In John 2:7, Jesus instructed the servants to fill six waterpots, and they did so "up to the brim." The previous verse explains that these waterpots were typically used for ceremonial washings (cf. Mark 7:3,4). Since each pot had a capacity of twenty to thirty gallons, the total quantity of water needed to fill these waterpots would have been between 120 and 180 gallons! That's a lot of water, and the fact that the waterpots were filled to the top shows that there was no room left to add anything to the water. Both of these facts are significant for the miracle Jesus was about to perform.
Jesus further instructed the servants in John 2:8 - "Draw some out now, and take it to the master of the feast." The servants complied. At some point, after the waterpots had been filled yet before the servants reached the master of the feast, Jesus miraculously changed the water into wine. When the master of the feast tasted the beverage, he, not knowing its origin, called for the bridegroom to come to him.
The master of the feast was familiar with the proper etiquette; that is, one should serve the best wine first. He rebuked the bridegroom since this had not been done. The water Jesus transformed into wine was of a superior quality than anything they had already served to the guests. Truly, Jesus performed no inferior miracles. What He did was always the best! When he turned the water into wine, it was good wine. But, what exactly is "good wine"? We will reserve that question for tomorrow's lesson, but there are a couple observations I want to deal with at this time.
1. JESUS PARTICIPATED IN THE HAPPY OCCASIONS OF LIFE.
Some have the notion that followers of Christ are not supposed to have any fun but that life should always be very serious. Here our Lord is found at a wedding celebration! He attended a party and even assisted the host! Certainly Jesus enjoyed Himself at the feast, and His presence shows His approval of the marriage relationship.
It is undeniable that Jesus was a "man of sorrows and acquainted with grief" as He faced His enemies and His work of redemption (Isa. 53:3), but in the daily activities of life, He did enjoy things. His enemies who saw His habits accused Him of being a glutton and a wine bibber (Matt. 11:19). Their accusations were false, of course. The problem was that His enjoyment of the good things in life offended their self-righteous sensibilities.
Friends, even though Jesus came into the world for the great purpose of redemption, He took time to participate in the joyous occasions of life. We too need times of cheerfulness! We need laughter! We need wholesome recreation and relaxation from time to time! Certainly everything should be kept in a proper balance, but the Creator made us with these needs. "A merry heart does good like medicine" (Prov. 17:22). However, let me hasten to state that good times must always be within the bounds of what is decent and right. The Lord's example shows us that one can have a good time without doing anything that is wrong.
2. JESUS TURNS THE COMMONPLACE THINGS OF LIFE INTO SOMETHING SPECIAL.
Jesus took ordinary water and transformed it into wine! In many ways, our lives may seem plain, dull, or ordinary, but Jesus, through the power of the Scriptures, can transform us into something that is truly special! Christ gives meaning and purpose to life. Most of us will never achieve greatness by the world's standards, but what is greater than being a Christian? True disciples can and should proudly say: "I am a child of the King!" That is something special.
Jesus still turns water into wine in that He gives life its true meaning; He makes it special. Jesus Himself affirmed in John 10:10 - "I came that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly."
We will conclude this study tomorrow.