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Why Did Jesus Create Wine? — 50 Comments

  1. Wow!,I never had knowledge on the wine that paul advised timothy to drink for his stomach problems,that it was fermented or un fermented. Thank God now I have. A clear picture,thank you very much may God bless.

  2. Great post Mrs Anderson, really liked the information about wine preservation in biblical times and wine as a symbol. May God bless you with more knowledge and a heart to continue to share them.

    Praise the Lord

  3. I am now relieved because last year I had an unusual fever that lasted almost 3 months due to exposure to paint fumes, my doctor couldn't help until 2 of my colleagues suggested I take a sip of brandy. I reluctantly accepted it when my manager brought me the following day. It truly helped and I would suggest to someone going through the same ordeal as I did.

    • How very interesting, Bongiwe!

      Did the fever go away immediately? Or? Could it have been a coincidence?

      As I understand it the main reason given in the Bible for not drinking alcoholic beverages is that it clouds judgment, not that it is intrinsically evil to sip or whatever.

      Alcohol is a drug, and drugs can sometimes be helpful. I say "sometimes," because I believe we trust way too much in drugs, many of which do more harm than good. Alcohol is not the only problem. Many times people take drugs to attempt to alleviate symptoms when a change in lifestyle is what they really need.

  4. Thank you for showing methods of preserving grape juice. Other points - nothing fermented at Passover as indicated by unleavened bread. Also had Jesus taken Nazerite vows which among other things prohibited intoxicating drink?

    • Hi Carol, I know of no evidence to indicate that Jesus took the Nazirite vow. If he had, He could not drink even unfermented grape juice, and neither could he eat grapes.

      That Jesus was called a "winebibber" would indicate that he at least drank grape juice. And that would mean He was not keeping the Nazirite vow.

  5. Thank you, Inge, for an exhaustive treatment of the subject. I would also like to add a comment I posted under "Abstinence and the Priesthood of All Believers" which I link here.

    Here it is again, for convenience:

    I now would like to ask the question what was the good wine spoken of at the wedding feast at Cana. If we consider that Jesus officially ended His ministry at Passover which was, and still is, in April and that His ministry started with His baptism 3 1/2 years earlier (Dan 9:27). That would mean that the wedding feast in Cana that was well within on month of his baptism (Jn 1:35-2:1) was in the fall about the time of the grape harvest. Because there was new wine production the price of the old would have dropped in an effort to clear out old stock preserved from the previous year just like businesses often do today when new products come out. That situation was probably one reason the wedding was held at that time of the year.

    We are talking about very small communities where there was probably something less than two dozen households that for the most part were not very well off (the family of Jesus was one of those lower class families). The wedding was probably attended by local residents and relatives along with associates of the bride and groom so I am estimating the number of guests well below 100 and with the feast lasting more than a day which was the custom of that time their supply of purchased beverage ran out testifying to their level of wealth or lack of it - they bought what they could. I am also assuming that their financial status was such that probably what they bought was the older stock which would most likely be at some stage of fermentation even if only slightly. That would have been in opposition to the newly pressed juice, the new wine.

    So the question is why would the steward of the feast say, "Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!" (Jn. 2:10 NKJV). What did he mean by "inferior" and good wine? If we look at what Jesus said, "And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says,`The old is better.'" (Lk. 5:39 NKJV) and compare that illustration with what the steward said it makes all the sense in the world. You start out with new wine first because if you don't then your guests after being full of the more inebriating stuff won't want the newer less fermented product. But that is not what happened at Cana. The older wine was served first then Jesus did the miracle that produced new wine or what we would call grape juice. That is how I view the situation you may choose to argue the whole thing but with this comment I am finished discussing beverages.

  6. When God created man, he gave him limits in life so that he can enjoy communion with God as a creator, but man have opted for that knowledge of good and evil which God warned him not to....since the fall of man, he is always opting for the wrong choice in life and he is always looking for reasons to free himself to do the wrong thing, so no matter how a good things is explained to him, 99% of his choice will be on the wrong side. God loved man so much, that he gave his only son to die for his sins. If you don't allow God to control your life, it will be very hard for you to make the right choice in life...God Bless you all and please allow the Holy Spirit to control your lives...and you will understand what I'm saying here...you need to experience it.

  7. The thought on the new versus the old wine got me thinking:
    What is more likely to be called 'NEW' wine:

    1. The freshly pressed (thus unfermented) juice
    2. The one that has been pressed and then is consumed later after being allowed to ferment?

    Its a no brainer isnt it?

