The New Wine from the Kingdom of Heaven

Posted Aug 11, 2016 by Carlos A. Hernández in Everlasting Gospel Hits: 526

I had the opportunity recently to read the booklet Living Bread from Heaven by Adrian Ebens, and found an amazing blessing in understanding for the first time the connection of the blessings represented in the offerings of the sacrificial or ceremonial system and the blessings our heavenly Father bestows to His children through His only begotten Son and His sacrifice; this blessings expand and deepen throughout the year as we partake of our Father’s Holy convocations: daily, Sabbath, monthly, yearly (first and seventh month convocations); and if we follow this cascading Sabbath fountain all through the year, we will be immersing ourselves in the river of life that deepens every 1000 cubits.

It is very important to understand that every blessing God is able to give to the human race was purchased by the blood of Christ.  That’s why in the sacrificial system a lamb was sacrifice and an offering of flour, oil, and wine were presented before the Lord in recognition of the blessings that were available through the sacrifice of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the World.   

Num 28:3  And thou shalt say unto them, This [is] the offering made by fire which ye shall offer unto the LORD; two lambs of the first year without spot day by day, [for] a continual burnt offering.

Num 28:4  The one lamb shalt thou offer in the morning, and the other lamb shalt thou offer at even;

Num 28:5  And a tenth [part] of an ephah of flour for a meat offering, mingled with the fourth [part] of an hin of beaten oil.

Num 28:6  [It is] a continual burnt offering, which was ordained in mount Sinai for a sweet savour, a sacrifice made by fire unto the LORD.

Num 28:7  And the drink offering thereof [shall be] the fourth [part] of an hin for the one lamb: in the holy [place] shalt thou cause the strong wine to be poured unto the LORD [for] a drink offering.

In verse 7 we find the expression strong wine (shakár- Stong’s H7941). Some translators prefer the expression superior wine instead of strong wine; this concurs with Leviticus 2:11 that says “No present which ye bring near to Jehovah is made fermented, for with any leaven or any honey ye perfume no fire-offering to Jehovah” (YLT).  That this drink offering consist on wine and not any other drink can be confirm in Numbers 15:1-10 where the command to offer with the sacrificial animal of the Feasts (also mentioned in Numbers 28) a drink offering of yayin Strong’s H3196 is clearly a product of the vine. I noticed that the majority of translations rendered it as strong, or fermented drink, but it was hard for me to accept that the Lord asks for an offering that symbolize a blessing He gives, something that He condemns.  So I consulted many Bible translations and revisions in Spanish and noticed that almost all of them (excluding the catholic ones) rendered “superior wine”.  The Reina-Valera Revisada from 1909,1960, 1994,1995, 2000, 2004 all rendered it “superior wine”. The Sagradas Escrituras(1569) version also rendered it “superior wine”.  The Biblia Latinoamericana 1995 translated it “pure wine”. The Jubilee Bible 2000 translation says:

And the drink offering thereof shall be the fourth part of a hin with each lamb; thou shalt pour out the drink offering of superior wine unto the LORD in the sanctuary.

Also, the S.D.A. Bible Commentary says the following (translating from Spanish because I don’t have it in English):

“Many commentators insist that in this case shekár must refer to the best and most noble wine.  The Jewish commentators, by general rule, sustain that in this case, from the use of shekár, the concept of a diluted wine is excluded, and on the other hand, they favor the idea of a freshly squeezed wine”.

This gives space to think that strong wine could mean concentrated, not diluted, grape juice. It is also in accord with the changing of water into wine done by Jesus in the wedding in Cana, when the ruler of the feast said that the bridegroom saved the best wine for last. The concept of “superior wine”, “pure wine” or “freshly squeezed wine” made a lot of sense after reading this quotes from the Desire of Ages:

“Beside the doorway stood six large stone water jars, and Jesus bade the servants fill these with water. It was done. Then as the wine was wanted for immediate use, He said, “Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast.” Instead of the water with which the vessels had been filled, there flowed forth wine. Neither the ruler of the feast nor the guests generally were aware that the supply of wine had failed. Upon tasting that which the servants brought, the ruler found it superior to any he had ever before drunk, and very different from that served at the beginning of the feast. Turning to the bridegroom, he said, “Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.” – {DA 148.2}

Notice the relation between wine and the blessings God gives through Christ.

