Summary: The 7th sermon in our series from John's Gospel. In this sermon we look at principles of prayer, and we discuss aligning ourselves with God's will so that we pray correctly and according to God's will
Principles of Prayer at Cana (Gospel of John Part Seven)
Text: John 2:1 – 11
Imagine for a minute that you picked up the Woodward Newspaper and on the front page they had a story about a wedding that took place. And let’s say that the paper tells you where the wedding was, and about some of the events that took place at the wedding, but it never mentions the bride or groom… That would seem strange right? Well that’s what our text does this morning, but there’s a reason it does that, and I hope we all see that and understand it by the time we’re done today.
So let’s go ahead and open our Bibles to the Gospel of John, chapter two (READ JOHN 2:1-11).
So; like I was saying, we don’t know whose wedding this was. And the reason we don’t know who it was that got married is because the Bible isn’t really about those people. John’s focus isn’t on the bride and groom here. His focus is on Jesus. I say it all the time, and it’s on our sign out front… IT’S ALL ABOUT JESUS! So John’s not going to focus on the bride and groom. He’s not concerned with what the bride wore, or the songs that were played, or even the venue of the wedding. Because it’s Jesus that’s important here. And the way John writes this that’s exactly what he’s trying to get us to see and understand. He wants our thoughts to be on the Lord. Not the event. So let’s break this text down, bit by bit, and we’ll see what the Lord is saying to us.
The first thing we should notice is right there in verse 1. John starts out by writing, “On the third day…” but verse 2 also tells us that Jesus was there with His disciples. And I think John is referring to the disciples that he’s already introduced us to… So that would be Andrew, Peter, Philip, Nathanael, and this un-named disciples (which is probably John himself). So the third day here, would be three days after Jesus has called Philip and Nathanael…
So let me just summarize for you what’s taken place. Jesus started out in a desolate, wilderness area on the Eastern Side of the Jordan River where John the Baptist was baptizing and calling people to repentance. He picks up Andrew, probably John, and Peter while He’s there. Then He travels to the Western Side of the Jordan River to Cana in Galilee, there He adds Philip and Nathanael to His disciples. And now He’s been invited to a wedding.
And again; we don’t know who was getting married but we DO KNOW that Jesus’ mother Mary was there, and that Jesus Himself had been invited to the wedding.
(It’s always good to invite Jesus to your wedding)
Now apparently, more people showed up to the wedding than was expected, or they were drinking a bit more heavily than was expected, because the wine runs out. To us, in our modern culture, this may not seem like a big deal… you’re throwing a party, you run out of booze, it’s not uncommon for folks to just jump in the car and make a beer run. At least that’s what we used to do back when I used to party… but in this setting it’s a HUGE deal. You see; a Jewish wedding ceremony in this time and in this culture was a very important ritual.
Here’s how it worked. On the day of the wedding, the Groom’s procession would start out from the Groom’s parents’ house and start making their way to the home of the Bride and her parents. Along the way they would pick up guests who were waiting and who were invited to the ceremony. As they drew near the Brides home, the Bride, her family, and her guests would go out and meet the Groom and His guests. Then the whole procession would return back to the Brides parents’ home where they would have the wedding and a big feast would follow. Then the Bride and Groom and all the guests would return to the Grooms home… not His parents’ home, but the Grooms home that He had made ready for His new Bride.
Now the Groom’s family was responsible for paying for the feast, and they were expected to meet a certain standard, and that would include having enough wine. The Bride’s father put the feast on, or we might say – he hosted it… and he was called the “master of the feast”. And if the standard wasn’t met, the Groom’s family could actually be held financially responsible for inadequately preparing an adequate feast. So if you screwed up, and didn’t have enough wine, this was a huge social faux paw.