Wine, Beer, Wisdom, Discipline, and Understanding

A recent blog post by Frank Viola got me to thinking about drinking. Having grown up with an alcoholic father (thankfully God delivered my dad from this about 14 years before he passed away) I know the pain, hurt, dysfunction, and turmoil that drinking too much causes. Proverbs informs us correctly that “Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise.” (Proverbs 20:1). So here is some advice, especially for the younger generation.

Listen, my son, and be wise, and keep your heart on the right path. Do not join those who drink too much wine or gorge themselves on meat, for drunkards and gluttons become poor, and drowsiness clothes them in rags. Listen to your father, who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old. Buy truth and do not sell it; get wisdom, discipline, and understanding.” (Proverbs 23:19-23)

Lessons To Learn

  • Listen to those who have knowledge, wisdom, and insight that you don’t have.  They aren’t trying to control or harm you, they are just showing concern and care for you so that you don’t go down the same paths they have or they have seen others go down. Listening isn’t just “hearing.” Listening means “obeying,” or “yielding to” what is told.
  • Be wise not foolish. Someone correctly said “wisdom is knowledge rightly applied.” You may have knowledge of the dangers of drinking, but are you rightly applying that knowledge so that you are wise?
  • Where is your heart? Is the condition of your heart dark and set on foolish and unwise activities? In the same chapter (23) of Proverbs verse 26 the wise one pleads with his son “My son, give me your heart and let your eyes keep to my ways.” You can keep your heart on the right path by “giving it” to a wise father or mother.
  • Your friends affect your decisions. Choose your friends wisely.  Don’t join with those who drink too much or live gluttonous and undisciplined lives. The reason is because you become who you hang with.  I know too many stories where some young man or woman was with the wrong crowd and as a result they ended up getting arrested and having a criminal record.  Be careful who you hang with because it can have “life long consequences.”
  • Value what is the truth. When you buy something it’s usually because  you think it has some value and you are willing to pay for it. There is nothing more valuable than truth. You don’t buy truth with money, you possess it with learning what is true and once you have it, don’t sell it or get rid of it.  Truth will always have valueTweet This
  • Three essentials: Wisdom, Discipline, and Understanding. These three character qualities will aid you throughout your life. Whatever it takes get wisdom, discipline, which is instruction or correction, and understanding or discernment.

What lessons have you learned that you would add? I’d like to hear from you.

— Keith


  1. My addition would be to choose your spouse wisely That is even more critical than choosing your friends wisely! My beautiful bride keeps me on the right path when my heart leads me astray.

    • Amen, Brad! I mentioned that in a message I delivered last Wednesday when I brought up that Ahab didn’t choose wisely and his wife’s (Jezebel) influence on him got him labeled the King who “did more evil in the eyes of the Lord than any of those before him.” (1 Kings 16:30-33) You can hear the message here http://keithfife.podbean.com/e/take-up-your-positions/

  2. Amen and Amen. Oh, that all of the youth in the world could hear and heed this message it would save so much heartache, trouble and sorrow. And Brad’s additional comment is so apropos.

  3. Excellent read my wordsmith friend. I too am the child of an alcoholic father. As I read your words of wisdom I was reminded of the old saying, “Youth is wasted on the young.” This is certainly true in my case. But fortunately our God, I Am That I Am, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is forgiving and merciful. His powers of restoration are as infinite as His love for us.

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