Thursday, April 2, 2009

Are we allowed to drink wine regularly?

A year ago, I had a sunday school class discussion and my teacher was asking all of us a question that "Are we allowed to drink wine regularly?" Well, as the question went around and people started to share their thoughts, the common and simple answer to that question was "No, but there are certain conditions."

In my opinion, I was thinking about how we always drink the transformed bread and wine as the blood and body of our Lord Jesus Christ every Sunday during the Holy Eucharist, so I guess it was okay.

St. Paul writes in 1 Timothy 5:23 that, "No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for your stomach's sake and your frequent infirmities." Also, in the parable of the Good Samaritan, that our Lord taught to his apostles and followers, it says that the Samaritan put wine on the beaten Jew's wounds, and then put olive oil. In other words, wine is good for the body as a whole, as well as for life.


Joe V. said...

The drink we receive during Qurbana is not wine ... Personally I believe that misconception is what is eroding our faith over all these years

demetrios1 said...

It's not the frequency that should be questioned, but the quantity.

By definition, there is no wine in Holy Communion.

Anil George said...

actually, yes we do not drink the wine during qurbana. What is actually happening is that the priest is mixing the wine and bread together as you can not have the body without the blood. The water is just so that it helps us swallow the bread, because traditionally you are to swallow the communion rather than chew on it and swallow it.

Anil George
St. Mary's Malankara Orthodox Syrian Cathedral of Philadelphia

The Stylite said...

Think of it in context of the life of Jesus. When the Holy Qurbana was instilled by the Lord during the Last Supper, it was during the Jewish Passover which is a feast of the Jewish exodus from Egypt. Jewish tradition is to celebrate the Passover by telling stories of the exodus and eating foods that are symbolic of it. During the celebrations, the people drink cups of wine to symbolize God's promise to them and also ate unleavened bread.

During the Last Supper, Jesus and the Apostles participated in the Passover meal. Jesus however started the new Covenant in remembrance of him where the bread and wine become his body and blood.

One thing to also take note was that wine was popular during those times because of its long shelf life. Additionally, wine probably wasn't made like it is today (it was probably must more dilute).