JourneyOnline

John 2:1-11 Jesus’ First Miracle

Author: Dr. George M. Flattery

Jesus’ First Miracle John 2:1-11

selective focus photography of purple grape fruit

Thoughts from John 2:1-11

Many people face difficult circumstances today. At some point, most of us have said, “It will take a miracle to get me through my situation.” We may say this without becoming very analytical about what we mean by “miracle.” We just feel that without something very unusual taking place, we might not make it. However, God has demonstrated His love for us by helping us. With great gratitude, we thank the Lord for all the things He has done.

With this in mind, let us follow Jesus from Judea to Cana of Galilee. It was very early in the ministry of Jesus. In Judea, He had enlisted these five disciples: Andrew, Peter, Philip, Nathanael, and John. John (1:35-40) does not name himself, but he is commonly thought to be one of the two who first turned to Jesus. Together, Jesus and the disciples had accepted an invitation to a wedding in Cana of Galilee.

At the wedding, Jesus performed the first of His miracles. This story, now as when it happened, should challenge us to believe in the Lord and to give Him glory. Our understanding of the miracle Jesus performed will help us have great faith in the future.

In our next “thoughts” we will discuss the wedding as an ordinary occasion that led to a miracle. Then, we’ll present the need for a miracle, talk about the performance of the miracle, and then identify the significance of the miracle.

More Thoughts from John 2:1-11

Today we will consider the occasion for the first miracle that Jesus performed which was to turn water into wine.

A wedding was the occasion for this miracle. The wedding celebration took place in Cana of Galilee. There were several towns in Galilee called Cana, but a town called Kephar Kenna is usually accepted as the location. This town was about 3.5 miles from Nazareth where Jesus spent His boyhood years.

Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding. They had to make the journey from Judea to Cana. This took perhaps two days. Mary, the mother of Jesus was there. She was a friend of the family. At least she was close enough to the family to get involved in the administration of the wedding.

The thing that impresses me most about this story is that the events took place in rather ordinary circumstances. Many of the great truths Jesus taught and the miracles He worked took place sort of “on the way.” This event was not planned by the wedding party to be a stage for His activity. Jesus was simply engaged in life and met a need.

Jesus, the Son of God, is ever-present. He meets with us on an impromptu basis at the point of our need. He is with us in the office, while we travel, in the marketplace, on the golf course, while at home taking care of the children, or while shopping for groceries. When needs arise, He is present. We do not have to set up an appointment to see him. He makes His presence known “on the way.”

This is very encouraging to us as needy people, but we must learn from this for our ministries as well. As ministers of the gospel and soldiers of the cross, we need to be ready to meet a need. We may be confronted with a need at any time. We must be prepared at all times to speak for Jesus. We must be willing to interrupt a schedule to meet the need before us. Otherwise, the need might not be met.

More Thoughts from John 2:1-11

It was at a wedding attended by Jesus and the disciples that the need for a miracle arose. Mary, the mother of Jesus, came to Him expressing an unexpected problem. The hosts were out of wine. Mary simply says to Jesus, “They have no wine.”

Jesus replied, “Woman, what do I have to do with you? My hour has not yet come.” Jesus seems to be rejecting his mother’s desires. He would go ahead and meet the need for wine. However, He said that His hour had not yet come. This suggests that Mary may have wanted Him to do more than solve the wine problem. Mary knew that Jesus was the Messiah. She may have wanted Jesus to openly declare that He was the Messiah. Doing something unusual here would provide a good platform for that announcement.

Mary understood that Jesus was not saying He would do nothing. Her next comment assumes that Jesus will do something. She turned to the servants and said, “Whatever He says to you, do it.” She showed her complete confidence in Jesus and her willingness to leave the matter in His hands. He might not do all that she originally desired, but He would do what He desired to accomplish in this situation.

Confronted with a need, Mary went to Jesus. We should follow her example. When we have a need, we should come to Jesus. We must come knowing that all things are in His hands. He will determine when, why, and how He responds to our concerns. Certainly, we can express our desires and call upon Jesus in faith, but we must in the end put all things in His hands. With Mary, we must be willing to accept His decisions and actions.

More Thoughts from Matthew 2:1-11

At the wedding in Cana, Jesus turned the water into wine. We have talked about the occasion, the need, and the performance of this miracle. Today, we will focus on verse 11 and the significance of the miracle. In verse 11 John says: “This beginning of [His] signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him.”

Why did Jesus perform this miracle? Here John calls the miracle a “sign.” This is the first of eight miracles that John calls signs. Signs challenge us to believe in the thing signified and call us to obedience. John wrote His Gospel that men might believe in Christ (Jn. 20:31) as the Son of God. Miracles provide a witness for the deity of Jesus.

Through this sign, Jesus did–to a degree at least–what Mary wanted Him to do. When Jesus performed a miracle, His glory was manifested. Mary did not understand all that would be required for Jesus to establish His Kingdom. A greater glorification would come through His death, burial, and resurrection.

Although John does not mention the need in verse 11, one obvious reason for the miracle was meeting the need. The host was out of wine. Jesus turned the water into wine that was better than the wine previously served. Similarly, Jesus works miracles today to meet needs. Jesus is interested in the details of our lives. He always demonstrates love and compassion.

The five disciples who were with Jesus already had believed. They had followed Him from Judea to Cana of Galilee. But this miracle strengthened their faith in Him. Our faith, like theirs, is strengthened through the works of Jesus. Let us look around us and see what Jesus is doing. He is doing great things today. Across the world, Jesus is manifesting His great power. His servants are doing great things in His name.

We read about it in John 2:1-11.

1 And on the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there;

2   and Jesus also were invited, and His disciples, to the wedding.

3   And when the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.”

4   And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what do I have to do with you? My hour has not yet come.”

5   His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

6   Now there were six stone water pots set there for the Jewish custom of purification, containing twenty or thirty gallons each.

7   Jesus said to them, “Fill the water pots with water.” And they filled them up to the brim.

8   And He said to them, “Draw {some} out now, and take it to the headwaiter.” And they took it {to him.}

9   And when the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom,

10  and said to him, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when {men} have drunk freely, {then} that which is poorer; you have kept the good wine until now.”

11  This beginning of {His} signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him. (NAS)

George M. Flattery, Ph.D., is the founder of Global University and Network211.

Excerpts transferred from a series originally posted on Dr. George's Facebook.

What's Next

We would love to answer any question you have or help suggest next steps on your journey.