When we look at how the Bible talks about wine, we can see that there are times when the writer is talking about actual wine (Ephesians 5:18) and then there are times when the writer is using the word wine to mean something else (just like we called it spiritual fruit but we were talking about character traits like Love, joy, peace, etc.). When the word wine means something else the meaning is coded. One important example of the meaning of the word “wine” being coded comes from Jesus Himself, when He tells the parable of the wine in the wineskins. You can read about this in Matthew 9:1, Mark 2:22, and Luke 5:37-39. This example is important here because it explains why wine is tied in with many of your names, and what that same wine has to do with the Joy that we have in Jesus.
In our example story, Jesus was being questioned by some devout Jews about why he was eating with sinners and about why his disciples did not keep the law like they did. They were called devout Jews because they considered themselves to be perfect followers of God, having followed every commandment that God had given. These devout Jews wondered why Jesus’s disciples did not fast on Saturdays like they did, and as it was commanded in the Law of Moses. Trying to explain, Jesus says, “Do happy men fast? Do wedding guests go hungry while celebrating with the groom? But the time will come when the bridegroom will be killed; then they won’t want to eat.” (Luke 5:34-35) After that, Jesus used this illustration: He said, “No one tears off a piece of a new garment to make a patch for an old one. Not only will the new garment be ruined, but the old garment will look worse with a new patch on it! And no one puts new wine into old wineskins, for the new wine bursts the old skins, ruining the skins and spilling the wine. New wine must be put into new wineskins. But no one after drinking the old wine seems to want the fresh and the new. ‘The old ways are best,’ they say.” (Luke 5:36-39).
The “old wine” in Jesus story is about the Law (or the old covenant), which is like a contract between God and His People (if they break any part of the contract they have to pay the fines that were agreed upon). The “new wine” in Jesus’s story is about GRACE (or the new covenant) which is a new contract that makes the old contract not have to be followed anymore (the new contract states that all debts from the old contract have been paid in full – FOREVER). Grace means that God is no longer looking at our sins as a reason to keep us from coming to him, because Jesus’s died on the cross, and His blood became the final sacrifice for sins.
You see, according to the Law of Moses (the “old wine” covenant), every sin that the people did had to be paid for in blood taken from someone perfect and without sin. BUT ALL HAD SINNED, and the only blood that the priest could to sacrifice was the blood from a sinless animal (one without any bruises or blemishes). To keep the people from judgement, the priest would have to go over and over into the temple and sacrifice. However, as far as God was concerned, the blood of animals was not enough to cover the sins of His people. So, God came up with a different plan to provide his own sacrifice. He sent his Son Jesus as the sacrificial lamb. When Jesus died on the cross, because he had never sinned, his blood was enough to set us free from the “old wine” (which means Coming to God by trying to keep the Law), and establish the “new wine” (which means coming to God through believing in Jesus (Grace)).
To sum it all up, the “new wine” that Jesus is talking about in his illustration is the “Grace of God” that was provided by the Blood of Jesus. Grace is the new covenant that God has established with His people, which means that, it is not our works that get us to God, but it is Jesus (God’s own gift to us), that whoever believes in Him will not have to die, but can have eternal life.