Did Jesus Turn Water into Wine or Grape Juice?

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WBailey's picture

I found this the other day (actually found the website) I must say it surely caught my attention. Coming from the legealistic brand of fundamentalism that I do, this should be an interesting discussion. BTW, what would some here say of the "Priests and Kings forbidden to drink wine" argument? I personally believe(now) that it was alcoholic wine, as I see no indication that it wasn't, but as you may already know,the argument says that since Jesus is Priest and King, and Prov. 31 says that wine isn't for Kings (I don't personally see the prohibition but the recommendation) that's how we know it couldn't have been alcoholic but instead grape juice ( I can't imagine a bunch of grape juice drinkers at a celebration of any kind, let alone a wedding).

Mr Bailey

Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

I'm not sure which is the greater mystery at this point: that people are still trying to answer this question or that people are still interested in reading people try. Biggrin

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

Aaron Blumer wrote:

I'm not sure which is the greater mystery at this point: that people are still trying to answer this question or that people are still interested in reading people try. Biggrin

It's precisely because people still argue over this issue that reading what various people have to say on it can still be interesting.  Other than reading the scripture itself, I don't read much on "justification by faith alone," since it is settled in my mind as well as in biblical Christianity at large.  Maybe if there was an interesting new take on this that is provoking, and recommended by others I respect, I might read more on this subject too.

It is the things that aren't settled or easy that make for interesting reading (or at least attempt to make for interesting reading).  The same would go for music, law vs. grace, etc.  I'm much less prone to argue about such things, because they just go round and round, but sometimes I still want to see if there are any arguments that approach "something new under the sun," or at least "something new to me under the sun."

So I'd say that for me the greater mystery is that people are still trying to answer questions like this definitively (and have it accepted) -- I still find it interesting to watch them try!  And who knows, I might actually learn something!

Dave Barnhart

Bill Roach's picture

Dave,

Speaking of controversial things...

Don't you mean "justification by faith alone, that is not alone?"

Smile

 

J Ng's picture

WBailey wrote:
BTW, what would some here say of the "Priests and Kings forbidden to drink wine" argument? I personally believe(now) that it was alcoholic wine, as I see no indication that it wasn't, but as you may already know,the argument says that since Jesus is Priest and King, and Prov. 31 says that wine isn't for Kings ...

Pfft. Even if that were true, wasn't King Lemuel ordered to "Prov 31:6

Let beer be for those who are perishing,

    wine for those who are in anguish!
7 Let them drink and forget their poverty

    and remember their misery no more"?

And it would have behooved the King of Kings to administer that to His lost and dying people.

But oh, what a silly argument that seems.

One would have an interesting time explaining what's that latter "choice grape juice" at the Cana wedding--as compared to um, what kind, regular Welch's?

 

WBailey's picture

Not sure what your driving at here, did you seem to think I hold the view or argument I posted?

-'BTW, what would some here say of the "Priests and Kings forbidden to drink wine" argument? I personally believe(now) that it was alcoholic wine, as I see no indication that it wasn't, but as you may already know,the argument says that since Jesus is Priest and King, and Prov. 31 says that wine isn't for Kings ...'

Or are you poking fun at the argument itself with a slight sarcastic wit? BTW, I agree that wine is wine in Scripture, not "grape juice", as I don't see, (with all the references to wine coinciding with merriment), a bunch of people at social gatherings, weddings et al, sipping away at plain old juice from a grape.....

Mr Bailey

DrJamesAch's picture

Any study of the manners and customs of the Bible shows that they DID call grape juice wine. However, I believe the reference referred to was likely alcoholic.

1) Those present claimed that Jesus saved the best for the last. 

     a) that indicates that there were different kinds present meaning that there was more than just one kind of "grape juice" present

     b) the text indicates that the reason it was considered to be better is because it was aged. Grape juice that is aged is fermented and becomes alcoholic.

2) The miracle becomes "more miraculous" if Jesus turned it into an aged beverage. If it was normal "grape juice", then it could have been claimed that someone sneaked around back and just stomped out some grapes and the content would not have been any different than the juice that was considered less worthy. By presenting the wine at an already aged condition shows that Jesus had power over time as He was able to speed up the aging process. Such a miracle would not have been so obvious had it only been grape juice.

And finally, in Ephesian 5 it says "be not drunk with wine wherein is excess". I could not imagine this verse being written, "and be not drunk with grape juice wherein is excess". There have been times when Welch's was all I had in the fridge, and I was still able to drive after its consumption. I have yet to see anyone drink an entire bottle of Welch's and get drunk.

In Revelation John says that the nations were drunken with the wine of her (Rome's) fornication. Granted that is symbolic, but the use of "drunken" implies that whatever they consumed had an adverse affect them. Even though wine was used symbolically, it would not have been used as a reference had the common usage of it not been familiar to the readers.

Thus virtually every usage of the term wine throughout the Bible is mentioned as a fermented beverage, any attempt to reinvent the definition based on scant history excerpts from manners and customs sources does not stack against the evidence in the Bible to the contrary.

 

 

 

 

Dr James Ach

What Kills You Makes You Stronger Rom 8:13; 7:24-25

Do Right Christians, and Calvinisms Other Side

Huw's picture

If it had been grape juice then the act of producing it could have been challenged as being fake. It would have been possible by slight of hand to add grape juice to the containers and nobody would have been the wiser. Wine however, if diluted, loses if potency and the 'kept the best until last'' could not have been said.

I know this as I drink sparkling water and add, in varying quantities, grape juice. Although the strength of flavor is affected it still has the flavor, irrespective of how much water I add.

Wine has a 'body' and if you add water to the wine it loses it's body.