jewels8

water into wine

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We know that Jesus was and is without sin.  But why then, would he use the priesthood to turn water into an alcoholic beverage?  Or was the wine just grape juice?  I would definitely feel it would be sinful today if someone turned water into wine.  Has anyone else ever been bothered by this or puzzled by it as a child growing up or as an adult?  I would not feel right drinking wine, having it around, or if I were a goddess I would not feel comfortable performing a miracle like that

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There’s nothing inherently “sinful” about wine.  We Latter-day Saints have been asked not to partake of it as a token of a covenant that pertains specifically to us, in this dispensation.  But it’s no more problematic for Jesus to feed Jews wine, than it would be for Him to feed us pork.

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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14 minutes ago, jewels8 said:

We know that Jesus was and is without sin.  But why then, would he use the priesthood to turn water into an alcoholic beverage?  Or was the wine just grape juice?  I would definitely feel it would be sinful today if someone turned water into wine.  Has anyone else ever been bothered by this or puzzled by it as a child growing up or as an adult?  I would not feel right drinking wine, having it around, or if I were a goddess I would not feel comfortable performing a miracle like that

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I’m sure the Israelites would say the same thing about our shredded pork sandwiches sis. Jones brought to the pot luck today.

It was just a different set of dietary laws for the time. JAG said it perfectly above

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The prohibition against wine is very, very new. Joseph Smith himself was known to enjoy a glass of wine at times. The original text of the Word of Wisdom prohibited distilled liquors. Fermented liquors were added to the restrictions, I believe, after Prohibition. (My recollection of timing might be off)

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20 minutes ago, MarginOfError said:

The prohibition against wine is very, very new. Joseph Smith himself was known to enjoy a glass of wine at times. The original text of the Word of Wisdom prohibited distilled liquors. Fermented liquors were added to the restrictions, I believe, after Prohibition. (My recollection of timing might be off)

Wine was pronounced “not good” in the original text; but yes, the most absolute language was reserved for “strong drink”—in this case, hard liquor and probably not applying to either beer and wine.  

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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2 hours ago, Colirio said:

Considering the Sacrament as instituted by the Savior was bread and wine, I'm thinking it was ok to drink during their time period.

 

See: 3 Nephi 18:1-11

It wasn't just OK, it was almost mandatory. 

The people back then didn't have the type of modern purification we take for granted today, and so drinking plain water was risky unless it came straight from a "pure" source like a well. 

Beer, wine, and other alcoholic beverages were a way of countering this, as the fermentation process often killed any nasties that were in the water. 

Tea and coffee, meanwhile, emerged from the practice of boiling water to purify it. Boiled water is rather unpleasant to taste, and so people began mixing things into it to mask that. 

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but alcohol damages the brain, impairs thinking, people get drunk, engage in immoral behavior, its bad for the human body, and it hurt the bodies of people back then too., though I do appreciate the insights of these posts and do take them into consideration.  

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Why would Joseph Smith drink wine when he refused alcohol as a child to deaden the pain when undergoing the operation on his leg?  That story is used in primary to illustrate the importance of the word of wisdom.  I don't know of any accurate LDS account that says he did that.

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On 9/28/2018 at 6:55 PM, Just_A_Guy said:

There’s nothing inherently “sinful” about wine.  We Latter-day Saints have been asked not to partake of it as a token of a covenant that pertains specifically to us, in this dispensation.  But it’s no more problematic for Jesus to feed Jews wine, than it would be for Him to feed us pork.

I think the effects of alcohol in wine, beer, and other alcoholic beverages can definitely be regarded as sinful because of what people do when under the influence of this substance.  It is addictive, it impairs judgment, the Holy Ghost leaves, the result is often loss of responsibility, loss of control, of self esteem, separation from God, getting into the wrong crowd, drunk driving, contention and abuse in homes, immorallity, job loss, murde, suicide, withdrwal, etc.  At first it starts out so slightly.  Pork is nothing compared to alcohol.

