Behold, my belly [is] as wine, [which] hath no vent
Or, "is not opened" F1, like a bottle of wine, as Ben Gersom, which is stopped close, and the wine in it new; which is most apt to ferment, and should have vent given it; so the Targum,
``as new wine, which is not opened:''in the same manner Jarchi and Bar Tzemach interpret it; in these words Elihu illustrates, by a metaphor taken from new wine put into bottles and tightly stopped, what he had before more literally and properly expressed, and so in the following clause:
it is ready to burst like new bottles;
or perhaps it may be better rendered, "like bottles of new wine" F2; for new bottles are not so apt to burst as old ones, and especially when they have new wine in them; the bottles of the ancients, and in the eastern countries, being made of skin, which better agrees with what our Lord says, ( Matthew 9:17 ) ; by his belly he means his mind, which was full of matter, and that matter he compares to new wine in bottles, tightly stopped, which need vent, and are in danger of bursting: the doctrine of the Gospel is like to wine, ( Song of Solomon 7:9 ) ; to wine neat and clean, being free from all human mixtures; to wine of a good flavour and pleasant taste, as the Gospel is to those whose taste is changed; to generous wine, which revives, and refreshes, and comforts; all which effects the doctrines of the Gospel have, when attended with a divine influence: and it may be compared to new wine; not that it is a new and upstart doctrine, it is the everlasting Gospel, made known immediately on the fall of Adam, and was ordained before the world for our glory; but because it is newly, or of late, under the Gospel dispensation, more clearly revealed: ministers of the word are like vessels, into which it is put; they are but vessels, even earthly vessels, and have nothing but what is put into them; and they are like vessels stopped up, when they are straitened in themselves, or shut up by the Lord, that they cannot come forth freely in their ministry, and when any outward restraint is laid upon them by persecuting magistrates, and when there is no open door for them in Providence; which gives them great pain and uneasiness, and, let the consequence be what it will, they are weary of forbearing, and cannot stay, but must speak the things they see and know; see ( Jeremiah 20:9 ) ( Acts 4:18 Acts 4:20 ) .
F1 (htpy al) "quod non est apertum", Pagninus, Michaelis, Schultens.
F2 (Myvdx twbak) "sicut utres vino nova repleti", Piscator.