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Did Jesus ever drink wine / alcohol?

In the Bible, the Nazirites are the only group who are instructed to never drink wine/alcohol (Numbers 6:1–4). Jesus was a "Nazarene," meaning He was from the town of Nazareth, but he was not a Nazirite (Luke 18:37).

Traditional Jewish wedding celebrations included drinking wine, and Jesus' first miracle was turning water into wine at the wedding in Cana (John 2:1–11). It is safe to assume that He also partook in drinking the wine in moderation. Another Jewish tradition, the Passover celebration, also generally included wine, which the Bible sometimes refers to as the "fruit of the vine" (Matthew 26:27–29; Mark 14:23–25; Luke 22:17–18). Jesus certainly partook of the Passover cup.

Luke 7 indicates that Jesus drank alcohol at times. While John the Baptist did not drink wine, it is implied that Jesus did drink wine, for the religious leaders of the day accused Him of being a drunkard. Jesus said: "For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, 'He has a demon.' The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, 'Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!'" (Luke 7:33–34). In spite of this accusation, Jesus was never gluttonous or drunk, because He lived a totally sinless life (1 Peter 2:22). Jesus Himself warned against drunkenness because it prevents one from being ready for His return (Luke 21:34–36; see also Luke 12:45–47).

The Bible explicitly forbids drunkenness (Ephesians 5:18; Romans 13:13; Galatians 5:21; 1 Peter 4:3; Luke 21:34; Proverbs 23:20), but drinking wine or alcohol is not inherently a sin. The problem is the lack of self-restraint and the consequences of overindulgence. The same is true with food. Both gluttony and drunkenness are sins, according to the Bible (Proverbs 20:1; 23:2; 25:16, 27; Ephesians 5:18). First Corinthians 6:12 says, "'All things are lawful for me,' but not all things are helpful. 'All things are lawful for me,' but I will not be dominated by anything."

Instead of being drunk, we are to be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18). We need to remember that we ourselves, if we are in Jesus Christ, are a home for the Holy Spirit: "Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple" (1 Corinthians 3:16–17).

If one is a believer but has previously had an unhealthy relationship with alcohol consumption, it may be best to abstain from all drinking to prevent the temptation to get drunk. In Romans 14:14, Paul says, "I know and am persuaded in the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself, but it is unclean for anyone who thinks it unclean." If alcohol consumption is something that is not a good idea for you as an individual, then don't do it. And likewise, if someone you are with struggles with the temptation to overindulge in alcohol, it may be best for you to refrain from drinking any alcohol in their presence: "It is good not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything that causes your brother to stumble" (Romans 14:21).

While the Bible warns against alcohol abuse in many texts such as Proverbs 20:1, it also discusses wine in a positive light. The book of Psalms describes wine as something to "gladden the heart of man" (Psalm 104:14–15). Enjoying a glass of wine or an alcoholic beverage is permissible for Christians, but, assuming you desire to keep a biblical standard, all drinking should be done in moderation and never for the purpose of drunkenness.


Related Truth:

Is drinking alcohol a sin?

What do we know about the real, historical Jesus? Who is Jesus?

What did Jesus look like?

Why is it significant that Jesus ate with sinners?

Did Jesus ever laugh?


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