  8. I would like to thank Anderson for the topic.
    However, my question is:Some times i see Adventists sipping Pure Heaven at their wedding festivals as substitute beverage.Is it alcohol or not,secondly,is it allowed in the Adventist faith or not?
    God bless you all.
    Kalulu Ronald

    • Kalulu, I checked out what "Pure Heaven" is and found it to be a "celebration beverage" sold in Great Britain. It is pure white or red grape juice with added carbonation to make it fizz, packaged in fancy bottles with an accompanying fancy price.

      In North America we have similar "sparkling" fruit juices which are used instead of alcoholic wine by those who want to avoid alcohol.

      It seems to me that these would be great alternatives to wine as "celebration beverages" - especially since everyone would know that these are not wine. 🙂

      For anyone interested, I have included the white "Pure Heaven" and red "Pure Heaven" in our new Amazon UK store. You'll be supporting the publication of SSNET by going through our Amazon UK links. 🙂

  9. ....Now if the bible refers to unfermented wine,...then how do you interpret the allegory of not keeping new wine in old wine skins in Mark 2.22?.....the church needs to refocus its definition of the ways of Christianity....I may be wrong but there is no where in the bible that says if you take alcohol you wont be right with God.....but rather says you wont go to heaven if u don't love!...Look at the day of judgement in Mathew 29.....lets focus on what defines a Christian as thought by Jesus....this attempt to reimagine what the bible would have meant is actually a side show....focus on what is so straight forward Mathew 29

    • Dear Robert, in science (and logic) it is said absence of evidence of existence is not evidence that something does not exist. There is always a chance new tools/ways will be found to study the evidence. You may not have found the correct scripture yet, but God is against alcohol use from Genesis to Revelation (e.g Lev.10v9,10; Prov 31v4-5, Isaiah 5v11, etc). Take some time to look at several parts of the Bible, not just Matthew you mentioned (of which there is no Matthew 29 by the way}. God bless your search.

    • Tyler you may understand something in those verses Mark 2:18-22 that I do not. They are talking about His disciples not fasting like the disciples of John the Baptist and the Pharisees. Verse 21 that Robert referenced is out of context.

  10. People like to fit Jesus into their way of life. They misrepresent Him as Someone who would have no problem with drinking wine or breaking the Sabbath. It's interesting that some people are taking the word of the religious leaders who were always accusing Jesus of something. They called Him a "winebibber", accused Him of blasphemy and claimed that He had a demon in Him. None of these things were true, of course. Jesus would never have used alcohol or encouraged His followers to do so. He would never do anything that is contrary to the Word. He would be a hypocrite. At the wedding in Cana, the host didn't seem at all intoxicated. Why would Jesus change something as pure as water into something that is unhealthy and toxic for the body? It doesn't make any sense. People need to stop twisting the Word of God to suit themselves. And stop making Jesus into Someone He is not! He is the sinless Son of God. He is the unblemished Lamb of God who came to take away the sins of the world.

    • I totally agree with you Deborah.

      "Jesus would never have used alcohol or encouraged His followers to do so. He would never do anything that is contrary to the Word. He would be a hypocrite. At the wedding in Cana, the host didn't seem at all intoxicated. Why would Jesus change something as pure as water into something that is unhealthy and toxic for the body? It doesn't make any sense. People need to stop twisting the Word of God to suit themselves. And stop making Jesus into Someone He is not!"

      Another thing to think about, would Jesus want us to use "fermented wine/alcohol" as a symbol for His pure blood at communion? I doubt it.

  11. Excellent information on this sometimes tricky subject.

    My thoughts concerning the wine Jesus made for the wedding have always been that it would be too out of character for the sinless One to have made fermented wine for such a sacred occasion. The making of an intoxicating beverage would have countered the wisdom He had given to Solomon regarding fermented wine.

    If Jesus had made fermented wine in the light of what scripture teaches, would He have remained sinless?

  12. How do we reconcile the message in the text below with the teachings in our SDA church where we are to believe that there is nowhere in the Bible where it allows the drinking of a fermented drink (wine).

    Deuteronomy 14 New International Version (NIV)

    24 But if that place is too distant and you have been blessed by the LORD your God and cannot carry your tithe (because the place where the LORD will choose to put his Name is so far away), 25 then exchange your tithe for silver, and take the silver with you and go to the place the LORD your God will choose. 26 Use the silver to buy whatever you like: cattle, sheep, wine or other fermented drink, or anything you wish. Then you and your household shall eat there in the presence of the LORD your God and rejoice.

