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Epiphany 2 – John 2:1-11

by pastorjuhl ~ January 13th, 2011

In the Name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit

Mary would not have come to Jesus with they have no wine unless she knew her Son could do something about the situation. The pieces of the puzzle are coming together. First she was visited by an angel who told her she would give birth to the Son of God Who would be called Jesus. Next, she saw shepherds rejoicing by the manger where her newborn Son lay. A star led them to the exact spot where Jesus was. Then came the Magi some months later to worship Him and bring Him gifts. Last week we heard Jesus as a pre-teen lagging behind His earthly parents to teach the teachers in His Father’s house.

Mary pondered all these things in her heart. Could Jesus be the Savior of Israel? If He is Messiah, then certainly He might be able to fix the problem of running out of wine at a wedding.

Our Lord’s response to her seems harsh and distant. Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come. It’s as if Jesus responds to Mary in this way. “Mom, no. Come on. I’m going to save the world from sin and you want me to come up with some wine for a wedding feast? Not yet. I will make no wine before it’s time.”

Well, maybe not quite that way. Nevertheless, Mary does ask something of her Son expecting Him to comply with her wishes. The top of the puzzle box is in sight for the Mother of God. What Jesus is about to do shows that He is subject to His mother, but more importantly is subject to His heavenly Father. Jesus Christ takes on flesh to do more than signs and wonders. Jesus takes on flesh to do His Father’s will: to save many people alive.

Our Lord’s response to His mother should not discourage you from asking Jesus for what you need. Jesus wishes only to do good, to bless, help, and renew. He also wants you to recognize His blessings, His gifts and His help. He wants you to taste the sweetness of His love. Ask away and praise Him for everything, for He is your only Helper and Preserver.

You don’t have everything you want or need. Perhaps you wonder if Jesus is Messiah. If He is, then He should fulfill my request as He did His mother’s request at Cana. Jesus is doing you a favor when He doesn’t speedily answer your every request. Jesus awakens hunger and thirst for the one thing needful through want and deprivation.

Take away all the creature comforts you have or you want and you might think it impossible to survive. People lived for many years without the benefit of television, radio, print media, automobiles, indoor plumbing, microwave ovens, the Internet, and Dollar General Store. Perhaps it’s a good thing that you go without a desperate need for that one item that will bring satisfaction for a couple days before being cast aside for another desperately needed item. Deprivation is good. Embrace it, for in unfulfilled wants and needs is the cross and tribulation of everyday life.

Hidden under cross and tribulation is comfort and help in order that you may know and appreciate His love and goodness. When you want, you are in need. Your needs are not necessarily your wants. What your need becomes is help from above.

Moses received the sure Word from God Almighty that His Presence would go with him and He will give him rest. Moses wanted proof. “How will I know that we have found grace in your sight?” he asks. Finally, Moses wanted to see His glory as proof. No man sees the Face of God and lives. Nevertheless, Moses is hidden in a cleft of a rock and covered with God’s Hand in order to see God’s Back. For Moses, this was proof enough that God will take care of him and the Israelites.

What is the proof you look for from God in order to know you have found grace in His sight? Look no farther than the fullness of the Godhead dwelling in flesh: Jesus Christ. Saint John says toward the end of His Gospel that what he writes are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name. Today water used for purification purposes according to the ritual Law of the Israelites is changed into wine. No more could those jars be used for pure water. The best wine has stained them. The old way of doing things is about to change now that the Shadow of things to come has come among His people.

Right after Jesus changes water into wine, He makes His angry run through the temple knocking over the moneychangers’ tables and making a ruckus about how the temple is now a den of thieves. This event did not endear Jesus with the authorities. The authorities should have thanked Him for doing it. They needed a radical shift in priorities. Their wants and needs should be forgiveness and mercy, not how much money they could make on the backs of the faithful.

They see in the signs Jesus performed a Man that needs to go away because He ruins their way of life. The disciples see in the signs Jesus performed One Whom they believe. Through faith, they have life in His Name. Through faith, you have life in His Name. You don’t know how good you have it with Christ. He gives you many bitter cups to drink in this life. Nevertheless, He gives the best He has: fullness of joy and pleasures at God’s right hand forever. If in wine there is truth, then Jesus is the vintage par excellence. When you drink from His chalice of righteousness, your thirst is quenched. As Psalm 92 says, Blessed be God, because He has not rejected my prayer or removed His steadfast love from me!

In the Name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit

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