Sunday, February 22, 2015

The Fuel Which Ignites

Proverbs 20:1
1Wine is a mocker, strong drink is a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise.
You and I already know that God blessed King Solomon with much wisdom because he asked for it. You and I both know that King Solomon was termed the wisest and wealthiest king in the Old Testament. So a king who is wise by God's hand gave you and I insight into the behavior of man thousands of years before. Remember the Word says there is nothing new under the sun. So there is no behavior that has not already been seen. It may be new to you, but God has seen it all. The NKJV Study Bible records the translation of this verse as: "Wine mocks the one who drinks it and the strong drink makes him loud, aggressive, and without self-control. Intoxicating drinks have often led to great misery and suffering. They can lead people astray and cause them to do foolish and abusive things." Have you ever wondered why when people get drunk they get extra loud? Have you ever wondered why when people get drunk they seem to get in a fighting mode? Have you ever wondered why when people get drunk they seem to loose their capacity to think straight and have control over their reflexes? When I was on campus in college, we had visits regularly by the campus police as they said most of their weekends were spent trying to save young people from alcohol poisoning. What does it mean to mock? Merriam-Webster's Dictionary says it means to 1) treat with contempt or ridicule 2) delude 3) defy 4)to mimic in sport or derision. So basically being intoxicated can get you to a place where what you are drinking is making a fool of you. Deluding means to mislead, deceive, trick. So being intoxicated can get you to the point where you see things that may not be present. Wine and Spirits- they are called spirits for a reason. Let's look at it from it a different perspective.
The translation said it can make a person aggressive, without self-control and even abusive. I recall being at comedian Dick Gregory's 80th birthday celebration at a comedy house in Washington, D.C. There he mentioned how alcohol often plays a factor in abuse. Well, the word is true. In the most recent cases of domestic violence involving former Baltimore Ravens player Ray Rice, R&B singer Kyle Norman from the group Jagged Edge both were very much intoxicated. Kyle Norman tried to choke his fiancĂ© to death and attempted to shove the engagement ring he gave her down her throat. Even in the domestic violence situations I witnessed growing up, most times, drunkenness was a factor. It brings out what is hidden, deep-rooted. Alcohol is no excuse for abuse but it can bring out anger that is already there and ignite it ten times greater than what it is there. My personal refusal to drink was long before I understood it in the word of God but rather because alcoholism is a disease and I have seen the disease and wanted no part of it. The word states that God's people are not to be drunk with wine but rather with the Holy Spirit. How can you hear the Spirit of the Lord when you hear the spirit of something else tricking, deceiving and misleading you? It's something to think about. What you do is between you and God that is for sure. But when you harm another because of your actions then it's everyone's problem. Being intoxicated with alcohol can be a fuel which ignites something horrible including loss of freedom and/or life. "You are your brother's keeper." You can be joyous and happy without being intoxicated as long as you love life, your own and that of others.