Title: Turning Wine Into Water
Text: John 2:1-12
Themes: Wedding feast, sensory language (ie: thirsting, hunger,) Desire for God, Doubt, Experiencing God.

Recap: Last week: how to deal with temptation.

Prayer –
[Read through story in opening]

Why is this the first miraculous sign God chose?
What do the wine and water teach us about how we live?

Water to wine – the first miraculous sign. Signs point to something…
What is this sign pointing to? Why is this the first? (Could have been anything: blindness, resurrecting a dead person, walking on water, etc)
The wedding feast of the Lamb. Being a Christ follower means we are heading toward a feast, an eternal celebration with our creator, Jesus.

[Ask] Christians are…
[Christian’s have a bad rap for being bored, joyless, uptight, etc]

[vs 1-5] – The setup

Running out of wine would have been a social embarrassment to the bridegroom. Weddings were the main celebrations in the communities and they would have lasted days. Wedding/community event – meant more production, reproduction, security, (in perpetuity)
The celebrations were the highlight of community celebration.

Running out of wine would have been a social embarassment. In a shame-honor culture this is more than just fading humiliation. It would have showed a lack of ability to perform and be a contributing member of the community. The master of ceremonies was tasked with making sure things went well.

Jesus’ mother [She may not know the fullness of Jesus yet, but she knows something]
Jesus’ response: Abrupt “Woman” → Why perform Miracle?
Jesus’ path to procuring his wedding feast, his celebration — Cause for abrupt rant
Self Denial, Suffering, Denial are means to the end of the Feast of The Lamb!

“hour not yet come” – thinking of his own union, his own Wedding feast, with his bride, the church.

My hour not yet come — John 2:4, John 7:30; 8:20; — hour as come 12:23, 27; 13:1; 17:1)
What hour? The hour that Jesus would be procuring his wedding, his feast; the hour of his death.

[vs 6-10] – Water to Wine

Ceremonial jars – used for religious cleansing ceremony. Used to symbolically cleanse oneself for religious purity.

150 Gallons of wine [approx 760 bottles, 3000 glasses] – The true Lord of the feast –

Feasts are sensory experiences; think about it [sight, smells, taste, sound, feel — then the emotions: joy, satisfaction, celebration, love]

What he brings to his people?
Experience Jesus – experience vs knowledge
Taste and See – sensory experience vs knowledge

Ps 119:18 – Open my eyes that I might behold wondrous things
Ps 34:8 – Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!
Ps 42:1-2 – As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.

Jesus is bringing us to THE WEDDING of weddings. THE FEAST of feasts.
Isaiah 25:6 – On this mountain the LORD of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine, of rich food full of marrow, of aged wine well refined.

Jonathan Edwards – Why does the Bible continually insist on using sensory experience? Because you are not invited to anything less than this; you are invited to experience God. Your heart gets a new sensory experience. You move from knowing to tasting.

Not just a set of rules… You are invited to a feast.
Not just a stale belief… You are invited to a feast.
Not just a religion… You are invited to a feast.
A feast with Jesus the king.

When this [religious thing] becomes about a set of rules you are turning wine back into water.
When this [church thing] becomes about being a better person, you are turning wine back into water.
When this [learning thing] becomes about what you know more than who knows you, you are turning wine back into water.

You are invited to a wedding. a feast. a sensory experience that fulfills EVERYTHING you have been looking for, longing for, hoping for.

Enjoy this journey to the wedding feast.
Coming down the aisle perspective: Ravishing Bride.

[Receive Gospel]
You’re out, You’re empty. You’ve blown it.
The human Bridegroom in this story didn’t measure up, he didn’t order enough wine. Yet he gets all the credit for what Jesus has done in his place. You get all the credit, relationship, purpose, and power for what Jesus has done!