The Transforming Power of Christ

Bible Book: John  2 : 11
Subject: Miracle at Cana; Water to Wine; Power of Christ; Miracle of Jesus

John 2:11, “This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory and his disciples believed on him.”

I want you to turn now to the Gospel of John. And we’re going to be in the Gospel of John now for our next seven messages on Sunday morning, except perhaps some interlude where God may intervene or tell us otherwise. But we’re going to be bringing seven messages, seven miracles, in the Gospel of John. And I want us to look now in John chapter 2, the first miracle that Jesus ever performed.

You know, there are some people who say that Jesus performed miracles as a child, and so forth. Oh no, this is the first one right here, and we can read it. I’m reading here John chapter 2 and verse 1: “And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee 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.” Now if you understand the idiom in which Jesus is speaking, He’s not being harsh or disrespectful. Jesus honored His mother. And so it loses a little in the translation, but what Jesus is just simply saying is, what affair is that of yours right now? “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 a piece.” That is really about 120 gallons. “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,”—that is, when they have sated their appetites—“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.” (John 2:1–11)

I want to speak to you today about “The Transforming Power of Christ.” And the same Jesus that turned water into wine can transform your home, can transform your life, can transform your family, can transform your future. That same Jesus is still in the miracle-­working business. And His business is the business of transformation. Someone has well said that nature forms us, sin deforms us, penitentiary reforms us, education informs us, the world conforms us, but only Jesus transforms us. And that’s what we’re going to be thinking about today: the transforming power of the Lord Jesus Christ as He turned water into wine.

Now before we get into this, let me just give you a setting for the entire series. I want you to turn to John 20. Do as Brother Tommy said about the hymnal: just put your finger there in John 2 and just go forward with me to John 20, verses 30 and 31, and I want you to see the significance of this miracle. John chapter 20, verses 30 and 31. Now the Bible says in verse 30, “And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book.” Now the word sign is an interesting word. It’s a word that means “miracle.” But the word semeion means “a miracle with a message and a miracle with a meaning.” Not just a miracle, but there’s a lesson in the miracle. I believe G. Campbell Morgan said that every parable that Jesus gave was a miracle of instruction, and every miracle that Jesus performed was a parable for our instruction. I like that. And there is a meaning in the miracle. Now John said, “…many of these miracles Jesus did.” Look, if you will, please, in verse 31: “But these are written,”—these miracles—“that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of

God and that believing ye might have life through his name.” (John 20:30–31) Now therefore John, as he was directed by the Holy Spirit, chose seven miracles. Now Jesus did many more, but John chose seven significant miracles that Jesus performed, that we might believe that Jesus is the Christ, and believing that Jesus is the Christ, we might have life through His name. Are you interested in life?

And incidentally, Jesus came not for death, but for life. It was here at a wedding that Jesus performed this miracle that we’re going to study this morning, it was a feast. I read in the Bible where Jesus broke up several funerals but He never broke up a feast. And don’t think of Him as the pale Galilean who has come to take all of the joy out of your life. Jesus said in John 10, verse 10, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10)

Jesus wants to give you abundant life, as we’re going to see in a moment. And so here it was at a wedding—not a funeral, but at a wedding feast—that Jesus performed His first miracle. And what a lesson that ought to be. But all of these miracles, beginning with the turning of the water into wine, right on through, as we’re going to see—all seven of them—were for a particular purpose: that we might believe that Jesus is the Christ. And when we believe that Jesus is the Christ, we will receive life through His name. And so the name of our series is this: “A Parade of Miracles.”

And incidentally, in and out through this series we’re going to be asking some of you to come up here and tell about a miracle that God has done in your life. It may be a physical miracle, the healing of a body. It may be a financial miracle, where the Lord has provided for your need. It may be a domestic miracle, where God has healed your home and saved your marriage. It may be a social miracle, where the Lord has helped you in your relationship with someone else. We’re going to be dealing with all of the miracles of our great God that show that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, as we study this parade of miracles.

