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006 - Waterpots

More Than Ink / Pastor Jim Catlin & Dorothy Catlin
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September 11, 2020 7:26 pm

006 - Waterpots

More Than Ink / Pastor Jim Catlin & Dorothy Catlin

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September 11, 2020 7:26 pm

Episode 006 - Waterpots (5 Sep 2020)

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You pick up your Bible and wondered, is there more here than meets the eye. Is there something here for me.

I mean it's just words printed on paper right well it may look like just print on the page but it's more than Inc. join us for the next half hour, as we explore God's word together as we learn how to explore it on our own.

As we ask God to meet us there in its pages welcome to more than Inc. read the Bible. John one and Joey get John the Baptist to get a handful of disciples and inducing you. Just as Nevis will complement disciples went to Chuck today to get that hugely important statement by the witness, John the Baptist saying there is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world right. He says that twice and by the way, if you confused about who John the Baptist was. He was mentioned in the Old Testament as a forerunner for ethical come before so he's like if you ever want to live TV show on the record. They always have a comedic amount before the accident John the Baptist as a warm up guy. He's there to give you an understanding of the sky is coming, but he's not the guy Jesus is the guy right so that's will relook at today so we actually start his public ministry with five disciples and a pickups more as we go on, so we were John today so wedding went great, so, so this is this is is a fascinating passage.

For one thing, because you just read this and and urethra and you go. Okay that was a that was kind crazy, but then ask yourself why is it here so yeah you want to you want to read some of the passage to have it there just get us into it reading Dante to the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus also was invited his disciples to the wedding so he already had disciples this point have fun guys.

They were identified as his followers identify with him. And when the wind gave out. No, Jesus said to him, that's interesting. Okay you my hour has not yet his mother said to the servants you do it were six stoneware pot set there for the Jewish custom purification containing 20 or 30 gallons each.

Jesus said to them, fill the water pots with water and they fill them up to the brim and he said to them, draw out some now and take it to the head waiter took it and went head waiter tasted the water which had become wine and didn't know where it had come from, but the servants who drawn the water knew head waiter called the bridegroom and said to him, every man serves the good wine first in one minute.

Drink freely than that which is for you have kept the good wine until now this the beginning of his signs, Jesus did in Cana of Galilee manifested his glory and his disciples believed in him great stories but I mean because if you characterize us against all the other miracles he does the rest of Johnny the Gospels are mostly all about healing people. This is like it. Almost all almost all okay maybe there's a few but I mean this is to start all if I was gonna write the Bible myself is a fiction piece.

I wouldn't start with this. This is an odd story, but it does attract your attention. It does attract your attention so but what doesn't do is it doesn't explain itself. The study can talk about today asking question question good question in the text because the writer has included details for a particular reason. He could've told us how many people were at the wedding told us who's wedding and what details but we know where it was. We know the mother of Jesus was there but had good question of the text that will cause us to think about it in a way that will lead us in a fruitful direction so that this is one of the this wonderfully fun things to do when you're exploring the Bible is a fog. If you're reading it and you got a piece of paper by citing the pencil in his right, that questions like wait a second. It is not is not irreverent. I know a lot of people think what if I just read the Bible so well it's what today are so I just except what's there is the Bible.

After all it is, but but you have to realize remember last week we said the John dreading the purpose right so he included the story with that. He's intending to provoke a question for you to go well who is this guy and like like in a good storytelling fashion.

You never give all the details as you go, you leave some open holes which draws the listener to think more critically about what's going on just to do it.

So if if if you are doing this and you have a piece paper next to you. Feel free to write down questions, I can't get you did it because it would help him, and even something just as simple observational questions like will who's wedding is this that is this a lot of false religions will claim what was Jesus wedding know the right way know it doesn't say there.

I think he would've said something so but it is at a relevant question. I don't know, but just put the question down so one of the first times I read the story I wrote a bunch of questions on me just share some of the questions I had and this will lead you into a fascinating discovery process.

If you ask questions and scratch your head and wonder what's what exploring the Bible is just a blast to do so. Like for instance the first questions again. My mind is why didn't he just refill the wineskins. If you know the ancient culture they had wineskins.

They were animal skins and you put the wind at the Newport out of them and you know it's out of town on the white and just say bring me all the empty wineskins, not just will not just that.

