Bible Book: John / Johannes
Verse (to): 11
Whenever I read this text I am transported to another place – in my mind I hear traditional Jewish music, I see people dancing, I hear the shouts of “L‘Chaim”. I imagine festivities, a great celebration.
I think that my mind’s picture might have quite a strong influence from books and from movies, but the Bible also often refers to wedding festivals and celebrations. Even in the text from Isaiah prescribed for this week we read of weddings and marriage as a time of rejoicing.
This wedding in Cana was surely not a quiet and subdued affair. In fact, it seems as if the guests enjoyed the feast so much that they drank more than the bridegroom expected! I can imagine the response if someone tells you or me that a party has run out of wine. We would probably frown, and complain that people should not be drinking so much.
But Jesus does something very different. In spite of the fact that His time has not yet come (John 2:4) He reveals His glory for the first time (11).
He does not reveal His glory by preaching or other ‘spiritual’ acts. He makes wine! Lots and lots of wine! Even if we use the minimum amount in the reading (20 gallons per jar), He made more than 450 liters of wine. Wow, that is really enough for a huge party!
Much has been written about how we should understand this text and many philosophical meanings can be read into this. But right now I would like to focus on this – Jesus attended a festival, a time of joy, and it is at this festival that John tells us that a sign revealed His glory. Yes, we also read about many other places and times where the glory of Christ was revealed, but this first time was at a time of joy.
I wonder then why we who claim to follow Jesus do not also imitate Christ in celebration and joy.
To Think About: If people describe your faith community, what would the first words be they think about; people that bring joy or people that bring judgement and criticism?
Author: van Rooyen L (Ms)