I don't mean this to be flippant in any way, so please understand what I'm going to say:
As a devout Jew, Jesus drank wine ("real" wine, not just pure grape juice) - but he also abstained from things we eat regularly now. Personally, I think those who struggle to accept the Word of Wisdom because Jesus and Joseph Smith drank in their time make WAY too much out of the fact that the Word of Wisdom went from a suggestion to a command and that former prophets (and Jesus) didn't follow it. Lots of things go from suggestions or cultural practices to commands - but lots of things also go from commands to suggestions, cultural practices or even rejected absurdities.
This is going to sound paradoxical, I'm sure, but I am totally fine with the Word of Wisdom primarily because I see it as such a little thing for most but such a HUGE thing for some - not as a health code, but as an addiction avoider and debt controller. It goes back to the benefits of following versus the benefits of indulging argument - focused on the weakest of the weak.
If I'm strong enough to indulge without disaster, I should be strong enough to abstain without disaster. Therefore, for the strong, it simply isn't worth making it an issue, in my opinion. (and I use the word "worth" carefully and intentionally) However, if I'm NOT strong enough to indulge without disaster (and that applies to SO many people, even if a minority), I need an environment in which I can abstain without pressure or stigma or negative consequence. I'm willing to give up my "right to drink" (really, with no negative consequences of high value) if it contributes to even one person not becoming a drunk or raped at a party or a weapon behind the steering wheel . . . - and I know it contributes to that end for far more than one person.
At heart, it's a simple cost/benefit analysis for me - and I actually see the revelation itself as framed in that way. (not the individual ideal, but adapted for the weak to be a substitute communal ideal) I think the problem is that too many members interpret and treat it as a health code or individual ideal it never was intended or revealed to be.
Randy: Chapter 5
1 hour ago