Thursday, 28 February 2008

Jesus turns water into wine

I woke up early this morning and started reading the 2nd chapter of Johns Gospel.

Joh 2:3 When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to him, "They have no wine."
Joh 2:4 And Jesus said to her, "Woman, what does this have to do with me? My hour has not yet come."
Joh 2:5 His mother said to the servants, "Do whatever he tells you."
Joh 2:6 Now there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons.[1]
Joh 2:7 Jesus said to the servants, "Fill the jars with water." And they filled them up to the brim.
Joh 2:8 And he said to them, "Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast." So they took it.
Joh 2:9 When the master of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom
Joh 2:10 and said to him, "Everyone serves the good wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then the poor wine. But you have kept the good wine until now."

A couple of things struck me that I hadn't thought about before.
  • Jesus changes the water into wine that is used for ritual purification. He doesn't just use any normal drinking water. This is the water that they would have dipped all the eating and drinking utensils with, washed their hands with to signify they have been purified etc; but it would not be used for drinking. The fact they are drinking the new wine I believe signifies an internal purifying and not external.
  • This is very symbolic because he begins his ministry with wine and feasting and ends his earthly ministry with sharing the passover meal again sharing wine and bread. John talks a lot about the Blood of Christ and in 1Jn 1:7 says,
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.
  • Jesus also shows he is superior to Moses. Moses changed water into blood, so did the many magicians in Egypt as well. But here Jesus changes the water into wine, a far superior wine then what they had been drinking before hand and had their fill of it and I think it refers to the blood of Christ again showing that he is superior to Moses.
  • The third thought I had was the difficulty I have had in the past with verse 4 where Jesus tells his mother off. I think he is referring to the future where his time comes to be hung on the cross and he becomes the new wine... Jesus talks a lot about wine and in the Synoptic Gospels talks about putting new wine into new wine skins - referring to himself and I think it makes more sense to read it the light of this and so Jesus is not so much rebuking his mother as he is making a statement about his true purpose.


Terry Delaney said...

I don't think Jesus is telling his mother off so to speak. If I am not mistaking, calling her "woman" was more a term of endearment than the way we use it today. I believe we have lost some semblance of the intetion because of the difference in cultures.

Another thing I was shown the other night about this passage is that Jesus made them go fill the jugs with water first. Why didn't he just say "let there be wine"? After all, we know that Jesus was/is the creator and sustainer of all things. What was shared, and I find this intriguing, is that Jesus performed this miracle in a way that was personal to those around him. Look at the catch of fish in Luke 5. That was just as personal.

Anyway, just thought you might be interested in this line of thinking. God bless you brother.

Craig Bennett said...

Thats a good point Terry.

The Gospel message is a personal message...God is interested in relationship with individuals.

Blessings craig