Mary - "Women of the Bible" -part 2

Luke 8:19-21, where the family of Jesus visited Him during His ministry.

Luke 8:19 Then came to Him His mother and His brethren, and could not come at Him for the press.

(Jesus was attending his ministry and there were so many people around Him that His mother and family could not approach Him.)

20 And it was told Him by certain which said, "Thy mother and "Thy brethren stand without, desiring to see Thee."

21 And He answered and said unto them, "My mother and My brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it."

(The brethren of Jesus Christ are those that not only hear the Word of God, but do it. The plant the seeds of truth, and follow the instruction that our Lord has given to us in His entire Word. It is up to you whether you desire to be a brethren of Christ, or not. You can chose to receive His blessings, or refuse them. You receive them by doing the will of God.)

Now we go to another viewpoint from Matthew's Gospel.

Matthew’s gospel contains several stories not found in the other gospels. In Matthew’s gospel, the references to Mary are:

1:18-25, the birth of Mary’s son Jesus

2:13-21, Mary, Joseph and Jesus flee to Egypt

12:46-50, the family of Jesus visit Him during His ministry

13:53-58, Jesus is rejected at Nazareth

In the gospel written by Matthew, the story of Jesus’ birth is told from Joseph’s point of view, not Mary’s. The story is preceded by a genealogy, in which Joseph is named as the legal father of Jesus.

A genealogy established social position and religious identity. It shows a difference in approach between Luke’s and Matthew’s accounts.

In Matthew’s gospel, Mary was in a vulnerable position because her culture emphasized family honor. Her pregnancy could bring dishonor to her whole family.

At first, Joseph was reluctant to marry, knowing that he was not the father of her child. But in a dream he realized that what was happening is remarkable and amazing, and cannot be treated in an ordinary way. So Mary and Joseph were married.

‘When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him. He took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son.’

Matthew 1:18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When His mother Mary had been betrothed

(by Divine ordering, so that the 2 lines, through Solomon and Nathan might be united and exhausted in Messiah.)

to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit;

(When Jesus' [Jesus'] mother Mary was engaged to Joseph, and before they were married, Mary, the virgin was conceived by the Holy Spirit.)

19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame,

(Joseph, the man engaged to Mary, was a just man, and had no desire to ruin Mary's reputation. He did not want Mary to be held up to public ridicule, decided to put her away privately, so she would not be embarrassed in public. Joseph did not want Mary's child to be a illegitimate child. this exposure would have necessitated her being stoned to death, according to the Law [Deut. 22:22]. Cp. John 8:5.)

resolved to divorce her quietly.

(By putting a "bill of divorcement into her hand".)

20 But as he considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit;

(Keep in mind that the entire society were students of God's Word, they knew the Old Testament of the prophets. He understood exactly what this meant in the term; "for that Which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit." This was the Messiah that they were all looking for, that was prophesied from the very beginning in the Garden of Eden.

Genesis 3:15; "And I [God] will put enmity between thee [Satan] and the woman, and between thy [Satan's] seed [the Kenites] and her Seed [Eve's Seed who is Jesus Christ]. It [Jesus] shall bruise thy head [put Satan to parish], and thou shalt bruise His heel." The bruising of Christ's heal was done at the cross of Calvary by Satan's offspring the Kenites. All the books of Moses were well known to all, and especially to Joseph. Joseph know what it meant to be "conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit." )

21 She will bear a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save is people from their sins."

(In the Hebrew language "Hoshea", and Greek language, "Jesus" means "Yah [God] Savior", or "God Who is our salvation" to man.)

22 All this took place to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:

23 "Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and His name shall be called Emmanuel" (which means, God with us).

(In other words, God with us in the flesh. Let's go to Isaiah 7:14; Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Isaiah was a well known prophet, and all his writings, and this Angel of God repeated exactly what the prophecy of God was from Isaiah. Joseph knew exactly what that Angel was telling him, for it was well written, and prophesied. That sign was given through Joseph to Mary.

This is only one case where the virgin birth was written of in the Old Testament, by the prophets of old. As we continue studying the words and works of Jesus Christ, it has to be completely obvious that a supernatural person had to have walked on this earth, to accomplish the things that Jesus did. Jesus conquered death so that we could have life, eternal life. This eternal life starts at the instant you repent, for should death come to the flesh today, the soul continues eternally with the Father in Heaven.

