The new and old wine (Lk 5:38-5:39)

“But new wine

Must be put into

Fresh wineskins.

No one,

After drinking old wine

Desires new wine.

But he says.

‘The old wine

Is good.’”

 

ἀλλὰ οἶνον νέον εἰς ἀσκοὺς καινοὺς βλητέον.

καὶ οὐδεὶς πιὼν παλαιὸν θέλει νέον· λέγει γάρ Ὁ παλαιὸς χρηστός ἐστιν.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that new wine (ἀλλὰ οἶνον νέον) must be put into fresh, new, or unused wineskins (εἰς ἀσκοὺς καινοὺς βλητέον).  No one, after drinking old wine (καὶ οὐδεὶς πιὼν παλαιὸν), desires new wine (θέλει νέον).  But he says (λέγει γάρ) that the old wine was good (Ὁ παλαιὸς χρηστός ἐστιν).  Interesting enough, Luke has the first verse like Mark, chapter 2:22, and Matthew, chapter 9:17, but then he uniquely added that that old wine was good because people did not like new wine.  Both Mark and Matthew said that new wine should be poured into fresh or new wineskin leather pouches.  Thus, both the wine and the wineskins would be preserved.  They seem to be saying not to mix up the new with the old, since they are incompatible.  Here Luke said that the old was better, when most of the teaching was about the renewal of the old ways.

The right wineskins (Mt 9:17-9:17)

“Neither is new wine

Poured into old wineskins.

Otherwise,

The skins burst.

The wine is spilled.

The skins

Are destroyed.

But new wine

Is poured

Into fresh wineskins.

Thus,

Both are preserved.”

 

οὐδὲ βάλλουσιν οἶνον νέον εἰς ἀσκοὺς παλαιούς· εἰ δὲ μήγε, ῥήγνυνται οἱ ἀσκοί, καὶ ὁ οἶνος ἐκχεῖται καὶ οἱ ἀσκοὶ ἀπόλλυνται· ἀλλὰ βάλλουσιν οἶνον νέον εἰς ἀσκοὺς καινούς, καὶ ἀμφότεροι συντηροῦνται.

 

This wineskin saying is almost the same as in Mark, chapter 2:22, and Luke, chapter 5:37-38.  Jesus continued with his metaphors.  New wine should not be poured (οὐδὲ βάλλουσιν οἶνον νέον) into old wineskins or leather pouches (εἰς ἀσκοὺς παλαιούς), because they would crack.  The old wineskins would burst open (εἰ δὲ μήγε, ῥήγνυνται οἱ ἀσκοί,).  The new wine would be spilled (καὶ ὁ οἶνος ἐκχεῖται) and the skins destroyed (καὶ οἱ ἀσκοὶ ἀπόλλυνται).  New wine should be poured (ἀλλὰ βάλλουσιν οἶνον νέον) into fresh or new wineskins leather pouches (εἰς ἀσκοὺς καινούς), so that both the wine and the wineskins would be preserved (καὶ ἀμφότεροι συντηροῦνται).  Do not mix up the new with the old.

Past history (Sir 2:10-2:11)

“Consider the generations of old.

See the generations of old.

Has anyone who trusted in the Lord been disappointed?

Has anyone persevered in the fear of the Lord been forsaken?

Has anyone who called upon him been neglected?

The Lord is compassionate.

The Lord is merciful.

He forgives sins.

He saves in time of distress.”

See what happened to your ancestors, the generations of old. Has anyone who trusted in the Lord been disappointed?   Has anyone been forsaken who preserved in the fear of the Lord? Has anyone been neglected who called upon the Lord? After all, the Lord is compassionate, merciful, and forgiving. He will save you in the time of distress.

The power of God (Wis 11:21-11:26)

“It is always in your power

To show great strength.

Who can withstand the might of your arm?

Because the whole world is before you

Like a speck that tips the scales.

It is like a drop of morning dew

That falls upon the ground.

But you are merciful to all.

You can do all things.

You overlook people’s sins.

Thus they may repent.

You love all things that exist.

You detest none of the things

That you have made.

You would not have made anything

If you had hated it.

How would anything have endured,

If you had not willed it?

How would anything not called forth by you

Have been preserved?

You spare all things.

They are yours. O Lord!

You love the living!”

This is like a great prayer to God, who has power and strength. No one is able to withstand the might of his arm. The whole world (ὅλος ὁ κόσμος) is like a speck or a drop of morning dew before him. This is reminiscent of the folk spiritual song He’s got the Whole World in his Hands. God is also merciful to all. He overlooks people’s sins so that man can repent (ἀνθρώπων εἰς μετάνοιαν). He loves (ἀγαπᾷς) all things, but he detests none since he made everything. If God hated anything, it would not endure. If he did not will it, it would not happen. He has preserved all things, since all belongs to the Lord who loves all (πάντων) living things.

Tower of Babel and Abraham (Wis 10:5-10:5)

“Wisdom also,

When the nations in wicked agreement

Had been put to confusion,

Recognized the righteous man.

She preserved him

Blameless before God.

She kept him strong

In the face of his compassion

For his child.”

Here there seems to be a link with the Tower of Babel and Abraham. Once again in this abridgment of Genesis, there is a leap from chapter 11 about the Tower of Babel and Abraham sacrificing his son Isaac in chapter 22. Obviously, we then have this abbreviated history of mankind that jumps from Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, to Noah and the flood, without explicitly mentioning their names. Now the jump is from the Tower of Babel to Abraham. Here it is wisdom and not God who caused the confusion as the men were building the high tower. She also recognized and preserved Abraham as the strong righteous man who was blameless before God (ἄμεμπτον Θεῷ). Just as the idea of God dominates over wisdom, she, wisdom, is the one who had compassion for the child (τέκνου) of Abraham, Isaac.

Rescue me (Ps 119:153-119:160)

Resh

“Look on my misery!

Rescue me!

I do not forget your law.

Plead my cause!

Redeem me!

Give me life

According to your promise!

Salvation is far from the wicked.

They do not seek your statutes.

Great is your mercy!

Yahweh!

Give me life

According to your justice!

Many are my persecutors.

Many are my adversaries.

Yet I do not swerve from your decrees.

I look at the faithless with disgust.

Because they do not keep your commands.

Consider how I love your precepts!

Preserve my life

According to your steadfast love!

The sum of your word is truth.

Every one of your righteous ordinances endures forever.”

This psalmist wanted to be rescued from his misery because he had not forgotten the law. He wanted a defense attorney and a redeemer. He wanted his life as Yahweh had promised. The wicked would not be saved because they did not seek Yahweh’s statutes. Yahweh’s mercy was great so that his justice would also help him. Although he had many persecutors and adversaries the psalmist did not swerve from Yahweh’s decrees. He looked at the unfaithful in disgust because they did not keep Yahweh’s commands. He, on the other hand, loved Yahweh’s precepts. He wanted his life preserved because of Yahweh’s love. The word of Yahweh is truth so that every one of his just ordinances would endure forever. So ends this section on the twentieth consonant letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Resh.

 

Yahweh delivers (Ps 32:6-32:7)

“Therefore let all

Who are faithful

Offer prayer to you.

At a time of distress,

The rush of mighty waters

Shall not reach them.

You are a hiding place for me.

You preserve me from trouble.

You surround me

With glad cries of deliverance.

Selah

The faithful ones pray to Yahweh. At the time of distress, the rush of mighty waters does not reach the faithful praying ones. Yahweh hid and preserved David from trouble. He was surrounded with glad cries of deliverance. Once again, there is a pause for a musical interlude with the Selah.