A Beer-Only Fast During Lent

Erik Raymond —  April 29, 2011

It sounds like a plan hatched in a college dorm room: a beer fast for 40+ days. However, for J. Wilson, this was not a plan for collegiate binging but rather Christian living.

Wilson emulated a tradition practiced by ancient monks. He ate a meal on Ash Wednesday for the last time until Easter Sunday. His only ‘food’ was beer.

That’s right. Nothing but beer for 40+ days.

What did he drink? Apparently his favorite was Illuminator Doppelbock from Rock Bottom Brewery in Des Moines. According to CNN, “At the beginning of the fast Wilson drank four beers a day during the week and five a day on weekends. Toward the end of the fast, he increased his beer intake to five a day during the week to maintain his strength.”

Wilson kept a keg at the office and one at home to fend off his hunger and provide ‘nourishment’. This guy seems to have landed the dream job / work environment for many American men.

As a Christian, home-brewer, and blogger, this fast combined many of his passions. Wilson was able to partake of a personal sacrifice, drink a lot of beer, and write about it.

At its conclusion, Wilson broke the fast with a bacon smoothie. Now I fully realize if you have not begun to admire Wilson for his creative beer planning this bacon-feast will doubtless win you over. How does one even make a bacon smoothie? I have actually heard of guys fantasy about being able to drink bacon. Maybe he’ll brew a bacon beer for next year.

While I’m not advocating this type of unorthodox fast, much less the consumption of bacon, I was glad to read that the preliminary doctor reports came back positive. The only ‘issue’ is that he dropped 25 lbs. during the fast.

J. Wilson definitely has the most creative Lenten story that I’ve heard.

Erik Raymond

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Erik has been writing at Ordinary Pastor since 2006. He lives in Omaha with his wife and kids while pastoring at Emmaus Bible Church. Follow regular updates on Twitter at www.twitter.com/erikraymond

18 responses to A Beer-Only Fast During Lent

  1. wots wrong with bacon??????

  2. I’m encouraged that you can drink beer and actually loose weight. Really don’t think the Bacon Bits Beer will go anywhere.

  3. Oh my goodness…..What would the conservative, fundamentalist say about that???? What about Paige Patterson and others from the SBC???? I don’t think the Bacon issue would bother any of them at all, even if it was 80lbs of it for one meal. Just the fact that I could drop 20lbs kind of makes that appealing……

    • I don’t think the guarantee is full-proof. And this is why the post is so good: it charms the anti-beer guys with bacon.

  4. Well, with Keller gone completely nuts, Piper bringing the vicious wolf Warren into the fold and Driscoll following suit, it maybe time to cast off from the silly, have to be ultra cool, New Calvinists. Wow, this was dumb.

    • Whoa…don’t forget to reload your gun. Yikes.

      btw, there is no mention of this guy being part of the Young, Restless and Reformed crowd. He is a just a guy from Iowa. I have no idea about his doctrine. I found the story intriguing.

  5. Keller bases a lot of his false teaching on vicious, protestant hating monks also.

  6. It seems that this post has upset John MacArthur.

    • It seems that some in the comment section of John MacArthur’s post seem to think that you “are a pastor who drank only beer for 40 days”. It is pretty shameful that such an implication is easily made in John MacArthur’s post when it is obviously false.

      • Yeah, I don’t get it. I thought the whole article and tone was below average. Irony: he is by far the most listened to podcast on my iPhone.

        • MacArthur had much more to say recently about the YRR crowd than what you mentioned in an earlier comment. It was not just the beer but a serious bent toward worldliness that the YRR crowd maintains.

          I am not an expert on the YRR people but I do find some things problematic about you guys. Some of you seem to conduct your ministry sort of like a frat house with Jesus added in to make it orthodox. It doesn’t seem like self has been crucified and life has become Christ in the YRR circles I have researched. It seems more like the rules for ‘holiness’ have been changed to incorporate the world’s likes & wants and call it good.

          Obviously I do not know all of the YRR crowd and do not claim to. I do see some things that give me pause in what I have researched however.

          Keep listening to MacArthur. He has a way of cutting through the superfluous and getting to the heart of the truth. Thanks.

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