    • Ben, do you expect God to contradict Himself? Would He bless something He has shown should be avoided? There are some words we must realize to mean something other than what seems to be the obvious meaning. God does not confuse or change. The same always. "For the Truth of the Lord endures forever." Ps 117:2

      Does one questionable verse make void the many verses?

      Trust and obey.

    • You are right in your interpretation of the verses. it is fermented alcoholic drink, just seek out the original Hebrew word. God did not set out to bring immediate change on Israel but dealt with them in a way that would encourage change in due course." In times past God often "winked" at gross ignorance, responsible for practices he could never approved. But eventually the times come when on each point God commandeth all men everywhere to repent. Acts 17:30.Then those who persist in their practices in spite of counsel and warnings no longer have a cloak for their sin. John15:22 prior to that time " they had not sin"and God did not hold them wholly accountable even though their deeds were far short of the ideal His long suffering is extended to all who know not what they do LUKE 24: 34. In old times God allow the Israelites to have slaves, But protected the slaves against injustices, Ex 21:16,20.Even in the Christian church slavery was not immediately abolished, see Ex.21:17 Duet.25:15. God never approved the practice of divorce, or Polygamy "From the beginning it was not so"Mat.19:8.But for a time God allowed it and gave instructions to safe guard the rights of women.Ex.21: 7-11.Deut 21:10-17. " then there was the eye for on eye. and the avenger of blood and the city of refuge for the person fleeing for his life. In due time the most of these practices came to on end, and so was the drinking of strong drinks.

    • Ben the verses in Deuteronomy14:25&26, have to be applicable entirely. We can't choose a part that only applies to what we are interested in. The verses are talking about an exception, and two choices that are made by God. This is not an all encompassing general rule.
      However there are some that read and refer only those scriptures that they understand to substantiate their position and refuse to see any or all verses that do not agree with their position.

    • Ben and Barry, although the references in the Old Testament are really beyond the scope of this post. From what I have read, that where the term the NIV translates as "fermented drink" (shekar) does not necessarily mean fermented drink, but it represents a beverage made from grain or dates or fruit other than grapes. It could be fermented or unfermented, and we cannot always tell which is meant. I suspect that the people drank some of those beverages in various stages of fermentation.

      An interesting view on this subject is found in "Beer and Wine: The Bible's Counsel." (The author believes that "shekar" meant beer, but from what I can tell, we can't be sure.)

      As far as I'm concerned we don't need any Bible texts to tell us that we should not drink alcoholic beverages. There are plenty of practical reasons to avoid numbing our brains and putting ourselves at risk for the negative effects of alcohol in the body.

  13. I can't find the report but I remember reading how it is grape skin that good for digestion and wine as people seem to thing, since wine have some grape skin it give the illusion that it help with stomach conditions

  14. Hi Ben

    Your question is a reasonable one, based on the NIV, but is shown to be incomplete by the KJB - a far more reliable text. Verse 26 states "… or for wine, or for strong drink …"

    By stating "other fermented drink" in the NIV, the presumption is made that the "wine" just mentioned is alcoholic. This is human error - not Divine revelation.

    A scan through the earlier comments above demonstrates that Wine: 'yayin' (Hebrew) or 'Oinos' (Greek) does not address alcoholic content, but New Wine is always unfermented.

    The text is actually saying that it is acceptable to convert physical tithe into money and then convert it back at the LORD's designated place. The strong drink was simply the condensed grape jelly stored in jars. After some time this jelly did ferment and become alcoholic. The usual 'wine' drunk by Israelites was a jelly to water ratio of 1 to 20 (very weak indeed). Strong drink would have been 1 to 1 or 2 (very toxic).

    It is the drinking of strong drink that is forbidden in the Scriptures, not the possession of the jelly that could be used to make the weak wine. One would have had to drink a bucketful to feel a toxic effect, but the weak alcohol in it would serve to kill germs.

    Hope that clears things up for you.

    • Thanks for your contribution, Martin, your explanation is similar to others I have read. (I deliberately did not address Old Testament references because they present more problems than the NT references, and most people do not usually take their cues from the OT.)

      The bottom line is that we can't *prove* for sure one way or another just what these words meant, but there are certainly reasonable options other than fermented beverages.

      The way I see it, if we believe that the Bible is consistent in its counsel, then these references likely refer to unfermented drinks, since there are some strong warnings against wine that is apparently fermented.

