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Edward O’Hara Fri 4/24/2020 1:16 PM…
If you have not yet heard of or read the story of how Jesus turned the water to wine at a marriage feast in Cana you’re in for a treat. Because in it we find all the things that we need to know about what happens when we are saved. Which is why it is the first of Jesus’ many miracles. Because this is why the Bible says He came in John3:16,17. Because He so loved the world that He came not to condemn us, but to deliver us from the power of death to eternal life.
It has nothing to do with the way it is used by some to justify drinking alcohol. There is no justification for that, nor is it needed. It has only to do with the greatest miracle that ever has or ever will happen. A greater miracle than any that Jesus could perform while in His earthly ministry. The miracle of deliverance from eternal death to eternal life that was only possible after He died. Because it was only after His death and resurrection that the gospel could be preached about His death and resurrection that provides this deliverance.
In John 2 we read John’s eyewitness account of Jesus turning water to wine. And like I said, this is the first miracle Jesus ever did. And by performing this miracle the Bible says something amazing happened. It tells us that through this miracle Jesus “manifested forth His glory”. And I want you to know that this means so much more than first meets the eye. Because it is in this “manifesting forth His glory” that this miracle shows us how Jesus brought to us the miracle we call salvation.
We begin by reading that Jesus and the disciples were asked to come to the wedding feast. So like all of Jesus’ miracles they begin with His being there. His presence. This shows us that His presence is always necessary for His miracles to take place. Because we can not do them in and of ourselves. We possess no power to do such things. To believe so is witchcraft. It is only the power of God that does His miracles. So first and foremost we need to see that God has not imparted some mystical power to us as if there is anything given to us that makes us in and of ourselves able to create these miracles. Nor are there some magic words we speak or positive mental attitude we possess that does this. It is truly by God’s creative power that is in Him alone and through Him as He wills, sometimes using us as conduits, that they ever happen. And in this way God manifests forth His glory here for us today. A glory that is His presence and power, and the expression of His purpose for coming. This is the glory or presence that Paul describes in Rom.3:23 as that which we all “fall short”, or are in need of caused by not knowing Jesus.
As we look further into these events surrounding this miracle we see John who attended and was an eyewitness to them saying, “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.” So Jesus was called on the third day. It wasn’t the second or fourth day. It was the third day. Just as it was the third day when He rose from the dead conquering death. We also see that those who had believed in Him, the disciples, were called too. This was so that they could witness this first miracle. By this they would be witnesses both to the power and presence of God, and Jesus’ purpose in coming. Just as they were to Jesus’ death and the resurrection when Jesus sent them out to “Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and all the uttermost parts of the earth” in Acts1:8 just before He ascended up into the clouds and out of their sight.
Are you beginning to see where this is going? The entire story is full of these examples of what Jesus’ glory is and how it was manifested forth that day with this the first miracle He ever did. This is why it was the first of His miracles. Because it is meant to show Israel then, and Gentiles after He left, who He was and why He came. And the importance of His presence, which is His glory, in our lives. Which is the difference between life and death.
Continuing on we read, “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.” Notice it was only when they “wanted wine” that the miracle happened. Wine here in this story is representative of the new birth that happens when we choose of our own free will to answer God’s call. The spirit birth that Jesus spoke of in John3. It is analogous to the new wine that is placed in old wine bottles that Jesus spoke of in Mt.9:17 when Jesus said, “Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.”
These old bottles are analogous to the stone waterpots at the wedding at Cana. These represent our natural bodies. These will eventually all go back to the dust. But, after these go back to the dust the new wine which is our spirit that we received at the new birth will be housed with new wine bottles which are the new bodies that are our house made without hands that Paul speaks of saying, “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” in 2Cor.5:1. They are immortal and eternal and incorruptible as Paul said in 1Cor.15 when he wrote, “But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come? Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die: And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain: But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body…. and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.”
So now when we think about what “mine hour” means in the context of scripture we see that when Jesus told Mary that “mine hour is not yet come” He was referring here to the fact that it was not yet time for Him to die. We see this when we realize it was only by His death and resurrection that power could be given to a New Covenant that has in it the power to change the water, the word of God, into wine, the spiritual man. This happens when the word of God is preached, which is “the power of God unto salvation for all who will believe”(Rom.1:16), changing men who were only “natural”, “of the earth earthy”, and “flesh and blood” by a natural fleshly birth, to become spiritual beings by the spiritual birth. By being born again.
John continues recounting the events saying, “His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.” What Mary shows here is that she knows it was not in or by or because of her that the miracle would come. She didn’t know what Jesus would do. She only knew that whatever was about to happen could only happen when they did what Jesus told them to do. And not by what she told them or Jesus to do. Just as any believer in Jesus must know. So we see Mary submitted to Jesus just as we all must be to have eternal life. Telling them that they must do what Jesus told them just as we who are New Covenant believers preach that we must do what Paul’s gospel that he received of the Holy Spirit tells us.
Next, we read, “And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.” The number six has great significance here because it is the number of men. For it was on the sixth day that God created man. So the fact that there were six pots was to represent mankind. And the fact that these waterpots were made of stone is significant as well. Because being made of stone also represents mankind as this is what man is made from when God made Adam at the beginning in Gen.2:7. The man was made from the elements or dust of the ground just as these pots were. So these six waterpots represent the body man has from his mother’s womb.
Then we read that “Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.” The water is representative of the word of God as we see in Eph.5:26 where husbands are instructed to wash their wives with the word. And interestingly the water these pots were filled with was water for the purification of the Jews. So Jesus told them to fill these stone waterpots that represented man, with water that represents the word of God. And He told them to fill them to the brim so that they are filled as much as can be with God’s word. This is akin to what takes place when the word is sown in our hearts as Jesus said in the parable of the sower. Because only by the receiving of God’s word does man come to know the true God for salvation. Because it is through this filling with the word that man bears the fruit which is to know Jesus as Lord and His resurrection as Peter describes for us in 1Peter1:23 saying, “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever.”
