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Devotionals 2004

The Sting Of A Viper - Part 2
July 22, 2004By Ed Wrather


Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has contentions? Who has complaints? Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes? Those who linger long at the wine, those who go in search of mixed wine. Do not look on the wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it swirls around smoothly; at the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like a viper. Your eyes will see strange things, and your heart will utter perverse things. - Proverbs 23:29-33.

I’ve heard of drunken airline passengers, drunk airline pilots, and just drunk pilots. However, they had something new on a flight from Moscow to the Siberian city of Nizhnevartovsk. The airline attendants were drunk and beat up a passenger who complained. Another passenger reported that half the food the attendants served ended up on the floor. There is an investigation being conducted into their behavior and it is doubtful they will be serving food and beating up anymore passengers anytime soon.

While I was a parole officer I supervised a murderer who once warned me that if he ever started drinking to stay away from him because he was a “mean drunk”. He was drunk when he committed his offense so I did take his warning seriously. Thankfully, he never relapsed into drinking while he was under my supervision.

Recently when I was at the drive-thru window of a McDonalds (My son loves their hamburgers.) I was shocked by the overwhelming smell of alcohol when I put my window down. I did not complain about the intoxicated young man who handed us our order. However, someone must have because I have not seen him since.

Alcohol abuse is a serious problem for businesses, which is not only costly in monetary terms; it is even more costly in the devastation it wrecks to those who abuse alcohol and their families. Many are simply unable to stay employed because of their problem. As a result, they and their families experience poverty and stress in every area of their lives.

Job loss and financial hardship is terrible for those who are going through it. Those things, however, are of minor consequence compared to those who are the “mean drunks” committing violent offenses while under the influence from beatings to murder. There are also those who while not necessarily “mean drunks” have their judgment impaired and get behind the wheel of their cars. The result has been countless innocent lives lost in the wake of an addiction out of control.

If you have a problem with alcohol abuse I urge you to find help before some terrible thing happens in your life. It will happen if you do not stop! If you are a Christian, you know this is wrong. Why? “…do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:17-18).” When you are drunk, you are not controlled by the Holy Spirit. No, you are controlled by alcohol, which will only bring about woe, sorrows, contentions, complaints, wounds, and you find that you have been stung by the viper. If you have an alcohol problem, you know it is only too true. Now is the time to seek the Lord with all your heart and being for He is the only One that can truly help you.

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