“As men set forth the best wine first, then afterward that which is worse, so does the world with its gifts. That which it offers may please the eye and fascinate the senses, but it proves to be unsatisfying. The wine turns to bitterness, the gaiety to gloom. That which was begun with songs and mirth ends in weariness and disgust. But the gifts of Jesus are ever fresh and new. The feast that He provides for the soul never fails to give satisfaction and joy. Each new gift increases the capacity of the receiver to appreciate and enjoy the blessings of the Lord. He gives grace for grace. There can be no failure of supply. If you abide in Him, the fact that you receive a rich gift today insures the reception of a richer gift tomorrow. The words of Jesus to Nathanael express the law of God’s dealing with the children of faith. With every fresh revelation of His love, He declares to the receptive heart, “Believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these.” John 1:50. – {DA 148.3}

The wine which Christ provided for the feast, and that which He gave to the disciples as a symbol of His own blood, was the pure juice of the grape. To this the prophet Isaiah refers when he speaks of the new wine “in the cluster,” and says, “Destroy it not; for a blessing is in it.” Isaiah 65:8. – {DA 149.3}

If this Superior and Pure Wine is a symbol of Christ’s blessings, then the drink offering from Numbers 28:7 which is meant to signify a blessing must be of the same order.  One can only bring an offering to God recognizing that it was Him in the first place who gave it to you.  God did not gave to men fermented and intoxicating drinks.  God gave His Pure and Uncontaminated Son.

Also notice the similarity of the word shekár with the verb shakár which according to Strong’s H7937 could mean to be glad or to drink abundantly.

With this I want to clarify that the wine offerings were of new wine, and they meant a blessing given by God to His people.

The flour used to make bread, represents the life that God gives and sustains through His Son throughout the Universe; the oil, is also used to make bread, but is also a symbol of the spirit given to God’s children; but what about the wine? It is often a symbol of Christ’s blood, but in the context of the offerings it cannot be because there is already a type of the blood in the lamb slain.  In this context an offering of wine has to be a symbol of something that Christ’s blood bought for us.

The bread, compose of flour and oil, and wine are symbols of blessings. For example, when Abraham came back from rescuing his nephew Lot, Melchizedek came to meet him to bless him and brought bread and wine for Abraham.

Gen 14:18  And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he [was] the priest of the most high God.

Gen 14:19  And he blessed him, and said, Blessed [be] Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth:

Following this blessing Abraham had the assurance that he was sustained by God, and needed not the goods of men, and refused to accept the riches from Sodom’s king.

Gen 14:21  And the king of Sodom said unto Abram, Give me the persons, and take the goods to thyself.

Gen 14:22  And Abram said to the king of Sodom, I have lift up mine hand unto the LORD, the most high God, the possessor of heaven and earth,

Gen 14:23  That I will not [take] from a thread even to a shoelatchet, and that I will not take any thing that [is] thine, lest thou shouldest say, I have made Abram rich:

The book of Joel uses the flour, oil, and wine as symbols of blessings from God.

Joe 2:19  Yea, the LORD will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, and ye shall be satisfied therewith: and I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen:

The word for corn is dagan Strong’s H1715 and means grain, bread or wheat.

Meditating in the meaning of the symbols, a Sabbath morning I came across this Psalm

Psa 104:1  Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty.

Psa 104:2  Who coverest [thyself] with light as [with] a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain:

Psa 104:3  Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters: who maketh the clouds his chariot: who walketh upon the wings of the wind:

Psa 104:4  Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire:

Psa 104:5  [Who] laid the foundations of the earth, [that] it should not be removed for ever.

Psa 104:6  Thou coveredst it with the deep as [with] a garment: the waters stood above the mountains.

Psa 104:7  At thy rebuke they fled; at the voice of thy thunder they hasted away.

Psa 104:8  They go up by the mountains; they go down by the valleys unto the place which thou hast founded for them.

