Sermons

Summary: A sermon for the New Year about how God uses the ordinary to accomplish the extraordinary.

“2020 Vision”

John 2:1-11

Cana in Galilee was a village near Nazareth.

In Cana, there was a wedding feast and, it seems, Mary had something to do with the arrangements, because she was worried when the wine ran out; and she had authority enough to ask the servants to do whatever Jesus told them to do.

Some think that the groom was none-other than John himself, and that his mother was Salome, the sister of Mary.

It’s interesting to note that there is no mention of Jesus’ father, Joseph.

Most scholars think the reason is that Joseph was dead by this time, and that this is one of the reasons why Jesus spent eighteen long years in Nazareth.

Jesus took it upon Himself to support His mother and His family until his brothers and sisters were old enough to look after themselves.

This not only shows that Jesus was a good boy, but that He can sympathize with those who lose parents and have to take on big responsibilities at a young age.

In any event, Jesus and His disciples are invited to this wedding feast.

And a wedding feast in Jesus’ day could go on for a week or ten days.

It was a huge celebration!

And wine was absolutely essential.

Without wine, the Rabbis said, “There is no joy.”

So, imagine the terror that would have shot through Mary’s veins when she was told that the wine was gone!

How could she let her sister down on the biggest day of her life?

So, Mary went to Jesus to tell Him what was wrong.

Then, she said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”

It’s been said that Mary’s words to Jesus are pertinent to us all.

“Do whatever he tells you.”

Isn’t that the key to life?

If we want God to move in our lives, we must be prepared to do what He says.

It’s not always easy.

And it will probably take a lot of missteps and mistakes to get it right—if we ever do—but when and if we do—we will find ourselves living within a miracle.

So, the servants take Mary’s words seriously, “Do whatever he tells you.”

We are told that “Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.

Jesus said to the servants, ‘Fill the jars with water’; so they filled them to the brim.”

And when they took some out to the master of ceremonies, he tasted the water that had been turned into wine…and it was the best, most choice wine!

Jesus turning ordinary water into the best of wines, signals to us the effect that Jesus can have and does have on people’s lives.

There can be no doubt that throughout history, the influence Jesus has had on the lives of people has never been surpassed.

No other great leader has inspired so many positive changes in the lives of his or her followers.

People who encounter the Risen Christ are totally transformed.

Their outlook on life is altered forever.

Staying true to their faith, they dedicate their lives to serving others.

I have no doubt, that the decision to follow Jesus Christ--to do what He says-- is the single most important thing a human being can do.

It is the key to everything!!!

And it is the glue keeping this world together.

But, there are times, throughout history, when that glue starts running in short supply.

Oftentimes, this is the fault of the Church, which is, of course made up of faulty human beings.

We get off course.

We might get too involved in worldly politics, thinking that salvation is found in human governments, policies, political candidates and parties.

We might have scandals and abuses that understandably turn people away from the Church.

We may become complacent.

Lazy.

Burned out.

Frustrated.

We may forget Mary’s words in today’s Gospel Lesson: “Do whatever he tells you.”

“Do whatever he tells you.”

“Do whatever he tells you.”

You know, this is one of the most amazing stories.

Jesus goes to this wedding.

He has no plans to do anything, but to relax, enjoy Himself and take part in the festivities.

But then, the wine runs out.

What would you do?

Would you try and collect money from as many guests as possible in order to make a wine-run to the nearest vineyard?

Would you turn around and go home?

Or would you make the best out of a, seemingly, hopeless situation?

That’s the difference between Jesus and so many of us, is it not?

Jesus, obviously looks at the glass as half-full rather than half-empty.

He looks around and the first thing He sees are six stone jars, standing nearby.

The kind used for ceremonial washing.

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