50 Reasons Why I Don’t Drink

I am a Christian and I don’t drink. I am also a pastor and ex-alcoholic. I need to make that disclaimer right up front.  Although it makes me biased, it also makes me an expert on this hotly debated issue.

Some of the worst “shudder moments” of my life have been under the influence, and as a pastor, some of the worst “shudder moments” I have witnessed in the lives of others have been because of alcohol. You have come too late to tell me it’s God’s best for a Christian to drink.

We are living in a church age where drinking has become “hipster” for some.  Christian young adults post pictures of their signature drink on Facebook. Middle-aged Christian women name drop their favorite brand of Pinot Grigio to impress their wine snob friends. Churches send direct-mail postcards that read, “Give our church a shot!” featuring an edgy shot glass graphic. Even some pastors drink. Not this one.

I stopped drinking when I became a Christian 26 years ago. No one told me to abstain. I just knew it would be contradictory and self-defeating to my relationship with Christ. I had given my life to follow Jesus and nothing was going to hinder my walk. For me, it was a no-brainer.

This article is not a theological defense on the topic of Christians and alcohol (another article for another time), but it is a heartfelt plea. I humbly ask you to table any knee jerk, pro-alcohol, fight-for-my-right-to-drink arguments that you have ever heard, or made, and prayerfully consider this list.

50 reasons why I don’t drink:

1. I can’t be sober-minded if I’m not sober.

2. Alcohol has an assignment: destruction.

3. Alcohol is a depressant. Anything that depresses should be avoided at all costs.

4. I don’t want to make my brother or sister stumble in the name of exercising my “Christian liberties.” My choice to drink could lead to someone’s demise.

5. Alcohol skews my judgment.

6. Alcohol leaves me worse, not better.

7. What I do in moderation, my children will do in excess.

8. Even the unsaved know I shouldn’t drink. Bible in one hand, beer in the other – any lost person could point this out as a confusing contradiction.

9. Alcohol doesn’t bring others closer to the Lord when they see me drinking, but farther away.

10. Alcohol doesn’t bring me closer to the Lord when I drink, but farther away.

11. I want to be fully awake and ready for the return of Christ, not drowsy, sluggish and fuzzy.

12. Show me a family that alcohol has made a positive difference in their lives. You won’t be able to.

13. I have never heard anyone say, “Wow, that gin and tonic made me feel so Christ-like!”

14. I want to avoid all appearances of evil.

15. Alcohol makes it much harder for me to practice the fruit of self-control.

16. Alcohol causes me to lose my filter.

17. Alcohol is a mind-altering, legal drug.

18. Alcohol is addictive.

19. Alcohol is a numbing agent for pain and sorrow that only Jesus can heal.

20. Many regrets are associated with alcohol. (I can give you a whole bunch!)

21. No one has ever said, “If only I had taken a drink, things wouldn’t have gotten out of control.”

22. Alcohol causes me to act in ways I normally wouldn’t.

23. Alcohol kills brain cells.

24.  Alcohol is a counterfeit, and provides a false peace.

25. The Bible says that no drunkards will enter the Kingdom of God. Being drunk starts with  and one drink. I don’t want to see how far outside the lines I can color when eternity is at stake.

26. Alcohol is a waster – money, gifts and talents, destinies, etc.

27. Alcohol leads to really bad behavior. It is a factor in 50% of violent crimes.

28. Alcohol distracts and derails you from living the the victorious life for which Christ died.

29. Wisdom is the principle thing that I need to pursue at all cost; alcohol makes me stupid.

30. Alcohol has ruined many, many marriages.

31. The only influence I should be “under” is God’s.

32. The Bible tells me to be alert; alcohol delays my reaction time.

33. If I don’t start drinking, I’ll never have to stop.

34. Alcohol severely tarnishes my testimony.

35. Don’t want your teenagers to drink? Yep, same reasons apply to you.

36.  God is holy; alcohol is not.

37. Alcohol and prayer don’t mix.

38. Alcohol and Bible study don’t mix.

39. Alcohol lowers my resolve to resist temptation.

40. Alcohol = Brokenness (broken lives, health, dreams, etc.)

41. When the world sees us drinking it sends the message that Jesus isn’t enough.

42. Moderate drinking? How about moderate pornography or moderate heroin use or moderate lying or moderate adultery?

43. Christians are called to live a life of total surrender and separation from the world.

44. Alcohol makes me forget. It can make me forget that I am married, that I am saved, etc.

45. “I don’t get drunk. I only have one or two drinks.” If they didn’t affect you, you would drink soda.