  15. Robert! In your expression of this wine topic you have stressed that there is not clear verse that regard the consumption of alcohol as a sin. Here I am to surprise you. Lets read 1 Corinthians 6:9,10: "know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards....... shall inherit the kingdom of God." Mind you drunkards are included in the group which shall not inherit the kingdom of God. So my question is if alcohol is spiritually clean why then its consumption will make somebody fail to inherit the kingdom of God? In short we can see that the bible prohit wine(alcohol). But if our desire is not to go to heaven then lets consume it.

    • Does that mean that Noah is not going to inherit the kingdom of God? (see Genesis 9:21). Although I do not drink alcoholic beverages, I must admit, I find this topic confusing.

      • Sybil, Noah will be in Heaven in spite of the one act of getting drunk (he is listed among the faithful in Heb 11:7). Those that are lost are there because they "practiced" sin. It is something they continually do as a matter of routine.

        We all have our weaknesses and stumble and fall but the promise is, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 Jn. 1:9 NKJV). If nothing else read chapter 7 in the book Steps to Christ which says the following, "The character is revealed, not by occasional good deeds and occasional misdeeds, but by the tendency of the habitual words and acts" (Steps to Christ, p. 57; it is instructive to read the entire chapter to get the complete picture).

        The scene that Noah saw after the flood was, to say the least, disheartening, He was overtaken by discouragement and in that low point he made some bad choices but he recovered like all good Christians should and went about his normally life of faith in God. We so often like to use scripture like, "For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins" (Heb. 10:26 NKJV) but that verse speaks of an ongoing, deliberate direction in one's life according to the Greek verb tense which other translations pick up on. For instance, "If we deliberately keep on sinning" (Heb. 10:26 TNIV; NET, ESV, NLT, etc.) or as the New Revised Version has it, "if we willfully persist in sin" (Heb. 10:26 NRS).

  16. Please also consider that during Passover (Matt. 26), that Jesus would not have likely used fermented wine due to the fact that Jews removed all yeast products from their homes during that time. Fermented wine requires yeast to ferment as I understand it. It can be naturally occurring or added to speed the fermentation process. Either way, good analysis of scripture will agree that yeast would be present in fermented wine and thus a violation of Passover. Additionally, as was aptly stated in the original post, I too cannot imagine using rotting grapes as a symbol of the blood of Christ. The bread at the table was surely not moldy, so the juice would also have to be pure. Psalms 16:10 states that His body was not allowed to see corruption (decay) in death. So, why would we imagine that He would put anything in His body that was decaying (fermented wine) while He lived. 1Cor. 15:53 indicates that we will one day have bodies that in the same way will not see corruption (decay). So it would not appear to be in concert with this verse to allow ourselves to ingest something that is in a rapidly decaying process now. For this would truly be presumption to believe that we can arrogantly take rotten things in our bodies now, but yet expect Jesus to change our bodies at His appearing...Just a thought. I would welcome all rebuttal....Blessings

  17. Alcohol as drug/medicine for healing or health care, even entertaining drink like tea/coffee/juice etc, it is may be ok, but think about addiction and craziness what effect on our Basic Wisdom or in morality (sense of humanity) while we may demand us as a MAN (Morality+Ability+Necessary) ? then have we any fitness of Worship (Holy+Sincerity+Pray)....any situation of Praise Creator? Just Think and ask ourselves, Answer will be arise....

    …Knowledge that makes Worship…

    …MAN’s knowledge…
    (Morality + Ability + Necessary)

    (Holy + Sincere + Pray)

    …the wisdom from above is first of all pure,
    then peaceable, courteous, congenial,
    full of mercy and good fruits, impartial
    and sincere. James 03:17

    • I think you mean 1 Tim 3:8?

      I could say that too much grape juice is not good for anyone, which is true. In fact drinking a lot of fruit juice is not good. It is better to eat the whole fruit to avoid health complications.

      However, I would guess that anyone given to "much wine" would likely be drinking alcoholic wine as well as the fresh juice. That would be partly because preservation methods, though available, would not always be as successful as one might like. So people likely drank juice in various stages of natural fermentation.

      • What you say is absolutely true but I think we can get valuable counsel from many texts in the Bible that have negative comments on drinking alcoholic beverages and conclude that doing so is not what God intends for us to do.

        As for me personally I have known a number of people, one uncle in particular, who became alcoholics before they realized what had happened to them. In the case of my uncle it almost completely destroyed his life and his family along with him. I really don't think we have to have a mountain collapse on us before we can see the obvious. A desire to glorify God and to be what we should be should be enough to see the right path.

