New Wine - Day 10

What to Do with an Old Wineskin?

“And He was also telling them a parable: “No one tears a piece of cloth from a new garment and puts it on an old garment; otherwise he will both tear the new, and the piece from the new will not match the old. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins, spilled out, and the skins will be ruined. But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. And no one, after drinking old wine, wishes for new; for he says, ‘The old is good enough.’” Luke 5:36-39 (NASB) is also found in Mark 2:21-22 & Matthew 9:16-18

We have been looking at this for a while now, but we should take the whole text and pull some interesting thoughts out. I have been reading and meditating on this text all week, and the first question that came to my mind is, “What do we do with the old wineskin?” 

Most of us would throw it away. Jesus is saying much more than throwing away the old. I looked up more about wineskin and learned that wineskin is usually made of goatskin with the insides lined with pitch to waterproof it. If wineskins are made of leather, then logically, they should not be thrown away as leather products usually last for a long time. It does not make sense to keep making new wineskins for the new wine. Old wineskins cannot hold new wines because they become brittle and lose elasticity. As new wine ferments, gases are created, expanding the wineskin. Being less elastic, the old wineskin will eventually burst because of the pressure inside, and the new wine will be wasted.

Interestingly, “fresh” describes the wineskin used to contain new wine, not “new.” A fresh wineskin can be a new wineskin but can also refer to an old one reconditioned. A reconditioned wineskin is as supple as new and can hold new wine. An old wineskin must be cleaned and soaked in oil to recondition it. The wineskin is soaked until it is rejuvenated to its supple and soft state to be ready for the new wine. So old wineskins are not thrown away or only used to hold old wine. It can be made fresh again to hold new wine!

  1. What would it look like to be rejuvenated in Christ? 
  2. What would the oil be in this situation? 
  3. Have you tried to put old wine into new wineskins? 

By Pastor Timothy Gillespie

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