46. I should never look to the glass or bottle for joy which can only be found in the Lord Jesus Christ.

47.  Alcohol fills my mind with impure thoughts.

48. If it could hinder my faith walk, love walk or dishonor the lordship of Jesus Christ I need to forsake it.

49. Alcohol doesn’t help me run the race that Jesus has marked before me to finish with more accuracy. It does the polar opposite.

50. For any argument that tries to justify Christian drinking, there are at least 50 other reasons not to. The writing is on wall.  It’s not God’s best for Christians to drink.

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Comments

  1. Nancy Laxton said at 4:06 pm on July 21st, 2014:

    Very interesting. A good read.

  2. Linda Leedom said at 11:41 pm on July 22nd, 2014:

    Thank you for a list that will help many see the truth on this matter. I wasted many years of my life and hurt so many people because of drinking. After turning my life over to Christ I had no need for drinking. I like #41 the most. The message we need to send is JESUS is enough. I believe many will be convicted, challenged and set free by your message. Blessings to you Brother.

  3. Linda Olivier said at 6:52 am on July 23rd, 2014:

    I agree. Can you please email this to me.

  4. Lily said at 1:51 am on July 24th, 2014:

    Very awesome! Thank you!

  5. Ted Storm said at 5:50 pm on July 24th, 2014:

    Ask yourself this. ” Show me a family where alcohol has had a positive influence”. The answer at best case is no effect, are we not called to be the light to raise the standard. I am not condemning anyone, I have been down the destructive road of alcohol but God delivered me from it!

  6. Jason said at 12:13 pm on July 25th, 2014:

    Great stuff!
    I would add that a church full of drinking Christians would be a weak church full of compromise with the world. Feed the Spirit not the flesh.

  7. Elizabeth Lombardi said at 3:48 am on July 28th, 2014:

    EXCELLENT

  8. LENA said at 7:25 pm on August 9th, 2014:

    Both my spouse and myself were raised in Pentecostal/christian homes. We attended church our entire lives. Good churches, not cold, dead, fake churches. HOWEVER, when my spouse decided to start drinking alcohol. He became immediately addicted and it has almost destroyed our marriage completely. We are still struggling to pick up the pieces and find healing for our 21 year dream of a marriage that took less than 6 months of drinking to destroy. I still pray every single day that God would heal our marriage and give us back what the alcohol took away.Grant it, my husband was a willing participant as no one forced the drinking on him. BUt nevertheless, alcohol is a destroyer.

  9. Rose said at 10:47 pm on August 9th, 2014:

    Excellent I a sways said that a Christian should not drink.Would you please email this to me.

  10. Marna Laurito said at 1:23 am on August 11th, 2014:

    Good points! Add in the expense, and the support of an industry that brings so much sorrow & death to so many. Why participate in that?

  11. duncan tillson said at 10:49 pm on August 11th, 2014:

    WELL WELL WELL after 20 years of smoking dope, first 10 every day…… I found JESUS, NO HIGH is HIGHER no love is greater no joy is more joyfull than what I have found in JESUS. NO HANGOVER NO REGRETS NO COST………..HE DID IT ALL.See I was not just saved…I was born again old things past away all things new…….And for the record wilder crazier than ever…..GLORY TO HIS NAME….for ever

  12. Alaina Nay said at 5:30 pm on April 8th, 2015:

    Amen!!! I agree 100% and the Word of God is the whole truth that proves this true. I could never see Jesus drinking a beer or an alcoholic drink. Even the wine fermented back in the Biblical days was made more like a grape juice not the strong alcohol content of today!

