This a a very good and insightful little article by Scott Smith, which I post below. It demonstrates that there are hidden depths in all of scripture.
I remember many years ago chatting with a Seventh Day Adventist elder in his office at their college in Lancaster, Massachusetts. I brought up the subject of wine and asked him why the Adventists condemn any drinking of wine when it is a staple beverage in the Bible. Of course, I began the dialogue with the fact that Our Lord changed water into wine at Cana. He was very cordial and, as I remember, he did not protest too much on the point. He may have offered something, and meekly as I recall, like the “new wine” was not yet fermented; it was still just grape juice. What surprised me was his mild manner. He was not at all defensive. So, I continued. I read from Matthew’s Gospel (11:18) [which I had planned on doing beforehand] replacing the word “wine” with “grape juice.”
“For John came neither eating nor drinking; and they say: He hath a devil. The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say: Behold a man that is a glutton and a drinker of grape juice, a friend of publicans and sinners. . . .”
The elder looked down and smiled, as if to say “Of course it was fermented wine”, otherwise Our Lord’s words make no sense.
The elder was a reasonable man, no zealot, naturally good, I’d say, but he had no fortitude. He was comfortable. And wealthy. All the Adventist who lived in Lancaster, Massachusetts, were wealthy. They took care of their own. The students at the college, however, were mostly from the south. They lived on campus. They were almost all Blacks, at that time, being in the early 80s. And, the girls were all modestly dressed and the boys well dressed. Such a shame when you compare these poor young heretics with the immodesty of Catholic youth in our colleges and universities.
Here is the article from Scott Smith: Why does the steward at the Wedding at Cana praise the “good wine”? Did you know this fulfilled a Messianic prophesy from Isaiah? And from Moses?
Is the Bible against drinking alcohol? Is the wine at the Wedding at Cana non-alcoholic, as some Protestants argue? Ever heard of “wine on the lees” or aging wine “sur lie”? This is where your Catholic knowledge can inform your wine knowledge and vice-versa. Continued here.