Psa 104:9  Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over; that they turn not again to cover the earth.

Psa 104:10  He sendeth the springs into the valleys, [which] run among the hills.

Psa 104:11  They give drink to every beast of the field: the wild asses quench their thirst.

Psa 104:12  By them shall the fowls of the heaven have their habitation, [which] sing among the branches.

Psa 104:13  He watereth the hills from his chambers: the earth is satisfied with the fruit of thy works.

Psa 104:14  He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth;

Psa 104:15  And wine [that] maketh glad the heart of man, [and] oil to make [his] face to shine, and bread [which] strengtheneth man's heart.

This passage happens to explain the meaning of the three types of offerings mentioned in Numbers 28, and the context of the psalm is God as the giver and sustainer of life.  We can see that the bread as a symbol of Christ’s life given to men strengthens or sustains man’s heart, the oil as a symbol of Christ’s Spirit makes man’s face to shine, and the wine as a symbol of Christ’s joy makes glad the hearts of men. 

I found many texts that presents the wine as a symbol of gladness, joy and delight. One of them is a parable or allegory in Judges 9.

Jdg 9:12  Then said the trees unto the vine, Come thou, [and] reign over us.

Jdg 9:13  And the vine said unto them, Should I leave my wine, which cheereth God and man, and go to be promoted over the trees?

The word here for cheereth is samakj Strong’s H8055 and is the same word used in Psalm 104:15.  In psalm 104:15 we see that wine makes glad the heart of man, and in Judges 9:13 it cheers God and man.  How wine can cheer or make God glad?  What do we know about the Father’s joy, delight, and pleasure? In whom He is well pleased? Proverbs 8:30 says

        Pro 8:30  Then I was by him, [as] one brought up [with him]: and I was daily [his] delight, rejoicing always before him;

And in Mathew 3:17 says

      Mat 3:17  And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Christ, God’s only begotten Son, is the Father’s delight, joy and pleasure. There is a beautiful relationship of joy between Christ and God His Father.  Christ rejoices in the agape of the Father manifested in the appointing of His Son as heir of all things, and the Father delights and is well pleased in His Son, one who appreciates His self-denying love, and shares everything he inherited with the Universe.  Christ took to give, and he shares with men the delight and joy of the relationship between them both. The Spirit of Prophecy says

“And the word that was spoken to Jesus at the Jordan, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased,” embraces humanity. God spoke to Jesus as our representative. With all our sins and weaknesses, we are not cast aside as worthless. “He hath made us accepted in the Beloved.” Ephesians 1:6. DA 113

Pro 8:30  Then I was by him, [as] one brought up [with him]: and I was daily [his] delight, rejoicing always before him;

Pro 8:31  Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights [were] with the sons of men.

See, Christ extends this delight to men.  The Father’s delight upon His Son, and the Son’s delight not only before the Father, but with men also. The wine as a symbol of joy, gladness and delight, represents Christ as the joy of God and men.  Christ is God’s delight, and man’s true delight can only be the beloved Son of God.

Another symbol of Christ that connects with the wine as a symbol of gladness, joy and delight is the river of life. Psalm 46:4 says

        Psa 46:4  [There is] a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy [place] of the tabernacles of the most High.

The word here for glad is again samakj, and we can see that this river in the city of God makes glad the whole city.  According to Revelation 22 this river flows from the throne of God and of the Lamb.  Could this be a symbol of the delight of the Father in His Son shared with the Universe through Christ, the channel? I believe so.  For me, the most beautiful thing about all this is that Heaven’s wine, Heaven’s joy and delight is given to us freely.

Let’s take a look at another verse.

Psa 36:7  How excellent [is] thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.

Psa 36:8  They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures.

Psa 36:9  For with thee [is] the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.