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I know a friend who said when on his mission he needed to make a phone call.  the only place they could find was a bar.  Reluctantly, they went in.  He has never felt the spirit so diatinctly leave as at the entrance of that bar,

Edited by jewels8
mispelled word

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41 minutes ago, jewels8 said:

but alcohol damages the brain, impairs thinking, people get drunk, engage in immoral behavior, its bad for the human body, and it hurt the bodies of people back then too., though I do appreciate the insights of these posts and do take them into consideration.  

Many, many substances are bad for the body but aren’t explicitly prohibited.  Science is increasingly telling us, for example, that sugar is actually pretty nasty stuff.  

35 minutes ago, jewels8 said:

Why would Joseph Smith drink wine when he refused alcohol as a child to deaden the pain when undergoing the operation on his leg?  That story is used in primary to illustrate the importance of the word of wisdom.  I don't know of any accurate LDS account that says he did that.

I haven’t seen it used in primary at all in the past 20 years.  It may have been used sloppily in the past; but the reason Lucy Mack Smith bothered to record the story in the first place was to illustrate Joseph’s love and trust for his father and his overall grit—not to present Joseph as a budding teetotaler.  

And if we were consistent about saying alcohol shouldn’t be used even for medicinal purposes, we would also oppose even medical uses of—say—cocaine, and morphine, and metaphetamine, and hydrocodone.  Whereas the Church, in fact, does not oppose the medicinal use of any of those substances.

33 minutes ago, jewels8 said:

I always thought the "wine" they used was more like grape juice, in their sacrament.  That's what I was taught

It’s a common misperception; but no.  “Wine” in ancient Israel was alcoholic, though usually diluted down to about one part wine to three or four parts water.  Anything stronger than that was considered excessive; and drunkenness was of course always frowned upon.  (If ancient “wine” was merely grape juice, then why was it a problem that King Noah was a winebibber?)

26 minutes ago, jewels8 said:

I think the effects of alcohol in wine, beer, and other alcoholic beverages can definitely be regarded as sinful because of what people do when under the influence of this substance.  It is addictive, it impairs judgment, the Holy Ghost leaves, the result is often loss of responsibility, loss of control, of self esteem, separation from God, getting into the wrong crowd, drunk driving, contention and abuse in homes, immorallity, job loss, murde, suicide, withdrwal, etc.  At first it starts out so slightly.  Pork is nothing compared to alcohol.

Be that as it may, alcohol *can* be taken in moderation without yielding those results and there have been dispensations where partaking of moderate amounts thereof was not deemed a problem.  It’s not that the substances themselves have cooties in every age; you just have to be careful with them in every age, and some of them may at times become subject to blanket bans.

By way of analogy:  Cheese contains casein, which binds to opiate receptors in the brain and elicits more-or-less the same reaction (though at a much lower intensity).  So, will gouda be an eternally verboten substance once we are living the Word of Wisdom as we should?

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There was no prohibition from drinking wine in the New Testament, so there was no sin.

Throughout the Old Testament, there have been many people that have been commanded not to drink wine.  The same is true today, since the members of the Church have been commanded not to drink it.

See the following scriptures in the Old Testament where some people were commanded not to drink wine:

Numbers 6:1-3

Judges 13:3-4

Proverbs 20:1 (not a prohibition, but it says wine is a mocker).

Proverbs 31:4-5

Sometimes it was only in certain places where wine was prohibited:

Leviticus 10:9

Ezekiel 44:21

So throughout the history of the scriptures, some people have been commanded not to drink wine while other people and in other times have not. We just happen to be living in a time when we are commanded not to drink it, just like some people in ancient times were sometimes also commanded not to drink it. 

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I always thought the "wine" they used was more like grape juice, in their sacrament.  That's what I was taught

It had alcohol.   The parable of the new wine on old bottles (which were actually animal skins) refers directly to fermentation. 

Quote

It is addictive, it impairs judgment, the Holy Ghost leaves, the result is often loss of responsibility, loss of control, of self esteem, separation from God, getting into the wrong crowd, drunk driving, contention and abuse in homes, immorallity, job loss, murde, suicide, withdrwal, etc.

Only when taken in excess.   Wine is not like that in small amounts or in moderation.