  13. Sandra Wood said at 6:48 pm on June 1st, 2015:

    Love it very interesting to read thanks!

  14. Sheri said at 4:19 am on July 10th, 2015:

    Awesome!!! While I don’t drink myself, I have (in the past). Sadly – I find so many of my friends who are believers caught up in the lie that drinking is ok. Just a glass of wine, just a mug of beer… They say they don’t feel any conviction about doing such. I didn’t either because I found ways to (sort of) justify it. And while I don’t judge them for making their choice, I do feel grieved inside about it, for them. This list says it all for me and even moreso as a leader at my church who thankfully has a standard of no drinking period. I lead worship for our small church and the one thing that really has kept me from joining in with my friends is I feel strongly that doing such will compromise the anointing He’s placed on my life to lead others into worship! I’ve thought about the Nazarites and how they abstained from things for a reason and then there is the infamous story of Samson.
    A friend of mine shared your article on Facebook. Glad he did.
    Thank you for writing this!! ?????

  15. susan makumbi said at 4:54 am on August 12th, 2015:

    Thanks for enlighting people. It’s good to tell people the truth.Thanks

  16. Robin said at 4:45 am on January 17th, 2016:

    Thanks so much for this. There’s so many christians that drink, it’s easy to start thinking, “I can too”! I quit a long time ago, then started again for about two years. No good came from it. Only misery. Praise God for showing me the out, again. Thanks again, bless you.

  17. Is It OK for Christians to Drink Alcohol? - Christian Post - Stock Prices Now said at 9:58 am on January 24th, 2016:

    […] a blog she penned for her church’s website that was shared by Christian Today this month, […]

  18. Is It OK for Christians to Drink Alcohol? - Ghana Christian News, Church Activities, Christian Programmes, Crusades, Revivals, Events, Christian Opinions, Radio, Photos, Videos, Audios, Promotions, Celebrations and Advertising Homepage. | Ghana Christian said at 10:47 am on January 25th, 2016:

    […] a blog she penned for her church’s website that was shared by Christian Today this month, […]

  19. Is It OK for Christians to Drink Alcohol? - WXXV 25 said at 10:07 pm on January 26th, 2016:

    […] a blog she penned for her church’s website that was shared by Christian Today this month, […]

  20. Josh Shawty said at 9:02 am on May 14th, 2016:

    I’m struggling with alcohol right now. I try to keep myself from falling into temptation but when I drink I make dumb decisions and have thoughts I don’t want to have. I’m thinking about giving it up for a while, or period. I don’t know what to do. Its hard to give it up when I usually drink during every social event or thing I do in public. This struggle is not a game.

  21. PSWIF ONE DESIGNZ said at 1:49 am on March 15th, 2017:

    HEY, I LOVE THIS… I’M PUSHING 33, AND BY THE GRACE OF GOD I HAVE NEVER TAKEN A DRINK OF BOOZE.. BEING IN THE CREATIVE ARTS SINCE THE LATE 90’S IT IS ALWAYS AT ARTSHOWS, AND MOST VISUAL ARTISTS AND MUSICIANS ARE REALLY INTO IT… WHEN I GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL IN 2002.. MOST OF MY FRIENDS AND PEOPLE I KNEW ONCE THEY WENT OFF TO COLLEGE STARTED TO DRINK… I NEVER HAD MANY FRIENDS BECAUSE OF IT. PEOPLE WILL NOT INVITE YOU TO EVENTS OR DINNERS BECAUSE OF IT.. I HAVE LEFT AND CALLED OUT PASTORS BECAUSE OF THEIR DRINKING HABITS.. THE BIBLE TALKS ABOUT WE ARE TO BE SET APART.. NOT MIMINCING OR COPYIN THE WORLD.. THEIR MUST BE A DIFFERENCE AND THEIR IS NO DIFFERNCE IN THIS DAY IN AGE.

