The Place of Wine According to Scripture
Wine is an alcoholic beverage or drink containing alcohol as the active agent. It is a liquor that inebriates.
Wine is an intoxicant. It exalts, exhilarates, puffs, thrills, it tickles pink. Wine may cause joy and makes a consumer to rejoice. It fills a person with high spirits making a consumer to fill up with optimism.
A key attribute of wine is to elate, lift up, to pick up or to uplift. Wine brings excitement. It shakes a consumer to a point of stimulating or stirring their feelings beyond reasonable levels.
Many consider this to be a good innocent thing that makes one merry. People wrongly believe that God approves the consumption of wine. God says much about wine.
Wine can cause a confused multitude of things. It can be confusing or perplexing enough to cause anybody to be unable to think clearly. It seduces consumers to loosen up while compelling them to attach little significance to vital issues of life.
Human beings can be made stupid with alcohol. It can cause a person to beatify or declare a dead person to be blessed. Drunkards have often found themselves among the dead in a mortuary.
Biblical mention of wine
Wine was first mentioned in Genesis 9:20, 21 “And Noah began to be a husbandman, and he planted a vineyard: And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.
Notice that had Noah not taken wine, he would not have uncovered himself leading to sin in his family after fulfilling the noble task of saving mankind.
The making of wine in the bible
Wine was made of the juice of grapes by treading the grapes barefooted in a press. The juice of ripe grapes was thereafter fermented in cellars and kept in wine skins, jars or bottles until a high content of alcohol was attained as stated in Genesis 49 verse 11.
In some cases, the juice of the pomegranate was used for the same purpose as mentioned in Song of Solomon 8 verse 2.
The first mode of making wine is mentioned in Genesis 40 verse 11. It is also stated by Luke that wine improves with the passage of time (Luke 5:39).
Glass of wine
Effects of drunk driving
Festive use of Wine before the advent of the Holy Spirit
There are several incidents in the bible where wine was used during celebrations.
In Canaan it is stated that Israel then shall dwell in safety alone: the fountain of Jacob shall be upon a land of corn and wine; also, his heavens shall drop down dew.
Concerning Judah, it is written Judah, you are he whom your brethren shall praise: your hand shall be in the neck of your enemies; your father's children shall bow down before you. Judah is a lion's whelp; From the prey, my son, you have gone up. He bows down, he lies down as a lion; And as a lion, who shall rouse him?
The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, Until Shiloh comes; And to Him shall be the obedience of the people.
Binding his donkey to the vine, and his donkey's colt to the choice vine, He washed his garments in wine, And his clothes in the blood of grapes. His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.
Mention of celebrations with wine is also mentioned about Lebanon, Helbon, Assyria and Moab.
Types of wine in the bible
Many kinds of wine are mentioned in the bible by prophet Nehemiah as follows “Now that which was prepared for me daily was one ox and six choice sheep; also, fowls were prepared for me, and once in ten days store of all sorts of wine: yet for all this required not I the bread of the governor, because the bondage was heavy upon this people (Nehemiah 5:18).
Sweet wine was esteemed for flavour and strength but red wine was most esteemed. Wine was often spiced to increase its strength. The following are uses to which wine was put during times of old;
• As a beverage from the earliest age
• At all feasts and entertainments
• For drink offerings in the worship of God
• For drink offerings in idolatrous worship
• As a medicine (Luke 10:34; 1Titus 5:23)
Wine was offered as First fruits to God together with corn and oil which denoted all temporal blessings
It was also given in abundance to Jews when obedient but was often deprived as a punishment.
Scripture indicates that Jews frequently drank to excess and in times of scarcity, it would be mixed with water to dilute it while increasing its volume to serve many guests.
Sometimes wine was mixed with milk to serve as a beverage
Jewish customs on the use of wine in scripture
Wine is mentioned in usage as follows:
- Cheering God and man
- Gladdening the heart
- Making mirthful, great merriment, glee or hilarity
- Custom of presenting to travelers
- Custom of giving to persons in pain or suffering when mixed with drugs
- Forbidden to the priests while engaged in the tabernacle
- Forbidden to Nazarites during their separation
- The Rechabites never drank
- Medicinal use of wine
- Recommended by Paul to Timothy as medicinal
- Used at meals
- Made by Jesus at the marriage feast in Cana
- Sacramental use of wine
A Set of Jewish Wine Glass Markers
Negative effects of wine
- Excess usage of wine is forbidden
- Excess wine infuriates thereby making a person temperamental or easily irritable
- It impairs one’s health
- It impairs judgment and memory
- Excess wine inflames the passions
- Leads to sorrow and contention
- Leads to remorse
- Creates a doorway for evil spirits
- Leads to idol worship
A chilled hot drink
Unsavory instances of intoxication from wine
Noah drank wine, got intoxicated and was found naked in his tent
- Lot got drunk and sired Moabites and Ammonites with his daughters
- Nabal the fool was too drunk to discern David’s murder plot against him
- Amnon was killed by servants while drunk
- Ahasuerus inebriated, deceived into replacing his queen with another woman
- Kings of Israel made poor judgement under the influence of wine
The use of wine in commerce
Prophet Ezekiel mentions the use of wine in commercial venture as follows “Damascus was your merchant because of the abundance of goods you made, because of your many luxury items, with the wine of Helbon and with white wool” (Ezekiel 27:18).
