The Wedding At Cana

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The Wedding At Cana — The Gospel Of John Essay, Research Paper The Gospel of John The Wedding at Cana The story of the wedding at Cana follows the standard form of a miracle story. The setting comes first in verses one and two. The preparation of the miracle occurs in verses three through five. The miracle is actually performed in verses six through eight. A conclusion wraps everything up in verses nine through eleven, and verse twelve is a transitional link into what follows (O’Day, 1995). There I very little in the way of setting for this miracle story. It takes place at Cana in Galilee. Cana was probably what is now called Kef Kenna. It is about four miles northeast of Nazareth. It is possible that Jesus’ family had moved to Cana. Mary is mentioned as a guest. Some

scholarly legends say that Mary was the aunt of the bride. Joseph is not mentioned, leading most scholars to believe he had already died. There is also a vague reference to Jesus’ brothers or disciples depending on the translation. Usually all or most of the women would be helping out with the festivities. Mary would most likely be a part of this entourage of caterers, and therefore would have known that the wine was running low. (St. John, 1995). In the story of the wedding at Cana, Mary’s charity and her prominent faith in Jesus’ power are her two most noticeable features. In verse three she points out the lack of wine to her son. The problem is established, however Mary does not ask anything explicit of Jesus – she only draws her Son’s attention to the need

(Haenchen, 1984). At first glance the crisis appearse to only be connected to earthly drink. In Israel at the time, wedding celebrations lasted for days. In the case of a virgin bride they could last up to a week (Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, 1964). During the course of the wedding celebration relative and friends of the wedding couple and their family would come and go. Many times even people passing through would join in on the celebration. Wine was a critical part of meals in general, the wedding, and the creation of a festive atmosphere. The hosts would be extremely embarrassed if the wine ran out, and it would be a very negative beginning for a marriage (Fuller & Kearns, 1990). Jesus replies in a tone that comes off harsh to contemporary ears. The first

part of his answer is a widely used phrase in the Old Testament and Judaism in general, and the Hellenistic world. It never means, “What concern is that of yours and mine?” Depending on different nuances such as tone of voice it translates better to “What would you have me do?” or “Leave me in peace.” It displays certain aloofness on the part of Jesus towards Mary (St. John, 1995). The rest of Jesus’ words can also come off very abrasive. Jesus addresses Mary as “Woman” where the reader might have expected a gentler “Mother.” It is not a rude, hostile usage. The term is respectful, and Jesus uses it often when talking with women including the Samaritan woman at the well. It is, however, unusually to refer to ones mother. It again creates an aloofness, a

distance between Jesus and his mother. It downplays their blood relationship. The Lord does not act as a result of human prompting, even if that prompting comes from his mother. He acts only in accordance with the Father’s will (Lightfoot, 1963). The words spoken by Jesus, “My hour has not yet come,” is characteristically Johannine. It is clear that the hour Jesus if referring to is his glorification and death, which leads to the salvation of all. The reference to the “hour” alludes to this event, and can be understood symbolically to represent Jesus’ blood. The reader is shown that there is greater meaning to the story than what is simply happening (Meeks, 1988). Although rebuked, Jesus’ mother continues with instruction to the waiters. She speaks the famous words;