  22. Kelley said at 11:59 pm on August 20th, 2017:

    Thanks to this article, I didn’t walk down to the corner store for a bottle of wine. When I felt the nagging tap on my shoulder that my evening would be better with wine in my hand and a buzz, I googled Christian reasons not to drink.., and thanks to you, I found 50!

  23. Samantha Charlton said at 5:13 am on February 21st, 2018:

    Wow! Thank you so much for taking the time to make think these through and make this list!
    I appreciate your thoroughness and will certainly use this page when I try to defend my stance on alcohol!

    God bless you and keep you!

  24. Victor Arana said at 9:41 pm on June 5th, 2018:

    I was about to pick up a drink today and my Bible God knows where it is, my A.A. book I don’t know what I did to it, I got no help only God who is looking at me I just put my headphones on and I listen to piano music very depressing and very sad thinking about how do I get a drink and calm my sadness, I didn’t know what else to do and I pick up my phone and I Google “God help me I don’t want to drink” and this is what came on, I’m great full it did after reading all the comments makes me want to comment on this as well just to say thank you Lord because you know how bad I want to drink but just for today this has save my life.

  25. Patty said at 4:13 pm on August 7th, 2018:

    I am so grieved in my spirit to see so many Christians opening the door to alcohol. Thank yiu for sharing this article. My husband and I are pastors and he always says he can make a case against alcohol from a logical standpoint (like you did) without debating theology. My heart is heavy at the moment because I see people I know who once stood against drinking that have joined in and compromised. Thanks again!

  26. Enyinna Chinyere ( Bro) said at 4:38 am on September 13th, 2018:

    I have never been an alcoholic, I hated drinking but in 2004 November, I got a job with a brewery as a Retail Development Manager ( Guinness Nigeria PLC) l. After about four and half years my pastor by name Dike Osa Dike says God told him I should resign from the brewery, without a proper plan B? I couldn’t believe it. I ignored him. We both worshiped with the Foursquare Gospel Church, Omole Estate in Ojodu Ikeja in Lagos Nigeria.
    But something happened. One morning I was driving to trade and at a police check point I was stopped by the police for a check , but I was bold to tell the police that my license had expired and renewal was an issue because The Federal Road safety commission was having issues with VIO, everyone knew about it, so it wasn’t my fault but yet he ordered me to come down from the vehicle which was Harp Branded. So I did and told him sorry, if it’s bribe you want I don’t do that , I am a child of God. So the Police man stirred at me and said pointing at my vehicle and said so you claim to be born again and you are working in this company. Yes we resolved and a drove off. But Immedaitly I entered the road I heard a voice in my spirit say ” did you hear the police man””? The next week I turned in my resignation letter. My line manager thought I was mad because I was been packaged for a higher role. A lot of my colleagues spoke to me but my mind was made up and I left. After about eleven months God gave me a job as a sales manager in charge of the whole country sale for A Firbank Estate company, a subsidiary of Afribank Nig. Plc.so I knew afterwards that God hates alcohol.

  27. Pamela D Johnson said at 2:25 pm on February 23rd, 2019:

    This was a very interesting article to read. I know many of my relatives that think you can drink and go to church. I believe it to be as bad as smoking cigarettes if you are trying to show the true life you are living for Christ. Thanks for your comments I will keep them close for reference.

  28. Roy simpson said at 9:32 pm on March 11th, 2019:

    Thank you we are having a discussion in our men’s fellowship should Christians drink find ing your article give me reasons to answer no may you be blessed in all you do for the name of christ

  29. Martha said at 12:15 pm on August 12th, 2019:

    Thank you for posting this, I’m surrounded by a drinking culture in Southern California. Even restaurants have started looking more like bars, and have become “family friendly” so the parents can drink while their kids have a little play area to go to. As a former drinker, and now Christian, I can tell you the greatest regrets in my life came from drinking. Instead of drinking now I offer up praise to God. You can’t compare the incredible joy of worship to wine!


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