Fact check: where does Old Testament say any wine required at Passover?

R. C. Sproul made a very questionable claim: “…everybody knows that the Old Testament feast of the Passover, that Jesus celebrated in the upper room, called for the use of real wine – by Devine sanction.” (R. C. Sproul, The Wedding Feast, sermon at St Andrew’s Chapel, Sanford, Florida, 9 Jun. 2002.)

I found where the Old Testament talks about the Passover: wine is not mentioned!

I found no Old Testament verse that commands {yayin} “wine,” nor even mentions the fruit of the vine, for the Passover seder meal.

Ex. 12; Ex. 13:3-10; Ex. 23:15, 18; Ex. 34:18, 25; Lev. 23:5-8; Num. 9:1-14; Num. 28:16-25; Num. 33:3; Deut. 16:1-8; Josh. 5:10-11; 2 Kin. 23:9, 21-23; 2 Chr. 8:13; 2 Chr. 30; 2 Chr. 35:1-19; Ezra 6:19-22; Ezek. 45:21-24.

Sproul said “real wine” when he meant alcoholic wine exclusively, forgetting the unfermented wine of Isaiah 16:10 is equally real {yayin} “wine” – by God’s own word. (This verse is about wine, but not about the Passover.)

Also the Greek New Testament itself never says {oinos} “wine” referring to the Last Supper, but only refers to the cup and the “fruit of the vine.”

Matt. 26:2, 17-19; Mark 14:1, 12, 14, 16; Luke 2:41; Luke 22:1, 7-8; Luke 22:11, 13, 15; John 2:13, 23; John 6:4; John 11:55; John 12:1; John 13:1; John 18:28, 39; John 19:14; Acts 12:3-4; Acts 20:6; 1 Cor. 5:7-8; Heb. 11:28.

Nothing wrong with grape juice!

The danger of former alcoholics relapsing is one of multiple reasons for various church denominations to stipulate the observance the Lord’s Supper with only unfermented wine.

Paul rebukes some Corinthians for what? (1 Cor. 11:21)

Jeremiah 31:25 (Greek version) contrasts methuo with being hungry (peinao). 1 Cor. 11:21 likewise contrasts methuo with being hungry (peinao). I understand methuo in 1 Cor. 11:21 the same way as in Jeremiah 31:25. This is how several translations have rendered 1 Cor. 11:21, without any intoxication (for methuo) in this specific passage because in this context it is contrasted with being hungry:

“For, in eating it, every one takes first his own supper; and one, indeed, is hungry, and another is filled.” (Living Oracles New Testament)
“for in eating every one strives to take his own supper first, and while one is hungry, another is surfeited.” (Mace)
“for every one at eating taketh first his own supper, so one indeed is hungry and another is plentifully fed.” (Charles Thomson version)
“each one for the own supper takes before in the to eat, and one indeed is hungry, one but is filled.” (Emphatic Diaglott – Benjamin Wilson)

R.C. Sproul should have demoted his ungodly son, rather than loading slander against sober men

In the same sermon (2002), R. C. Sproul made further questionable claims, such as an allegation against his childhood pastor who supposedly denied Christ even did a miracle at the wedding of Cana. I think that pastor did believe Christ miraculously turned water into non-alcholic wine at Cana. But still Sproul was full of spite and slander against him.

As with Eli, the same R.C. Sproul Sr. should not have honoured his son more than God (1 Sam. 2:29). R. C. Sproul Jr. was employed by Ligonier Ministries even after he very grossly promoted alcohol to Christians in 2003, writing extremely un-Christian things like: “it’s not enough that we should drink, but that we ought to drink well.”

R. C. Sproul Jr., while still openly in “Christian” ministry, lectured against Christians to “stop suggesting that it is wrong to drink alcohol in moderation, or that drinking alcohol in moderation somehow is a failure to love my brothers?” One scandal has lead to another and another. The same man was convicted after drink driving on 29 Nov. 2016 – with blood alcohol content as high as 0.175 – and endangering the lives of R. C. Sproul’s grandchildren.

In fact the Bible does requires us again and again to be sober.

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