Weekly Church Service – Epiphany 2 – 20th of January 2019


Sentence:

Jesus revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him. John 2:11


Collect of the day

Bountiful God, whose son revealed his glory at Cana of Galilee help us to believe and obey so that, as our saviour promised, we may be filled with the wine of new life and show forth his joy and love, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.


Today’s readings

Isaiah 62:1 – 5
Psalm 36:5 – 10
1 Corinthians 12:1 – 11
John 2:1 – 11

Next week
Nehemiah 8:1 – 10
Psalm 19
1 Corinthians 12:12 – 31
Luke 4:14 – 21


A thought to ponder upon

Epiphany 2 – John 2:1 – 11

Today’s gospel is Johns account of Jesus’s first great “sign”, the transformation of water into wine at the wedding feast at Cana. For the churches of the East, the miracle at Cana is the 4th great event of their celebration of the Lord’s epiphany or manifestation to the world to (the first three: his birth at Bethlehem, the adoration of the Magi and the baptism at the Jordan by John)

Cana evokes 2 important scriptural symbols that point to the Messiahship of Jesus.

1st, wine in abundance was considered a sign for Israel of the Messianic age to come (one example is Isaiah 54:5 – 14, reading 4 for the Easter vigil). The water in the 6 large stone jazzed use for the ritual washings mandated by the 1st covenant law is transformed by Jesus into the Messianic wine, prefiguring the new covenant to be sealed in Jesus is blood (which were we celebrate in the wine of the Eucharist).

2nd, the limitless love of God for his people is described throughout Scripture in terms of marriage. Today’s 1st reading from Isaiah is a beautiful example of this tradition. It is the strongest (yet still far from perfect) image we have to understand the depth of God’s love for his holy people.

The Evangelist John pulls together to these two powerful Messianic symbols of wine and marriage together to introduce the public ministry of Jesus, the promised Messiah and bridegroom

A final note to: verse 4 of today’s gospel, Jesus is not as brisk towards his mother as he sounds to us in the English translation of the text. The address “woman” was a common courteous form of address in Jesus’s time. We do not have a modern English equivalent of this is idiomatic expression.

As ministers of the marriage sacraments, husbands and wives, in their love for one another, mirror for us all the great love of God in our midst.

The love of God is manifested at its most powerful in the love between husband and wife, in marriages that as sacraments, in which Christ is the always present wedding guest

At Cana, Jesus offers for the first time the “new wine” of gospel hope and re-creation. We, too, are called to see our world with eyes of faith in order that we might bring the possibilities of such hope – hope that transforms hurt into reconciliation, despair into confidence and alienation into community.

© Connections/Media Works

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