Key Scriptural Passages
Romans 14:1-4 (HCSB)
1 Accept anyone who is weak in faith, but don’t argue about doubtful issues. 2 One person believes he may eat anything, but one who is weak eats only vegetables. 3 One who eats must not look down on one who does not eat; and one who does not eat must not criticize one who does, because God has accepted him. 4 Who are you to criticize another’s household slave? Before his own Lord he stands or falls. And stand he will! For the Lord is able to make him stand.
Romans 14:13-20 (HCSB)
13 Therefore, let us no longer criticize one another, but instead decide not to put a stumbling block or pitfall in your brother’s way. 14 (I know and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself. Still, to someone who considers a thing to be unclean, to that one it is unclean.) 15 For if your brother is hurt by what you eat, you are no longer walking according to love. By what you eat, do not destroy that one for whom Christ died. 16 Therefore, do not let your good be slandered, 17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 Whoever serves the Messiah in this way is acceptable to God and approved by men. 19 So then, we must pursue what promotes peace and what builds up one another. 20 Do not tear down God’s work because of food. Everything is clean, but it is wrong for a man to cause stumbling by what he eats.
Background on Crossroads Position on Alcohol and Leadership Positions:
- We’ve never taken a position that alcohol use is a sin.
- Our prohibition of alcohol use is based on the “stumbling block” principle, feeling that in our particular cultural context, drinking alcohol among Staff, Elders & Deacons could do damage to our witness.
- It fits with the historical precedent in the Bible of giving up alcohol when called by God to a special task.
- I (Ken) feel a special responsibility to the many in our church and community who are struggling to overcome alcohol and substance addictions. I want my life and those of our top leaders to encourage people to be free of the control of substances, not give them thoughts of the use of those substances being a viable option.
- Have we singled out alcohol for attention while ignoring other areas of abuse? Yes.
- If the argument against a prohibition on alcohol for top leaders is based on the fact that there is no direct scriptural basis for the prohibition, we should note that there are several other requirements adopted that are also “man-made” standards:
Practical & Church Qualifications:
· A church member (12 months for deacons/24 months for elders)
· Take Class 101
· Sign the church covenant
· An active leader (12 months of teaching for Elders/
6 months of service for Deacons)
· Supportive of the church in time, giving (Be a Tither), & attitude
· Agreement to total abstinence from alcohol
· Minimum of 3 nominations for deacon candidates and 5 nominations for elder candidates
· In agreement with and willing to live by the Crossroads Church Beliefs, Vision, Covenant, Purpose & Strategy Statements