Sweet Wine

Published on Aug 31st, 2016 by Pastor Ed Hlad | 0
Sweet Wine

Sweet Wine

I don’t drink alcohol. I don’t trust myself. I get bored and look at a large bag of M&M’s and I just feel a challenge to eat the whole bag. To my credit, I don’t succeed…but not for a lack of trying. If I drank alcohol and got bored…well, it could get ugly. I have, at times, drank vinegar. It is supposed to be good for your health. It is bitter, sour and nasty. In Bible times, from what I understand, you used to get the beginnings of vinegar from the same place you got wine. You would place the mix in a new wineskin and it would ferment. The gases would make the wine skin expand. After a period of time, the bitters, or the dregs, would go to the bottom. You would then pour the top part into another wine skin and do the same thing time and time again until there were no more dregs and you were left with just sweet wine. The dregs would be used to produce sour, bitter vinegar.

Listen to how God uses this process to teach us a valuable lesson. Jeremiah 48:11, “Moab has been at ease from his youth and has settled on his dregs; he has not been emptied from vessel to vessel, nor has he gone into exile; so his taste remains in him, and his scent has not changed.” Moab was a cursed nation. Part of that curse was going to be a terrible time of judgment. That was yet to come. The part of the curse that they were experiencing now was that God simply left them alone. He did not judge their idolatry. They were living lives of ease. Because of their lack of trouble their lives had not been cleansed. They still had the stink of idolatry on them. They were bitter and sour. God is sharing with Israel that their times of trouble, their times of being poured out time and time again, acted like the pouring of the wine from skin to skin. It was sweetening them. It was driving out the bitter and bringing in the humility. It was driving out pride and self sufficiency and allowing the sweet fruit of the Spirit to rise to the top.

Isn’t our God amazing? It is why we need to be forever grateful that he is the one who is always in control and in charge. The troubles that he brings into our lives are measured and designed to bring the sweetness out in our lives. They are not random acts of happenstance that God then turns into something good. They are gifts from a heavenly father to reveal in us the Christlike character that brings all good things into our lives. He does not, even for one second, lose his temper or patience in such a way that he would ever be too hard on us. Each trial is carefully designed to accomplish exactly what he desires to teach us and to draw us closer to him. Every one of these is a good gift from above. Each one is worthy of our gratitude. That person who is making your life difficult is a gift from God. That lack of job is designed to draw you ever closer to him. That health issue is not by accident. God is simply pouring you into a new wine skin so that more and more dreg can be filtered out of your life. He is so awesome.

Comments are closed.