In John 2:1-12 we read of the first miracle that Jesus accomplished as He was beginning His ministry. He and His disciples were invited to a wedding in Cana of Galilee. Cana was located about eight miles northeast of Nazareth, His hometown. We are told that his mother was also at the wedding.
Weddings are usually happy, joyful events. This one was as well except for what could have been a terrible social disaster if Jesus had not intervened — they ran out of wine. (vs.3) His mother broke the news to Jesus and He responded, “Dear woman, that’s not our problem. My time has not yet come.” We should not think that He was being rude or discourteous or harsh with His mother. Rather, Jesus was indicating that He is now grown, and while He would always be Mary’s son, the relationship was now different and as to be expected, He was assuming responsibility for His own life.
I think it is obvious that Mary understood this as she said to the servants, “Do whatever He tells you.” In what follows we see the importance of obedience if we hope to see our needs met and our prayers answered.
1. The word “whatever” means that our obedience must be complete, total, or entire. Partial obedience is not acceptable.
2. The words “He tells you” indicate that our obedience is to be exclusive. He is LORD. That word means “He is the boss. He is in charge.”
3. A third thing I see here is that our obedience is to be focused or in alignment with what He asks us to do. Mary told the servants “whatever He tells you to do – do it.” We need to quit dabbling around and get busy with whatever our LORD asks us to do.
The next thing I want us to focus on has to do with the obedience of the servants at the wedding. In verse 7 Jesus told the servants “Fill the jars with water.” Nearby there were six stone water jars that would hold from twenty to thirty gallons of water.
1. I gather that their obedience was immediate. We read “When the jars had been filled.” No arguing or rationalizing – they did what they were asked to do.
2. I believe their obedience was total. One translation says they (the servants) filled the jars “to the brim.” It is so sad that many who say they are Christians, try to see how little they can get by with. There is a song that I think bears the truth we are seeking here — “Only one life, twill soon be over, only what’s done for Christ will last.” Our obedience needs to be total.
3. They followed through with each thing they were asked to do.
· They filled the jars.
· Then, they dipped some out (vs.8) as they were told to do.
· They took it to the master of ceremonies, the one in charge.
We read “So the servants followed His instructions.” How much richer our lives would be if we always followed through and did what our LORD asked us to do.
Let’s now focus on the results of their obedience.
1. A miracle took place. When the master of ceremonies tasted the water, it was now wine.” (vs.9) God had intervened.
2. A social disaster was avoided and a marvelous transformation took place. The master of ceremonies went to the bridegroom and told him what happened. “A host serves the best wine first. Then, when everyone has had a lot to drink, he brings out the less expensive wine. But you have kept the best until now!” (vs10)
Isn’t that the way it is? So many times, we are on a quest to find that which we think will satisfy, and even if we get it, it soon loses its luster and charm. Then one day we wake up and we invite Jesus to come into our lives and the Holy Spirit to fill us. We begin to live by God’s word and life begins to improve and we love the LORD and others and we become more and more fulfilled. I love Psalm 16:11 because it is so true. David wrote,
“You (God) will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with You forever.” The Apostle Paul wrote, “For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better.”
3. As a result of this miracle born out of obedience, an awesome, eye-opening, mind-comprehension took place. “This miraculous sign at Cana in Galilee was the first time Jesus revealed His glory. And His disciples believed in Him.” What will it take to persuade you that Jesus truly is the Son of God and that He wants the very best for you? In Psalm 34:8 we read “Taste and see that the LORD is good.” He is the best!
John, in the gospel bearing his name, had a goal in writing – he wanted everyone to know and believe that Jesus is God. Jesus accomplished many miracles during His ministry, but John only records eight of them. In John 20:30-31 we read – “The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God and that by believing in Him you will have life by the power of His name.”
I close with this truth – if we will believe that Jesus is God, come in the flesh, put our trust in Him and do what He asks us to do, we will see great things accomplished for His glory and our good. Obedience results in the blessings of God.