"Ask and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock and the door will be opened for you."
"Ask and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock and the door will be opened for you." (Matthew 7:7)
Many Christians have long found comfort in the words of Jesus. When confused, upset, or feeling alone, the above encouraging spiritual quote from Matthew has given countless people the motivation to keep going and take solace in God. These words can also be used to shed light on the meaning of the very first miracle that Jesus performed.
The turning of the water into wine during the Wedding at Cana, on top of the fact that it is traditionally considered to be Jesus' first miracle, is also thought to have been the start of His public ministry. The miracle is mentioned only in the Gospel of John, but there is no doubt about its importance and impact on Christianity.
The Marriage at Cana has been interpreted in a variety of different ways over the centuries. There are some points of contention and debate over issues such as where it happened and what Jesus' words mean. Some even consider it a nod to the idea that a little bit of wine is okay for Christians as long as you are a collector.
But what does Jesus' first miracle have to say about how God seeks to be involved in your life and about how you should go about establishing that relationship? Let's take a close look at the miracle and find out.
What Does This Miracle Mean?
The story of the Wedding at Cana carries obvious surface meaning about the divinity of Jesus, but there is no doubt that, like many Gospel stories, it carries a deep meaning for the life of the individual believer as well. The story seems to say that:
1) God wants to be involved in all aspects of your life
Many people think that one should only turn to God with deep struggles and hardships, but what this miracle seems to be saying is that God wants to be involved in all aspects of your life. Nothing is too trivial to be taken to God. The fact that the wine ran out at the wedding would have been embarrassing for the hosts, but it would have been a passing issue with no lasting negative effects. Nevertheless, God intervened.
2) You need to ask for His help
In John's retelling of the miracle, Jesus was reluctant to do anything because His time had "not yet come." Nevertheless, Mary simply had faith that Jesus could correct the situation if she asked Him to. She was willing to make her intentions known and was not afraid to ask for the help that she needed. Mary may be the Mother of God, but in this story she serves as an example to every single one of us, showing us that we can turn to God for help.
3) You need to follow His guidance
When Jesus instructed the servants to fill up six jars with water, they followed His instructions and not only ended up with wine, but with the best tasting wine at the wedding. This seems to say that if you follow God with an open heart, then He will not only provide you with what you need, but in more abundance than you ever expected.
Soren Kierkegaard, an influential 19th century philosopher and Christian theologian, said it best when he said that "Faith is convinced that God is concerned about the smallest things." He did not mean to trivialize faith, but rather to point out its power and ability to encompass the whole of life. It seems that John may have been trying to say the same thing.
After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed:
“Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began. “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them. I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one. While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled. “I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them. I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world. “Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”