Introduction of new wine
Wine in scripture has often been figuratively illustrated as the;
- The blood of Christ
- The blessing of the gospel
- Wrath and judgments of God
- Abominations of the apostasy
- Wine of violence
Jesus introduced the concept of a new heavenly wine to Jews by miraculously turning water into wine without using grapes in the wedding at Cana. Consumers in the wedding acknowledged that the new wine was indeed better than the old wine, but they never pursued to know why. During those days, wine was consumed as a way of life.
God had to find a way of introducing better wine (Holy Spirit) to a people who were lost in the old wine (alcohol).
The guests at Cana should have pursued after the brewer of this new wine in order to continue taking good wine. Those who know God know what would have happened if anybody dared follow Jesus for a better drink. Drunkenness prevented people from establishing the truth. It still does today.
God tells us through King Solomon that the love of Christ is to be preferred to wine (Song of Solomon 1:2,4)
New wine is the Holy Spirit
Christ said “And no one puts new wine into old wine skins; or else the new wine bursts the wine skins, the wine is spilled, and the wine skins are ruined. But new wine must be put into new wine skins” (Mark 2:22). Things of God are not like those of men.
New wine is figuratively speaking, the Holy Spirit, a person who has no place for alcohol.
God cannot stand mixtures. You must either choose to serve him or serve the devil. Choose life or death, truth or lies, right or wrong, light or darkness. There are no grey areas in God. He is the light of men. But men loved darkness.
If you choose to invite God, he will dwell within you by the Holy Spirit. This means you cannot welcome wine or alcohol into a house that is full of the Spirit of God. The two are simply not compatible because both intoxicate differently.
If you want to prove God’s departure from you, you will be given to alcohol or wine.
God used and still uses wine to cast away priests who are not suitable for service in his kingdom.
Remember, non-alcoholic wine is a subtle way the devil uses to introduce ignorant people to the consumption of alcoholic wine.
A tot of whiskey
There is no place for wine in the new testament church
Before Jesus died and rose again, the Holy Spirit resided in heaven. God sent the Holy Spirit to the earth after Jesus ascended to heaven.
Today, His dwelling place on earth is inside the human body. And yet human beings behave as if they own the bodies in which they live. God reminds us; “Don’t you know that your body is not your own and that it is the temple of the Holy Spirit?”.
Whatever we believe, say, do, eat, drink or worship matters to God. Some humans eat dogs, which is an abomination to God. Wine among believers is prohibited for those who are led and want the in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit (1Corinthians 6:19).
Not all spirits are holy, including alcohol that provides doorways to evil spirits. Alcohol is an easy doorway for Lucifer. Paul says “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit” (Ephesians 5:18).
God commands us to be filled with the Spirit. God has a wonderful wine that is not consumed by mouth. The new wine is the Holy Spirit. If you drink alcohol or wine, you cannot receive or find room for the Holy Spirit. If the person of the Holy Spirit welcomes the confusion in alcohol, He would not be holy.
God has therefore prevented the Holy Spirit from inhabiting inebriated or stupefied individuals as stated below;
“Awake, you drunkards, and weep; and wail, all you drinkers of wine, because of the new wine, for it has been cut off from your mouth” (Joel1:5).
God’s conclusion for drunkards
Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflames them! wine is a mocker, strong drink is a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise.
Who has intense mournfulness? Who has sorrow? Who has contentions? Who has complaints? Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes? Those who linger long at the wine and those who go in search of mixed wine.
Do not look on the wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it swirls around smoothly; at the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like a viper. Your eyes will see strange things, and your heart will utter perverse things.
Yes, you will be like one who lies down in the midst of the sea, or like one who lies at the top of the mast, saying: "They have struck me, but I was not hurt; They have beaten me, but I did not feel it. When shall I awake, that I may seek another drink?"
Blessed are you, O land, when your king is the son of nobles, and your princes feast at the proper time for strength and not for drunkenness!
Wines makes man to ignore Godly counsel
Woe to men mighty at drinking wine, Woe to men valiant for mixing intoxicating drink, who justify the wicked for a bribe, and take away justice from the righteous man!
And the harp, and the viol, the tabret, and pipe, and wine, are in their feasts: but they regard not the work of the LORD, neither consider the operation of his hands. Because they do not regard the works of the LORD, nor the operation of His hands. He shall destroy them and not build them up.
Therefore my people are gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge: and their honorable men are famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst.
