Sunday Weekly Reflections

16.01.22 – The Wedding at Cana

Jesus’ reluctance to be involved by his mother, suggests that Jesus and his disciples were simply going to a wedding to celebrate with the family and the village. It is included in The Gospel by John, because it becomes the scene of his first miracle, and as such is one of those events John says he records so that we might believe. What other village events did they go to, and were not recorded? And yet where else would an incarnate God be, but with people in their joyful coming together.

His humility is further seen in that they do not go to him for help, but to his mother. His reply is telling. His hour has not yet come. This phrase, pregnant with meaning, shows his awareness of his mission and work in this world.

He does then turn water into wine. Perhaps the simple impulse is to discreetly help the hosting family over their social embarrassment, on what should be a joyful day for them. There is also something of an “Epiphany” about it. There is the extraordinary happening in the ordinary, water is made wine, and the celebration of love is enhanced. We can see here the indication that the ordinary elements of our lives may be transformed, and love enhanced within us.

Yet there is more to this. The water is in jars, and is the water for the ritual of purification. The ritualistic is transformed into something free flowing and gracious and joyful. Religion that is only ritual is transformed in Jesus into something that is joyful and generous. One can see the symbolism in Jesus’ own words when he speaks about the new wine bursting the old wineskins; the new wine of the Spirit.

Finally, we are left with the conviction that with Jesus, the best is still to come, as the guest says at the end about the wine. We hear a lot about the depletion of resources, and time running out. In Christ, our resource is the source of all life, given generously. These six stone jars would have yielded 120 gallons, 450 litres or the equivalent of 600 bottles of wine approximately. In his first miracle Jesus shows us that the gift of life and salvation is freely and generously given, and enhances life and the celebration of unity and love.

Dean Paul

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