What About Jesus?

June 15, 2006

The Southern Baptist Convention messengers yesterday approved a resolution condemning alcoholic beverages. While I am personally a ‘teetotaler’ as a matter of personal witness, I am unwilling to demand of others a position that clearly goes beyond Scripture.

Only drinking in excess is condemned in the Bible. In addition to the numerous accounts of godly people drinking, we must remember that Jesus's first miracle was turning water into (wait for it) wine, and Paul told Timothy to (dramatic pause) drink wine! Oops. Thus to condemn all drinking as a sin is to go beyond the Bible and attack not only early church leaders like Paul and Timothy but even our Lord and Savior (and that's a dangerous thing to do).

The resolution even went as far as urging the body not to elect anyone who drinks alcoholic beverages. So apparently Jesus and the apostles would be unacceptable for SBC leadership. Jesus has just been voted out. Such a crazy action seems to echo concerns made in a great song by Todd Agnew called "My Jesus." Here are a few lines from it (you can hear it here):

Which Jesus do you follow?
Which Jesus do you serve?

...Cause my Jesus bled and died
He spent His time with thieves and liars
He loved the poor and accosted the arrogant
So which one do you want to be?

...If Jesus was here would you walk right by on the other side or fall down and worship at His holy feet

...Sometimes I doubt we'd recognize Him

...Cause my Jesus would never be accepted in my church
The blood and dirt on His feet would stain the carpet

Can I get an Amen? Oh, and if you want a thought-provoking piece about drinking, check out Wade Burleson's comments (keep reading because the best part comes late in the piece).