« הקודםהמשך »
your portion were only in this world. God hath made great his name among you by the display of his grace and glory in his Son Jesus Christ. Let his glory, his gracious character and attributes, particularly as manifested in the redemption by his Son, receive your increasing gratitude and homage. Let his grace be applied to the purpose for which it was designed, the “renewing of your minds ';” the “denying of 'ungodliness and worldly lusts, and the living righteously, soberly, and godly, in the world." Let the incense which you offer to his name, be that of fervent prayer and praise, not only in the great assembly of the people, but in the lesser congregations of your families, and at all times and in all places, from the acceptable altar of your hearts. Let the offering which you render to him be the pure offering of yourselves, your souls and bodies, to his service. Incur not the tremendous guilt and punishment of those, to whom the Son of God called, and they would not come; to whom he offered his blood, and they “trampled it under foot;" to whom his Spirit was given, and they counted it "an unholy thing;" to whom the joys of Heaven were extended, and they rejected these for the pleasures of the world! Better will it be in the day of judgment for Sodom and Gomorrah than for them.
i Rom. xii. 2..
m Titus ii, 12.
THE MARRIAGE IN CANA OF GALILEE.
[SECOND SUNDAY AFTER THE EPIPHANY.]
John ii. 11...
This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee,
and manifested forth his glory, and his disciples believed
The miracle which is thus distinguished as the first miracle which Jesus wrought, and which, proving his divine power, led his disciples to believe in him, was the miracle of turning water into wine, at the marriage in Cana of Galilee. A brief account of the event will enable us to deduce from it much useful instruction.
1. “And the third day, there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.
2. And both Jesus was called, and his disciples to the marriage.”
The third day after Christ had come into Gali
lee, Mary, the mother of Jesus was invited to a marriage festival; at the house probably of an intimate friend, or relative. For it appears that she assumed considerable authority in the regulation of some particulars in the solemnity. From courtesy to his mother, and from respect to Jesus, who had already made himself known by preparations for his ministry, and by selecting his disciples, “both Jesus was called, and his disciples to the marriage."
3. “And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, they have no wine.”
It may seem extraordinary that on such an occasion, the requisite provision for the feast should not have been made. But it should be recollected, that as Jesus and his kindred were poor, and in humble life, the persons who were entertaining them probably moved in the same sphere, and did not possess the means of providing for so large a company. And probably also, many guests not expected, were drawn together by the report that Jesus, whose fame, as an extraordinary personage, had already been noised abroad, was to honor the solemnity with his presence. In this emergency, it was natural for Mary to feel for the embarrassment of her kindred, and to endeavour to supply the deficiency of wine.
But why should she apply to Christ,--a stranger in the country, and destitute of all visible means of furnishing a supply, and who as yet had never given any evidence of his miraculous powers? She must have believed, that he, who was born of her by the power of the Holy Ghost; to whom, when an infant, distant sages had rendered homage; whom recently his illustrious forerunner had distinguished as “ the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world;" was that Messiah who should come for the redemption of Israel, and who would establish his divine commission, by “signs, and wonders, and mighty works.” Her address to him, therefore, was founded doubtless on the expectation that by some miraculous act he would furnish a supply of wine.
She probably was not only solicitous to save her kindred from embarrassment; but indulged also the flattering expectation, that Christ would embrace the occasion of a large assemblage of people, to display his supernatural power. Still, regarding him, as she doubtless did, in his divine capacity as the Messiah, whom the Prophets had
predicted, and who was to come to Israel with regal and divine authority, there was a degree of officiousness and impropriety in her urging him to enter on his divine office, by a display of his Almighty power. This was a business proper for him only to determine ; and in regard to which, no other person, who, like Mary understood his high pretensions, should have presumed to inter
a John i. 29.
meddle. Correct and exalted, therefore, as were the respect and affection which Jesus cherished for his mother, it was due to his public character, to chide her officious interference. Accordingly, his reply was,
4. “Woman-what have I to do with thee; mine hour is not yet come.”
The rebuke was not in the title with which he addressed her, “woman." This, though it now appears a rude mode of address, and in modern use, is seldom applied in this way, except as a term of contempt or opprobrium, was in ancient times a style of address, perfectly polite and respectful. The following words, “ what have I to do with thee,” or, “what is that to you and me,” were customary expressions of gentle reprehension for interfering with what did not concern one. They were used in this sense, on the present occasion by Christ, to signify to his mother, that the proper time for displaying his supernatural power, and all other matters relative to his high mission, were to be determined by him alone, and were not proper subjects for the suggestions of others. “Mine hour is not yet come.
The proper time for a public assumption of my office, as the Messiah, is not yet arrived. Orthis declaration may have been designed to repress the ardour of his mother with respect to his working this particular miracle, and to signify