New Wine - Day 2


Let’s talk wineskins for a little. Most of us are not so familiar with wineskins for many reasons. The biggest reason is that the bottle replaced the wineskin in approximately the 1600’s. Those bottles looked a great deal different than the glass bottles and the shape we are used to today.

The reason why wineskins were used for so long is pretty robust, but they used sheep or pig bladders to account for some flexibility in the material as they transported wine. For hundreds of years, the process of making wine was kept from the ordinary person, and wine would demand a high price. Therefore, most people didn’t get a chance to drink much wine unless it was connected to a religious ceremony. 

Regardless, wine is much more portable, and the process of making wine is common knowledge; wine is much cheaper and has become very different in our culture. 

When the wine was emptied of the wineskin, it would often become brittle, cracked, and no longer valid for its intended purpose. Therefore, if you put wine into a wineskin that had been used and then left empty, it would not be pliable and would burst. 

This is the point of the message we hear in Mark 2:22. When the previous wineskin has been left empty, the new wine will burst the vessel. When this happens, that precious liquid will be released onto the ground and won’t be suitable for anyone any longer. 

Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever felt pretty brittle and cracked, empty from what had filled you before? When we become this way, it is difficult for us to be prepared for something new to come into our understanding. We tend to let the great things we are learning or experiencing out and become useless because we need to prepare. Perhaps this is why we are told that we become “new creations” (2 Corinthians 5:17-“This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!”)

This means that when thinking about renewing our religious and spiritual experience, we must be remade and made into new creations and creatures, as Paul tells us. Jesus reminds us that we need to be “born again” (John 3). All of this means that we are made to be renewed to hold that new wine God has to carry.

  1. When did you feel brittle and about ready to crack?
  2. Do you think you were good to hold anything new? 
  3. What changed in your life? 
  4. Do you feel you were “born again” and a “new creation?”
  5. If you do or did feel that, what was it like? 

By Pastor Timothy Gillespie

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