Ancient Wine Press
In the ancient world the wine
press was a large basin where men would tread grapes. They would
hold on to ropes above them and stamp their feet.
Men Treading Grapes in
a Wine Press
The juice would run into containers
on the sides of the large basin. In the above illustration a woman is seen
bringing more grapes in a basket.
"Hear another parable: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a
winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country: And when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it."
- Matthew 21:33-34
"And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he
treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God."
- Revelation 19:15
"When the ruler of the feast had
tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was:
(but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the
feast called the bridegroom, And saith unto him, Every man at the
beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk,
then that which is worse: [but] thou hast kept the good wine until
now." John 2:9-10
Wine - He Saves the Best for Last
Vineyards and wine-making were common in agrarian Israel,
and used in Scripture as symbols of many important truths.
At the beginning of the Lordís ministry he turned water into
wine at the Cana wedding perhaps symbolizing the joy of the
wedding supper of the Lamb. This was his first miracle. The
banquet master marveled that the best wine was saved for
last. (John 2:10)
At the end of Christís ministry, the Passover cup at the
last supper was filled with wine. Jesus said that the
Passover wine represented his blood shed to create the New
Jesus drank wine with the common people and was accused by
the Pharisees of being a drunkard. (Luke 7:34) He spoke of
the new birth by comparing it to pouring new wine into new
wineskins lest the new wine burst the old wineskins. (Mathew
Wine in scripture is seen as a gift of God which produces
joy. (Psalm 104:15) The disciples on the day of Pentecost
were so joyful after being filled by the Spirit and in
miraculously worshipping in known foreign languages that
they were accused by some of being drunk on new wine. In all
three synoptic gospels Jesus uses a leased Vineyard as a
parable of Israel whose tenants wouldnít provide the fruit
due to the owner at harvest time. (Mathew 21, Mark 12, Luke
Overuse of wine leads to debauchery and should not be used
as a substitute for the joy of the Spirit of God. (Ephesians
5:18) This is a temptation we can do with any of the good
things God has created.
Wine is produced through a methodical process beginning with
planting a vineyard with chosen grape varieties in the right
soil. Weather plays an important part in the quality of the
wine providing the right amount of sunshine and rainfall. As
believers growing in the Lordís vineyard, we are being
transformed into fine wine through the soil he plants us in,
the weather and circumstances we endure and the long
fermentation process. We are all somewhere in His
wine-making process. We may be new believers enjoying our
miraculous connection to the Vine. Or perhaps we have
ripened but suddenly challenged with a crushing process
within some unforeseen winepress. Could we be stored in a
cold lonely place as we endure the unstable and gaseous
process of fermentation? Be encouraged, the Master
Wine-Maker, whose example you are following, will call upon
your vintage to be used to share the joy of His kingdom.
Those who experience your transformed character will marvel
saying he has saved the best for last.
The Bible Mentions the
7:25 - And they took two princes of the Midianites, Oreb and
Zeeb; and they slew Oreb upon the rock Oreb, and Zeeb they slew at
the winepress of Zeeb, and pursued Midian, and brought
the heads of Oreb and Zeeb to Gideon on the other side Jordan.
Lamentations 1:15 - The Lord hath trodden under foot all my
mighty [men] in the midst of me: he hath called an assembly against
me to crush my young men: the Lord hath trodden the virgin, the
daughter of Judah, [as] in a winepress.
Deuteronomy 15:14 - Thou shalt furnish him liberally out of
thy flock, and out of thy floor, and out of thy winepress:
[of that] wherewith the LORD thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt
give unto him.
- And he fenced it, and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted
it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and
also made a winepress therein: and he looked that it
should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes.
6:27 - And he said, If the LORD do not help thee, whence
shall I help thee? out of the barnfloor, or out of the
Revelation 14:19 - And the angel thrust in his sickle into
the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast [it] into
the great winepress of the wrath of God.
18:30 - Therefore thou shalt say unto them, When ye have
heaved the best thereof from it, then it shall be counted unto the
Levites as the increase of the threshingfloor, and as the increase
of the winepress.
- I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the
people [there was] none with me: for I will tread them in mine
anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be
sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment.
21:33 - Hear another parable: There was a certain
householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about,
and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and
let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country:
Revelation 19:15 - And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword,
that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them
with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of
the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
- And there came an angel of the LORD, and sat under an oak which
[was] in Ophrah, that [pertained] unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his
son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide
[it] from the Midianites.
18:27 - And [this] your heave offering shall be reckoned
unto you, as though [it were] the corn of the threshingfloor, and as
the fulness of the winepress.
- The floor and the winepress shall not feed them, and
the new wine shall fail in her.
Revelation 14:20 - And the winepress was
trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress,
even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand [and] six