So why the water pots is why the water pots why water pots when it is Philip the wineskins. It would be really natural thing and so from someone in that culture, they would they would see that that was a very delivered action really strained even know the number in the water pots why we told there were 66 what yet. So that brings it interesting that brings up a question. Why six water pots.

We know that it's near the end of the knew the end of the wedding party so so the need for the wine is still there but it's probably not as large. It was beginning so you know you might make a lot of went beginning with the Michelob wine but not come on. These water pots are huge. You know they they hold 20 gallons apiece and are successful right even the head waiter. The story says you know well usually save the good students of the good stuff first. When people can still taste it right or drunk is when you bring just to have brought the best stuff out at the end. So why do really good wine. For one thing only makes no much at the end. I mean it's it's like almost 200 gallons wine. It's a lot of wine so why do that. I mean white top off the water pots he says fill my film up there not feeling wonderfully well because they had used some out of them in order to wash their hands high prices before me to do on the dupes film up, why do that?

I hear that question. This is fascinating interaction between Jesus and his mother. Yes, she seems to assume that he's good to do something about it and that he can do something about it to something and and and you and why would she think he could because we know that his training growing up was as a carpenter is not what is going to build a table. She knew who was more than she's telling us she knows more about who Jesus is that we know so far, so he shut she presumes he can do something about it in his responses interesting. He doesn't do anything to give you the crown is not working. Response to her, and really interesting way when what have you to doing what I do with you write that and says my time hasn't come yet so golly, what does that mean you're pulling me into this but it's premature writer in what way is so know it you wondering the census is mom giving him permission to actually take a step into ministry. Yes, in a public way and publicly visible ploy somewhere going to have our sense that something should be asking yourself, you know and and why is it near the end of this that the true source of the wine is kind of kept secret disciples.

Now the disciples knowing is real and the servants know the guys are handling the pots and like that so so it's a yeah but but clearly at the end of the story again if I was writing a fictional libel at the very end of the story I'd have Jesus pop up on the table and say okay everybody I've made all the line for you and I'm the one that did that so have a great party bubble, but do something with a really big splash flights and lights and firemen, but this is not the doesn't sell selling something out. This one came.

Interestingly enough, all the other miracles of Jesus. Does the Gospels, it says that he does them.

So, give him credibility. Give him credit for the people who see him in a civil civil yellowcake judgment based on what I do I raise people from the dead.

I heal people. So there meant to be very public demonstrations, but here it's not really a public event, but some private people like us to tells party celebration again Avenue life beginning. Really, when people get married there declaring publicly and entering a new way of life. So it's really interesting that that the Lord would do this first miracle at a wedding at a wedding exactly so.

So if you if you make a list of these questions. I guess the issue is if you learning how to study the Bible side adjacent down to find out what goes on with these things I do this and you could actually just go to a commentary that commentaries will try and answer all the questions for you but yet we recommend you don't do that. First, because then you you don't take time to explore your own thinking and give the spirit time to direct your thinking.

I just automatically jump to what somebody else has thought and think that's wrong but it's better if you get better if you regard commentary as a check later.

Like half. I wandered into something weird to check yourself against thinking of those who been studying longer and processing more deeply perhaps but say that they immediately got a commentary just linger in your own questions and ask the Lord and begin to put two and two together because that's what John intended for you to do and many times your questions come from the fact that you are not living in the skin of people to live right first century. So one of the first tips you can do is say will what about this whole event is something that they would understand that I don't understand. So, for instance, one of Ms. water pots okay and so there's is a six water pots. By the way, it says specifically their stone and and jump draw your attention to something specific that is that everyone seem to know what the time was that households had the stone water pots not you know they had had vessels that held stuff used animal skins for wine, but they also had they had ceramic pottery pots it holds to we we see those importers and stuff like that so these stone water jars are great curiosity to us. Why would they have gigantic pigs big jars made out of stone. And so if you have a way of researching into that and finding out why would they have these gigantic Joe typically jars what what what are these, therefore, in the whole water we know the water well water for a specific purpose. Water first was a right Jewish rite of purification which is a specific way of washing washing your hands right and you we often miss it because in modern times you wash your hands before you wash our hands hundred million times a day. This this is for ceremonial reasons as well on it did coincide with meals and stuff like that. The stone jars when you when you go when you read up about those. The stone jars with the belief in the early first century was the fact that stone was a special material that was kind of impenetrable to bad things.

