My morning reading happened to be John chapter 2 – Jesus goes to Cana for a wedding and He turns the water into wine. It says in scripture it was His first sign, meaning it was His first public miracle.
It hit me this morning in a completely different way than it has before – as God’s Word always does (it is living and active you know . . . Hebrews 4:12). I have always thought about the wine – grape juice or real wine? (real wine people) I have always thought about Mary being so sure Jesus could so something about the “no wine” crisis – meaning she may have seen something He did before? (probably, she knew who He was supposed to be) I have always thought about the guests – what did they think about this better wine? (ah – fabulous). But I had never thought about God the Father. Never. Why would I? It was a Jesus’ story. He takes the water; He turns it into wine and wha-la – fantastic.
Why would God the Father, the Supreme Ruler of the Universe, as our founding fathers called Him, direct events to have Jesus – His Son – turn the water into wine as His first miracle? I mean, why not raise the dead? Why not heal the sick? Heal leprosy? Why did Jesus first miracle have to do with a wedding, and a celebration, and wine?
This is important. Jesus’ first miracle had to do with a celebration. A party. A joyful event. A break the glass under your foot and sing joyful songs event. It was a WEDDING.
I think God gave Jesus this moment – His first moment in the public eye – to show His Son where to put His focus.
“Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb . . . ” Revelation 19:9
The marriage supper of the Lamb – that is what God the Father wanted Jesus the Son to focus on – the end.
The marriage supper of the Lamb comes when Jesus returns in His glory and puts the enemy under His feet. The marriage supper is when all believers are reunited with Jesus. It is when the Bride – the church and the Jewish believers – have made themselves ready. It is the reunion. The beginning of a new life. It is happiness. It is Eden reborn.
But Jesus had to go through a lot. He had to be ridiculed. He had to be questioned. He had to be dis-believed in. He had to be betrayed. He had to suffer. He had to be whipped. He had to be hit. He had to be nailed. He had to die.
But His first miracle was a wedding. Look to the end, Jesus, God seems to be saying. Many will believe. Many will be there. Many will come. Many will accept the cross.
I wonder, as Jesus hung on the cross, if He thought about His first miracle – if He thought about the end. I bet He did. I know, when my husband was killed, the pain was so much I had to turn to the end. I couldn’t take the in-between. I couldn’t take the wait to see him again.
I can’t imagine Jesus’ pain. I can’t even wrap my head around it. When I stub my toe I always hop around with my foot in my hands and say “How did Jesus take the nails? How did Jesus take the nails?” I don’t know how. He was God. He could have come down. He could have chosen to leave. But He did not. Why? His bride was not yet ready. He had to save her. He would do anything to save her. He had to take the nails.
He was looking at the wedding. He was remembering Cana.
Daddy always knows what to give His children. He knew what to give Jesus.
“Hold on Son!” God seems to be saying in Cana. “She will prepare She will believe. She will love you! Look to the wedding, no matter the pain. Look Son, to the wedding, and stand firm no matter what.”
And Jesus did. Can you imagine the hammer driving the nails in your hands and your feet, slowly, blow by blow, when you could just disappear?
Jesus was God after all. He could raise the dead. He could heal the paraplegic. He could leave the cross.
But He did not.
The wedding. His focus was on you.
Always remember that.