Sep. 28, 2019

He Turned Water Into Wine...

“He turned the water into wine, He turned the water into wine.
In the little Canan town the word went all around,

that he turned the water into wine.”

Johnny Cash

“On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus mother was there. 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.” John 2:1-3

Weddings were the highlight of everybody’s social calendar in those days. The feast was very important and might go on for a week, unlike a lot of the weddings we attend these days where it’s a short ceremony leading up to waiting around hours for pictures to be taken. We all hope there will be really great hors d’oeuvres, decent wine and maybe a sit down dinner with filet mignon or salmon, incredible wedding cake, a little dancing and you’re outta there. In first-century Palestine, to fail in proper hospitality was a serious offense. Running out of wine was more than a minor social embarrassment, since the family had an obligation to provide a feast of the socially required standard. There wasn’t a great variety in beverages – no Diet Coke or Sprite - and your choices were water or wine. Running out of wine would mean that you would be the town joke forevermore. Needless to say, there was no BevMo down the block and the best man and a couple of ushers couldn’t just jump on their mules and run down for a couple of cases of Mumm’s Cordon Rouge (high end wedding) or Cook’s Brut (lower end wedding) even then nobody would have served Andre or Two-Buck Chuck!

“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.” Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water” so they filled them to the brim. Then He told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.” They did so and the banquet master tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, ‘Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.” John 2:4-10

My friend, Rich Johnson, who is a member of the praise and worship team at Bethany Church in Sierra Madre, recently had the opportunity to deliver a small sermonette on the subject of the water into wine. He spoke of Jesus’ mother’s involvement. He referred to her as Jesus’ Mom, but with a different meaning than just the name most of us call our mother. Rich used Mom as Mother Of Messiah. She didn’t want this young couple and their families to be humiliated before everyone they knew and so she asked Jesus for His help. He responded as most of us do when our mother asks us to do something, “Hey, Why me! I’m not ready yet!” She knew He would do the right thing and said no more to Him about it. And look what happened! Dom Perignon all around and the astonished bridegroom was incredibly grateful to whoever had saved them all from social disaster.

“Dear Woman,” what Jesus called her when she wanted His help at this wedding, where He performed His first miracle, and “Dear Woman” is what He called her as He hung on the cross. “Dear Woman, here is your son,” indicating his disciple, John, and to his beloved disciple, John, “Here is your mother.” Dear Woman. Mom is what He meant. Just Mom.

My daughter-in-law, Michon’s mom passed away this week and today is her memorial service. Michon has written wonderful memories of her mom and will speak wonderful memories today. Her mom is in heaven now and has already met Jesus’ Mom. What a glorious thought!

“Whatever He tells you, do it.”