I am a staff writer for www.gotquestions.org and recently I was asked to answer a question about what the Bible means when it says a drunkard shall not inherit heaven. The question came from a person whose relative drinks every night but does not get drunk.
The important thing for the Christian to remember is that he is a new creature in Christ (II Cor 5:17) and have been adopted into the family of God (Galatians 4:4-6). We are righteous based upon the blood of Christ and do not lose that legal standing regardless of our activities. We do not go to heaven or hell based upon the things that we do. Keeping that in mind, a Christian is not a drunkard, or a liar or a murderer. They may be someone who drinks or lies or has killed someone…but, their identity is in Christ. Having said that, being a Christian is not a free pass to be drunk, lie or kill someone.
We may compromise in our faith and lose that closeness of fellowship with God. However, we do not lose our standing in Christ for He has clothed us in his righteousness (Isaiah 61:10). It’s similar to a marriage. If I leave my dirty clothes right in front of the bathroom sink, my wife may get mad at me which impacts our closeness but I don’t suddenly cease to be her husband. I am in relationship with her. Once I apologize and ask her to forgive me, we can sit and cuddle on the couch because that which created distance in our relationship has been resolved. That is a shallow illustration…but, the truth is the same.
Evidently your husband feels some conviction about his pattern of drinking. The Bible never forbids drinking with the exception of instances regarding people serving in certain roles within Jewish life. But, you won’t find sweeping prohibitions in the Bible. On the other hand, you can’t find anything complimentary about alcohol. There are a number of passages that speak to the issue of wine and strong drink being a negative influence (Proverbs 20:1, Ephesians 5:18).
The issue at hand is really about obedience to what God is saying to your life. When God convicts our heart, it is certainly because He wants to lead us towards excellence. God knows what is best in our life. Therefore, if the Lord is speaking to your heart about giving up alcohol then by all means listen to that voice. You might consider approaching it in a fun way. Figure out how much you spend on alcohol each day and each day put that amount into a “piggy bank” and send it to your favorite ministry on a monthly basis. The satisfaction you will feel from knowing you are helping a ministry in a very tangible way will be a thrill to you.