Contrasts in Trust

MEMORY SELECTION: “His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever He saith unto you, do it.” —John 2:5

SELECTED SCRIPTURE: John 2:1-5; 7:3-5; 19:25-27

THE real lesson in the cluster of texts before us is contained in the account of the first miracle of our Lord, the turning of the water in the waterpots into wine. A key as to the importance of this occurrence is given in John 2:11: “This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.”

To the disciples this was simply a demonstration of divine power operating through Jesus, and this miracle confirmed to them that Jesus was indeed the Son of God. But after Pentecost, when their minds were illuminated by the Holy Spirit, they undoubtedly understood the finer lines of types and prophecies contained in the miracle, even as we today are privileged to see and understand.—John 14:26

This beginning of Christ’s miracles typified, or pictured, the glory of his coming kingdom and power. In Matthew 26:26-29 is the account of Jesus instituting the Memorial Supper. The symbol of the bread that was broken, we have learned, represented the perfect humanity of Jesus, which he surrendered on Calvary’s cross as a ransom price for Adam and all his progeny. (John 6:51) The cup, we have learned, is a symbolic cup, which represents the willingness of the Christian to share the same experiences as came upon Jesus. (Mark 10:38) The cup contained wine, which represented the Lord’s blood. As a symbol, it pictured the Christian’s willingness to share in the sufferings of Christ, even unto death. (John 6:53-56) In Matthew 26:28,29 Jesus elaborated on the symbolic significance of the wine when he said: “For this is my blood of the new testament [covenant], which is shed for many for the remission of sins. But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”

We call to mind the wonderful prophecy of the kingdom in Isaiah 25:6. We recognize in the exhilarating wine an apt symbol of joy and gladness. To partake of the cup of the Lord in the present time signifies to share in his suffering, humiliation, and death. But to partake of the cup in the coming age will mean to share in his glory and joy. That will be the new wine in the kingdom.

There are some additional points that we believe are significant:

(a) The miracle was performed after the wedding; so the joy and blessings of Christ’s kingdom will follow only after the union of Christ and his church.

(b) The water, which was turned to wine, is a symbol of truth. (Eph. 5:26) It is through this cleansing agency that the church is to be glorified and the world blessed. Divine truth will have its glorious fulfillment in the blessings and joys of the kingdom.

(c) The Lord’s reply to Mary, who informed him of the lack of wine, is also significant. The essence of the thought seems to be that the hour for exaltation and glory had not yet come. Even now the footstep followers of Jesus are drinking the dregs of the cup of humiliation and sacrifice. And if we partake of this cup now, we will surely drink the new wine with him in the kingdom. Let us take the advice of Mary, “Whatever He saith unto you, do it.”

(d) We note that the miracle was performed on the third day. This helps to locate the time of the fulfillment of this symbolic miracle.

There seems to be possible support to the belief of some that the “third day” on which the miracle was performed was the third day after the last event of verse 43 of the 1st chapter of John, the first day’s events being described in verses 19-28, the second day’s events in verses 29-34, the third day in verses 35-42, and the fourth day in verses 43-51. The third day after the fourth would be the seventh day, or a sabbath. It will be observed that most of our Lord’s miracles were accomplished on the sabbath. The kingdom is the great antitypical sabbath, which will bring blessings to all the families of the earth.

Dawn Bible Students Association
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