D&C 89 indicates that in latter days the reason for the prohibition is because of evils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts of conspiring men in the last days:

4 Behold, verily, thus saith the Lord unto you: In consequence of evils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts of conspiring men in the last days, I have warned you, and forewarn you, by giving unto you this word of wisdom by revelation—

5 That inasmuch as any man drinketh wine or strong drink among you, behold it is not good, neither meet in the sight of your Father, only in assembling yourselves together to offer up your sacraments before him.

I don't know this, but perhaps if there weren't for the evils and designs which exist in the conspiring men of the last days, perhaps it wouldn't be prohibited.  Once again, I don't know this.

For sure, there have been different commandments concerning wine in different time periods of history. 

Edited by Scott

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17 hours ago, jewels8 said:

Why would Joseph Smith drink wine when he refused alcohol as a child to deaden the pain when undergoing the operation on his leg?  That story is used in primary to illustrate the importance of the word of wisdom.  I don't know of any accurate LDS account that says he did that.

It would seem his affiliation with drinking got off the ground in the events following his First Vision.  Remember that he was ostracized by the ministers, anyone of any religious community, and generally a laughing stock.  The only social group that was available to him at the time was the only group of people who didn't care what kind of crazy he was. As it turns out, drinking buddies are those kind of people. There is some vague illusion to his shortcomings here when he says 

Quote

I was left to all kinds of temptations; and, mingling with all kinds of society, I frequently fell into many foolish errors, and displayed the weakness of youth, and the foibles of human nature; which, I am sorry to say, led me into divers temptations, offensive in the sight of God. In making this confession, no one need suppose me guilty of any great or malignant sins. A disposition to commit such was never in my nature. But I was guilty of levity, and sometimes associated with jovial company, etc., not consistent with that character which ought to be maintained by one who was called of God as I had been. (JSH-1:28)

There's also a brief mention in the History of the Church where Martin Harris makes allegations that Smith drank heavily during the translation of the Book of Mormon.  Smith's response is, effectively, "No, that was before the Book of Mormon."

My personal take is that the restriction against alcohol isn't really about the alcohol.  Since I'm lazy and don't want to type out my full justification, I'll point you to my response to another thread. 

 

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On 9/28/2018 at 6:52 PM, jewels8 said:

We know that Jesus was and is without sin.  But why then, would he use the priesthood to turn water into an alcoholic beverage?  Or was the wine just grape juice?  I would definitely feel it would be sinful today if someone turned water into wine.  Has anyone else ever been bothered by this or puzzled by it as a child growing up or as an adult?  I would not feel right drinking wine, having it around, or if I were a goddess I would not feel comfortable performing a miracle like that

.

Context is key:

D&C 89:4

Behold, verily, thus saith the Lord unto you: In consequence of evils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts of conspiring men in the last days, I have warned you, and forewarn you, by giving unto you this word of wisdom by revelation

 

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On 9/28/2018 at 6:52 PM, jewels8 said:

We know that Jesus was and is without sin.  But why then, would he use the priesthood to turn water into an alcoholic beverage?  Or was the wine just grape juice?  I would definitely feel it would be sinful today if someone turned water into wine.  Has anyone else ever been bothered by this or puzzled by it as a child growing up or as an adult?  I would not feel right drinking wine, having it around, or if I were a goddess I would not feel comfortable performing a miracle like that

.

There are at least 3 problems in trying to understand scripture - I will try to summarize:

1. Translating scripture from an ancient language to our modern language without altering any content intent.

2. Understanding culture differences between the ancient society win which a particular scripture was created and our modern society in which we relate and understand

3. Realizing the spiritual intent that G-d intends - which requires spiritual validation.

Water and wine both play critical and important roles in ancient societies - especially in the aired climate of the Middle East.  Often the roles of the two are interchangeable.  For example there are differences with purity of both water and wine.  Both were used for washing and cleaning.  Both were used for drinking and overcoming thirst.  Both were needed and used both for refreshment as well as for economic status and trade.  And - (and this is very critical and important) both water and wine played critical and important roles in religious ordinances and covenants.

Now let us ask - why was it important for Jesus to turn water into wine?  Especially why would he do so when most (including those of important standing) not have a clue that he even did it?

