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The First Sign Points to the Divinity of Christ

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John 2:1–11 (CSB)

On the third day a wedding took place in Cana of Galilee. Jesus’s mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples were invited to the wedding as well. When the wine ran out, Jesus’s mother told him, “They don’t have any wine.”
“What does that have to do with you and me,, woman?” Jesus asked. “My hour has not yet come.”
“Do whatever he tells you,” his mother told the servants.
Now six stone water jars had been set there for Jewish purification. Each contained twenty or thirty gallons.
“Fill the jars with water,” Jesus told them. So they filled them to the brim. Then he said to them, “Now draw some out and take it to the headwaiter.” And they did.
When the headwaiter tasted the water (after it had become wine), he did not know where it came from—though the servants who had drawn the water knew. He called the groom 10 and told him, “Everyone sets out the fine wine first, then, after people are drunk, the inferior. But you have kept the fine wine until now.”
11 Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee. He revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him.

Dear fellow redeemed: John Baptized Jesus in the Jordan River, and then, evidently the next day, pointed out Jesus, the Lamb of God, Who takes away the world’s sins; some of John’s disciples follow Jesus. The next day, Jesus heads to Galilee and calls Philip and Nathaniel. And then on the third day He and his disciples were invited to this wedding in Cana.

This wedding provided the occasion for the third day in a row of Jesus’ entering into his ministry, anointed by God, pointed to by the last Old Testament Prophet, followed by disciples faithful to the promises of old, and now here showing that He is no mere prophet, but the Lord of creation.

This, as the Apostle John, lays it out, is the growing manifestation of Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God. Now remember, this isn’t something you just read on the internet; this is an eyewitness account. As John said in his first letter, 1 John 1:1–4 (CSB) What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have observed and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life… what we have seen and heard we also declare to you, …

This is for us to hold in our hands and to read and to see that the One who set out to reveal Himself as the one chosen and anointed to be our salvation is God in the flesh.

THE SIGN POINTS TO JESUS

  1. As God
  2. As the Christ
  3. As Savior
  1. As God

I find that many people find it difficult to get beyond reading “religion” and understand that this is history. It is religious, not because it is open to question, or appeals to spiritual feeling, or because religious reality is different from other reality, it is religious because the historical truth that it reveals shows that this man Jesus exercises miraculous, creative power.

We know why John included these events in Cana, as well the others in his gospel. He tells us in John 20:31 “31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”

What He gives us first is a very carefully drawn account of the miracle. It isn’t like the so-called miracles of bogus Faith-healers, because the evidence is objective, and the witnesses are what scientists call “double-blind.”

Objective Factual Account

Waterpots: Large. Definitely used for water that day. Not used for wine, no remnant of wine. If there were, it would have been terribly diluted.

The servants filled them with water to the brim. No room to add wine.

Double-Blind Attestation 

The servants only knew about the water, the manager of the feast only knew about the wine. One did not know what the other was doing.

UNDERSTAND THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS FOR THE DISCIPLES AND FOR US!!  It means that Jesus is able to do what no chemist in the world can do – create one thing from something entirely different.  It means Jesus is not JUST a teacher or a prophet, but He possesses creative power in Himself. He is divine.

The sign of water-into-wine manifests Jesus as God.

      2. As the Christ

But the apostle John writes to show us that He is also the Christ, the Messiah, the Anointed One. As we talked about last week, He is the One chosen to this office of redeemer. This is the significance of these words that seem rather difficult: When the wine ran out, Jesus’s mother told him, “They don’t have any wine.”
“What does that have to do with you and me,, woman?” Jesus asked. “My hour has not yet come.”
“Do whatever he tells you,” his mother told the servants.

When Mary comes to Jesus with the problem, He tells her that what is going to happen isn’t just about their social situation, but involves something much greater – the time in which He will lay down His life, suffer the torment of hell itself, cast off by God, and redeem the world from sin, death, and hell.

This is what He was chosen, anointed, to do as the Christ. Therefore His solution isn’t just to come up with a strategy to help the embarrassed family, but to communicate with His disciples, who had just begun to follow Him, Who He really is. It doesn’t appear that Jesus upstaged the wedding couple or was conspicuous in what He did. But His disciples saw and knew. 11 Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee. He revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him.

The sign of water-into-wine reveals Jesus as the Christ.

As Savior

Now isn’t it interesting that this astounding miracle (it really was!) took place in such a normal, homey setting? The day will come when Jesus will appear as the Lord of all, and the judge of the living and the dead as they are all called before Him. He will utter words of power, and command, judgment and justice.

Philippians 2:10–11 (CSB)

10 so that at the name of Jesus
every knee will bow—
in heaven and on earth
and under the earth—
11 and every tongue will confess
that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

But first He came as Savior.

“Once He came in blessing,
All our ills redressing:
Came in likeness lowly, Son of God most holy;
Bore the cross to save us,
Hope and freedom gave us.” (ELH 141:1)

It is important that Jesus died for you, to make satisfaction for your sins. It is just as important that He lived for – in your place – to live out the righteousness of God that is given to you by faith. So it is not only important that He reveals Himself as Lord, but that shows himself to be in our place, living the daily life of those He came to save. He eats, He sleeps, He deals with the problems of life. He earns his bread as a carpenter until He is supported as a rabbi, a teacher. He attends weddings and supports and encourages a young man and woman as they start out life together.

In short, He is our Savior, our Righteousness.

He lived His life as you do, among sinful family, among imperfect friends, facing the challenges of daily life to provide food, clothing and shelter. The politics in Judea, Galilee, and the Roman empire were difficult, and affected even the lowly. There were taxes and other obligations. There was illness and poverty, there were the fit and able and the wealthy.

By recording these events, John wants you to know that the One we pray to daily, the One we worship, and the One Who comes to us in this word and this sacrament is no less than the true God, but humbled Himself to be no more than one of us, no more than a servant.

So, I can assure you that His righteousness is for YOU. Your life in your family, with all your mistakes and sins and shortcomings, is counted as holy because Christ lived it out for you. Your life as a husband, wife, son, daughter, friend, or any station of life is made holy by our Savior.

This is why we have hope, isn’t it? Like everyone, we have regrets of the things we have done and left undone. We feel shame. But with Christ as our righteousness, we have hope to stand before God, both now and in eternity.

And this is the hope that we have to share with others as well. Do you understand that knowing Christ as He is, you are in a unique position to share this hope with those who are in your life? You have such a hope that the world is crying for, so you have an infinity of joy to offer. Please never forget it.

AMEN.