Thursday, March 03, 2011

What Would Jesus Brew?

WWJB? It’s a legitimate question. Jesus drank with the best of them. He made choice wine from water at a wedding in Cana—and lots of it. About 150 gallons. In case you’re wondering, that’s about 800 bottles. And it was good stuff.

“You saved the best for last,” said the master of the banquet to the bridegroom. All proof that Jesus approved of earthly celebrations and drinking, despite the fact that some fundamentalists make the ludicrous claim that his wine wasn’t fermented. It was. The Greek word used is oinos, which means fermented drink derived from grapes. In fact, in the Torah, God told the Israelites to use a portion of their tithe to buy food, wine, and strong drink—whatever their appetites craved—for an annual party. Like the Cana wedding, it was a time of rejoicing, which the Psalmist echoed when he said “He makes wine that gladdens the heart of man [and woman].” The scriptures tell us the abundance of wine is a divine blessing.

Don’t get nervous, teetotalers. God does not approve of alcohol abuse. Paul told his hearers “don’t get drunk with wine” in the Greek continuous tense; meaning don’t be in the habit of overindulging. The implication is, it’s fine to tie one on with restraint once in a while, as the Israelites were encouraged to do once a year; just beware of the dangers of drunkenness, in other words, alcoholism. It will ruin your life. Today, unlike biblical times, it is complicated by the deadly combination of drinking and driving.

But what of societies where moderate imbibing is practiced responsibly? If Jesus was invited to a wedding in Belgium or Germany or the home of an American microbrewer, and his mother Mary was worried because they ran out of beer, what would he brew? You can bet your bottom dollar it wouldn’t be Bud Lite.



Anonymous said...

Amen!!! I hope Jesus would have gone with an imperial stout or imperial IPA, but of course probably not everyone at a wedding could drink those. Jesus doesn't strike me as the kind of guy who would drink alot of grand cru. Just too sweet. But I think he had to choose one, he would choose a Belgium triple or Quadrupel ale that's not very sweet and has lot of subtle hits of favors, but not a white belgium. Just about everyone I've known likes these kind of ales. Good article.



Andrew said...

Yea, there is nothing to celebrate, or rejoice about, in Bud Lite, imo. :-)

This kind of reminds me of the European proverb, "One drink is good, two drinks is too many."

Michael Camp said...

Andrew, Amen to nixing Bud Lite. I think the cutoff should be more than one brew, however! :-)