The Vinegar Offered to Jesus

Discussion in 'The Gospels & Acts' started by Prufrock, Sep 24, 2009.

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  1. Prufrock

    Prufrock Arbitrary Moderation

    I am wondering if anyone can provide good exegesis of what is happening in Luke 23:36 and the parallel passages in the other gospels.

    Are the soldiers trying to harm Jesus somehow? Are they offering pain relief? Is there simply a sympathetic man trying to offer him a drink?

    Yes, Rick, thank you for the correction.
  2. SolaSaint

    SolaSaint Puritan Board Sophomore


    I think you meant Luke 23:36. But after looking at the four Gospels I feel it is nothing more than a traditional gesture done at crucifixions to help the dying person.
  3. OPC'n

    OPC'n Puritan Board Doctor

    Matthew tells us that it was a bystander who gave it to Him. That bystander could have been someone who followed Him during His ministry we don't know. We know that a Roman soldier wouldn't have been referred to as a bystander so it couldn't have been a person who nailed Him to the cross or whipped Him etc. John 19 does tell us that Christ received from the bystander what was offered so I think the bystander was trying to help.
  4. JennyG

    JennyG Puritan Board Graduate

    He did receive it, yes (John 19. 30).
    I'm guessing no-one will answer this.... but can anyone explain how that text is to be fitted with Luke 22. 18, "...for I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come"?
    Does it mean that the crucifixion has to be equated with the coming of the kingdom, and if so, in what sense exactly?
  5. Megan Mozart

    Megan Mozart Puritan Board Junior

    Oooo this is something that has intrigued my husband and I for some time. I'm really interested to see the debate here. :popcorn:
  6. CharlieJ

    CharlieJ Puritan Board Junior

    The simplest explanation would seem to be.... no one would call that drinking. HOWEVER, if Jesus ate and drank with the disciples during the 40 days before his ascension, does that mean that the kingdom came in his death and resurrection? I think there is some merit in seeing a connection between "the kingdom" and "the new covenant."
  7. Rogerant

    Rogerant Puritan Board Freshman

    Wine is the symbol for "joy" and "life" in the scriptures. In John 2 we have 6 stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, and they were empty. This is what the religion of Judaism had become. It had become a religion of ceremonial works, devoid of life giving water and devoid of teaching that provided life and joy. It was the religion of man (note "6" stone jars) 6 is the number for man.

    Jesus said that He would not drink of the fruit of the vine until the Kingdom of God had come. In other words, He would not drink of it again until the Kingdom was fully consummated in the New Covenant after His death. Note that it was wine vinegar. Man could not provide living water or wine that supplied joy or sustenance to our Lord. The Romans provided gall or wine vinegar to those on the cross to quench their thirst. Quench their thirst is all that vinegar could do. It did not provide any life giving sustenance, but only quenching of thirst. It is all that man can offer in times of despair. And it is no longer fruit, but vinegar.

    But our Lord does supply water to us so that we never thirst! (John 4:13) And He provides us with a taste of the joy giving wine at the Lords supper. New wine that we will share with Him in heaven!

    But, you can only come to these conclusions if you believe in the Historical Redemptive method of preaching. :detective:
  8. JonathanHunt

    JonathanHunt Puritan Board Senior

    I heard a minister who hypothesized that the sponge on a stick was actually something used by slaves to wash people's backs, which was disinfected every so many washes with vinegar.

    I don't see the connection myself.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2009
  9. JennyG

    JennyG Puritan Board Graduate

    I don't think I would agree that that is the simplest, considering that the sponge was proffered in response to "I thirst"(ideas about its being for rubbing backs seem a bit weird)
    I don't seem to remember any reference to drinking wine after the resurrection - is there one? but still I think this must be the key, that in some sense the kingdom must have come.
    I like that symbolism, but actually there's a separate:worms: in there!!
    This is another niggling thing I have wondered about and would love to have explained.
    I've always heard it implied that the jars used for that purpose were huge. But if so, how long would it actually take to fill them all, using a well? I should think it would take all day.
    I always leaned to the solution that they were fairly well full already, and the servants simply topped them up in obedience to the Lord. But that completely spoils the symbolism!
  10. Rogerant

    Rogerant Puritan Board Freshman

    I will add to that can of worms! The stone jars or jars of clay. Clay is dead, inert material, devoid of life. Christ fills those dead, inert jars of clay with life giving water. And fills the vessels with the joy giving wine.

    "And the vine said unto them, Should I leave my wine, which cheereth God and man?" Judges 9:13

    I don't seem to remember any reference to drinking wine after the resurrection - is there one? but still I think this must be the key, that in some sense the kingdom Quote

    Well if He said Luke 22. 18, "...for I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come"?

    Then that must mean that He would drink of the fruit of the vine after the resurrection.

    I do believe that there will by wine served at the wedding reception.