As I was thinking about this, I’m reminded of the old Burma Shave signs. Some of you youngsters don’t know what a Burma Shave sign is, but Burma Shave was, or is—I don’t know whether they still have it or not—a form of shaving lather. And they used to advertise it primarily on the highways in the olden days. There would be a succession of small signs that would be stuck on sticks, and there would one, and then another about a quarter of a mile, and then another about a quarter of a mile, and then another and another and another—and they would say something. And you had to read each one before you got to the conclusion. They were little poems, pure doggerel, but poetry and such. I remember reading one: “A peach looks good with lots of fuzz, but a man’s not a peach, and never was.” And then it would say, “Burma Shave.” And you would get a portion of this sign as you would go down you’d read this one, and then this one, and then this one, and then finally at the end it would say, “Burma Shave.”

Well, that idea is old—two thousand years old. That’s what John is doing. John is giving us a series of signs. And then at the end of the signs, it doesn’t say, “Burma Shave” it says, “Jesus Christ, Son of God.” That’s what he’s talking about. And so we’re going to be studying together what we call “A Parade of Miracles.” And I pray God at the conclusion of what we do today, you’ll say, “Oh yes, yes, yes, yes, He is the Son of God. Furthermore, He has become my Savior. And furthermore, I have life, wonderful life, through His name.” And those of you who already know Him, my prayer is that you’ll know Him better, love Him more dearly, and see Him more clearly, and follow Him more nearly, and know even a more abundant life than you know right now.

Now you know the story that I just read to you. Let’s go back to John chapter 2. Jesus was at a wedding, and there was a time of embarrassment, because the refreshments had run out. And I want you to think about the word refreshments. This was not intoxicating wine. Incidentally, in one of our Wednesday night contemporary issues, we’re going to be dealing with the subject of the Christian’s relation to beverage alcohol. Remember that the word wine in the Bible may mean that which is intoxicating, and it may mean that which is not intoxicating. For example, the Bible says in Proverbs chapter 23, “Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright.” That is, when it is fermented, God says, “Leave it alone.” Because God says, concerning that wine, “At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.” (Proverbs 23:31–32)

Now Jesus didn’t serve something with a serpent in it—you can believe that. There’s no serpent in the refreshment that Jesus served, only joy. You see, beverage alcohol is the devil’s substitute, Satan’s substitute, for Jesus’ joy. But Jesus was there, and the refreshments ran out at this party. And so there was a time of embarrassment.

I don’t even know who the bride and groom were. They’re not mentioned—a nameless couple. And it seems like a small thing. But I’m so glad that Jesus did a small thing for a nameless couple. Why? That tells me that He is the Christ for everybody and the Christ for every circumstance. Isn’t that wonderful? And He’s just as interested in you on Tuesday morning as He is this Sunday morning. And He’s interested in everybody. He’s interested in everything. What a wonderful, wonderful Savior! What a sympathetic Savior we have! And what a dear, marvelous, wonderful Savior!

And so the Lord Jesus Christ moved in to take care of this embarrassing situation. There were six water pots there. He said to the servants, “Fill them with water.” They did. He said, “Draw out now.” And when they drew out, no longer water but wine and not ordinary wine, the very best. As a matter of fact, the governor of the feast, the master of ceremonies, said, “I never tasted anything like this.” He said, “This is a strange party. Generally, people bring the best out first, but,” he said to the bridegroom, “you saved the best for the last.”

And let me just say parenthetically, but not necessarily incidentally, Jesus always gives the best last. Did you know that? He always does. The devil gives the best first. You see, “The bread of deceit is sweet, but afterwards a man’s mouth shall be filled with gravel.” (Proverbs 20:17) And the wine and the cup look so sparkling—I’m talking about the wrong kind. You know, it moves itself aright—there it is. You know, the most beautiful ads in the papers are what? The liquor ads, aren’t they? They make it look so good, but “at the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.” The devil gives the best first and the worst last. Jesus gives the best last. And the longer you serve Jesus, the sweeter He grows. And the joy of the Lord, it maketh full and bringeth no sorrow with it. (Proverbs 10:22)

Jesus doesn’t give any hangovers, friend. I want to tell you, I’m so glad that He does. I’m so glad that every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before. And we can even look forward to heaven where the Apostle Paul said, “Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.” (2 Timothy 4:8) It gets better and better. And the longer you serve Him, the sweeter He grows. Jesus gives the best last, and so Jesus worked a miracle that day. It was a miracle of transformation as we turned water into wine.

