Jesus, Passover, and Wine

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pastorway

Puritan Board Senior
The question was raised in another thread as to whether or not Jesus ever took a Nazarite vow. In studying the issue I had determined that He did not. In fact, until it was mentioned here on the forum I had never heard such an idea. Jesus was from Nazareth, hence the reference to Him as a Nazarene (this is what everyone from Nazareth was called). But the Bible never tells us that He took a Nazarite vow.

So where does the idea come from, that Jesus might have taken such a vow?

The verses that are used to make such a claim are the verses where Jesus, while observing the Passover with His disciples and instituting the Lord's Supper, says that He will no longer drink of the cup until He does so in the kingdom. Here are the verses:

[b:981bd66534]Matthew 26[/b:981bd66534]
26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, "Take, eat; this is My body." 27Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you. 28For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. 29[u:981bd66534]But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father's kingdom[/u:981bd66534]." 30And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

[b:981bd66534]Mark 14[/b:981bd66534]
22 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them and said, "Take, eat; this is My body." 23Then He took the cup, and when He had given thanks He gave it to them, and they all drank from it. 24And He said to them, "This is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many. 25[u:981bd66534]Assuredly, I say to you, I will no longer drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God[/u:981bd66534]." 26And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

[b:981bd66534]Luke 22[/b:981bd66534]
14 When the hour had come, He sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him. 15Then He said to them, "With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; 16[u:981bd66534]for I say to you, I will no longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God[/u:981bd66534]." 17Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, "Take this and divide it among yourselves; 18[u:981bd66534]for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes[/u:981bd66534]."

Now then, it is further believed that Jesus refused to take the sour wine and myrrh while on the cross because of this vow (Matt 27:34; Mark 15:23). However, it is clear when we understand that myrrh was a narcotic mixed with any drink to be given to dull pain and extend the suffering of one on the cross that Jesus refused this not because it was wine, but because it was a pain killer and there is no releif from the wrath of God for the judgment of sin, which Jesus was bearing for us on the cross.

So the question that we need to ask is this:

Did Jesus mean that He had taken a Nazarite vow and would not drink any wine until the coming of the Kingdom? Or did He mean that He would not observe the Passover (as fulfilled in the Lord's Supper) and drink of the "cup" of that ordinance until the coming of the Kingdom?

Was His reference to the fruit of the vine a specific reference to all wine whatsoever, or was it a reference to the cup of the Supper, the cup of the new covenant in His shed blood?

I think that we can deduce clearly from Scripture that Jesus did NOT mean that He would not drink any wine whatsoever until the coming of the kingdom, but that instead He meant that He would not partake of the cup of the Supper until later.

How can I say this? Because if Jesus was really saying that He would not drink any wine at all again until the coming of the kingdom (His second coming at the marriage feast of the Lamb - Rev 19), then Jesus LIED to His disciples!

WHAT? How can I say sucj a thing? Jesus never lied. He is God. "God cannot lie" the Bible tells us.

So how is it that Jesus lied if He meant that He was taking a Nazarite vow and would never again drink anything from the fruit of the vine until His return?

Jesus was offered sour wine TWICE while on the cross. The first was mixed with gall, or myrrh, and was refused because it was a pain killer! The second time, He said on the cross, 'I thirst." And they brought Him sour wine and He drank it!!!

[b:981bd66534]John 19[/b:981bd66534]
28 After this, Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled (Psalm 69:21), said, "I thirst!" 29Now a vessel full of sour wine was sitting there; and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and put it to His mouth. 30[u:981bd66534]So when Jesus had received the sour wine[/u:981bd66534], He said, "It is finished!" And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.

Psalm 69:21 also confirms that there were two instances at play here. The first, as prophesied, was the offering of a narcotic to deaden pain. The second was an offering of sour wine, old wine that had turned to vinegar. It was the fruit of the vine and Jesus received it!!

