because alcohol causes damage ot the body it is a sin. I am now wondering is drinking a sin since it causes damage to oneself, and since our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost? What is the Orthodox Church view on drinking, I know we use wine during the service, but is there any other uses of alcohol in our services?

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May God's abundant mercy be upon all of us.
drinking to get drunk is a sin.  you seriously hurt yourself mentally and physically.  drinking in moderation is FINE!  wine has been shown to have benefits to your health.  the blood of our Lord that we recieve every Sunday is in the form of wine.
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« Reply #40 on: July 19, 2010, 12:11:29 PM »

Even if some monastics and ascetics warn against drinking, as in the long quotation above, others drink wine. The monks at the monastery I frequent in Romanian get wine with meals fairly often (though watered down).
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« Reply #41 on: July 19, 2010, 05:52:24 PM »

Perhaps some brutal honesty will help.

I enjoy drinking beer. I believe I drink in moderation. I never, ever, drive even after having only one beer. I haven't had a hangover in 5 or 6 years. That being said, I honestly think that this "Christian liberty" of mine is more of a hinderance than a help to me spiritually. I am thankful for the many fast days and fasting periods throughout the year, or else I can honestly say that it could easily become a problem for me.

Now, whether or not this means my drinking is sinful, I do not know. I don't believe it is, or else I would quit. Years ago I used to drink hard liquor heavily, and that was a problem for me. I never learned how to drink liquor in moderation, and so I gave it up completely. But that's not to say others can't imbibe hard liquor moderately.


Anyway, those are just some of my honest thoughts.


Selam

I'm with you. Theoretically I'm in the pro-alcohol camp. I believe God made alcohol for us to enjoy. But on a practical level I know how it affects me, and the older I get the less interested I've become in drinking. I feel it can be a distraction. I've also found that sometimes even a small amount of alcohol makes me more susceptible to temptations and passions.

I think the best way to enjoy drinking is as a form of fellowship. I always enjoy drinking in the parish hall on feast days. No one really gets dtunk, but a lot of human hearts are gladdened lol.
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« Reply #42 on: July 21, 2010, 02:33:41 PM »

Because you're saying that it's a sin to abstain from drinking but one of the stipulations in the Nazarite vow (which Paul followed once btw) is to abstain from drinking.

What portion of the Holy Scriptures indicates that St. Paul took the Nazarite vow? I have heard this referenced many times but have never seen the source.

And after Paul was there many days, he gave a farewell to the brothers and journeyed by sea to go to Syria. And Priscilla and Aquila went with him, after he had shaved his head in Cenchrea, because a vow was vowed by him. (Acts 18:18)
What is there in this passage that indicates that it was specifically a Nazirite vow that St. Paul vowed, and not just any old vow?

Nazarene-  Could you please help us understand why you feel St. Paul's vow was Nazarite? 
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« Reply #43 on: July 21, 2010, 11:20:01 PM »

Likewise, if St. Paul's vow was the Nazarite Vow, how could he have received the Blood of the Lord, which one would assume he did based on his epistles?
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« Reply #44 on: November 07, 2010, 10:04:23 PM »

For you godless beer drinkers, don't you know that Biblical wine was grape juice Roll Eyes laugh
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