And there are three major lessons I want us to see: the first one, moderately short the second one, a little longer and the third one will be the major, major lesson that I want us to deal with. First of all, as we look at this story, I want us to learn a lesson of prophecy as it deals with the Second Coming, the prophetic lesson as it deals with the Second Coming. Secondly, I want us to see the practical lesson as it deals with service. And, thirdly, I want us to see the personal lesson as it deals with salvation. I believe all of those are right here in this miracle this morning as we study it together.

I. The Prophetic Lesson Concerning the Second Coming

Now, first of all, I believe there is a prophetic lesson as it deals with the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. You see, He was the Messiah of Israel, but they didn’t recognize Him. Go back to chapter 1 here for just a moment. John had been preaching, John the Baptist, and had been baptizing, but they did not recognize who Jesus was. And I’m talking about the Pharisees. Read John 1, beginning in verse 24: “And they which were sent were of the Pharisees…”—that is, there was a committee coming out to investigate old John the Baptist—“And they which were sent were of the Pharisees. And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ,”—that is, the Messiah— “nor Elias, neither that prophet? John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not.” (John 1:24–26)

A. The Messiah They Did Not Recognize

Now Jesus was right there, but they didn’t recognize it. So the first thing I want you to notice, as we think of the dispensational, or prophetic nature, is this: the Messiah they did not recognize. He was there. The Lord Jesus was right there, but they did not know Him. They should have known Him. They could have known Him. They ought to have known Him. But they didn’t know Him.

B. The Miracle They Did Not Understand

All right, the Messiah they did not recognize, and therefore the miracle that they did not understand. When Jesus performed this miracle, it was more than to provide refreshments for a party. It was a miracle with a message, and it was a manifestation of the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ, and it looked forward to that future time when the Lord Jesus shall sit upon the throne of His glory. It will look forward to that Marriage Supper of the Lamb when He Himself is the heavenly bridegroom and we are the bride, and we eat that marriage feast up there. And you talk about refreshments! Dear friend, what Jesus did there on that day is but a foregleam of what He will do for His saints throughout all of the ages. But they didn’t understand this miracle. They didn’t understand. As a matter of fact, at the last of chapter 2 here, the Bible says they were following Him. Some people followed Him because of the miracles which He did. But the Bible says, “Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men, and needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man.” (John 2:24– 25)

C. The Marriage That They Missed

Oh, listen: the Messiah that they did not recognize the miracle that they did not understand and then, dear friend, the marriage that they missed—not that marriage, but the Marriage of the Lamb. Oh, it’s so close. Jesus is even at the door. You say, “I’ve heard that before.” I want to tell you, friend, that we are living in the closing days of this dispensation. My heart is telling me preachers across the land are preaching it God is giving a consciousness to His body, the church, that we are living in the closing days of this dispensation. Notice chapter 2, verse 1. The Bible says, “And the third day there was a marriage”—the third day.

Now you know Peter tells us that “one day is with the Lord as a thousand years.” (2 Peter 3:8) I believe that two days of human history have passed since Jesus Christ first came. I believe we’re close to that third day right now. I really do. I believe that the third day of the millennial reign of the Lord Jesus Christ is right here: that thousand years where Jesus is going to rule and reign here upon this earth as Lord of lords and King of kings.

II. The Practical Lesson Concerning Servants

There is a prophetic lesson, I believe, as it deals with the Second Coming. But, oh, there is a practical lesson as it deals with servants. There were some servants there that day. And I want you to continue to read with me and look, if you will, in verse 5: “His mother saith unto the servants,”—are you a servant of Jesus? Look up here. Are you a servant of Jesus? Nod your head this way. Are you? Okay now, do you want me to give you some advice? I’ll guarantee I’m going to give you the best advice you’ve ever heard in all of your life. You say, “That’s pretty arrogant.” I’m sure I’m right absolutely sure I’m right. Are you a servant of Jesus? Here’s the advice—“Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.” Amen? Wasn’t that good advice? Wasn’t that good advice? I’ll tell you, that’s good advice. “Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.” Do it. There is a practical lesson concerning service. “Whatsoever he saith unto you,”—if you’re His servant—“do it.” Why? Three reasons: for your good, for their gladness, for His glory.

