New Wine and the Dispensation of Grace
Pastor Ricky Kurth
“Is the new wine in Mark 2:22 the dispensation of grace?”
No, the dispensation of grace was a mystery that was not revealed until Paul (Eph. 3:1-3). That means it cannot be found hidden in the Lord’s parables, for it was still “hid in God” at that time (Eph. 3:1-9).
Wine is a type of the Holy Spirit, for both are associated with joy (Zech. 10:7; I Thes. 1:6), and new wine is a type of the coming of the Spirit at Pentecost. You’ll remember that when the apostles were “filled with the Holy Ghost” (Acts 2:4), men thought that they were “full of new wine” (2:13).
With the parable of the bottles, the Lord was saying that the new wine of the Holy Ghost could not be put into the “old bottles” of Israel’s religious leaders; it must rather be put in the “new bottles” of His “little flock” (Luke 12:32).
New wine is first mentioned in the Bible when Israel was gathered back into her land after her captivity (Neh. 10:39; 13:5,12), a type of Israel’s future gathering back into her land for the kingdom, and so it is associated with the kingdom that was taken from Israel’s apostate leaders and given to the little flock (Matt. 21:43). New wine was withheld from Israel when she rebelled against God (Isa. 24:7; Hos. 9:2; Joel 1:5,10; Hag. 1:11) and was given when she was obedient (Prov. 3:5-10), and so it will be given in the kingdom (Joel 3:18; Zech. 9:17; Matt. 26:29) when God’s Spirit will “cause” them to walk in His ways (Ezek. 36:27).