Welcome Valley Bible Studies

Lesson 9: John 2:1-12

John 2:1-12
And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galillee; and the mother of Jesus was there: And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage. And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come. His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it. And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece. Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it. 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, 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. This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him. After this he went down to Capernaum, he, and his mother, and his brethren, and his disciples: and they continued there not many days.

Background Information
The wedding described here would have been in keeping with the culture of the ancient Middle East. Such a wedding followed a lengthy formal engagement. The bridegroom would get the celebration ready and then come to the home of the bride unannounced to bring her to the wedding. Regardless of specific customs, the wedding would have involved similar commitments and emotions to weddings in other times and cultures.

The firkin is an old measurement. One newer Bible translation says that the waterpots held 20-30 gallons each. [I suppose this would come out to maybe about 100 liters each.] Jesus’ first miracle was to make wine at a party. In today’s world, making wine at a party would be contributing to drunkenness, and Jesus was too holy to contribute to sin. There is, however, historical evidence that ancient peoples made and used nonalcoholic wine in addition to the alcoholic type. Such a nonalcoholic wine would have been in keeping with Jesus’ character as we see it throughout the New Testament.

Related Scriptures
Exodus 20:12
Mark 7:3-4 (Might explain the significance of the water pots in the text.)
1 Corinthians 6:10
Ephesians 5:18

  1. Who was invited to the wedding?
  2. What did the host run short of?
  3. Who asked Jesus to help?
  4. a. Was Jesus eager to perform this miracle? b. What reason did He give for His reluctance?
  5. What was the quality of the wine that He made?
  6. a. Who knew what He had done? b. Was he trying to impress the important people at the wedding?
  7. Since the word “wine,” as used in the Bible, can include both alcoholic and nonalcoholic grape beverages, would 1 Corinthians 6:10 and Ephesians 5:18, lead you to think that Jesus made the alcoholic variety of wine? 
  8. What effect did this miracle have on Jesus’ disciples?

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