A. For Your Good

Now, notice: for your good. “Whatever He says to you, do it.” Now everything He tells you to do is going to be a blessing to you in some way, some fashion. How was it a blessing to these people? Well, they were there the servants were there. Mary said to the servants, “Whatever Jesus says, do it.” And now, notice what He told them to do in verse 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. 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.” Now they are obeying. They’re doing exactly, precisely, with no stutter, no stammer, no apologies, no question, what Jesus told them to do.

Now, notice in verse 9: “When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, he knew not whence it was: (but the servants…knew).” Now, what is the blessing of obeying the Lord? Intimacy with Him. Knowing things that you could never know any other way. Do you know something? You’re saying, “Brother Rogers, I just don’t understand things. The Bible is a closed book to me. I can’t understand spiritual truth. How is it that some people seem to know so much and some other people seem to know so little?” Do you want me to tell you how? Become a servant. Listen. Those servants know things that the big shots at the head table didn’t know. Did you know that? The high muckety-­mucks sitting up there at the head table. Even the bride and the groom didn’t know what the servants knew. It’s amazing what you can learn if you’re willing to be a servant.

Do you know what the Lord Jesus said? He said in John 15, verse 15—I want you to put it in your margin—“Henceforth I call you not servants”—now they were, but He didn’t call them servants—“for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.” (John 15:15) You see, the servant becomes the friend, and the friend knows all things—Jesus. When we become His servants, become His intimates. And the Bible says in Amos chapter 3, verse 7, “Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret to his servants.” (Amos 3:7) Isn’t that beautiful? God reveals His secrets to His servants. What a blessing there is in service that we know the most intimate things about our dear Lord and we have knowledge!

Some of you have come only so far in your Christian life and you’ve stopped growing and the reason you’ve stopped growing is you’ve stopped obeying. Some of you need believer’s baptism, but you’ve refused to be baptized. I don’t know why, but you’ve refused. And then you read another verse, and you say, “Lord, I’ve read that one about baptism: I’m not going to do that. But now, show me what this means.” And God says, “I’m not going to show you.” “What, Lord? You’re not going to show me what your Word says?” “Absolutely not!” “Why not, Lord?” “I’ve already shown you about baptism. You won’t do that. Why should I show you anything else?”

Listen, friend. The way to understand the Scripture that you don’t know is to obey the Scripture you know. Did you know that? The Bible says, “To him that hath shall be given. But to him that hath not, shall be taken away even that which you have.” (Matthew 13:12 Matthew 25:29 Luke 19:26) And you’re going to stop dead in your tracks in your growth in your understanding of the Word of God until you start to obey. For your understanding, for your good, you ought to obey. The servants that day knew something no one else knew, because they were servants. That’s the way to grow that’s the way to have an insight into the heart and mind of God: to obey the Lord. The servants knew. For your goodness. They knew.

B. For Their Gladness

But not only for your goodness for their gladness. You know, the party was getting dull. The refreshments had worn out. But when these people started to obey the Lord, when the servants did, everybody else got blessed. Let me tell you something. Did you know that when I obey God, I’ll be a blessing to you? When you obey God, you’ll be a blessing to me. You cannot obey God without your obedience spilling out in a blessing to all those around about you. When we obey God, we make those around about us glad. When you disobey God, you break the hearts of those around about you. Some of you are breaking the hearts of your father, your mother, your wife, your husband, because you are disobeying God rather than letting the wine of gladness and the joy of Jesus be made manifest through you.

C. For His Glory

Why obey Him? Number one: for your good. Number two: for their gladness. Number three: for His glory. Look, if you will, in verse 11: “This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory.” He manifested His glory. When people obey the Lord Jesus Christ, when they do what Jesus tells them to do, He is thereby glorified. Jesus said, “Why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46) Not only do you fail to bring Him glory you dishonor Him. You bring disgrace and disrepute upon the name of Jesus when you do not obey Him. But when you obey Him, then He works in your heart and in your life, and the result is glory to God.

   Now, obey Him, whether you can understand it or not. These servants had no way of knowing what Jesus was going to do. It might have seemed silly to them to fill those water pots with water. It wasn’t a matter of whether they understood it or not, just that He told them to do it. “Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.” Now a lot of times your twentieth-­century mind is going to say, “Well, that’s old-fashioned. That doesn’t make sense. That’s not practical.” Friend, never come to the Bible that way. Never parade the Bible across the judgment bar of your reason. “Whatever he saith unto you, do it.”

