Lily of the Valley. The Almighty. Lamb of God. The Great I Am. All of these titles and more, we attribute to Jesus. He is the center focus of our faith. His love and power, mercy and grace are extolled in our expressions of devotion to Him. Jesus’ unique ability to be both God and human is what empowers Him to justify and reconcile the human race unto a holy God.
Christians are immersed in a spiritual culture that focuses on the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We are taught from the very beginning of our “faith-walk” about Jesus’ identity and His works on earth. We hear about the healings, and the preaching and the disciples. We learn about the many miracles that He performed while on earth.
The first recorded miracle is that of the “turning water in to wine” at the wedding at Cana [John 2:11]. For decades, this miracle has sparked debate amongst Christians as to whether or not it was wine or merely grape juice. Time Magazine recorded the opposing views of Southern Baptist, Billy Graham and Fundamentalist Presbyterian, Carl Mclntire in a 1977 article entitled, Did Jesus Drink Wine? http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,945726,00.html.
At any rate, it is in this account that we are witness to the power of Jesus and how He has command over the elements.Here, Jesus is at a party. Yes, a party – a wedding reception to be exact, but a party none-the-less. We often overlook this fact as Jesus is traditionally depicted as a somber, introspective, mild mannered man. Party and traditional Jesus are two, historically antithetical concepts.
But, Jesus was human. The Bible tells us that He is acquainted with our grief [Isaiah 53:3]. Is He not also acquainted with our happiness? Jesus came to earth and had the full human experience. Was He the “wall-flower Jesus” He is commonly painted to be? What type of party guest was He? I surmise that he was the kind of guest that would have gone to the store to replenish the drinks. Why do say this? Because, He did just that.
The party was such a success that they ran out of wine. Too many people, not enough wine. So what did Jesus do? The traditional Jesus, we often conjure in our minds, would have shut the party down. He would have grabbed the microphone from the DJ and admonished the crowd that they should be glad there is no more wine; they weren’t supposed to be drinking it anyway. But, Jesus didn’t do that. He satisfied the crowd with more wine. He took the water and made it in to the best wine for the guests. He kept the party going. Which brings us to another notion – if Jesus saw that it was acceptable to create wine for the guests to consume did He partake in his own creation? Wine drinking Jesus?
Do we really appreciate His humanity and His sacrifice? Do we really recognize Him as having lived a life similar to ours? Or do we elevate His earthly experience to a level that seems unfamiliar and unattainable to us mere mortal humans? How would our perception of the Savior of mankind change if we really understood His humanity? To be like Him is our ultimate goal. Perhaps we are more like Him and He more like us then we realize.
Join the conversation and leave us a comment. Let us know what other emotions or experiences we often disassociate with Jesus’ earthly experience.