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Daily Bread - March 18, 2017
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 18 March 2017 10:18
John 2:5 - His mother said to the servants, if he says something, whatever
it is, do it.

The Seven Miracles of Jesus Described in the Gospel of John

Introduction:

The Gospel of John records seven miracles of Jesus. There is a reason why
the Lord chose to highlight these specific miracles among so many. It is
important to recognize that these reports are given to us so that we might
know what to expect from Jesus and how to cooperate with Him in the working
of miracles today. If we want to know how to move with the Holy Spirit in
the working of miracles, then we must receive the wisdom that He alone can
give.

The First Miracle: Water into Wine (John 2:1-11)

When Jesus turned the water into wine, there were several people involved
in participation with this miracle. To begin with, this was a miracle that
was initiated by Mary, the mother of Jesus. Mary presented the need to
Jesus by simply saying, "they have no wine." The response of Jesus was
shocking, as it appeared as if He was not interested in being involved, and
effectively points to a timing issue (John 2:4). Jesus was committed only
to doing what the Father showed Him to do; but this did not stop Mary, who
persisted in her desire to provide the needed wine for the wedding. Mary,
as it were, ignored what Jesus said, and persisted by instructing the
servants to do whatever Jesus required of them. Jesus then told the
servants, who were evidently waiting for His instruction, to fill the six
water pots with water and then, afterwards, to take the water and present
it to the governor as wine. The six water pots combined would have
furnished a generous amount of wine totaling roughly 108 to 180 gallons.
Each stone jar would have been about 18 to 30 gallons, weighing up to more
than 200 pounds each. Once the water was supplied, it is not clear if the
water was made wine while it was sitting in the water pots, or at the time
of the drawing of the water by the servants, or at the time that the
governor actually tasted of the water.

The people that participated in this miracle were: Mary, who initiated it
and insisted that it take place; Jesus, who instructed how the miracle
would transpire; and the servants, who were willing to obey the instruction
given to them by both Mary and Jesus. The total number of servants involved
would have been numerous, because the jars themselves would have been of an
enormous weight. Therefore, they would have had to either carry the
containers weighing around 200 pounds, or continuously carry smaller
buckets until the jars were full. In either case, there would have been a
significant amount of work involved in the performance of this miracle.

The persistent faith of Mary cannot be regarded as a minor factor in this
miracle. Although it was Jesus who did the miracle, it was the idea and
insistence of His mother that moved Jesus to do the work. Jesus, however,
would not do the miracle without the labor of the servants, who would have
to obey the commands of someone they were not obligated to obey; and,
furthermore, He issued a ridiculous request to supply an enormous amount of
water for wedding guests that were not in need of water in the first place.

Mary showed us how to move in faith. She made her request to the Lord and
then prepared to receive the miracle. She showed no signs of wavering or
doubt. She made her request, but did more than just leave it in the hands
of the Lord to work it out. She immediately set the servants to wait upon
Him until they received the specific instructions on how the miracle would
take place. If those who were waiting upon the instructions of the Lord
were unwilling to follow through with divine instruction, there would have
been no miracle.

There was also a similar pattern of interaction observed with the woman who
was from the nation of Jezebel, a Syrophenician (Matthew 15:21-28; Mark
7:26). In both instances, a request was made which was met by a rebuke from
Jesus that was then followed by His assistance. The most outstanding
characteristic of the faith exhibited by both Mary and the Syrophenician
woman was that neither of them were willing to take "no" for an answer.
While both seem to interrupt the divine commission - one who was asking
Jesus to do something before His time and the other who stood outside those
to whom Jesus was sent - their faith changed the order of things. While
many important points could be made here, the most outstanding one is that
faith does not say, "if it be thy will." Rather, as Jesus points out
elsewhere, faith places a demand on those things that we know a loving and
generous God is willing to supply (Luke 11:5-13, 18:1-8).
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