The New Testament is the fulfillment of the Old Testament, and though we call it "New", it is the continuation of the promises of the Old Covenant. What is interesting is that most of the New Testament is history to us today, whereas most of the Old Testament is still prophecy that is future to us living in this final generation. The Old Covenant [Testament] is alive today, and don't let others rob you of the wealth of information that we need to stand against the Antichrist in these serious times ahead.)

24 When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took his wife,

(Joseph did exactly as the angel of God had told him to do. He went right out and married Mary. Joseph had no problem with doing this, because he understood what was about to happen with Mary. She was going to give birth to the promised Messiah. He now understood that Mary's pregnancy was of God, and Mary would be the mother of our Savior.)

25 But knew her not until she had borne a Son; and He called His name Jesus.

(There is so much truth jammed into this one chapter, that volumes of books could be written, with all the prophecies surrounding it. This chapter relates Joseph's relationship to Mary, and to our Heavenly Father.)

Mary, Joseph and Jesus flee to Egypt

The story about Jesus' escape to Egypt paralleled another escape stories in the Hebrew Scripture: Joseph in the book of Genesis, and Moses’ escape from the Pharaoh.



13-. The Angel.                      Event.
-13. His Command to Joseph.           "
14. Joseph's Obedience.               "
15-. Christ's abode. Egypt.           "
-15. Prophecy fulfilled.
16. Herod's wrath and crime. Event.
17,18. Prophecy fulfilled.
19. The Angel.                       Event.
20. His Command.                      "
21. Joseph's Obedience.               "
22,23-. Christ's abode. Nazareth.     "
-23. Prophecy fulfilled.

Matthew 2:13 Now when they had departed, behold, the Angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, "Rise, take the Child and His mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there till I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the Child, to destroy Him."

(Notice that when God protects one of His own children, that protection is complete. He will let it be known what has to be done, when and how to do it, for the safe keeping of His own. Just as He protected the Christ child from Herod's sword, He will also protect His elect from the wicked one, the Antichrist Satan, in that day of deception. He knows the minds of our enemies, and His Spirit dwells in us with communion with our minds. The mind is the intellect of the soul, which houses our spirit.

God knows in advance all things that each of us will be confronted with, and when we are in His will and Spirit, He will control our steps and words. We do have free will, and He doesn't know or control that part of our free will, but when we study His Word, then His Word will direct our path. But God does know what the enemy shall bring against us.)

14 And he rose and took the Child and His mother by night, and departed to Egypt,

15 And remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, "Out of Egypt have I called My son."

(Prophecies over 600 years before from Hosea 11:1; "When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt.")

16 Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, was in a furious rage, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time which he had ascertained from the wise men.

17 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:

(Do you want to know what Jeremiah said? Jeremiah 31:15; Thus saith the Lord; "A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rachel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not." Ramah in the Hebrew means "the high place", evidently a high place near Jerusalem. 16; Thus saith the Lord; 'Refrain thy voice form weeping, and thine eyes from tears: for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the Lord; and they shall come again from the land of the enemy. Your work is not in vain, is what he is saying to Rachel. Remember Rachel is the mother of both Joseph and Benjamin, the tribes of both Houses, Israel and Judah. Some day I'm going to join those children of the tribes of Israel back to Israel. We know that will be in the Millennium age, and it will be upon His return to Jerusalem, when His feet touch down on mount Zion.

Lets go back to Genesis 35:18; And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) that she called his name Benoni: but his father called him Benjamin. "Ben-oni", in the Hebrew means "son of my sorrow", she named him that because his birth brought about her death. Jacob however, called him Benjamin, which is "son of my right hand".

19; And Rachel died, and was buried in the way to Ephrath, which is Bethlehem. Place where Rachel died weeping for her children, will be the same place where the Jesus Christ the Messiah would be born. The last of Jacob's sons was born where Jesus would later be born, and this is why the Lord said in Jeremiah 31:16; Refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears; for thy work shall be rewarded.)

18 "A voice was heard in Ramah, wailing and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be consoled, because they were no more."

(Though the weeping for the small children that were slaughtered went on, our Lord is reminding us that the true eternal comfort will be coming at the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. God said, "Don't weep Rachel, it is going to be alright," and we know it will be. Jesus will gather them all back to Him.)

19 But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying,

20 "Rise, take the Child and His mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child's life are dead."