That means He could not have been saying that He would not drink the fruit of the vine until the coming of the kingdom, but that He meant that He would not participate in the Supper, in the cup of blessing, the cup of the new covenant in His shed blood, until all the elect have been gathered together for the marriage feast of the Lamb!

Jesus was not a Nazarite. He is looking to that day, as should we, when we will partake of this cup together! That cup has been made possible because Jesus bowed His will to the Father, and drank from teh cup of His wrath in our place. When Jesus does drink with us, it will be because He did exectly what He said He would do while praying in the garden....."let this cup pass from Me, nevertheless, not My will, but Thine."

He has exchanged the cup of wrath for the cup of blessing!!What a work He has done on our behalf to the glory of the Father.

Phillip
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
Not to disagree with you, but to add something . . .

Amen.
Yes, Jesus was not a Nazarite according to the OT ritual (Num. 6:2-5).
But the Nazarite vow was pointing to Jesus.
A few years ago I found the most marvelous exposition of this matter in the Puritan (of course!!) Thomas Goodwin. See his collected works, volume 5, pp147-164 (from "Of Christ the Mediator" book iv, chapters iii-vii). You simply [i:e14dc01aad]must[/i:e14dc01aad] read this. I cannot do it justice in a summary. Classic.
I'd like to get a couple other opinions of this bit of Goodwin (if or after you read it, nach.)
 

mjbee

Puritan Board Freshman
I'm the one who suggested that Jesus may have been taking a Nazirite vow in Matt 26:29, and that is why He refused the "sour wine" which was offered to Him. I still have no idea why my suggestion was met with such hostility. It seems perfectly reasonable to me that a Jew would take a Nazirite vow to consecrate Himself to God. Jesus was baptized,even though He was sinless, so why not take a Nazirite vow before He was crucified? It does NOT make sense to me that Jesus refused the drink offered to Him because it was supposedly a "painkiller." Crucifixion was meant to be horribly painful. That was its purpose. I rather doubt that what the Romans were offering Christ, after His scourging, and after nailing Him to a cross, was a "painkiller."
They may have offered Him a poison to hasten death, but not an analgesic to make it less painful.

And by the way, notice that He was not defiled by coming near a dead body. He died first, and after His death the Romans broke the legs of the criminals who were crucified next to Him.

Also notice that Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus were unclean to keep the Passover because they buried Jesus, and defiled themselves by touching a dead body, but there is a loophole for that in Numbers 9:9-11. They just had to postpone it for a month. (cf Lev 23:5) As Pharisees, they surely knew that.

Scott, you posed the question whether one single orthodox theologian had ever taught such a thing. You received a resounding "NO!" from all on the boards. Let me quote from Martin Luther..."Unless I am convicted by Scripture and plain reason---I do not accept the authority of popes and councils, for they have contradicted each other---my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe."

This is from Sproul's [i:5e6c4da8e7]The Holiness of God.[/i:5e6c4da8e7] Sproul goes on to say, "The question is raised how one man dare stand against pope and emperor, councils and creeds, against the entire organized authority of Christendom. What arrogance there must be to contradict the finest scholars and the highest officials of the church, to set his own powers of mind and biblical interpretation against that of the whole world."

Why did Luther do that? Because he was sure he was right? Luther was speaking of salvation by grace. I'm only pointing out something the Jewish Messiah did, in keeping with His Jewishness.

Let it go. I thought the thought was dead long ago. :deadhorse:
 

pastorway

Puritan Board Senior
Did you not even read my post?

Jesus DID drink sour wine while on the cross. He was offered it twice - once mixed with a narcotic (this is common knowledge and not speculation - the wine was mixed with a pain killer - the Bible and history are clear on this fact) and then He was offered sour wine with nothing added just before He died and He "received" it. [i:3aa2df8e4d]He drank wine on the cross[/i:3aa2df8e4d]. So He could not have taken a Nazarite vow.

[b:3aa2df8e4d]John 19[/b:3aa2df8e4d]
28 After this, Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled (Psalm 69:21), said, "I thirst!" 29Now a vessel full of sour wine was sitting there; and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and put it to His mouth. [u:3aa2df8e4d]30So when Jesus had received the sour wine[/u:3aa2df8e4d], He said, "It is finished!" And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.

