John 2:1-11: Give Glory To God

Read: John 2:1-11

Jesus’ first manifestation of his glory was turning water into wine as John notes in John 2:11. This particular set of verses is problematic for some because this manifestation of glory involves Jesus creating wine. The Greek word “οινος” is the most common word for wine in the New Testament and can refer to alcoholic and nonalcoholic forms of the juice from grapes. The “good” wine served at weddings was apparently alcoholic because people were able to get drunk off it (John 2:10) and after having their senses dulled, they are less sensitive to wine of a poorer quality. There’s no way to determine from the text if Jesus was making alcoholic or nonalcoholic wine and the scriptures clearly condemn debauchery (Ephesians 5:18, Galatians 5:19-21, Romans 13:13) and encourage sobriety (1 Peter 1:13, 1 Peter 5:8, 1 Thessalonians 5:6).  Also, it would difficult to reconcile how Jesus could contribute to debauchery by making more wine. For these reasons, it is probably the case then that they had drunk wine, but were not intoxicated regardless of the alcoholic content of the wine. What is certain is that the wine Jesus made was of a superior quality, perhaps even better than the good wine that was served initially, and this superior quality is noted for a reason — it is a manifestation of Jesus’ glory.

The passage does not seem to note that the miracle itself was somehow problematic, rather only the timing of the miracle. Jesus tells his mother that his hour has not come. Jesus announces that his hour had come in John 12:23 before the beginning of the Passion Narrative that continues after this verse until the end of the book. John notes that the hour had not tome two other times before chapter 12 when some were thinking about arresting him for various reasons (John 7:30, John 8:20). Jesus knew the timing of the Passion Narrative, and the wedding at Cana was not were it was suppose to begin. But nevertheless, he manifested his glory and some believed.

For believers today, the hour of Jesus’ glorification has come, and his glory has been revealed and continues to be revealed in the life of every believer (2 Corinthians 3:18). When God’s glory manifests itself in our lives through word or deed, it should point people to Jesus so that the nonbeliever might believe in Jesus. We should always give God the credit rather than take it for ourselves so we can point people to Jesus!

God, the glory is yours. Help me to help others see this and so they can believe in Jesus!