Therefore hell hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure: and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoices, shall descend into it.
(Isaiah 5:11, Proverbs 20:1, Proverbs 23:26-30, Ecclesiastes 10:16, Isaiah 5:22-23, Isaiah 5:12, Psalms 28:5, Isaiah 5:13-14)
Kings and Princes do not drink wine
Every citizen who is born of the Spirit of God is a king, prince and a royal priest. God forbids the consumption of wine by Priests, Princes and Kings.
God himself says “It is not for kings, O Lemuel; it is not for kings to drink wine, nor for princes intoxicating drinks; lest they drink and forget the law, and pervert the justice of all the afflicted (Proverbs 31:4-5).
Wine is a deceiver that cunningly enslaves, imprisons then lures the consumer to perdition, which is the abode of Satan and forces of evil, where sinners suffer eternal punishment.
Be sober and on guard
Drunkards worship the Queen of Heaven in ignorance
Drunkards are prisoners of a powerful goddess of alcohol called the Queen of Heaven, who resides in the second heavens. This principality controls everybody who consumes alcohol. God lives in the third heaven. Do not stop for any activity in the second heaven because that is also the home of the Prince of the power of the air.
A drunkard offers sacrifices to the Queen of Heaven in their use of wine or alcoholic beverages (Jeremiah 44:17-25).
It is therefore imperative that we choose wisely between life and death. It is very easy to stop drinking if you are willing. The day I was born again, Jesus delivered me from both alcohol and the smoking of cigarettes.
A slave is a captive who is entirely dominated by some influence or person. Nobody likes slavery. Addiction to alcohol is captivity that can be addressed through a sincere prayer for help to the Almighty God for total deliverance.
We serve a jealous God who will not share his glory with any other god. Scripture categorically states that no drunkard will inherit the kingdom of God (1Corinthians6:10).
This implies that all religions that teach you to drink are false religions. A true religion is one that welcomes God to dwell in his temple, your body, which actually doesn’t belong to you.
A drunkard has no capacity to keep quiet and attend to God. They tend to rumble and stumble. God cannot be heard when alcohol is in place.
Man has stuck to alcohol for personal pleasure. God himself says "And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, 'The old is better.'" (Luke5:39).
It is not easy for a drunkard to accept issues of God. He prefers alcohol to the Holy Spirit. Wine is for people who are terminally sick, dead to God or in the process of dying.
When we choose our drink, we have shunned God because his Spirit is Holy and cannot occupy the same body or temple with the principality called the Queen of Heaven.
There is nothing like "responsible drinking" when out of control
Scriptural evidence clearly reveals that God does not have a kind word, favour or place for wine which brings confusion and ultimately death to the consumer. We do not serve a confused God, but one who has a sound mind and good plans that lead us to an expected end.
Anybody who insists on taking wine has opted to kick the Holy Spirit and the kingdom of God out of their lives.
Not everybody is a child of God. Just like Abraham had two sons, Ishmael and Isaac, God too has two sons. One is in the light led by the Holy Spirit while the other is in darkness led of the devil. And yet the door is wide open to all who are willing to walk in the light.
In evidence of scriptural proof, a sound mind will not be involved in alcoholic affairs. God captured all forms of captivity and freed man at Calvary.
Prerequisites for citizens of heaven
In order to be citizens, children or heirs in the kingdom of God, God commands that;
- We must be born of the Spirit, like Jesus (Invite God to his temple-your body)
- We must be baptized in many waters, like Jesus (Die and bury the flesh)
- We must be filled with the Holy Spirit, like Jesus (Jesus baptizes with the Holy Spirit)
This is not religion but an intimate bond of love and fellowship with God when he occupies his habitat, your body, in response to your invitation (John 3:7, Matthew 3:16, Mark 1:8, Ephesians 5:18).
We cannot please God through our own methods, actions or effort. Grace has provided access to God through Jesus, The Anointed one.
You cannot be born again by simply being baptized in water or getting a biblical name nor can you be baptized in the Holy Spirit before you are born again. Jesus was first “born of the Spirit”, then water-baptized, then Spirit-baptized and filled with the Spirit of God. This order is very important. He is the perfect example and we are no exception.
The fool has said in his heart “No God” (Psalms 14:1, 53:1).
Remember, life on earth is very short. It is made shorter by alcohol which steals our time in a subtle manner. We are in the Information Age where every creature on the globe has almost heard the gospel, which marks the end of times, hence the return of the Lord.
God has already returned the bread back to his children from gentile nations. Yet old wine still whispers there is yet time. Refuse to worship the goddess of wine in ignorance.
The one with whom we have to reckon with awaits his children with open arms.
Holy Bible. Old and New Testaments. Peoples Parallel Edition. King James Version presented side-by-side with The Living Bible. Tynedale House Publishers, Inc (1981). Wheaton Illinois. U.S.A.
2018 Anjili Timothy – Alabaster Ministries