We reacted because you have added to Scripture and made it say something that it does not.

Phillip
 

Scott Bushey

Puritanboard Commissioner
Melissa,
If you would take the time to slow down to a trot, you would see that the thread was rejuvinated by Bruce (Contra_Mundum). His desire was not to run after your silly idea but take what he had read in T. Goodwins treatise on the Nazarite and how the vow all pointed to the Christ. To compare yourself with Luther's complaint at Worms and to use his quote in such a irresponsible way is in the least goofy if not prideful.

[Edited on 5-10-2004 by Scott Bushey]
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
The topic caught my eye in the Biblical Text forum, which is one of my favorites. It's not as popular as some others, like current events, etc., so its easy to pick up on an "old" thread, even on the first page. And if I haven't been talkative for a while and missed some things ... well, this is what happens.
 

mjbee

Puritan Board Freshman
Is receiving the same as drinking? And could somebody explain to me why God is so ticked off in Amos 2:12?

Pastorway, thank you for being kind and not calling me silly. I appreciate that.

I never even hinted that Jesus didn't drink wine, Paul. I suggested that He took a Nazirite vow just prior to his death and resurrection, because of what He said in Matt 26:29.

And would Jesus really have "received" (ie accepted) a "painkiller" (ie narcotic) to dull the pain of the cross? If He did, I'm disappointed in Him. Now I personally would want all the morphine and demerol I could get.....but Jesus? He came to suffer and he takes a painkiller? Does this make sense to you?

We're beating a dead horse that's headed for the dog-food factory, or the Chinese restaurant. Nobody's giving an inch here.:deadhorse:
 

pastorway

Puritan Board Senior
I know you locked this one Scott, but I must reply to Melissa's last post.

Melissa - go back to the very first post I started this thread with and READ it this time. Please. Read it carefully. Read it a few times if you have to.

I said and showed very clearly from Scripture that Jesus was offered wine TWICE (2 times) on the cross.

The first, when He was first being crucified (Matt 27:34; Mark 15:23), was wine mixed with gall (myrrh) - a narcotic, a drugged wine used to dull pain so that criminals being crucified would last longer and endure more agony while dying. This is not only proven in the text, but it also verified by history.

Jesus REFUSED this wine mixed with pain killer.

Then He was offered wine a SECOND time (John 19:30), just moments before He died, when He said, "I thirst." They brought Him wine, nothing added, just wine. And He "received" it and then died. The Greek word for received means literally that He "took it in." He took the wine from them. He drank it. He took it in, He received it to quench His thirst.

Now, I have already shown in my first post that He did not take any Nazarite vow. And if He did, then we have a major problem. That problem is John 19:30. A Nazarite would have been required to perform specific sacrifices at the Temple in order to be freed from the vow, but Jesus did no such thing, and in fact, if He was a Nazarite, He BROKE the vow by taking wine on the cross before He died.

Here is EXACTLY why I am taking the time to refute this error.

Listen closely.

IF Jesus had taken a Nazarite vow, and He obviously broke it just before He died, then He died in VAIN and cannot save anyone.

How can I say such a thing?

IF Jesus broke a vow to God on the cross then just before He died HE WOULD HAVE SINNED and then would be disqualified to serve as a spotless lamb. He would have been an inadequate sacrifice for our sins. Jesus would have died a SINNER. He would have died for His own sin, instead of for the sins of His people.

So let me say it one more time for emphasis.

Jesus NEVER took a Nazarite vow. And to say He did makes Him a sinner instead of a Savior.

Melissa, you need to repent of this error that you have embraced in your theology. It is an error that has serious ramifications. It is an error that impugns the sinlessness of Christ. It is an error that adds to the Scripture. It is an error that attacks the very sacrifice of Christ on the cross as an atonement for our sin.

Phillip
 
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