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17 January 2016
posted by Canon Dakin on 22-01-2016

Green vestments means Ordinary time. On ordinary Sundays - thirty three of them, the readings are planned in a three year cycle - each of the three years being given in turn to Mathew, Mark and Luke.  An exception is this Sunday, today, the Sunday which follows the Baptism of Jesus. The gospel today is always from St John, the story of the miracle at Cana. We are still within the shadow of the Epiphany.  The feast of the Epiphany, the revealing of Jesus, recalls three occasions - the coming of the Magi with their revealing gifts, the voice from heaven at Jesus’ baptism - ‘This is my beloved Son”  and the marriage feast at Cana when he revealed his glory and his disciples believed in him. How did Cana reveal the glory of Jesus?  This is possibly the most flashy of his miracles - as much as twenty-five gallons of water changed into wine. Impressive! But St John’s intention runs deeper. Cana occurs early in his gospel. Jesus has just gathered his first disciples, men who were full of messianic expectation. The messiah was the great king promised by God who would restore the kingdom of Israel. They knew their Old Testament.  The prophets had spoken of an abundance of fine wine as a sign of messianic times. ‘You have kept the choice wine till now’ is a proclamation that the era of the Messiah had arrived. The disciples are confirmed in their faith. They are also prepared for future development. The water required by Jewish rules of purification is changed into wine. Jesus had come to transform the old law into something new and of a different order.

Just a word to the wine buffs.  This explanation shows that Our Lord was not giving a blessing to binge drinking but he does accept wine as part of our culture

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