The miracle that happens as a result of filling the man (the stone waterpots) with the word of God(the water) then appears or “manifests” as they do what Jesus said by instructing them to, “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.”
Notice the servants drew the water out. These are they who believe in Jesus and are therefore His servants. Because it is only they who know where the water that turns to wine comes from. Like the one’s Jesus said know where the wind comes from and where it is going in John3 that makes men spiritual beings. They drew it out and knew where it came from while the ruler of the banquet did not. So in giving the water that turns to wine to the ruler this was analogous to these making known to him where it came from just as the disciples had been appointed by Jesus to tell Israel who Jesus was in Acts1. And as we who are the church are given the ministry of reconciliation as Paul says in 2Cor.5:19,20 to tell the world who Jesus is with the assurance that God is not imputing there trespasses to them. That God is not mad or angry at them. God does not condemn them. And that all they lack for eternal life is Jesus’ presence in them by a new birth and the infilling Holy Spirit.
Realizing this is how we see that it is in “This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.” Because it is this wine that is the wine of the New Covenant that is the best wine by comparison with the wine that was the Old Covenant. Of which the writer of Hebrews says it is “a better covenant, which was established upon better promises” in Heb.8:6. It is in this then, Jesus’ first miracle, that the salvation of the Lord that Jesus came to provide for mankind is manifested/shown.
So in this story, we see how it is that He brings men who are represented by the six stone waterpots His word which is represented by the water filling them as the sower does in Mark4. And that if believed we are filled and have birthed in us a spirit(the wine) which is the bearing of the fruit of salvation as the water which is the word is turned to wine which is the spirit. A spirit that men are not born with in the first fleshly, water birth Jesus spoke of in John3:1-8, as is seen in Paul’s description of Adam when God made him in 1Cor.15:45-48. A spirit that no man ever had before so that now we are enabled by that spirit to know and commune and have an intimate personal and spiritual fellowship with God. A fellowship that is only for those who worship God in spirit and in truth as Jesus said we must in John4:24. A relationship that is one of a Father with His child instead of the only Creator with His creation as it was for Adam in the garden. A relationship that has provided for us an eternal inheritance of His eternal spiritual kingdom.
This then is what Jesus was referring to when He said that “greater miracles than these shall you do” in John14:12. Because while He lived as a man on earth the spiritual birth could not come. Because only by His death and resurrection is the New Covenant wherein is this spiritual birth-given power. So it is the greatest of all miracles to share the New Covenant gospel with a man so that he comes to saving faith in Jesus for eternal life. And this is the greater miracle the New Covenant believer should be striving for. Because it is only by this greater miracle that we are given the hope, the firstfruits, for a spiritual kingdom where there is no death or any of its effects that we see and are subject to in this life.
This then is the miracle that did “manifest forth His glory”. Because in this miracle is His power to save from death to life manifested. His power to give eternal life by taking what is only temporary and natural and making it eternal and spiritual. This first miracle then was the confirmation that Jesus is “the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.”
I told you you were in for a treat. I pray you have been blessed by this message as never before. So that you will go and tell them of this great manifestation of His glory for mankind. The glory of God that saves to the uttermost those who are under the power of death. So that they can have the eternal life that Jesus has provided for all who will trust in Him.
And if you are reading this and have not yet come to know Jesus will you be born of His Spirit so you too can inherit this eternal life? The fleshly birth that gave us these stone waterpots that are our natural bodies only prepared you for this natural world where death reigns. Will you too be filled with His word so that you too can be born again in having the water turn to wine by being born of His Spirit? So that as His child you will now have for your inheritance His kingdom that is eternal where there is no death?
If you are reading this God is calling you. He loves you and wants you to know Him. Because knowing Him is this eternal life that provides you with the spirit that makes you God’s child.John17:3. Because while all men are created by God, not all men are born of His Spirit so that they are children of God. It is only those who have come to know Him that are spiritual because knowing Him is to be born of His Spirit. So if you do not know Him, but have now believed that He is Lord and that He has raised from the dead to conquer death for you, then please take the time right now to talk to Him and confess to Jesus that He is Lord of your life. And believe that He has raised from the dead to conquer death for you. If you do believe in Him then tell Him something like this and you will have eternal life:
Dear Jesus, I believe you. Thank you for joining with me in death so that by conquering death by your resurrection I could join with you in eternal life. Thank you that you raised from the dead so that I could raise from the dead too by trusting in, clinging to, and relying solely on you. Thank you for giving me a new spirit now Lord so that I can live with you in your kingdom forever. In Jesus’ name, amen.
By praying a prayer similar to this one and really meaning it from your heart you have been saved from death to life. From sin to righteousness. And from the wrath to peace with God. And now as you begin reading the Bible and believing what it plainly says it will begin to change the way you think and believe. Because when you trust in Jesus you leave the old life behind where you were only able to relate to and trust in what has been made. And now will be equipped for God’s kingdom because you are no longer only natural flesh and blood, but are a new creature made a spiritual being ready to inherit God’s spiritual kingdom. It is because of Jesus’ resurrection that He is the only WAY, THE TRUTH, AND THE LIFE. Because only Jesus has broken through the wall of death that the flesh and blood natural body can never get through. And only by the new birth are we made ready to receive the spiritual body that can go through the wall of death as Jesus’ did first so we could follow Him in the way He has prepared for us. God Bless you in your new life in Christ.
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