 

The Traveler

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22 hours ago, jewels8 said:

Why would Joseph Smith drink wine when he refused alcohol as a child to deaden the pain when undergoing the operation on his leg?  That story is used in primary to illustrate the importance of the word of wisdom.  I don't know of any accurate LDS account that says he did that.

There are certainly sunday school manuals that taught that Joseph Smith refused alcohol before the operation on his leg.  But for starters, he didn't have the word of wisdom at the time of the operation.  There was no commandment telling him no.  So using this story as an example of keeping the word of wisdom is a bit dishonest in my mind and would love for the church to distance this story from the word of wisdom.  Joseph certainly had alcohol later in life.  And even after the word of wisdom was given, it was not given as a commandment, but as council.

 

22 hours ago, jewels8 said:

I know a friend who said when on his mission he needed to make a phone call.  the only place they could find was a bar.  Reluctantly, they went in.  He has never felt the spirit so diatinctly leave as at the entrance of that bar,

If he was on a mission and needed to make a phone call and the only place was the entrance of a bar, then it makes absolutely no logical sense for the spirit to withdraw.  If the spirit prompted him to make a phone call from there, why would the spirit depart?  Furthermore, since when was "evil" more powerful than the spirit?  

Location has nothing to do with whether the spirit can be somewhere.  Your ability to feel the spirit depends on your righteousness.

My guess is that he grew up being told that bars are a place of sin and therefore he felt dread going in there mistaking this feeling for the spirit departing.

Now had he gone in there with intent to commit sin, then that would be a different story.  I have been in many bars throughout my life and have never once had a drink of alcohol.   I don't think the spirit ever left me.  I think the spirit will be with you regardless of where you are as long as you are living a righteous life.

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40 minutes ago, Lost Boy said:

Location has nothing to do with whether the spirit can be somewhere.  Your ability to feel the spirit depends on your righteousness.

 

 

 I believe this is an oversimplification - Dark spirits did not just pack up and leave whenever Jesus showed up - they had to be commanded - and this includes Satan himself.  

 

The Traveler

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4 hours ago, Traveler said:

 I believe this is an oversimplification - Dark spirits did not just pack up and leave whenever Jesus showed up - they had to be commanded - and this includes Satan himself.  

 

The Traveler

I agree with you.  But that doesn't mean the spirit turns tail and runs if evil is near by.   We are talking about the third member of the Godhead here.  I am sure the spirit is not afraid of satan nor his minions.

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On 9/28/2018 at 10:32 PM, Just_A_Guy said:

Wine was pronounced “not good” in the original text; but yes, the most absolute language was reserved for “strong drink”—in this case, hard liquor and probably not applying to either beer and wine.  

Yes. I read several entries on Joseph Smith drinking beer (his own journal) and it wasn't just a few months after the WOW revelation but long years after that. As a matter of fact in the early 1840'ish  one of the early Church's newspapers used to advertise beer (lol))since Nauvoo had its own brewery. When the Saints reached SLC, well...it was beer country, there were breweries  everywhere. The early Saints were the experts! The first one I believe was started by the controversial bodyguard of Joseph Smith, Orrin Porter Rockwell ----> this guy deserves a thread .

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If Joseph Smith is drinking alcohol after being commanded not to, then that would have made him a fallen prophet, but I imagine there must be some misunderstanding or he was forgiven, though a prophet should be above reproach

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1 hour ago, jewels8 said:

If Joseph Smith is drinking alcohol after being commanded not to, then that would have made him a fallen prophet, but I imagine there must be some misunderstanding or he was forgiven, though a prophet should be above reproach

Historical context is important here.

At the time that what we know as the Word of Wisdom was given, the language used was to prohibit "strong drink." People of that time would have understood that to mean distilled liquors, such as whiskey and rum. "Soft drink" or "soft liquors" were broadly understood to be fermented liquors, like beer and wine. It wasn't until the 1900s that the Church would classify fermented alcohols into the prohibited class.

So, a very valid way to describe it is that Joseph wasn't commanded not to drink any alcohol--he was commanded not to drink some alcohols. A commandment he dutifully followed, so far as we are aware.

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