21 And he rose and took the Child and His mother, and went to the land of Israel.

(We see that Joseph followed immediately the directions given by God, and took Mary and the Christ Child back from Egypt to the land of Judaea, however the fear never came until Joseph got back to Judaea. God lead Him back, and when Joseph took his eyes off of God, the fear came. He looked and saw that the son of Herod was now on the throne. God however, gave Joseph more instructions, after he was back in Judaea, to pass right through Judaea, north to Galilee.

Everything that has happened in the lives of Joseph, Mary and Jesus took place exactly as it was written. When Joseph was in the reality of living out the prophecies that were written years before, the control came by God in the dreams.

We are living in the latter days of this earth age, and many prophecies that seem strange to us that apply to what we will see and hear, just won't make sense until we see them come to pass, and live through them ourselves. However when they do, as God's elect we should note them and find comfort in our Lord, for He does have control over all men at all times.)

Matthew 12:46-50, the family of Jesus visit Him during His ministry.

Matthew 12:46 While He yet talked to the people, behold, His mother and His brethren stood without, desiring to speak with Him.

(They came there from their home, to speak to Him.)

47 Then one said unto Him, "Behold, Thy mother and Thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with Thee."

48 But He answered and said unto him that told him, "Who is My mother? and who are My brethren?"

49 And He stretched forth His hand toward His disciples, and said, "Behold My mother and My brethren!

(Jesus was not belittling His mother, or His earthly family; He is stating that He came to this world to minister to all the people. This is as it is in the family of God, and many times you become closer and find more love in the family of God, then within your earthly family. They are your true brethren, and this bonding of the true brethren will become even stronger, as we come closer to the times of the end, of this generation.)

50 For whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother."

(God is the Father of all, and His will is written in His Word. Jesus is stating, If you want to be in His family, joint heirs with Jesus Christ in His heavenly kingdom, you will learn what is in His Fathers will and do it. God created all souls, and called them His children, however sin has separated our Heavenly Father from His children. Because of sin, our Heavenly Father wrote a plan in the heavens [constellations], and sent His Son to fulfill that plan, and it is written in His written Word. This Word, is God's will and Testament that exists in two parts. Those parts are called the Old and the New Testaments. They are "the will of God".

Jesus is telling us that to become a member of the family of God, and Joint heirs with Christ in His kingdom, we must do the deeds that are written in God's will [the Bible]. That is the only way. That way starts when you see yourself as a sinner against God, and repent, You must believe in Jesus, and turn from your sinful ways to do this, for it is only through Christ blood that God the Father will forgive you.)

Matthew 13:53-58, Jesus is rejected at Nazareth.

Matthew 13:53 And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finished these parables, He departed thence.

54 And when He was come into His own country, He taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, "Whence hath this Man this wisdom, and these mighty works?

55 Is not this the carpenter's son? is not His mother called Mary? and His brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas?

(These people knew Jesus' family, His mother Mary, and father Joseph, including His brothers and sisters. These people have known Jesus all His life, and now finally He is back in His home town, and synagogue. These are common country people, and their son Jesus they watched grow into a man.)

56 And His sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this Man all these things?"

57 And they were offended in Him. But Jesus said unto them, "A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house."

(This is important to keep in mind when you are going to start planting seeds. Many times your own family, and those around you will reject what you have to say, for the simple reason, they think of you as common. They put you on their level of understanding of the Scripture. Those around you know your faults, and the fact that you are a sinner. They prefer to take the word of an outsider, for they will accept him as pure, and knowing the truth, because they simply prefer to over look his faults. They don't yours.

This is why you will either have to change your ways, and allow them to see the change in you, or you will have to just go elsewhere. )

58 And He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.

(The kingdom of heaven cannot be touched, nor can you become part of it, without belief in Jesus Christ, and the reality of the Word of God.)

In Mark’s gospel, the references to Mary are:

3:31-35, the family of Jesus visit him

6:1-6, Jesus is rejected at Nazareth; Mary is not mentioned by name in this painful incident, but she was almost certainly there.

Mark places Mary firmly at the centre of her family. One of his stories tell of a visit she and her family made to Jesus when he was preaching. ‘A crowd was sitting around him, and they said to him “Your mother and your brothers and sisters are outside, asking for you”.’

Mark 3:31 And His mother and His brothers came; and standing outside they sent to Him and called Him.

