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Author Topic: what does the Bible mean by 'sober'?  (Read 4602 times)

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April 21, 2011, 09:53:26 AM
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the church at large today seems to have the opinion that drinking alcohol is a sin, and i have to wonder if it's due to the use of the word (or form thereof) 'sober' in the KJV; such as here:
 
  1 Thessalonians 5:6 KJV
(6) Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
 
the same verse with Strong's numbers included:
 
  1 Thessalonians 5:6 KJV+
(6) ThereforeG686 G3767 let us notG3361 sleep,G2518 asG5613 do(G2532) others;G3062 butG235 let us watchG1127 andG2532 be sober.G3525
 
 
the Word Study definition of 'sober - G3525:
 
 G3525 νήφω nḗphō; fut. nḗpsō. To be sober-minded, watchful, circumspect (1Th_5:6, [/color]1Th_5:8[/font]; [/color]2Ti_4:5[/font]; [/color]1Pe_1:13[/font]; [/color]1Pe_4:7[/font]; [/color]1Pe_5:8[/font]). The word does not mean to abstain from the use of alcohol but rather to refrain from the abuse of it which leads to intoxication.Deriv.: ananḗphō ([/color]G366), to become sober; eknḗphō ([/color]G1594), to return to one's sense from drunkenness, become sober; nēphálios ([/color]G3524), sober. Syn.: egkrateúomai ([/color]G1467), to exercise self-restraint; sōphronéō ([/color]G4993), to act and think soberly; sōphronízō ([/color]G4994), to cause someone to be of a sound mind or sober. Ant.: methúō ([/color]G3184), to be drunk with wine; methúskō ([/color]G3182), to make drunk.
 
 
 
in·tox·i·cate    
verb /inˈtäksikāt/ 
intoxicated, past participle; intoxicated, past tense; intoxicates, 3rd person singular present; intoxicating, present participle

 
  •   (of alcoholic drink or a drug) Cause (someone) to lose control of their faculties or behavior
 
what about it - is drinking alcohol a 'sin'?
Joh 17:3  And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.


April 21, 2011, 10:16:04 AM
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I take that word to mean serious and as far as drinking being a sin it is just one more example of the church reinterpreting scripture.  The commandment is against drunkenness and not against drinking.  Jesus made water into wine and it does good for the heart.


April 21, 2011, 10:36:46 AM
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The word next to it in 1 Tim 3 actually does mean sober in the original sense.

I am writing a book on leading a living church, with a chapter on 1 Tim 3. It will be ready by June or July. I will email you a pdf when I am done.


April 21, 2011, 12:42:10 PM
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I always just thought it meant not drunk. Alcohol itself isn't a sin its too much of it that's a problem.


Its like the Jews erecting more laws because they're afraid of breaking one of the commandments.





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April 22, 2011, 07:35:54 AM
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I like to have a glass of wine with dinner. Not always but sometimes. If I'm having dinner with a group who doesn't drink alcohol of any kind, I won't either. It's really not worth arguing over and I wouldn't want to cause anyone to stumble.


Though today, when you look at the fruit of a drunkard (pardon the pun), they risk losing all they have, so it's not really helpful in your life.

The Pharisee's called Jesus and his disciples drunkards. What does that mean? because they joyfull and happy and had a few drinks, like a wedding?

Sober - in reference to scripture to me means 'keep alert'.

I like what JT said about erecting more laws ........
34
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.
35
By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13


April 22, 2011, 09:19:18 AM
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The word next to it in 1 Tim 3 actually does mean sober in the original sense.

I am writing a book on leading a living church, with a chapter on 1 Tim 3. It will be ready by June or July. I will email you a pdf when I am done.

1Ti 3:3 - 'not given to wine'; 1 Ti 3:8 - 'not given to much wine' - is this it? 
 
Thanks for the copy of the book (when it's ready) - i'll respond with a gift to your ministry - you're good ground Pastorzzub!!!
 
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Joh 17:3  And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.


April 22, 2011, 09:24:50 AM
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I like to have a glass of wine with dinner. Not always but sometimes. If I'm having dinner with a group who doesn't drink alcohol of any kind, I won't either. It's really not worth arguing over and I wouldn't want to cause anyone to stumble.


Though today, when you look at the fruit of a drunkard (pardon the pun), they risk losing all they have, so it's not really helpful in your life.

The Pharisee's called Jesus and his disciples drunkards. What does that mean? because they joyfull and happy and had a few drinks, like a wedding?

Sober - in reference to scripture to me means 'keep alert'.

I like what JT said about erecting more laws ........

all good points; your's too JTMcubed (should have followed through on those notes about how to make that little '3'...)
 
the weeding was probably part of it; but i figure that Jesus and His disciples were just joyfully happy much of the time, so the Pharisees probably thought they were drunk most of the time :)
 
GLYA!!!
 
Joh 17:3  And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.


April 22, 2011, 01:18:19 PM
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I don't think that verse is speaking about drinking alcohol, but it's a metaphor. Be "sober" in the way you live. Don't be "intoxicated" (disillusioned, deceived, not living in reality, swept up, lead astray) by sin (whatever tempts you to live a life that is contrary to the life that God want's you to lead). Stay in the "light" (in His view, transparent) not in the "darkness" (hiding from Him, behind His back).
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April 22, 2011, 11:08:52 PM
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Personal Opinion: I don't believe any physical thing of itself is a sin.  What is the sin is the way in which we use it.

Looking at drinking I would ask the question: If drinking is a sin why did Jesus turn water into wine?  No I do not go with the idea that it was just grape juice.  The guests at the wedding would not have said that it was the best and commented on most people bring the best wine out while people are still sober and then the poorer stuff when people are half cut (my words).  If drinking were a sin, then by turning water into wine he was encouraging people to sin (which of itself is a sin).  As Jesus was without sin drinking alcohol cannot be a sin.

Now in that remember that your belief also sets the benchmark for your personal life.  If you believe it is a sin for you it is. If you don't believe it is a sin (and there is no refutation of it in the Bible) then it is not because it has to do with where your faith is. (Rom 14:23)  Also do not be the cause of someone else sinning (Rom 14:13): eg. if you know another person doesn't agree with the drinking of alcohol then don't drink in their presence (do not lie about your drinking but don't tempt them by doing it in front of them).  If someone is alcoholic don't drink in front of them.  Why?  Because that is love.


April 25, 2011, 09:31:37 PM
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all good points!!!
 
the Bible is clear about intending to drink alcohol to reach the point where one looses control; this is evidence of sin, since the alcohol has become the thing worshiped - the thing trusted to deliver - but it's not the drinking alcohol that is the sin - the sin is not believing that God's love and goodness is able to deliver.
 
sin isn't something you do, it's something you think; the things we call 'sins' are the result of the one sin of not believing God in some way - sin is unbelief - and the battle is in our minds
 
GLYA!!!
 
 
 
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April 25, 2011, 09:39:09 PM
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the church at large today seems to have the opinion that drinking alcohol is a sin,
Some sources attribute this doctrine to Rev. Welch.  Generations later his name is still on the communion juice of most Christian churches.  Great marketing strategy. I guess he didn't know you could make wine out of concord grapes. 
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