You remember Simon Peter was a commercial fisherman. He was out there on the Sea of Galilee. Jesus was watching by the shore. They didn’t know it was Jesus at first. He said, “Hi, you caught anything?” He said, “Man,”—sounds like me—“we fished all night we haven’t taken anything. Nothing.” Jesus said, “Well, cast your net on the other side of the boat.” Peter said, “Look, we’ve fished all night and we’ve taken nothing. Nevertheless, at thy word I will.” (Luke 5:5) That would be a great motto for every one of us this coming year. “At thy word, I will”—whether you understand it or not. Now what ol’ Pete was saying was, “There are no fish over here. We’ve fished all night. We know every square inch of this lake it’s not all that big but because you say so, I will.” They caught a load of fish so big they couldn’t drag it in. I want to tell you, ladies and gentlemen, don’t parade it past the judgment bar of your reason. Just “whatever he saith unto you, do it.”

A missionary, an old retired missionary, was given the job of examining candidates for missionary service. And so, one snowy morning at five in the morning, a candidate showed up at the missionary’s house. He had to wait until eight to see the missionary. He sat there in the living room on a frigidly cold morning. After a while, the old missionary came down, looked at him, and said, “Well, I want to ask you several questions. First of all, can you spell?” He said, “Well, yes sir.” He said, “Okay, spell baker.” He said, “b-­a-­k-­e-­r.” He said, “Thank you.” He said, “Now, do you know the rudiments of math?” “Yes sir, I think so.” He said, “All right, what is two plus two?” “Well,” he said, “why, four, sir.” “Thank you. That’s all. You’re dismissed.” And the young man went away.

The next day, the missionary went back to the society and said, “I want to recommend this young man for service on the mission field. He’s just the man that we’re looking for. I tested him on self-­denial by having him arrive at five in the morning on a cold, snowy day when he had to get out of a warm bed and a warm house.” He said, “Also, I tested him on promptness, because he arrived on time.” He said, “Thirdly, I tested him on patience. I made him wait three hours, and he waited three hours to see me. Fourthly,” he said, “I tested him on temper, because he was not arrogant and he failed to show any aggravation at having to wait.” And he said, “Last of all, I tested him on humility, because I asked him questions that a seven-­year-­old could answer, and he answered them forthright. He’s the man that we’re looking for.”

You may not understand why God tells you to do something. You may not understand the seemingly small commands of the Lord. But God knows what He’s doing, ladies and gentlemen. And listen. There’s a practical lesson here, and it is a lesson on service. Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it for His glory. I don’t know, but I just believe that water never would have turned into wine unless those people had filled those water pots that Lazarus would not have come out of that grave unless there were some there to roll away the stone that five thousand would not have been fed unless there was a little boy there that gave his lunch on that day. You see, I don’t know what God is going to do through you, and I don’t know what God wants to do through this church, but when God performs a miracle, He still will do it through human instrumentality. That doesn’t take the miraculous out of it. It is just God’s formula for a miracle.

Listen to me, ladies and gentlemen: “Whatever he saith unto you, do it.” Do it. Do it! For your good, for their gladness, for His glory, do it. Will you do it? You’ll be a servant of the Lord. And the Lord will get into the transformation business, and He’ll be transforming lives. He’ll transform this community when this church says, “Yes sir, whatever you say to me, Lord Jesus, I’ll do.” He’ll transform your home. He’ll transform your personal life. “Whatever he saith unto you, do it.” There’s a practical lesson concerning service.

III. The Personal Lesson Concerning Salvation

But let’s go on and conclude this message. Not only is there a prophetic lesson, I believe, concerning the Second Coming and a practical lesson concerning service but there’s a personal lesson concerning salvation. You see, I believe here we also have a picture of the Lord Jesus Christ transforming lives and saving lives. And just as Jesus turned that worthless water into sparkling wine, the Lord Jesus Christ can transform and change your life and save you today if you’ve never been saved. Look again in verse 6, and I want you to see the symbolism that is there: “And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.”