        For those who desire to have a fix no amount of evidence will ever be sufficient. As a matter of fright night I suggest those that see no harm in consuming the stuff visit an alcohol treatment center and see what people who are trying to withdraw from that addiction go through. It is the same as trying to withdraw from hard drug use.

      • As you guys argue... Romans 14 tells u this..... As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. ...

        • Passing judgment and providing evidence with an aim to help a person make healthy choices are birds of a different feather, as they say. In addition, facts and opinions are as different from each other as are fish and chicken. No person is dispising any person here for their points of view. A discussion is not a 'quarrel,' by any stretch of the imagination. I do not think, therefore, that the Scripture you quoted, although beneficial, pertains to the discussion herein. It is a Christian's duty to share the Word of God with those around, whenever the opportunity presents itself. God Bless You!

    • I would like to suggest that the picture we get in Paul's lists of qualifications in 1 Tim 3 for both elders and deacons is one of righteous self control. Within that broad context are things like gluttony which is not specifically mentioned but Solomon had some things to say about it (Prov 23:20-21; Prov 28:7). Not only that but the list of attributes of the saved and the lost in Gal 5 give the same general picture of choosing the best things and keeping things under control:

      Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God (Gal. 5:19-21 NKJV)

      But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law (Gal. 5:22-23 NKJV)

      So in the list of qualifications I think what Paul is looking for are people that have control of their lives rather than the things in their life controlling them. I don't think Paul is splitting hairs over what kind of beverage.

  18. I was always under the assumption that the type of grape juice was predicated on the type of grape. Some were used for wine and some for juice due to the sweetness of the grape. In addition some depending on their color produced different types of juice or wine. Do we know what type of grapes were grown and harvested in that region during that time?

  19. Angel Gabriel commanded Zacharias not to drink wine or strong drink.
    What does this wine mean? An alcoholic drink or a cider? There are many other occasions that Bible indicate "wine" meaning alcoholic drink. It appears to me that SDAs try to deny this fact.

  20. In the old hebrew transcripts it specifically describes wether it be fermented or unfermented wine.

  21. Jesus Christ drank sour wine put out by Roman soldiers for crucified people(John 19:29-30) He refused the sour wine the first time because it had gall in it which was a common pain killer in the day(Matthew 27:34) The Romans would not have used unfermented wine, that is quite obvious.

  22. Proverbs 20:1 says, “Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler, ​And whoever is led astray by it is not wise.” A few chapters later, in Proverbs 23:29-35, we read a very vivid description of what happens to people when they drink alcohol, and I encourage you to read it.
    For me the word " Wine" in the Bible context is synonymous with " strong drink" Wine is Alcohol.Wine is a strong drink. When Paul tells deacons not to take too much wine, he is asking them not to be led by alcohol. (Only to take it for medicinal purposes) because too much may affect their operations as leaders. A little wine (sip) enabled my little baby to empty her bowels easily. This should not be abused by Christians.

  23. The Bible is very clear on Salvation and the character of the LORD because this is what is important. In addition it gives us Principles by which we live and He gives us intelligence and the guidance of the Holy Spirit to discover what is best for us, there is not a plain instruction on everything. As far as alcohol we find statements that a drunkard will not go to heaven and principles of being healthy and we put them together with current knowledge on health and that our bodies are the temple of the LORD and decide that it is best to avoid alcohol altogether. Being a Christian is not a matter of what is the minimum we can do to earn heaven but the joy of becoming more and more like the pure image of God as they were in the beginning.

  24. Thanks , I have just been looking for information approximately this topic for ages and yours is
    the greatest I've came upon till now. However,
    what about the conclusion? Are you sure in regards to the source?

  25. Our bodies and minds belong to the Holy Ghost. We are bought with a price therefore glorify God in your bodies.

    Many things in our world destroy our bodies and minds and wine is no exception. After working in the health care system for more than thirty plus years I have witness the devastating effect of several things on humans body and minds. Alcohol which is in wine has been one of them. Several people died from Cirrhosis of the liver from consuming the alcohol in those products.

    Wine consists of a product named Ethyl Alcohol- its the chemical part of the drink. We can google youtube for future knowledge. This chemical can be used to make several other things.
    In some cultures, sterilization is done with the use of Ethyl mixed with other things for medical and surgical equipment.
    Jesus is looking for a people who can stand for him in these days to be an example to others.

  26. We should all trust the precious LORD JESUS with the confidence that He would not have given fermented alcoholic wine to anyone.

    Don't we drink un-fermented non-alcoholic wine at what we call Communion every time?


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