(While Jesus is inside reasoning with the scribes, as the door is His mother Mary, and his brother and sisters, waiting for Him to come with them.)

32 And a crowd was sitting about Him; and they said to Him, "Your mother and your brothers are outside, asking for you."

(Those that are there are aware of who the members of Jesus' family are, and they remind Jesus that His family are outside waiting for Him. Those family members are the same ones that told these scribes that Jesus was beside Himself, and didn't know what He was doing. Jesus' family loved Him, and they didn't want Jesus to get in trouble with the religious leaders and the community. The rumors and the actions of the religious community toward Jesus was quite obvious, they wanted to kill Him. Mary and the brothers and sisters were seeking the safety for Jesus life.)

33 And He replied, "Who are My mother and My brothers?"

34 And looking around on those who sat about Him, He said, "Here are My mother and My brothers!

(Jesus looked at those that sat around Him that believed that He was the Christ, and love Him and served Him, and Jesus said, "This is my family.")

35 Whoever does the will of God is My brother, and sister, and mother."

(This is important to keep in mind when you are going to start planting seeds. Many times your own family and those around you will reject what you have to say, for the simply reason that they think of you as common to them. They put you on their level of understanding of the Scripture. Those around you know your faults, and the fact that you are a sinner, just like them. They prefer to take the word of an outsider and they will accept him as pure because of not knowing the truth about him. They simply prefer to overlook his faults, and refuse to overlook yours.

It doesn't matter what family you belong to here on earth, all souls are created by the Father and He is the Father of all. In God, and in Christ we are all kinsmen. Jesus Christ's mother [the Virgin Mary] knew exactly who Jesus was, because the Father through His Holy Spirit revealed Himself to her. The Father told Mary to name Him "Emmanuel", which means "God with us". However human nature is a strange thing, and sometimes we give Satan and the outsider the advantage, because of our kin.

Those that we grew up with and have known for a long period of time, naturally we cannot help but want them to be saved also. However don't ever let it interfere with the progress, and what must be done for the sake of spreading the Word of God, and doing the work of God.)

Jesus is rejected at Nazareth

Mark 6:1 He went away from there and came to His own country; and His disciples followed Him.

2 And on the sabbath He began to teach in the synagogue; and many who heard Him were astonished, saying, "Where did this man get all this? What is the wisdom given to Him? What mighty works are wrought by His hands!

(The people in the synagogue where Jesus' family worshipped heard the things that Jesus was teaching, and they were amazed at the knowledge that He had. They knew Jesus' family, but they did not know Him. Jesus caused the blind to see and the sick to walk, and the wisdom that Jesus had went far beyond the teachings of the higher educated of that day. The point that this is trying to make is that the people that you grow up around, no matter what you do will always think of you as common.

Jesus grew up amongst these people as a boy, and in time the uncle of His mother Mary, Joseph of Arimathea had taken Jesus on long trips with Him, after Jesus was at the age of twelve. This is well recorded in historical accounts in Glastonbury, and else where. However the people here in his families home church thought of Jesus to be no more than the son of a carpenter. Usually the level of understanding of a carpenter does not bring forth the wisdom that exceeds the teaching levels of the universities of the day.

They were amazed with the authority that Jesus spoke, and the miracles that He was able to do.)

3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not His sisters here with us?" And they took offense at Him.

(We know from this verse that Jesus had four brothers, and at least two sisters, for the word "sisters" is plural in the Greek text. These of course were half brothers and half sisters, for Jesus true Father was the Heavenly Father. These members of the congregation were more than offended, they were stumbling and confounded at the wisdom that Jesus had shown them. Here was a local boy, one of their own that knew far more than any one of the community.

God will give wisdom to whom He chooses, and in this case Jesus was the Messiah. When the Word of God comes into a person and he or she touched with the Holy Spirit, there will be a difference. The people in that immediate community may not see the difference in that person in their mind, for that boy will always remain what their image of him is for His entire life. As far as the people in the Galilee are were concerned, Jesus would always be a carpenter, so what is He doing with all this wisdom and power? It simply didn't make sense to them.

If God blesses you with the mantle of wisdom and and knowledge, you will not be respected in your home community as you would in other places where your past is not remembered. In other places, people look at the gift, rather than looking at the individual. It is the gift from God that is precious.)

4 And Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor, except in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house."