In verse 9 we see that the fountain of life is referred to as being with God.  We know the Bible teaches that the Father is the Great source of all, here we see something or someone with God referred to as the fountain of life.  In Proverbs 8 we see Christ with God, in John 1:1 we see that the Word was with God, and in Revelation we see the Lamb sited with God in His throne.  We see here the possibility of Christ being referred to as the fountain of life because He is the river, the channel, in which the life, spirit, joy, and all the blessings of God flow to the Universe. The Spirit of Prophecy says:

            
“The same beautiful and expressive figures are carried throughout the Bible. Centuries before the advent of Christ, Moses pointed to Him as the rock of Israel’s salvation (Deuteronomy 32:15); the psalmist sang of Him as “my Redeemer,” “the rock of my strength,” “the rock that is higher than I,” “a rock of habitation,” “rock of my heart,” “rock of my refuge.” In David’s song His grace is pictured also as the cool, “still waters,” amid green pastures, beside which the heavenly Shepherd leads His flock. Again, “Thou shalt make them,” he says, “drink of the river of Thy pleasures. For with Thee is the fountain of life.” Psalm 19:14; 62:7; Psalm 61:2; 71:3 (margin); 73:26 (margin); 94:22; 23:2; 36:8, 9. And the wise man declares, “The wellspring of wisdom [is] as a flowing brook.” Proverbs 18:4. To Jeremiah, Christ is “the fountain of living waters;” to Zechariah, “a fountain opened ... for sin and for uncleanness.” Jeremiah 2:13; Zechariah 13:1. – {PP 413.1}
Isaiah describes Him as the “rock of ages,” and “the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.” Isaiah 26:4 (margin); 32:2. And he records the precious promise, bringing vividly to mind the living stream that flowed for Israel: “When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the Lord will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.” “I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground;” “in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.” The invitation is given, “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters.” Isaiah 41:17; 44:3; Isaiah 35:6; 55:1. And in the closing pages of the Sacred Word this invitation is echoed. The river of the water of life, “clear as crystal,” proceeds from the throne of God and the Lamb; and the gracious call is ringing down through the ages, “Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” Revelation 22:17. – {PP 413.2}

In Psalm 36, verse 8 we see that whosoever drinks of this river, drinks of the pleasures and delight of God

        Psa 36:8  They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures.

This amazing fellowship with God of pleasure and delight is given to us.

1Jn 1:3  That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship [is] with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.

There are times appointed for this refreshing.  It flows in the Sabbaths.

Isa 58:13  If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, [from] doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking [thine own] words:

Isa 58:14  Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken [it].

Also in the new moons.

Eze 46:1  Thus saith the Lord GOD; The gate of the inner court that looketh toward the east shall be shut the six working days; but on the sabbath it shall be opened, and in the day of the new moon it shall be opened.

Eze 46:3  Likewise the people of the land shall worship at the door of this gate before the LORD in the sabbaths and in the new moons.

Jesus invited us to drink of the living waters in the feasts times.

Joh 7:37  In the last day, that great [day] of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.

Joh 7:38  He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

There is a connection of symbols between the wine and the river of life because the wine, just as the flour and oil, flows through the living waters of the river of life, the fountain of life, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God. In the celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles in times of Jesus, the priests would commemorate the bringing of water from the rock at Horeb by bringing water from Siloam in a golden vessel to the temple. There were two silver basins, one for the water, and the other for the wine; these two mingled together in a pipe that conducted to the Dead Sea.  This is very similar to what we read in Ezequiel 47.

Eze 47:7  Now when I had returned, behold, at the bank of the river [were] very many trees on the one side and on the other.

Eze 47:8  Then said he unto me, These waters issue out toward the east country, and go down into the desert, and go into the sea: [which being] brought forth into the sea, the waters shall be healed.

The NIV translates it like this

47:8 He said to me, "This water flows toward the eastern region and goes down into the Arabah, where it enters the Dead Sea. When it empties into the sea, the salty water there becomes fresh.

