Noah’s Wine

An ancient account concerning the period 2348 B.C. says: “And Noah began to be a husbandman, and he planted a vineyard (Genesis 9:20).”  “Although many scholars would be tempted to dismiss claims of Noah’s original vineyard as lacking any historical merit, scientists are discovering evidence of ancient wine making in that very same region (Biblical Archaeology, September/October 2011).”

Moses tells about Noah’s grapes, wine, drunkenness, and nakedness.  Next Ham’s actions and his brother’s totally different reactions are detailed.  (It appears that Ham did more than just gaze upon his naked father.)  Yet we do not learn how or why a vineyard of grapes was planted, how wine was made, or why Noah became intoxicated.  However, archaeologists from a joint Armenian, American and Irish expedition announced the discovery of the earliest known wine-making operation in an Armenian cave near the southern border with Iran.  This site, which lies about 60  miles fromTurkey’s Mt. Ararat, the traditional site of the Biblical ark’s grounding, contained well-preserved ancient remains thanks to a dry, consistent temperature and a layer of sheep dung in the cave that formed a protective layer over the artifacts and organic remains.”  (Ibid.)

The team found “a few ancient grape seeds, the remains of grape vines and pressed grapes, a wine press, a clay collection/fermentation vat, potsherds with wine reside, as well as a cup and a bowl.” (Ibid.)  One puzzling fact was that no device was found for smashing grapes in the press.  One said, however, that “these ancient people probably used their feet to stomp the grapes in the wide think-rimmed basin, as was standard wine-making practice throughout the Mediterranean world for most of history.” (Ibid.)

Wine production and consumption generate huge amounts of money all over the world, especially inCalifornia.  Solomon utters solemn warnings about wine, nevertheless.  “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise (Proverbs 20:1).”  This writer fears for some of our young people who take this matter lightly.  There is an apostolic minister who would come home from church and drink a little wine to relax but in time it overcame him with dire consequences both legally and spiritually.  Notice that Noah’s moment of intoxication caused him to curse his grandson,Canaan!  One never knows until too late what alcohol’s results will be.  Prudent people avoid wine, beer, and strong drink.  Paul’s admonition is: “Be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18).”

Noah’s wine, or the infilling of the Holy Ghost?

Rev.Raymond Parnell is Pastor Emeritus of Christ Memorial Temple in Lafayette, Indiana.
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