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John  ◦   Chapter 2

1On Tuesday, a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus' mother was there,2along with Jesus and his disciples, who had also been invited.

3When all the wine had been consumed, Jesus' mother said to him, "They are all out of wine."

4Jesus said to her, "Dear mother, why are you trying to involve me? It is not yet time for me to begin my public ministry."

5His mother didn't respond to Jesus, but said to the servants, "Do whatever he tells you."

6Nearby were six stone jars — the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing — each holding twenty to thirty gallons (ninety to one hundred and fifteen liters).

7Jesus said to the servants, "Fill the jars with water;" so they did — all the way to the brim.

8Then Jesus told them, "Now draw some out and take it to the wedding coordinator." They did exactly as he said,9and the wedding coordinator tasted the water–but it was no longer water, for it had been turned into the freshest, sweetest wine. He did not realize where this new wine had come from, although the servants who brought it to him knew. Then the wedding coordinator called the bridegroom aside.10and said, "Everyone else brings out the best wine at the beginning of the wedding and saves the cheaper wine for later, when the guests are full or have already had too much to drink; but you have saved the premier wine until now."

11Jesus performed this–the first of his miracles–at Cana in Galilee. In doing this miracle, he revealed the glory of his compassionate character as well as his power; and his disciples' faith in him increased.

12After the wedding, he went with his mother, brothers and disciples to Capernaum, where they stayed for a few days.

13As the Jewish Passover was approaching, Jesus went to Jerusalem.

14In the temple courts, he found men selling cattle sheep, and doves at exorbitant prices, and others were cheating the people by exchanging money at a marked-up rate. These people, by carrying on their thievery in the temple, made it appear that such behavior was in keeping with God's will and character.15So Jesus made a whip out of cords, and drove all those liars, cheaters and thieves from the temple area. He drove out their sheep and cattle, and overturned their money tables, scattering the coins.16To those selling doves, he said, "Get out of here! How dare you turn my Father's house into a den of thieves!"

17His disciples remembered that the Scriptures said: "A passionate desire to reveal and complete God's healing plan, which was all symbolically taught in the temple service, will consume me."

18Then the Jewish leaders demanded of him, "What miracle can you perform to prove to us that you have the right and authority to come in here and change what we have been doing for hundreds of years?"

19Jesus answered them, "If you destroy this temple, I will raise it again in three days."

20The Jewish leaders replied, "This temple is one of the greatest accomplishments in the world. It has taken thousands of men forty-six years to build this temple, and you, all by yourself, are going to raise it in three days? What kind of nonsense are you talking about?"

21But the temple of which Jesus spoke was the temple of the Holy Spirit — the true original temple of God — of which the building in Jerusalem was only a symbol. He was speaking of the temple of his body.

22After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered what he had said, and their confidence and trust in the Scriptures and Christ's words increased even more.

23While Jesus was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many people saw the miracles he performed and were convinced that he was the Messiah.24But Jesus would not put his plans and mission in their hands or allow them to influence his decisions, because he knew that all people were infected with selfishness, which tainted their motives. He knew that humans did not yet understand his true mission and instead were looking for a kingdom of power rather than a kingdom of love.25He did not need humankind to inform him of their sick state of heart and mind because he already knew that selfishness had infected the deepest wellsprings of the soul.