Isaiah 5: 22-23.
Woe unto them that are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink:
23Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him!
These verses aim at those who have some position of leadership and influence, who use that power to enrich themselves at someone else’s expense. Notice Isaiah’s use of sarcasm again: “Mighty to drink wine. . .strength to mingle strong drink.” Great heroes, these men. They are well-known for their injustice and their consumption of alcohol.
Do we idolize alcohol today? Well, of course! Talk to any young people who attend a college or university and you will hear about the guys (and girls) who “can really hold their liquor.” They are respected for their ability to be drunk, and that’s just one example. I’ve heard about competitions for drinking shots as fast as possible, for instance, but no one says much about the after-effects which sometimes lead to death.
It seems to me like a contest to see who can be the most stupid.
Not only are these men heroic drinkers, but they are also known for being able, through bribery, to get the wicked criminal set free and to accuse the righteous of doing evil. This is a picture of someone who has absolutely no moral character, and who is willing to go to any length to get what he wants.
Such behavior is not becoming to anyone, but especially unbecoming to those who claim the Name of Jesus Christ.
(I did the math on the inset statement above. Based on 100 adults, 75 of them drink, and 4.5 of them are alcoholics. Something to think about.)