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  • Writer's pictureAllison Wilcox

Filled with New Wine

When the day of Pentecost had come, [the apostles] were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.  Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. Amazed and astonished, they asked, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God’s deeds of power.” All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” But others sneered and said, “They are filled with new wine.”  But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, “Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning. No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:  ‘In the last days it will be, God declares,  that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh,   and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,  and your young men shall see visions,   and your old men shall dream dreams.  Even upon my slaves, both men and women,   in those days I will pour out my Spirit;    and they shall prophesy.  And I will show portents in the heaven above   and signs on the earth below,    blood, and fire, and smoky mist.  The sun shall be turned to darkness   and the moon to blood,    before the coming of the Lord’s great and glorious day.  Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ ” ~ Acts 2:1-21

You have to wonder if Peter took a moment to notice the irony.

If during this breathtakingly (actually, breath GIVingly) dramatic moment, he took the time to pause after the sneering remarks of the some of the folks in this room.

If he took the time to pause after they accused him and these other followers of Christ to be filled with new wine.

If in that pause - before he said they were not drunk - if he remembered Jesus' words about new wine in old wineskins.

And if in that pause - before he said they were not drunk - he nearly said: "Indeed. We ARE filled with new wine."

Do you think he remembered all the times Jesus told them he was coming to make something new? Do you think he remembered how new he was: that he was as new as the day he was born?

Do you think he remembered that Jesus promised to send the Advocate who would support them during the new things that were being brought forth?

Do you think he pictured a flagon of new wine, held securely in its new wine skins?

Do you think he remembered the wine from that last meal with Jesus at the Passover? Do you think he remembered that Jesus told them to drink from the cup that was his blood of the new covenant?

Do you think that in that pause he said to himself: "Yes. Yes. We are drunk on new wine. And it is wine that endures and makes everything else - including you - new as well."

Fill me with your new wine, gracious God! Let it strengthen me to be a bearer of your new things into the world. Amen

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