The New Wine: The life and sacrifice of Jesus became our new wine, providing for a new covenant that provides for a communal response; a constant flow of an inpouring and outpouring to others. For this symbol is a representation of the new covenant that now exists between God and man. It is the impartation of new life through the Holy Spirit, who is at work amongst His people. God chose humanity, a weak and fragile vessel to house the Imago Dei.
What humility, what honor to house His presence. It’s the practice of abiding and becoming one in relationship, rather than needing to prove or earn a right standing with God through the Law. “Do not think that I came to do away with or undo the Law [of Moses] or the [writings of the] Prophets; I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For I assure you and most solemnly say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke [of the pen] will pass from the Law until all things [which it foreshadows] are accomplished” (Matthew 5:17-18, AMP).
Christ has accomplished all, He has become our complete sacrifice, the spotless lamb. And in doing so, His grace provides a higher standard of righteousness, because His glory resides from within.
Remaining in Him is the only way to receive and be carriers of the new wine. Therefore, we need to be open to the new and not idolize ways of old. The Kingdom is all about transforming us into the image of Christ.
The Old & New Wineskins: The old wineskin represented the religious practices, customs, and traditions of ancient times (that from the old covenant), which was both practiced and highly revered. The religious leaders of that time tried to preserve the old garments, because they found the “new” offensive. This was a threat to the religious systems of hierarchal order, an embodiment of people who had become entrenched in ego and blinded by pride, who had lost fellowship with the Lord.
The new cloth calls for righteous living and thereby provides for one to become spiritually strong, encouraging others to right relationship with the Father. In times of old a wineskin was made from an animal, such as sheep, goat, or ox. After being prepared, it would become filled with either wine or water. However new skins could stretch without bursting, whereas to reuse the old would bring a loss to the wine and skin as both would burst forth in the fermentation process. Therefore, the new message of the Kingdom of God must be received with soft, pliable hearts.
This is a call for a renewal in the Kingdom of God, to advance and distance itself from the dried out and inflexible system of what was. The new wineskin must be able to expand and contract, ready to adjust, so that all will remain strong and stand.
Fermentation: For anything to become fermented, one would know that it takes time. They say that aged grapes reap a good wine. Spiritually, this means that our hearts become one with His. We do this through meditating on His word and taking time to abide in His presence.
-Mindi Oaten Art