DISSECTING THE SCRIPTURES – No. 4
BY: DAVE and SHEILA GARNER
DECEMBER 14, 2007
And on the third day there was a marriage celebration in Cana of Galilee and Mary the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and His disciples were called to the marriage. And when they arrived they asked for wine to drink, but the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no more wine.” But Jesus said to her, “Woman, we have arrived here this hour, do for me what I say.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatsoever He tells you to do.” There were six stone water containers used for purifying, each contained about twenty-seven gallons. Jesus told the servants to fill the containers up to the top with water. Then He told the servants to draw out enough to take to the governor of the feast. They drew it out and took it to him, and he was unaware of where it had come from, but the servants who drew the water knew. And when the governor had tasted the water which had been turned into wine, he called to the bridegroom and said to him, “Every man at the beginning of a feast sets out the good wine and when the men have become intoxicated, they bring out their inferior wine. But you have kept the good wine until now.”
In Cana of Galilee was the first (beginning) of the miracles which Jesus did that revealed His glory (majesty), and His disciples believed to (into) Him.
FOR COMPARISON: TRADITIONAL KJV
John 2:1-11, And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there: 2 And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage. 3 And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine. 4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come. 5 His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it. 6 And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece. 7 Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. 8 And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it. 9 When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom, 10 And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now. 11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.
JESUS TURNS THE WATER INTO WINE
The description of this wedding celebration is recorded only in the Gospel of John, in eleven short verses of scripture, and it happened shortly after Jesus had met His disciples, for they also had been invited to come. Chapter two, verse one begins with “And the third day,” but there is no clarification as to what it was the third day from, unless it was the third day from His baptism. If it was the third day after His baptism, it would exclude His forty day wilderness experience recorded in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke. (See Dissecting the Scriptures No. 2) According to all three Gospels, He was driven into the wilderness by the Spirit immediately after He was baptized and remained there forty days. Another problem with it being the third day from the baptism is He had met His disciples only a day or two before, so unless they were already invited individually, prior to the invitation Jesus received, no one could have known He even had disciples, much less invite them to a wedding in another town, a few miles away. It is my opinion that it was the third day from the time He received the invitation. Understanding this particular passage of scripture is of major importance because it describes more than just the wedding and the starting place for the miracles performed by Jesus. It also contains a wonderful picture of the initiation of the anointing upon His disciples, the body of believers (the true Church).
On the third day after Jesus was laid in the grave or tomb, He came out and shortly after, there was a marriage celebration or a union which took place when the anointing of the Holy Spirit fell for the first time upon the 120 in the upper room. (Acts 1, 2) It was from this awesome wedding celebration, the church began multiply and grow, thousands were added to its members daily.
As we dissected this section of scripture, the Holy Spirit really began to speak to us. A lot of the spiritual application has been obscured by the way the translators of the KJV (and other translations derived from it) translated it. But careful research and an open mind, unveil a deeper depth of understanding from the text. For instance, the first person Jesus approached when He arrived at the wedding was His mother. Now this was no accident, for in reality His mother was just as much a guest at the wedding as He was. She was not in charge of the distribution or quantity of wine as has been erroneously assumed, as there was a “master of ceremonies” or “governor of the feast” who bore responsibility over both of these tasks. However, she as His mother would be the one who would make sure refreshments was provided for Him and those with Him, not only because He was her son, but also because she knew who and what He was, even though no one else at the wedding did. He too would have held no special place of honor at the wedding, for He was still just a visitor and Mary’s eldest son. She was already there at the wedding when Jesus and His disciples arrived, so it is logical that as soon as they got to so large a celebration, they would join the members of His own family. It is also obvious that it was a large wedding since there was a “governor over the feast” and so several attendants would have been present who carried out the preparation and the serving of food and drink. Scripture does not tell us if the brothers and sisters of Jesus were at the wedding, but it is logical to assume that if Mary was invited, all of her family was invited as well, as is obvious by the invitation extended to Jesus, therefore the servants of her household would also have been present.
By understanding the natural (cultural) setting of the time, we can see with clarification, a bigger spiritual picture beginning to evolve into focus. As soon as Jesus and His disciples arrived, they asked for a drink, specifically wine, since her response was, “They have no more wine.” This represents the condition the Jewish nation or the church system was in before the anointing (new wine) fell. Jesus came to His mother and asked for a drink of wine, Mary represented the natural, physical bloodline, and she was helpless to provide Him and those with Him, anything to satisfy their thirst. The physical, natural bloodline of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob cannot produce new wine, but the seed of life generated by the Holy Spirit, which was the manifestation of the Word of God, slowly formed within her and birthed out from her in the form of her son Jesus Christ, could.
