Two Miracles in One

On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee.  Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and His disciples had also been invited to the wedding.  When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to Him,  “They have no more wine.”

“Dear woman, why do you involve me?”  Jesus replied.  “My time has not yet come.”

His mother said to the servants,  “Do whatever He tells you.”  John 2:1-5

I remember the first time I read this story.  I loved it immediately. Jesus partied, I thought, and that means parties must be okay.

Then I took a quarter of Greek, which opened the subject even more.  Jesus made wine, an undetermined type of wine, very good on the palette and of the best grade.  I asked around and found out the best wine at Jewish weddings is always fermented and carefully crafted for taste and texture.  I didn’t know much about wine but I did know a snow job when found one.

My church had colored this text to fit their bias.  It couldn’t be fermented wine, went their argument, because Jesus couldn’t do anything sinful or harmful to your health.  But Jesus made the best wine.  Either that meant Jesus needed to buck up and get His health teaching up to date with the conditions set out for Christian life in the conservative church manual or the church had it wrong.  Well, as you might guess, I sided with Jesus.  There are a host of issues like this that I won’t go into but it started me on a path to trying to understand the truth of Word rather than my preference, tradition or inherent bias.

Jesus partied in the NT on more than one occasion.  Hmmmm.  Wow, that has ramifications!

Another thing that stands out to me is His unwillingness to be miraculous.  It’s like you want to say to Him,  “You’re the Messiah just get on with it already!”  It took a little pushy Jewish mother to get Him to act.  It’s also significant that Jesus performed the miracle without waving His hand or making any big incantations.  Instead He used a quiet method of faith to work one of the most celebrated and oft used stories in Scriptures besides walking on water.  Popular songs use it as a metaphor for their points, people use it as political jabs or praise.

Instead of trying to gain from it politically, socially, ministerially, Jesus used it to validate a marriage, His mother, His new disciple’s fledgling faith and to just plain party.  It’s not hard to picture Him dancing in the wedding dance, talking and laughing with the other guests, not drawing attention to Himself by sitting on the sidelines but participating in a way which didn’t make Him holier than thou–even though He actually was (holier than anyone at the feast).  This story made me like Him all the more.  He took time for the little things–little by human theological standards anyway–some believe love and marriage to not be as high on the priority list as understanding the sanctuary doctrine or the rapture time table.  Jesus shows us this attitude is nonsense and doesn’t fit into His way of living.  He validates marriage by merely being at a wedding; He doubly validates it by making the best wine in the country for wedding already winding down to a close; then He goes above and beyond all that stuff by making this small, seemingly insignificant little miracle His very first of many.

Here’s another thought:  There was no fan-fair, trumpeted pronouncements, preamble act or announcement of the miracle itself.  When the servants poured the water into the cups it was wine.  He didn’t go into the main room and act humbly embarrassed, while secretly wishing for acknowledgement for John says only the servants were aware of the origins of the best wine at the wedding and the befuddled groom took all the credit.  No, it was with quiet simplicity and love for those present as well as the couple the day celebrated that He created something incredibly special.

Jesus showed love in this act.  He loved His mother and, though He sounded like every other kid objecting to doing something at His mother’s insistence, I think He wasn’t being whiny or petulant about it. The time for His miraculous ministry hadn’t arrived yet for Him but He went ahead to support His mother’s faith–I’m sure He thought she was just being cute and loved her all the more for her faith in Him, that would be just like Jesus–and, may be, to help His new disciples get a perspective on the true nature of the Messiah’s mission.

I just love the fact that His momma ignored His protests and just circumnavigated all objections by putting Him on the spot.  Do you get the poignancy of this fact?  The God of heaven was “manipulated” by His mother’s pushy motherly ways.  I bet He laughs about this story still, I know I would.  It demonstrated not only her faith in Him but His love and respect for her that He went ahead and obeyed her wish—though His authority to say “no” outweighed her motherly command by a long shot.  And what character!  She knew without any doubt He could take care of the situation.  Whatever possessed her to push for wine, is something I guess we’ll have to ask her when we meet her.  I just find it funny she chose wine at a party to be persistent about rather than some politically beneficial miracle.

God chose a lowly wedding to demonstrate His power and control over the natural order of things.  This tells us nothing is too small for Him to concern Himself with and we should be as careful of our world as He is and demonstrated while He walked earth.

Whatever His reasons for objecting, He performed His first miracle, according to John A, at a wedding for relatives or friends in a show of support and love for all involved. What do you think the servants’ reaction was after this clearly miraculous wedding gift?

I know what mine would be.

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One Response to “Two Miracles in One”

  1. tlc4women Says:

    I love this story as well. It’s great that he performed his first miracle at a wedding, the very reason he came to earth, to bring the bride to the bridegroom. I also love his obedience to his mother.

    Like you it’s a little frustrating that the church teaches this wine was non-alcoholic when clearly it was not.

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