Beer Cans and Bible School
Recently, a former student of mine sent me a message to ask a very important question about how followers of Jesus should interact with the religious artifacts and practices of other religions. I have enjoyed this student’s questions from the minute he walked into my class. As a freshman, he had recently chosen to follow Jesus and was learning things for the first time. It was always a privilege to have new followers of Jesus in my New Testament and Old Testament classes. They had questions no on else had and brought a perspective that really informed the rest of us “religious lifers”.
Not only do they do they ask great questions, but they sometimes do things that we would never expect. This student happened to be one of those kinds of students. In response to the requirement for a creative aspect to their presentation on first century social groups, this student threw empty beer cans all over the front of the classroom to demonstrate the licentious and decadent ethics of the Epicureans. Falling off of my chair, and choking to death from laughter, I still vividly remember cans of PBR in my Evangelical college school classroom where I taught New Testament three times a week. While alcohol has been destructive in the lives of so many people, it is one of those “things” that is too often labeled as evil when it is impossible to actually identify an ammoral object as evil or righteous. How a “thing” is used is usually what makes the action either normalized and healthy or immature and destructive, not what the “thing” is. As such, when I saw empty cans of Beer all over the front of my Bible class, I had not choice but to give them an A.