A. The Meaning of It

Now, notice, six. Six is the number of a man. These were water pots of stone—more aptly, of clay. That’s the way they made pots of that day. Now they, to me, symbolized man made of the dust of the earth, man formed from the dust of the ground. They were dry. They were hard. They were brittle. They were empty. They were used for ceremony. But these people needed more than ceremony. They were used for the washing of hands. Not to get the dirt off. That wasn’t it. It was ceremonially to wash their hands. They would wash their hands nine times to the elbows with the water dripping off the elbows. It was a ritual, a form that they went through. But the problem was not with their hands it was with their heart. It was not physical dirt it was spiritual defilement that they had. It was not a matter of ritual it was a matter of reality that they needed. And here were these people: they were religious, but they were lost.

It will be a great day when man stops enduring religion and starts enjoying salvation. There are a lot of people who will trudge to church this Sunday. They will rise and sing, and they will give their money, and they will go through the form, and they will go through the ritual but they will be lost. “Six waterpots…after the manner of the purifying of the Jews,” representing man and his ritual, man and his ceremony, but man in his lostness, man without Christ, who is the water of life.

Then these water pots are filled with water. What is water a symbol of? It’s a symbol of the Word of God. Have you ever heard of “the washing of water by the word”? (Ephesians 5:26) Have you read where Isaiah said, “Is not my Word like the rain that cometh down from heaven?” (Isaiah 55:10–11) And all throughout the Old Testament, water has been used symbolically of the Word of God and the Spirit of God. And so here these old, hard, empty vessels are filled with water.

And incidentally, dear friend, I cannot save you. But one thing I’m trying to do today is pour you full of water. Did you know that? Oh, that’s my job. I can be faithful to put the Word of God into you. That’s what I’m doing. I am depending upon Jesus to perform the miracle. But I’ve got His water, I’ve got His Word, and I’m filling those pots right now, getting ready for a miracle, getting ready for a transformation. And so here are these empty pots finding that ritual is not enough, religion is not enough. It takes reality. It’s not the hands it’s the heart. It’s not the outward it’s the inward.

Do you know what wine represents? Joy. The Bible speaks of “wine that maketh glad the heart of man.” (Psalm 104:15) Jesus is about to show that it is inward, not outward. That it is reality that comes through transformation. And so when these empty water pots are filled with water and then touched by the omnipotent finger of God, a transforming miracle takes place. And that’s precisely, ladies and gentlemen, what needs to happen to you. You need the joy of the Lord that comes through the Lord Jesus Christ.

B. The Miracle of It

And, oh, such joy there is! Such joy there is! You see, the meaning of it is transformation. The miracle of it—only Jesus can do it. When a person is saved, it is a miracle. That’s what Tommy sang about that’s what Elmer sang about: “When He saved my soul, when He made me whole, it took a miracle of love and grace.” When Jesus turned water into wine, He did it like that. But when He saved me, He hung on a cross in order to do it. Oh, what a miracle! What a miracle! What a miracle—that Jesus can transform you!

C. The Measure of It

But notice not only the meaning of it, the miracle of it notice the measure of it. He turned 120 gallons of water to wine. Now I don’t know what kind of party they had, but they didn’t need 120 gallons. What was He showing? He was showing again John

10:10. What is it? “I have come that you might have life, and have it”—how?—“abundantly.” Oh, He’s able to do exceeding abundantly more than you can ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20)

There’s more, so much more. He doesn’t just deliver us from hell. Thank God He does that. But there’s so much more. Oh, when that prodigal got ready to go to his father’s house there in Luke chapter 15, what did He say about his father’s house? “My father has bread enough and”—what?—“to spare.” (Luke 15:17) Listen. When Jesus fed the five thousand, there were twelve baskets full left over. “Out of His riches in Jesus, He giveth and giveth and giveth again.”


If people understood what they had in the Lord Jesus Christ, you couldn’t keep them away with a machine gun. Really. They just don’t understand. Sin blinds, and they don’t understand the fullness of joy. At His right hand is fullness of joy. (Psalm 16:11) The meaning of it: transformation. The miracle of it: when the Word of God is touched by the hand of God, there’s a miracle. The measure of it: there’s fullness of joy. Life, an abundant life. And, ladies and gentlemen, it is yours through Jesus Christ.

Don’t be like those Pharisees so long ago who were religious but lost, who were enduring religion without enjoying salvation. Come to Jesus and trust Him. “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)