John / chapter 2 (read the chapter)
There is something lovely in this story of turning the water into wine that we don’t normally focus on because we’re too busy admiring the miracle! And certainly, the miracle is to be admired—as well as the servants. For all they knew, they were drawing out water to take to the host. They really put themselves on the line to trust in Jesus!
But before we even get to that part of the story, there’s this: “Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, ‘Fill the jars with water’; so they filled them to the brim.” (vs 6-7)
To my simple mind, the message here is clear: God is always doing a new thing. Was it simply coincidence (or convenience) that Jesus used the ceremonial washing jars as the vessel for His wine? I don’t think so. After all, if you’re going to work a miracle, I’m pretty sure you also have the power to do it any way you want to. Jesus could have produced that wine in any number of ways.
I think He chose to use the jars on purpose, and I think His purpose was to help us understand that He’s always doing something new. Sure, these ceremonial washing jars were used for a good purpose. In fact, they were used for the purpose God had designed! But the purpose of the ceremonial system was to help point the Jews toward the Messiah who was coming. Once He was with them, the party could begin!
Jesus took a symbol of what had come before and transformed it into something brand new. This is what God does. He is always transforming, always making something new—including us. Just when we think we’re old, used, relegated to the corner, Jesus will transform us into something new, something good.
He alone has the power to work those kinds of miracles!