First Miracle, Water Made
Wine—Brief Visit to
1. third day—He would take two days to
reach Galilee, and this was the third.
mother there—it being probably some
relative's marriage. John never names her [Bengel].
3. no wine—evidently expecting some
display of His glory, and hinting that now was His time.
4, 5. Woman—no term of disrespect in the
language of that day (Joh 19:26).
what … to do with thee—that is,
"In my Father's business I have to do with Him only." It was a gentle
rebuke for officious interference, entering a region from which
all creatures were excluded (compare Ac 4:19, 20).
mine hour, &c.—hinting that He
would do something, but at His own time; and so she understood
6. firkins—about seven and a half
gallons in Jewish, or nine in Attic measure; each of these huge water
jars, therefore, holding some twenty or more gallons, for washings at
such feasts (Mr 7:4).
7, 8. Fill … draw …
bear—directing all, but Himself touching nothing, to prevent
all appearance of collusion.
9, 10. well drunk—"drunk abundantly" (as
So 5:1), speaking of the general
10. the good wine … until now—thus
testifying, while ignorant of the source of supply, not only that it
was real wine, but better than any at the feast.
11. manifested forth his glory—Nothing
in the least like this is said of the miracles of prophet or apostle,
nor could without manifest blasphemy be said of any mere creature.
Observe, (1) At a marriage Christ made His first public appearance in
any company, and at a marriage He wrought His first miracle—the
noblest sanction that could be given to that God-given institution. (2)
As the miracle did not make bad good, but good better, so
Christianity only redeems, sanctifies, and ennobles the beneficent but
abused institution of marriage; and Christ's whole work only turns the
water of earth into the wine of heaven. Thus "this beginning of
miracles" exhibited the character and "manifested forth the glory" of
His entire Mission. (3) As Christ countenanced our seasons of
festivity, so also that greater fulness which befits
such; so far was He from encouraging that asceticism which has
since been so often put for all religion. (4) The character and
authority ascribed by Romanists to the Virgin is directly in the teeth
of this and other scriptures.
12. Capernaum—on the Sea of Galilee.
(See on Mt 9:1).
his mother and his brethren—(See on Lu 2:51, and Mt
Joh 2:13-25. Christ's First
Passover—First Cleansing of the
14-17. in the temple—not the temple
itself, as Joh 2:19-21, but the temple-court.
sold oxen, &c.—for the convenience
of those who had to offer them in sacrifice.
changers of money—of Roman into Jewish
money, in which the temple dues (see on Mt
17:24) had to be paid.
15. small cords—likely some of the
rushes spread for bedding, and when twisted used to tie up the cattle
there collected. "Not by this slender whip but by divine majesty was
the ejection accomplished, the whip being but a sign of the scourge of
divine anger" [Grotius].
poured out … overthrew—thus
expressing the mingled indignation and authority of the impulse.
16. my Father's house—How close the
resemblance of these remarkable words to Lu 2:49; the same consciousness of intrinsic
relation to the temple—as the seat of His Father's most
august worship, and so the symbol of all that is due to Him on
earth—dictating both speeches. Only, when but a youth, with no
authority, He was simply "a Son in
His own house"; now He was "a Son over
His own house" (Heb 3:6), the
proper Representative, and in flesh "the Heir," of his Father's
house of merchandise—There was nothing
wrong in the merchandise; but to bring it, for their own and others'
convenience, into that most sacred place, was a high-handed profanation
which the eye of Jesus could not endure.
17. eaten me up—a glorious feature in
the predicted character of the suffering Messiah (Ps 69:9), and rising high even in some not
worthy to loose the latchet of His shoes. (Ex 32:19, &c.).
18-22. What sign showest thou unto us, seeing that
thou doest these things?—Though the act and the
words of Christ, taken together, were sign enough, they were
unconvinced: yet they were awed, and though at His very next
appearance at Jerusalem they "sought to kill Him" for speaking of "His
Father" just as He did now (Joh 5:18),
they, at this early stage, only ask a sign.
19. Destroy this temple, &c.—(See on
Mr 14:58, 59).
20. Forty and six years—From the
eighteenth year of Herod till then was just forty-six years [Josephus, Antiquities, 15.11.1].
21. temple of his body—in which was
enshrined the glory of the eternal Word. (See on Joh
1:14). By its resurrection the true Temple of God upon earth was
reared up, of which the stone one was but a shadow; so that the
allusion is not quite exclusively to Himself, but takes in that
Temple of which He is the foundation, and all believers are the "lively
stones." (1Pe 2:4, 5).
22. believed the scripture—on this
subject; that is, what was meant, which was hid from them till then.
Mark (1) The act by which Christ signalized His first public
appearance in the Temple. Taking "His fan in His hand, He purges
His floor," not thoroughly indeed, but enough to foreshadow His last
act towards that faithless people—to sweep them out of
God's house. (2) The sign of His authority to do this is the
announcement, at this first outset of His ministry, of that coming
death by their hands, and resurrection by His own, which were to pave
the way for their judicial ejection.
23-25. in the feast day—the foregoing
things occurring probably before the feast began.
many believed—superficially, struck
merely by "the miracles He did." Of these we have no record.
24. did not commit—"entrust," or let
Himself down familiarly to them, as to His genuine disciples.
25. knew what was in man—It is
impossible for language more clearly to assert of Christ what in Jer 17:9,
10, and elsewhere, is denied
of all mere creatures.