    Also see:

    Joel: 3:18, Amos 9:13,
  11. JennyG

    JennyG Puritan Board Graduate

    hmmm, that would make sense, though it had never occurred to me. The vinegar on the cross to me seems still unexplained though. Can we say the kingdom had then already come? Actually, can we even say it had come as soon as the Resurrection had happened? I'm still uncertain about that, can anyone help?
  12. JennyG

    JennyG Puritan Board Graduate

    duh -- I said *help*
    (just kidding)
  13. historyb

    historyb Puritan Board Junior

    I can see the connection

    Is vinegar from grapes? I don't know were vinegar is from, besides Apple vinegar :)
  14. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    From Wikipedia:

    "Vinegar is made from the oxidation by acetic acid bacteria of ethanol in wine, cider, beer, fermented fruit juice, or nearly any other liquid containing alcohol."
    [ame=]Vinegar - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
  15. JennyG

    JennyG Puritan Board Graduate

    You can probably make it from all sorts of things, but it seems reasonably certain that within the meaning of this passage, it's the fruit of the vine.
    The word means "sour wine" after all.
    Not but what it would be a neat solution if what Jesus drank on the cross was actually made from apples!!
  16. Mephibosheth

    Mephibosheth Puritan Board Freshman

    Mark Driscoll recently made a similar suggestion in his first sermon in his series on Luke's gospel -- except that the sponge was used by slaves to wash peoples backsides after a trip to the public latrine...:barfy:

    He has some strange views, frankly.

    Then again, it wouldn't necessarily surprise me if it were true, given the humiliation Christ went through.
  17. TimV

    TimV Puritanboard Botanist

    He wouldn't have drunk from the filth proposed by edge pusher referred to above, since it would have been unlawful. Vinegar based drinks called posca was standard Roman army drink, and the different accounts could have meant two different people at different times offered Him the thirst quenching drink. The vinegar could have been made from anything; most kinds you buy today don't come from fruit at all.
  18. JennyG

    JennyG Puritan Board Graduate

    ....but wouldn't that be only because they're manufactured in a chemistry lab from e-numbers??
  19. TimV

    TimV Puritanboard Botanist

    Yes. I just brought it up because of the valuable insight above about fruit of the vine. One must keep an open mind, and if grape juice could be considered fruit of the vine the vinegar must also be considered fruit of the vine (I think), and it takes away a strong argument of those (like myself) who think that while wine is by far best for the Lord's Supper, grape juice is also legit under some circumstances.

    So, I for one would have to (probably?) consider re-evaluating my definition of fruit of the vine, or re-evaluate when I think the Kingdom was ushered in.

    Again, a very fair point that needs to be addressed. I'm a wine maker, and know a bit about the subject, and have made alcohol from several different kinds of things, and I do know that vinegar was made from several different sources during the time, and that it was standard army rations.

    So, first of all do we know for a fact that the word(s) in the NT passages spoke of vinegar or sour wine? And are we sure that the two people (at least) who offered Him the substance were taking it from the same jar?
  20. OPC'n

    OPC'n Puritan Board Doctor

    Here..... some interesting info on sour wine during Roman times.
  21. JonathanHunt

    JonathanHunt Puritan Board Senior

    Oh. I must have misheard. I was referring to the same person. Yuck.
  22. Eoghan

    Eoghan Puritan Board Senior

    Definition of wine - by Jesus(?)

    It would seem that the wine i.e. alcoholic drink is not to be equated with vinegar. If I want wine I go to the offlicense (UK) or liquor store (US?). If I want vinegar I go to ASDA/Wallmart. So when Jesus speaks of not drinking wine he means "proper wine". Remember wine is very symbolic in the OT of rejoicing and blessing - in this regard wine simply does not cut the mustard.

    Does this have implications for communion? If wine is wine why do we change it to a glucose syrup drink. Yes I know that there is the uargument is that an alcoholic might be in the congregation. I would humbly suggest that the wrong use of wine should not ban it's correct use.

    We could argue that Mothers Day and Fathers Day often celebrated in church should be banned out of sensitivity to those who are from single parent families. After all over 50% of babies here in the UK are born out of wedlock!

    And before I finish venting can I just say that as a diabetic I spend my life trying to avoid glucose so what is passed of as wine on a Sunday morning is bad for my health!

    Nope let your wine be wine and your vinegar vinegar :duh:

    Apologies to recovering alcoholics. Would it not be possible for a mix of glasses to be put out. Most churches use "individual cups" so a few grape juices in a different shaped glass would not go astray. Most of the churches put out too many glasses anyway so there IS extra capacity to allow choice!

    Which brings me onto the loss of the communal cup... :worms:

    Then there is the failure to use unleavened bread... :offtopic:
  23. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    In most US states, you get wine where you get vinegar - the grocery store. A few states have more restrictive rules.
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