May God give you of heaven’s dew and of earth’s richness— an abundance of grain and new wine.
Alcohol has definite drawbacks – tell that to those who are nursing hangovers on New Year’s Day – but it wasn’t always so. Despite the connotation of drunkenness today – and deservedly so in most cases – alcohol was symbolic of joy in biblical times.
All throughout the Bible there are references to new wine. It is symbolic of celebration as wine was often used in feasts. It is no surprise that Jesus’ first miracle was to turn water into wine. Christianity is not about being bored or following a bunch of pointless rules. God wants us to enjoy life and He provides us with an abundance of things to enjoy life with.
While some may prefer old wine – see “Old is Better” – new wine is symbolic of God’s continued provision. Because God continues to give to us as we need, we know that He loves us and cares for us.
As humans, we can create new things that are not always beneficial. Using alcohol as an example, today’s wine is not like that of ancient times. It was often consumed because the water was unfit to drink and the fermentation killed off germs. It was still quite possible to become drunk from it but did not compare to today’s alcohol. Today it is drunk mostly for its content and to become drunk.
When man does something new, it’s not always for the best. But when God does something new, we can always be excited about it.