THE GOSPEL OF JOHN
LESSON FOUR

THE WEDDING FEAST AT CANA

I    
John 2:1-2
  1.   And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there:
  2.   And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage.

     [A]   The third day
             [1]  What does John mean here when he said the third day?
             [2]  The third day from what?

     [B]  Lets determine what is meant here by the third day.

             [1]   Look back to chapter one with me again.

                    
 John 1:35-37
                     35. Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;
                     36. And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!
                     37. And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.
                     [a]   There are several next days mentioned in John, but this particular next day is the first day, when
                             we start counting the three we are seeking to discover in our lesson. This is the day, John and
                             Andrew began following Jesus and went to where he was staying and talked to him. This was also
                             the day that Andrew went to Peter and told him they had found the Messiah, and Peter had gone
                             to meet Jesus as well. (This was the first day Jesus has any followers)

                 
    John 1:43-45
                     43. The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow
                           me.
                     44. Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter.
                     45. Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of who Moses in the law, and the
                            prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.
                     [b]  This is the second day, the day when Jesus called Phillip, and Nathanael. Notice also that this was
                              the day that Jesus went into Galilee.

                     
John 2:1
                     1.   And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there:

                     [c]   This was the third day, the third day when Jesus had men following him, as his disciples. Those
                             men were
                             [1]   Andrew
                             [2]   John
                             [3]   Simon Peter
                             [4]   Philip
                             [5]   Nathanael
     [C]   Cana
             [1]   Cana was a small village in Galilee
             [2]   Cana was the home of Nathanael
             [3]   It was located about eight miles northeast of Naxareth

     [D]   Galilee
             [1]   Galilee was one of the three provinces of Palestine (Israel) during the time of Jesus
                      [a]   When the Romans tool over the country of Israel, the renamed it Palestine.
                      [b]   They divided the country into three parts, three provinces with a governor or ruler over each
                            province
                      [c]  The three provinces were
                             [1]   Galilee
                             [2]   Samaria
                             [3]   Judea

            [2]   Galilee covered more than a third of Palestine’s territory, extending from the base of                              
                     Mount Hermon in the North, to the Carmel and Gilboa ranges in the south, and from the
                     Mediterranean Sea to the East and the Jordan River to the west.                                          

            [3]   It measured approximately fifty miles from north to south and thirty miles from east to west

     [E]  It was at Cana in Galilee where Jesus and his disciples went to attend a Wedding.
             [1]  Since Jesus’ mother was there, it is more than probable that those being wed was kin to Jesus

     [F]   Little is known about a marriage in the time of Jesus, other than that it was a very important occasion, and
             could go on for a week. To fail in providing hospitality to your guest was considered a serious offence - so
             all that could be done to insure that all were well fed and that the food and wind did not run out was done. It
             was a great time of feasting and partying, along with music making and dancing.

II.
 John 2:3-11
     3.   And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine.
     4.   Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come.
     5.   His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.
     6.   And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two
           or three firkins apiece.
     7.   Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.
     8.   And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it.
     9.   When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the
           servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,
     10. And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk,
           then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.
     11. This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples
            believed on him.

     [A]   Verse three
             [1]   Apparently, at the wedding, more wine was drank than the host of the party had expected.
                     [a]  In the time of Christ, there was not a vast abundance of drink as there is today, the options were
                             either water or wine.
             [2]  To run out of wine or food would have been a serious offence, and the host would have lost his
                     standing in the community.
             [3]   Mary, realizing that the wine was gone went to Jesus and told him, “They have no wine.”
                     [a]  Notice that she did not tell him he needed to do anything, nor did she even ask him to do anything,
                             all she did was say, “They have no wine.”  

     [B]  Verse four
             [1]   Several other placed in the gospels we find these same words, my hour has not yet come.
             [2]   What he meant by this statement is not something that I find readily available, unless it was simply
                     a statement that signified that this was not something that would glorify God, it was not something that
                     would further his kingdom

     [C]   Verse five
             [1]  Even after Jesus made this statement to his mother, she in faith believed that he would do something
             [2]  She told the servants, Whatever he tells you to do, do it,

     [D]   Verse six and seven
             [1]    There are several things in this verses that is very interesting
                     [a]  Six water pots of stone after the manor of the purifying of the Jews
                             [1]   There were six pots
                             [2]   They were the size of pots that were used by the Jews to hold water used in their purifying
                                     themselves
                             [3]  Jews became ceremonially defiled during their day, and were cleansed by pouring water over
                                     their hands. For a lengthy feast like a wedding that lasted for a week, a lot of water was
                                     needed for this ceremonial  washing, therefore at this wedding, six pots were provided for
                                     the guest to draw water to cleanse their hand with
                     [b]  A purifying pot held approximately twenty to thirty gallons of water
             [2]   Jesus told the servants to fill these six pots with water and they filled them to the brim        

