09/01/T – Signs

Judges 16:10-31; John 2:1-11; Psalms 103:1-12; Proverbs 22:14

NT: “On the third day a wedding took place in Cana of Galilee. Jesus’s mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples were invited to the wedding as well. When the wine ran out, Jesus’s mother told him, “They don’t have any wine.” “What has this concern of yours to do with me, woman?” Jesus asked. “My hour has not yet come.” “Do whatever he tells you,” his mother told the servants. Now six stone water jars had been set there for Jewish purification. Each contained twenty or thirty gallons. “Fill the jars with water,” Jesus told them. So they filled them to the brim. Then he said to them, “Now draw some out and take it to the headwaiter.” And they did. When the headwaiter tasted the water (after it had become wine), he did not know where it came from — though the servants who had drawn the water knew. He called the groom and told him, “Everyone sets out the fine wine first, then, after people are drunk, the inferior. But you have kept the fine wine until now.” Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee. He revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him.” (‭‭John‬ ‭2:1-11‬ ‭CSB‬‬)

John wrote his gospel for a very specific purpose: to show that Jesus was (and is) the Son of God and that we can have life in His name. In order to do that, John chose to highlight 7 miracles that Jesus performed during His life that served as a sign that He was the Son of God. The first miracle or sign is Jesus turning water into wine. The first miracle that God performed through Moses as a sign was turning the waters of the land into blood. That miraculous sign was a plague that brought judgement to Egypt. The first miraculous sign that Jesus the Son of God gave was turning water, not into blood, but into wine. Instead of a curse, it was a blessing… instead of bringing judgement, it brought joy. The sign showed that Jesus was the Son of God, for who could completely altar the molecular state of water and turn it into wine (not just ordinary wine, but fine wine) but God. The sign also showed that instead of bringing judgement, Jesus was bringing abundant joy. Jesus would later say that He did not come to condemn the world, but that the world may have life in His name. If Jesus can turn water into fine wine, then He can take our ordinary lack-luster lives and turn them into something glorious, if we fully follow Him.

Psalms: “My soul, bless the Lord, and all that is within me, bless his holy name. My soul, bless the Lord, and do not forget all his benefits. He forgives all your iniquity; he heals all your diseases. He redeems your life from the Pit; he crowns you with faithful love and compassion. He satisfies you with good things; your youth is renewed like the eagle. The Lord executes acts of righteousness and justice for all the oppressed. He revealed his ways to Moses, his deeds to the people of Israel. The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in faithful love. He will not always accuse us or be angry forever. He has not dealt with us as our sins deserve or repaid us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his faithful love toward those who fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” (‭‭Psalms‬ ‭103:1-12‬ ‭CSB‬‬)

As a father, one of the things that blesses me is when my kids are truly grateful for the blessings that I give them… instead of feeling entitled to my benevolence, they recognize that I bless them out of my love for them and are truly humbled and thankful. King David explains here, that when we do not take God’s goodness for granted and fully realize that we, though undeserving of His kindness, are blessed because of His love and goodness – that blesses God. When we are thankful for all of God’s blessings, God is blessed. When we remember (do not forget) all that God has done for us and respond in adoration, God is blessed. The word for bless literally means to bow down and adore. If we would stop and fully consider all that God has done for us, and continues to do for us, we will react like David reacted and say, “let all that is within me bow down before the Lord and adore Him… and may God be blessed by my faithfulness and gratitude.” To help us remember what God has done for us, David composed a list as he recounted all the things God had done for him. He forgives, He heals, He redeems, He glorifies, He satisfies, and He renews. Those are all the things he does for us individually as we walk in obedience to His way. David then goes on to list things that God does corporately as His people walk in His ways: He executes righteousness and justice for the oppressed, He shows compassion and gives grace, He is slow to anger and abounding in love, though He may correct us when we are wrong – His anger doesn’t last forever. His faithfulness to His faithful ones extends beyond the reaches of the universe, and for those who honor Him and His ways, He completely removes their sin. When we give our lives to the Lord fully and obey His word, will, and ways completely; He blesses us in such a way that we become miraculous signs. Our lives point to the fact that God Himself is at work in us and that we have life in His name. When we lose sight of that and take God’s blessings for granted, we stop being effective signs to God and end up becoming self-consumed… and the cycle of grace and blessing comes to an end. As long as we have an attitude of gratitude and bless the Lord, His blessings will continue to flow to us and we will continue pointing people to Him.

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