So if you had had pure water in pure waters important for the ceremonial stuff coming up if you have pure water. You don't want to put it in key things like ceramic jar you want to put it in a pure container and we would put it in a pure glass container something so for them.

The pure container was stone and it was a whole industry in Jerusalem and throughout Israel at the time were these guys would carve out these gigantic chunks of limestone. I mean big like 2 x 4' cubic coming big chunk and the rectum up on this big lay then they would cut this big jar out it was a huge effort to do this kind of thing. Just so you can guarantee that this water that you ceremonially was in yesterday didn't absorb impurities exactly so it's that's really it's a big deal so there is really is no question with someone here the story. The first center that so that's the water pots that hold the ceremonial water which is the purest water that we use for cleaning up up up up so Jesus decides to correct the rhythm of their lives by replacing that water with wine. Now that's very disruptive. It seems deliberately disruptive, don't you think well for one thing, and I can wash her hands with wine no no and and so so I mean it's it's a nice alternative place to put wine for the winning I get that, but clearly they're knocking to drink that much wine before the wedding, but it is very disruptive. It would be least disruptive if he just had put the wind back in the wineskins and just forget about the ceremonial water, but he deliberately basically gets rid of all the ceremonial water by giving them a tremendous gift by replacing it with wine by something very precious so you know that ritual of purification was to clean the dirt off the outside. Yeah, right. So I hope that now that that to into is beginning to fit together in your mind Jesus, talk about being clean on the outside, but not clean on the inside so I we begin to wonder now if this passage is really telling us something about the nature of purification right right and Jesus doing it kind of undercover a little bit so you know, so if you run the story out so okay, so what. So there pulled wine out of the stone jars. What crazy thing that is knowing the story that says it at the end of the end of the entire party that it reverted back to water. So our presumption is that at the end of the day to clean up the house and everyone is going to know a lot when I know a lot of wine in here and what who's going to drink all this wine. For one thing, but worse than that. The next time we have a meal we have to do ceremonial washing, according to the, the elder, then the question arises, do we we don't think the ransom in wine and refill it with water and will jars be clean enough after wine spinning into it jars and when we throw will outline, but we can't drink that much wine facet filled coming so owners of these consequences show up the next day where we are making a lot of the pain here doesn't tell us that were left to counsel over his head and say that because of this thing that he did those five first disciples believed they believe in him right right so it is extending the passage a little bit. It's fair to say were speculating but but actually Jesus has done a deliberate disruption in their life.

That's not speculation, because the next time they needed to do something ceremonial cleansing water in house and and they're knocking to dump why now I'm and I'm not going to dump it out to be thinking about this for a long time.

He would probably I figure this out once.

If you do the math they would be drinking this one for nine months.

If it's a it's a small family. I mean it's a long time to drink is not a very big wedding party every day. Be reminded of the fact remember the wedding. We had months ago and Jesus came and turned her water into wine were still have to do with drinking. This one, which is really good wine and the wine actually does well in these but still let me say what they would've done with the water that was there because we find out.

Again, the culture there if if you read Mark's gospel Mark seven is verse one says no one. The Pharisees gathered to him and some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem. They saw that some of his disciples Jesus disciples with hands that were different miles.

That is, they were unwashed and then Mark writes worse of parenthetical thoughts. He says three of Mark seven for the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they wash their hands properly holding to the tradition of the elders and when they come from the marketplace.

They do not eat unless they wash and there are many other traditions that they deserve such as a washing of cups and pots and copper vessels and dining couches and the Pharisees and scribes asked him why disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands. What you can read the rest that account Mark seven, but you can see this is the role of this water. It was actually to satisfy the tradition of the elders didn't have a direct connection to God's commandments to them. It was a tradition of the elders right so could it be that Jesus disruption is to deliberately differ up something about obeying the tradition of the Navy to replace that water that was used for external ritual purpose with something that's taken internally.

Internal means in celebration right and if you read the Gospels, Jesus takes the Pharisees to task later on saying you like cups man will clean the outside bay inside the cup is dirty or insights are dirty. Well, maybe that's what he's connected to hereto as I can write that down as a question and try to pages after the little renal confirmation that later on.

