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Can I hang out with people who drink?

Proverbs 23:20-21

"20 Do not mix with winebibbers, [Or] with gluttonous eaters of meat; 21 For the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, And drowsiness will clothe [a man] with rags. “

    To mix with winebibbers is to spend time with them while they are getting drunk. It is not to avoid them all together so that you cannot speak into their lives and lead them to Jesus. What is outstanding about these verses is that God places drunks and overeaters in the same category! In our society, this is not the case. Overeating has been accepted as the norm and we are forced to accept that a lack of self-control in this area is what is expected. Furthermore, God says to to “mix” with drunkards or gluttons because if you are in a bar with someone while they are actively getting drunk, they will soon run out of money and then turn to you for your money. As well, if you are eating with a glutton, they will soon be ill- able to financially support their own eating habits and will turn to you to provide for them. Therefore, we can see the heart of God here in that He wishes us to protect the financial provisions He has provided for us and not to squander them on the uncontrolled actions of others. It is worthy of mention here that although the scripture does not expressly mention drug use, the word for “winebibber” implies one who consumes any substance that causes intoxication. Therefore active drug use is implied although not overtly stated. 

    Furthermore, the second half of verse 21 indicates a similarity between intoxication and overeating…. drowsiness. Of this side effect, we are all well aware. For how many times the drunk pass out from his drunkenness and fail to make an appointment or attend and event less than ready if he has passed out in this way the night before? How many times does an over eater have feelings of exhaustion just after gorging themselves to the point that they must take a nap? If they cannot take a nap, then they are dull and lethargic in their actions and virtually ineffective. in both scenarios alike, the drunk and the glutton will come to poverty due to their lack of self-control and it is not wisdom to enable this behavior.

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