Saving the best till last
…“Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after
the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”
John 2:10 (NIV)
I love the story of the wedding feast at Cana – well, who wouldn’t want to be at a wedding where one of the guests has the ability to turn water into wine?! A close look at the passage reveals the importance of Jesus’ first miracle.
John reveals details of the occasion sparingly, telling us only that the event took place at Cana, in Galilee, and Jesus, his mother and his disciples were all invited. Right away we are drawn into the story when Mary breaks the news to Jesus that the hosts have run out of wine. His reply almost sounds rude to our modern ear: “Woman, why do you involve me? … My hour has not yet come.” (v.4).
Nevertheless, Jesus tells the servants to fill six stone jars, each holding 20 gallons, to the brim with water, then immediately to draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet. The passage doesn’t tell us at what point the water changes, but by the time it gets to the man in charge, it is already wine. And not just any wine, but wine of such good quality the head steward is surprised that it had not been served earlier.
The final sentence of this story tells us that changing water into wine was, ‘…the first of the signs through which [Jesus] revealed his glory…’ (v.11). In the Bible, wine is symbolic of blessing and joy. Abundant wine is associated with God’s future presence in the new world to come. At the close of the Last Supper, Jesus vowed to drink the fruit of the vine again with his disciples in his Father’s kingdom.
Jesus lived a life of giving, and in the end gave us everything he had. But as in Cana, Jesus is saving the best till last. One day all believers will sit together at our Lord’s table to celebrate another wedding feast (Revelation 19:9) and share with him the finest of wines.
Sovereign Lord, we thank you for the miracles through which Jesus revealed his glory. We thank you for the blessing and joy that come from the fruit of the vine. And we thank you most of all for Jesus himself, the first fruits of your kingdom. May it come soon, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Study by Peter Mill
About the writer:
Peter Mill is a Minister in Grace Communion International and Regional Pastor for Scotland, Ireland and Northern England
Gilmerton New Church
Saturday 11:00 am
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