There are two different Hebrew words used for the word wine. One word signifies unfermented sweet wine or new wine. It is called “must.” The other signifies fermented wine.
08492. tiyrowsh, tee-roshe’
in the sense of expulsion; must or fresh grape-juice (as just squeezed out); by implication (rarely) fermented wine:–(new, sweet) wine.
Strong’s Hebrew Dictionary
(noun) new wine; the unfermented juice as pressed from the grape or other fruit.
[Origin: bef. 900; ME, OE < L mustum,
short for vinum mustum new wine]
Dictionary.com unabridged (v 1.1)
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Random House, Inc. 2006
03196. Nyy yayin, yah’-yin
from an unused root meaning to effervesce; wine (as fermented); by implication, intoxication:–banqueting, wine, wine(-bibber).
Strong’s Hebrew Dictionary
The Marriage In Cana of Galilee …
John 2:1-11 And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there: And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage. And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come. His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it. And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece. Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it. When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew; ) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom, And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now. This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.
Albert Barnes’ Commentary …
We should not be deceived by the phrase “good wine.” We often use the phrase to denote that it is good in proportion to its strength and its power to intoxicate; but no such sense is to be attached to the word here. The most useful wine . . . was that which had little strength; and the most wholesome wine . . . was that which had not been adulterated by “the addition of anything to the must or juice. . . . It should not be assumed, therefore, that the “good wine” was stronger than the other: it is rather to be presumed that it was milder.
The wine referred to here was doubtless such as was commonly drunk in Palestine. That was the pure juice of the grape. It was not brandied wine, nor drugged wine, nor wine compounded of various substances, such as we drink in this land. The common wine drunk in Palestine was that which was the simple juice of the grape. We use the word wine now to denote the kind of liquid which passes under that name in this country–always containing a considerable portion of alcohol –not only the alcohol produced by fermentation, but alcohol added to keep it or make it stronger. But we have no right to take that sense of the word, and go with it to the interpretation of the Scriptures.
We should endeavour to place ourselves in the exact circumstances of those times, ascertain precisely what idea the word would convey to those who used it then, and apply that sense to the word in the interpretation of the Bible; and there is not the slightest evidence that the word so used would have conveyed any idea but that of the pure juice of the grape, nor the slightest circumstance mentioned in this account that would not be fully met by such a supposition.