Last week I wrote an article entitled “Could Jesus be Jesus and a Southern Baptist?” to the recent resolution by the Southern Baptist Convention that encouraged all of its members to advocate complete abstinence from alcoholic beverages based upon the ‘damaging’ effects of such a ‘drug’.
Well right on the heels of that posting, Paige Patterson, the President of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, TX, wrote an article promoting the total abstention from anything alcoholic. Whereas Akin was more emotional Patterson comes out with some Jedi mind tricks and voodoo hermeneutics to arrive at his conclusion that it is sinful for the Christian to drink.
I am definitely not on an alcohol crusade over here, but I am firmly committed to following what the Bible says and trying to make sure that I do my best to ensure that people are not lied to about what the Bible says. Paige Patterson is a leader in the largest evangelical denomination in the world and he is twisting the truth like a clown making balloon dogs at a toddler’s birthday party. It is just out of line.
Why is it alcohol that the SBC is going after? Why not gluttony? I’m not picking on the denomination here but there are two things I have experienced in every Southern Baptist Church that I’ve been to, 1) a hug from a male (not very comfortable with this, but try to be all things to all men), 2) a potluck. These people love to eat, and many of the pastors at these churches were not exactly in shape either. Something is out of line about a guy who’s suit jacket won’t stay buttoned telling me that I cannot drink alcohol because it is sinful.
I am not the only one upset. Even Southern Baptists are voicing their frustration. For a thoughtful response to Patterson’s article see this Southern Baptist.
Patterson says that “Strong drink is prohibited for those in leadership.” Well I guess Jesus didn’t get this memo since he drank alcohol! Or does Jesus not count? How about the Apostles did they refuse to drink the wine at the Last Supper? Can you imagine the Lord’s reaction if Andrew (we always pick on Peter, let’s try someone else) would have said, “uhh, Jesus, is that grape juice fermented? ‘Cause, you know, we want to make sure that we don’t give the wrong impression…you know how those Pharisees are. I’ll just hold off. I actually have some water left from lunch, I’ll have that.”
Concerning the miracle in John 2 (the first public miracle noted by John by the way) in which Jesus shows his winemaking skills, Patterson says, “The text nowhere indicates that Jesus participated.” Are you kidding!?! He made the wine!! How much more participation do you need? How about this, if Jesus had not participated there would have been no more wine!