The Feast of Tabernacles was a joyful celebration of the blessings God gave to Israel.  It is very possible that the symbol of wine in this celebration also meant joy, gladness and delight.  Note what the Spirit of Prophecy says:

“The flowing of the water from the rock in the desert was celebrated by the Israelites, after their establishment in Canaan, with demonstrations of great rejoicing. In the time of Christ this celebration had become a most impressive ceremony. It took place on the occasion of the Feast of Tabernacles, when the people from all the land were assembled at Jerusalem. On each of the seven days of the feast the priests went out with music and the choir of Levites to draw water in a golden vessel from the spring of Siloam. They were followed by multitudes of the worshipers, as many as could get near the stream drinking of it, while the jubilant strains arose, “With joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.” Isaiah 12:3. Then the water drawn by the priests was borne to the temple amid the sounding of trumpets and the solemn chant, “Our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem.” Psalm 122:2. The water was poured out upon the altar of burnt offering, while songs of praise rang out, the multitudes joining in triumphant chorus with musical instruments and deep-toned trumpets. – {PP 412.1}
The Saviour made use of this symbolic service to direct the minds of the people to the blessings that He had come to bring them. “In the last day, that great day of the feast,” His voice was heard in tones that rang through the temple courts, “If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink. He that believeth on Me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.” “This,” said John, “spake He of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive.” John 7:37-39. The refreshing water, welling up in a parched and barren land, causing the desert place to blossom, and flowing out to give life to the perishing, is an emblem of the divine grace which Christ alone can bestow, and which is as the living water, purifying, refreshing, and invigorating the soul. He in whom Christ is abiding has within him a never-failing fountain of grace and strength. Jesus cheers the life and brightens the path of all who truly seek Him. His love, received into the heart, will spring up in good works unto eternal life. And not only does it bless the soul in which it springs, but the living stream will flow out in words and deeds of righteousness, to refresh the thirsting around him.” – {PP 412.2}

The river of life is also a symbol of Christ pouring His blood, His life, in order for us to have life, and all the blessings Heaven wanted to give to us, including the gladness, joy, and happiness of heaven, and the delight of the Father.

“The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin.... We need to keep ever before us the efficacy of the blood of Jesus. That life-cleansing, life-sustaining blood, appropriated by living faith, is our hope. We need to grow in appreciation of its inestimable value, for it speaks for us only as we by faith claim its virtue, keeping the conscience clean and at peace with God. This is represented as the pardoning blood, inseparably connected with the resurrection and life of our Redeemer, illustrated by the ever-flowing stream that proceeds from the throne of God, the water of the river of life. “ – {SD 226.2}

“Our Saviour was not to be sacrificed a second time; and it is only necessary for those who seek the blessings of His grace to ask in the name of Jesus, pouring forth the heart’s desire in penitential prayer. Such prayer will bring before the Lord of hosts the wounds of Jesus, and then will flow forth afresh the life-giving blood, symbolized by the flowing of the living water for Israel.” – {PP 411.3}

The wine that makes glad the hearts of men, flows through the river of life. Through Christ we receive every blessing there is, and all this is possible through the beating, bruising, and crushing of Christ; His sufferings, the shedding of His blood.  All the symbols of the offerings speak of this.  The wheat has to be grinded in order to have flour, the olives have to be crushed to produce oil, and the grapes have to be trampled or crushed for making wine. If we come to Christ in the times He calls us for a special blessing, acknowledging the price He and His Father paid to make all blessings possible, we’ll drink of Him and immerse ourselves in the river that deepens every 1000 cubits mentioned in Ezekiel 47[1], and He’ll satisfy every need, even the need of being accepted by the Father and to know that He delights in us.  This happiness and joy will stablish a foundation to build solid and healthy family relationships that will also bring to our lives gladness and many happy moments.

“The one great Offering that has been made is ample for all who will believe. The love of Christ will animate the believer with new life. He who drinks from the water of the fountain of life, will be filled with the new wine of the kingdom.” 1SM 388.1

 


[1] It is very interesting to note that in RVA, SE, RVR and other Spanish translations of the Bible, Ezequiel 47:9 says: “And it shall come to pass that every living being that swims wherever the river flows will live.” The only way to swim in this river and live is to advance in the river up to 4000 cubits (see Eze. 47:5) where the waters are over the head and can only be cross by swimming.  If the river deepens every 1000 cubits (meaning the appointed times) and the blessings expand and deepen with it, and we choose not to follow the river down to the point we can swim in it, we will be losing a great needed blessing.