     [E]  Verse eight through 10
             [1]   Jesus told the servant who had filled the water pots with water to take some of the water and give it to
                     the governor of the feast,         
                     [a]  Apparently the governor was a man who’s job it was to oversee the feast and make sure that
                             everything went as it was supposed to go
             [2]  When he tasted the water the servants had taken to him it was no longer water, it had become wine,
                     and not just any wine it was good wine, wine like was served first at a feast, the good stuff.
             [3]  The question has to be asked, was this wine, fermented? Did Jesus make an alcoholic substance to
                     give the people to drink? After all, Jesus made Wine that was fermented and would make a person
                     drunk, and if he too drank this, would it not be all right for you and I to drink fermented wine or other
                     alcoholic drinks?   What are your thoughts?
             [4]  Biblical wine
                     [a]  When we think of wine, we automatically think of a fermented drink, do we not?
                     [b]  Yet the bible speaks of New wine and Old wine - What is the difference?
   
                            [1]   
Matthew 9:17
                                     17. Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine
                                           runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are
                                           preserved.

                             [2]  
 Mark 2:22
                                     22. And no man putteth new wine into old bottles: else the new wine doth burst the bottles,
                                           and the wine is spilled, and the bottles will be marred: but new wine must be put into new
                                           bottles.

                     [c]   New wine in the bible was nothing other than Grape juice, juice which had not yet fermented, wine
                              with no alcoholic content in it whatsoever
                     [d]  The reason old new wine could not be placed in old containers, containers which were constructed
                             of the skin of a goat or another animal, the new wine would eventually ferment, and when
                             fermentation takes place, the wine would swell, bursting the bag. To solve this problem, new wine,
                             grape juice has to be placed in new skins, so the skins would expand with the wine and the bag
                             would burst.
               [5]  Which wine did Jesus make?
                     [a]  Although there is no way we can know for sure, it is my belief that Jesus made New Wine,
                             unfermented wine, for the feast. This would have been the first wine that was served, and as the
                             party progressed, older wine would have been brought out to serve, the more bitter, alcoholic
                             wine. As the men were more  and more intoxicated, they would have no care as to how the wine
                             tasted, or how bad it was.
             [6]   Wine was used for many things in the bible time.
                     [a]  It was used in worship
                     [b]  It was used for medicine, - Paul wrote a little wine for the stomach’s sake.
                             [1]  Much of our medicines today has as a base, alcohol
                     [c]  It was used as a drink for the entire family
             [7]   Dangers of hard drink
                     [a]   Proverbs 20:1
                             1.   Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.
                             [1]  Notice the mention of two different things here,
                                     [a] Wine  is a mocker
                                     [b]  Strong drink is raging
                     [b]   
Proverbs 23:29-35
                             29. Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath
                                    wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes?
                             30. They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine.
                             31. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it
                                     moveth itself aright.
                             32. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.
                             33. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things.
                             34. Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the
                                     top of a mast.
                             35. They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it
                                    not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again.  
                             [a]   Notice again, the mention of the wine changing, when the wine is red - after it has fermented
                             [b]  Notice also that Solomon was speaking of someone addicted to wine, who suffered from it, but
                                     continually returned to the wine to drink
                     [c]  Isaiah 28:1
                             1.   Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, whose glorious beauty is a fading
                                   flower, which are on the head of the fat valleys of them that are overcome with wine!        
                     [d]  Ephesians 5:18
                             18. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
                     [e]   1 Corinthians 5:11
                             11. But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a
                                   fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such
                                   an one no not to eat.

                     [f]   1 Corinthians 6:10
                             10. Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the
                                   kingdom of God.
                     [g]   Luke 21:34
                             34. And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and
                                   drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.
                     [h]   Romans 13:14
                             13. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and
                                   wantonness, not in strife and envying.
                     [i]  Galatians 5:21
                             21. Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I
                                   have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of
                                   God.
              [8]  Question
                     [a]   Is it all right to drink alcoholic beverages?
                     [b]   Did Jesus make alcohol, fermented wine?
                     [c]   What should we answer someone who says, Jesus made wine, and he drank, so it is OK for me to
                             drink?
                     [d]  What are the problems with drinking?
                     [e]  Why is drinking in opposition to our being Christlike?