According to the translators of the KJV, He asked for a drink, and she responded that there was none, and then He rebuked her by saying, “Woman what have I to do with you?” This never did make sense to me, as she was only responding to His request to give Him wine to drink. What she did next clearly indicates this is not what He said, as she told the servants, whose ever servants they were, “Do whatever He tells you to do.” Had He responded to her in the way the KJV and the other translations derived from it, would have us believe, she would have turned and walked away, but instead she gave instructions to the servants to do what He told them to do. It should be obvious then that He really said something else like, “Do what I tell (ask) you to do.” By going to the “Interlinear Translation” and taking the sentence by itself and breaking it down, it is easy to see where the translators added words to make up a sentence structure that is not actually there. The translators translated the sentence “Woman, what have I to do with thee, mine hour is not yet come,” out of the words “Jesus what (or who) to me and to you woman not yet present (here) hour of me.” We personally believe what He said would be something like this, “Woman, we have arrived here this hour, do for me what I say.”
The arrangement of the words, and the additional added words provide us with an erroneous translation, which leaves us asking the question, “Why did she turn and tell the servants to do whatever He told them to do, and why did He go ahead and turn the water into wine if it was not His time?” This would imply that His mother had more control over the timing of His ministry than He did. We honestly do not know for sure how He responded, and my wording “Woman, we have arrived here this hour, do for me what I say,” is entirely of my own interpretation of what I feel He said, solely evaluated by the words that are present in the original text and by how His mother responded. If it had not been the time for Him to begin His earthly ministry, We are certain that He would not have performed the miracle, but even more, He would not have been baptized, nor would He have begun choosing disciples. We are also certain that His mother was not the one who decided when and where He was to initiate His earthly ministry and display to anyone else who He was, as it was John the baptizer who was sent to testify of His arrival, not His mother. It was His heavenly Father speaking to Him personally which initiated all of His actions, as He Himself made known later in the scriptures. The wording of KJV makes it sound as if He was reluctant to do anything, but she forced her will upon Him. If He had truly rebuked his mother as the translators would have us believe, He would not have gone on to turn the water into wine.
We do not believe it was a coincidence that there were six stone water pots used for purifying by the Jews setting there empty. Why not five or seven or some other number and why were they pots which were used by the Jews for purifying? As all of us should already know, six is considered to be the number of man, for he was created on the sixth day. The whole Jewish religious system in place during that time was administrated and carried out by man through the performance of their rituals. This religious system was controlled and administrated by men with hearts of stone who were empty of any living spiritual water, therefore lacking the ability to actually cleanse or purify anyone. They were cold and despondent to the spiritual needs of the people and no longer able to cleanse their hearts because of their spiritual emptiness, as this story clearly symbolizes.
Jesus did not turn the water into wine for the benefit of the wedding celebration nor for those in attendance at the wedding. For none of them were ever aware of the miracle He had performed, for the governor of the feast gave the glory and praise to the bridegroom, not to Jesus. The only ones who knew what He did was His mother, the servants who filled the water pots and His disciples. Now think on this one for a moment and you will see a picture of the bridegroom wedded to the body of Christ (the true church – His bride) on the Day of Pentecost, when the New Wine, the Holy Spirit of Truth fell, when it was the Son of God (the bridegroom) who was glorified and received all of the glory. Think on this, isn’t that awesome? It was only after He turned the water into wine that His disciples really began to have confidence in and believe in Him. (John 2:11)
The governor of the wedding called it the “new wine,” which clearly indicates the wine they had been drinking before was second rate and of much poorer quality than what Jesus provided. Until the old wine had been consumed there was no need for His new wine. They drank all they could drink, becoming intoxicated from this old religious system, Jesus took their empty ritualistic performances and filled them (the water pots) with fresh water, then turned this water into new wine. Their religious cleansing rituals were no longer able to cleanse them, and it was time for new wine to be brought forth and who else but the “Governor of the Feast” is qualified to boast and testify of the New Wine which is being brought forth. Oh how wonderful it is to have the testimony of the new wine of the Holy Spirit flowing through us, openly displayed to the world.
JOHN No. 4 [Dave-Sheila Garner] 12-14-07 ~ BIBLE STUDY 1