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©Kris Gerbrandt

Chapter 2:6-12 (ESV)

Posted on July 21, 2023  - By Chris LaBelle  

Chapter 2:6-12 (ESV) - Now there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. And he said to them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast.” So they took it. When the master of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then the poor wine. But you have kept the good wine until now.” This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory. And his disciples believed in him.

After this he went down to Capernaum, with his mother and his brothers and his disciples, and they stayed there for a few days.

Question to consider: Why do you think Jesus used the purification jars to turn water into wine?

John described this event as the “first of his signs” which manifested His glory such that the disciples believed in Him. This should tell us that Jesus was not just helping out His mother’s friends, and He was not doing some kind of magic trick to impress people.

The water jars were for rites of purification— baptizing of the hands before the breaking of bread. We see this image of water and wine throughout John’s gospel. Ultimately, this image would manifest Christ’s glory on the cross when a soldier pierced His side and out poured blood and water. If you went through my study of Ezekiel, I connected the stream from Christ’s side with the stream that ran beside the altar in Ezekiel’s temple vision.

If we look at this sign in relation to the old covenant, we could think of the steward servants as the temple priests, the master steward as the high priest, the original wine being the blood of the animals in the temple, and the “good” wine being the precious blood of Christ. The abundance of the water also gives us the image of God’s grace being lavishly poured out on us by the Holy Spirit.

I’m sure the impact of this miracle done in secret reassured these followers of John the Baptist that Jesus was indeed the Messiah, but it was also a much richer sign that pointed to Jesus as the Son of God who would take away the sin of the world. This would have been revealed to John after Jesus ascended to His throne, and the Holy Spirit was poured out on him at Pentecost.

After this, Jesus traveled with the disciples and His family back to Capernaum where I assume Jesus would pick up Peter and James before all of them would make their way back to Jerusalem for the Passover.


Dear Lord, thank You for revealing Yourself to shepherds, fishermen, and servants. Thank You for richly pouring out Your grace on us so that we may look forward to the wedding feast in Your kingdom. Amen.