John 2:3-5 When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, "They have no more wine." "Dear woman, why do you involve me?" Jesus replied. "My time has not yet come." His mother said to the servants, "Do whatever he tells you."
There are a number of things which are important in our Gospel lesson today. The Miracle at Cana is the 1st of the signs in John’s Gospel. John calls them signs because they point to the revelation of who Jesus is, and that is the Epiphany theme, God revealing himself and his will for us. John calls them signs, because they point beyond the actual events. Changing water into wine is an act of creation, everyone then knew, that only God could create. So the miracle tells us something about who Jesus is.
Our lesson today also reminds us of the importance of marriage. Since creation, God has made man for woman and woman for man. Since creation God has ordained marriage, where two become one, for life. Marriage is about creation, for not only does God intend for babies to come about in and through marriage; but the two becoming one is also a creation, and for lack of a word, we call it family. God created human life to be about families, not about individuals. God said "it is not good for the man to be alone," so it is important for us to remember that we were not created to be individuals, doing our own thing, but life is about being with those people who are our family.
We are all somewhat infected with the deadly disease called individualism. Individualism is the way of the world, and a path that leads not to glory, but only to destruction. God calls us together to live as His family, and we call that family the church. While God saves us individually, each and every one of us, in bring us to salvation, he doesn’t leave us individuals, but he brings us into his family, because he knows that we need one another.
God knows we need one another, but we often forget. God knows that we need one another, and so His family becomes a place of learning, we learn why we are here, we learn why we are family, and in learning God equips us to overcome every temptation that may come our way. As long as we talk about this as learning, well, it doesn’t sound to bad; but when we begin to call it training, it begins to sound like work [and so it is, but it is a pleasant and profitable work]. Learning, then training, sound like work, but our real rebellion is not seen until we come to the word with the big D, discipline. We don’t like that big D word at all. And chiefly we don’t like it because its contrary to the infection and affects us, individualism.
You see, when God calls us to faith, and brings us to salvation, and brings us to the church; he is bringing us to a family where discipline is practiced. Discipline is simply a tool to help us learn who God is. What do we learn when we obey God? We learn why God is God, and why we, are not God. Discipline teaches us about the idolatry of individualism. It teaches us how foolish it is to trust in ourselves, when we could be trusting in the one who created all things, even us.
I wonder what would happen if the wedding at Cana were held today... would the servants fill the water jars, or would they have such excuses that the jars were never filled. After all, its one thing to turn on the hose, its quite another to lower a bucket down into a well, and then bring it up again, and carry the pail, and carry the pail, after all we’re talking 600 gallons, more or less. And when the jars were filled, would today’s servants take samples and bring them to the steward, or would they decided that it was foolish and just not do it.
Today the world is all upside down. Many today think marriage is foolish, and they just don’t do it. Many believe that discipline is foolish, and they don’t do that either. In this time of great trial many families are falling apart, and not falling together, somehow individuals got put first, and its breaking the family. And while many can see the world around them, even see that its going to hell... we have something more, for we have the promise of God in Jesus Christ. Good news of the forgiveness of sins, powerful words about the salvation God in Christ has wrought. God doesn’t just fix our brokeness, but in water and the Word, He makes us a new creation, He gives us life, light and love, and these not only build families, and build the church, and build us, but they are salvation from hell for the rest of the world, in Jesus Christ.