3 not given to drunkenness, 1 Timothy 3:3a
Evidently, drunkenness was a problem in the early Church.
A lot has been said over the years in the American church about drinking alcohol. Is it wrong? Is it immoral? Is it right?
It goes to the concept of perception. If the circle of Believers you run around with believe it to be a sin and see you drinking wine, then you have offended that person – right or wrong. Even if you can quote scripture and verse about drinking alcohol, you are wrong because you know better. The point isn’t to lord your freedom over the head of weaker Believers. The point is, as it was in the previous verse, to teach. In this case it’s teaching by example.
The pastor in this case should “toe the line,” so to speak. And as you can see, this was merely addressing drinking alcohol, not the drunkenness that Paul wrote about.
Obviously we can’t go through life in fear of offending people who don’t believe as we do. If, however, what we do causes a weaker brother or sister to sin, then we have erred.
Do you now see part of the minefield pastors must weave through regularly. Yes, of course, they have complete freedom in Christ, but they also weigh their actions against offending a weaker Believer.