Something to think about is that we know you know everybody knows that Jesus did state that stuff of water brand said things about water, so in a couple of weeks for me to come to John for he says to that woman at the well, if you had asked me would give you real that wells up later on John. Seven he says that I'll give you living water that wells up like a well inside you. So John in his very careful writing as he setting right now right in the turning of the water into what is on your page say water so something specific about water and keep keep watch and as it comes up, and friends. Between washing something externally and taking it internally. Now if you want to extend you know I'm going to keep watching for water. What happens if we start keep watching for wine wellbores that show up. That will show up later. It does show up later so just keep your eyes out for that and for now all you have to remember is the fact that wine was an extraordinarily luxurious drink and to have nearly 200 gallons of it is that's like. That's a lot of wine so so what Jesus does for this family. He gives them a gift of extraordinary speaks of celebration and celebration extraordinary value extraordinary celebration extraordinary joy and he gives it to them almost under the table because it's so as not to cause a gigantic ruckus in all of this only a few people know anybody who was there at the wedding who was in the know is going to remember this event right as things unfold later in this is writing his own neighborhood cane eyes just up the hill from the galley. Everything Galilei but doesn't say hello from Capernaum next Nazareth you and and a lot of relatives lived in the area. Maybe it was a relatives wedding so you know this was among the people who knew him right so now that you're equipped as a first century person thinking about this, you like the people the story, ask yourself the question that you're going to ask you another question that you're going to try and answers are going to John which is is Jesus actually replacing a way of life. We had with something that is much more joyful.

That's much more celebratory. That's much more rich. That's much more party like something that's just really great news.

It ended in the end that's it's a great cost him his he is he doing something he's radically shifting who we are, what we've done replacing with something much, much better. Is that what he's all about. And if you remember back to John's introduction.

He said the law was given through Moses, grace and truth were realized brought into our real experience and Jesus Christ and actually you start to figure what grace is no what Jesus did by replacing that water with wine is tremendous grace. So there's just this should raise a ton of good questions and a lot of good. Who is this Jesus guy and why you do this, is he trying to tell us something more than just the fact that we had a social problem we ran out of wine so turn in your mind when you're reading and ask these questions of the text.

John is telling us this story with these details for a reason and we have to actually stop and think about it for some of us, these stories are so familiar.

We don't even see those details anymore so that's why doesn't evoke the question read out loud.

Read it slowly and then ask yourself why that detail why is that there is this more than just saying this is Jesus first miracle we just write a miracle establish who is, well, that's true, but the way this miracle is done is so deliberate, and remember that everything Jesus does is extraordinarily deliberate. He's communicating I'm saying because he is the word that is trying to tell us something and I think as I look at this. That's when I am struck by is the fact that he's taking an old life of obeying the traditions of the elders and is replacing something that's very joyful, very celebratory, very costly, very luxurious, and much, much better than we could ever imagine and is doing in such a way as to bless us in the process about and this is just its extraordinary every time I think about the beginning John to go back and I rerun this whole story in my head and I see other things about this is this is a very particular miracle. This not just needed to come_who Jesus is. But to tell something much, much deeper about what is all about.

He came John. John Artie told us he became flesh and dwelt among us, so we could behold his glory. We could see who he is, his distinctive message that only he could speak so this is one. This is where John begins the story is interesting that no other of the gospel to others include this. This is this is John telling us you know you need to know this is how it all began with this implanting this idea that that old way of cleaning the outside of the jar. Traditionally, can be completely blown out of the water by an encounter with this one who would give you something you're right celebratory to replace very well change of pace that telling me something fact we don't think the apostles really caught all the import of what were talking about here again. They believed miracle did that but did they actually catch what was in this message and interestingly enough nowhere else in the New Testament does anyone try to explain the meanings in this it's it's as though John says you know wink wink. If you live in the first century.

You know what this means. So it just takes a little bit more time to ask these questions and chase down some of these questions and see where it takes us so we can put ourselves in the flesh of the people the first century go oh I think I see it.

So next week come back with this really going to John three, and we want you to be with John the very Raphael John three this guy would come to Jesus in the middle night so no one can spot them and they have one the most remarkable conversations the entire Bible born again. People were going to take a look at that soul John three, and so again, take a piece of paper read in John three act like you've never read it before because of so much of it that you recognize and ask yourself questions about the text, like we did this waiting in the will just gonna jump on those ourselves come back next.

Don't skip over the part that comes after the wedding at Cana right John tells us that Jesus went straight wedding into the temple.

Check that out so that next week so we'll see you next week


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