What does the Bible say about underage drinking?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
The Bible never refers to underage drinking specifically. In Bible times, wine was the beverage of choice, partially due to the lack of water in the deserts of Palestine. Everyone drank wine, and t...

July 01 2013 4 responses Vote Up Share Report

Philip medium Philip Davies
It is important to understand that this is more a cultural issue than a Biblical one. Different countries have different traditions. In the UK where I live for instance the rules are quite different than in the US. In brief our rules are:

Under 5
It's illegal for a child under 5 to be given alcohol

Age 5
Parents can give their children alcohol under supervision. This might for example, involve a glass of wine with a meal at home. 

Age 14 
You can go into a pub or bar which has a children's certificate, but you can't buy or drink alcohol alone. Only soft drinks.

Age 16
You can drink wine, beer or cider with a meal at a restaurant.

Age 18 
You can buy alcohol, and you may be asked to show proof that you're 18 or over.

I suppose the important thing here is to understand that it is easy to become judgemental about others simply because we have a very limited viewpoint and we are only exposed to one tradition. Widening out your view so that you can take in no only what is done in your country but in other countries, and not only what is done in your time but many other times through history is the only way to get a perspective on questions like this. Don't forget they didn't have such rules in biblical times and there is no prohibition in the OT or NT. 

So the main thing is not to be rigid in our cultural thinking and accuse others of sinfulness if they don't follow our particular understanding.

October 23 2017 1 response Vote Up Share Report

Seth3 Seth Freeman
Scripture doesn't say anything about underage drinking. What it does say, however, is that unless the laws of the land asks us to do something that would compromise our faith, that we are to obey. 

So while there is nothing inherently wrong with someone in America who is 7,664 days old drinking alcohol as compared to someone who is 7,665 days old drinking alcohol - it becomes wrong for anyone under 21 to drink alcohol because we are to obey the law of the land. 

Likewise, that same 20 year old person who would be wrong to drink in America, may freely drink in another country where the drinking age is 18.

January 10 2014 1 response Vote Up Share Report

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