Young women’s desires and passions are not well regulated these days. Whatever they “feel” like doing, they do and they are easily led by their emotions. I had one woman comment on Trey’s homemaking post and she wrote this, “I hate the man who wrote this. I do as I please.” I wrote back, “You act like a child. Were you not taught to not hate others you disagreed with? Were you not taught that the world doesn’t revolve around you and you can’t always do as you please?” She deleted her comment but this was her gut reaction to reading someone’s words she disagreed with.
Many places in the New Covenant, we are told to be sober which is the opposite of being ruled by our desires and passions as was this woman. It doesn’t just mean to be sober-minded (which I will come back to) but also to not be filled with alcohol. Older women are told to not be “given to much wine” and teach younger women to be “sober.”
Whether or not Christians should drink alcohol has been debated for hundreds of years so I am just going to give my opinion as I see from reading the Bible. Jesus was not against drinking wine since His first miracle was to change water into wine. Wine was also used to symbolize Christ’s blood during the Passover supper. However, we do have some guidelines in how we are to drink it.
Paul writes that we can drink A LITTLE for our stomach’s sake. Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thine often infirmities (1 Timothy 5:23). Older women are told to NOT DRINK MUCH wine. The aged women likewise, that [they be] in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things (Titus 2:3).
In describing elders in the church, the Bible states they are NOT to be given to wine (I Timothy 3:3) while deacons are not to be given to much wine (1 Timothy 3:8). Older men are commanded to be sober (Titus 2:2). In 1 Timothy 3:11, Paul commands wives to be sober. God intends for His people who are called by His name to be sober in everything!
From Barnes’ Notes commentary, we learn that “sober” means “instruct them to have their desires and passions well regulated, or under proper control.” This includes all desires and passions. We should be known as women having self-control in word, deed, and actions, and doing what is according to godliness, not responding from our desires and passion.
The following question was asked to the women in the chat room and not one of them said they were offended by it since they are women who have soft, teachable hearts to the ways of the Lord and are sober-minded: “When I hear godly preachers/teacher exhort us to work hard, keep our home as neat as a pin, declutter, live simply within our means, be content, be thankful, obey our husband, don’t overeat, only drink a little or no alcohol, discipline our body towards godliness, spend time with our children, etc. it has always challenged and convicted me and I love it! So many women are offended by many of these things, however. Are you?”
Matthew Poole in his commentary wrote this about being sober: “Young women, especially conversing amongst heathens, are prone to be light and airy, and over frolicsome, following the heat of their youthful temper, and forming their converse after the manner of others; which is a behaviour, though it may suit their youth, yet if they be Christians it will not suit their profession, which calls to them for more gravity: speak to them that are aged to mind to be sober.”
Wow! We sure see this today, don’t we? Many women follow the heat of their youthful temper and have never learned to keep their passions and desires under control. The culture defines their behavior instead of godliness and the ways of the Lord. They have not left their childish ways behind. “When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things” (1 Corinthians 13:11).
Mothers, do you know how much easier you make it for your children when you are careful and consistent in the discipline of your children? If you discipline and train them as children, they will most likely grow up to be disciplined adults who have control over their desires and passions and are sober in everything. This not only benefits their future family but culture, too.
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children.