(It is hard to give special honor to a person that lives in the same house that you do. You see all his earthly habit, and know him to be a human just like you are. He gets dirty and needs a bath just like every one else does, and he become common in the sight of His family, friends and neighbors. This is all a natural thing.

The point that this is making is that it is very difficult to separate the person from the gift. If a person had a habit and did something that you didn't like, that is what you remember the most. Though Jesus didn't sin, He was human, and as a human He did all the things that Humans do. Jesus Christ was God in the flesh.

John 1:14 And the Word [God] was made flesh, and dwelt among us [Jesus Christ in the flesh], (And we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

Though Jesus didn't mess up, we that God chooses will mess up many times in our lives. Those that observe our shortcomings, will not forget those things and this is why it make is very difficult to operate amongst these people. Rather than looking to God for the miracles that have taken place, looking at the individual places a mental block in the minds of family and friends. This is why Jesus could do no mighty work for His own community except for the laying of hands on a few sick people and healing them.

Jesus is the Messiah, so what prevented Jesus from doing a mighty work in His home town? The answer is so simple it will blow right over you. Sick people have more faith that the people that have their health. The sick want relief and it is a lot easier to find faith and get religion when thing aren't going right. There was no faith in this church in Jesus as the Messiah, for they did not know that Jesus was the Messiah. All they saw in Jesus was that He was the carpenter's boy, the son of Mary the lady that worshiped with them in the local synagogue. Even though they marveled at the teachings and the wisdom that He had, they just could not see beyond the hammer in His hand.

When a person has grown up in his or her community with a bad reputation, and in time, comes to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ: That person accepted Christ and God turned him or her into a real preacher, yet in the minds of that community of unbelievers the things of the past will remain with that person all his or her life. It simply will not be much good trying to plant seeds in this community of unbelievers, for being unbelievers they simply do not understand the great change that will come into a persons life by their accepting Jesus Christ into their life. So what Jesus is saying here is for us to use a little common sense, and get over into the next town over to do your witnessing and planting the seeds. They will have more faith in God, rather than looking at the man.)

5 And He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands upon a few sick people and healed them.

(His own community never rec

eived Jesus as the Christ, and He did very little work in that community because of their lack of faith.) 6 And He marveled because of their unbelief. And He went about among the villages teaching.

(Just as the people did not receive John the Baptist in his home town, they did not receive Jesus here in Nazarath. They did listen to the teaching, and that is as far as it went. In stead of seeing the man, they sat in amazement wondering where Jesus got His information. The truth of Jesus' teaching sailed right over their head.)

John’s gospel contains stories not found in the other gospels. The references to Mary in John’s gospel are:

2:1-11, Mary and Jesus attended a wedding at Cana

19:25-27, Mary witnessed the crucifixion of her son.

The gospel of John developed complex ideas about Jesus: who He was, and how this was evident in His life. The emphasis was on the divinity of Jesus, with not many stories about Mary. But the stories we have show a woman who was sure of herself, and confident about her place in the community.

One story tells about a wedding that she and Jesus attended in a town in central Galilee, called Cana.

‘When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her “Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants “Do whatever he tells you.” Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to the “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim.’

The story of the wedding at Cana gives us an example of Mary’s assertiveness as she insists that Jesus help in a difficult situation. Mary has often been represented as quiet and submissive in iconography and tradition. As a Jewish peasant woman, it is unlikely that she was either of these things.

John 2:1 On the third day there was a marriage at Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there;

(This is a family event, and Mary the mother of Jesus was there. Of course there would be both family and friends at this wedding.)

2 Jesus also was invited to the marriage, with His disciples.

(There is a spiritual lesson to this marriage event that took place. In that this was a marriage, we must make every analogy possible. Jesus was called to prepare this wedding, to prepare for this marriage. Then why would the disciples be invited also. The explanation in this analogy, is that Christ has both a wife and a bride, as spoken of in Revelation 19.

The wife are the elect, that were chosen before the foundations of of the earth, in the first earth age, and were judged then and taken to wife. The disciples in this analogy are the elect, the wife of Christ, and bride are all those who are in preparation to become the wife of Christ.

The preparation for the marriage that will take place between Jesus and His bride started at the cross of Christ, and it will continue until the start of the great tribulation, and the arrival of the Antichrist.)

3 When the wine failed, the mother of Jesus said to Him, "They have no wine."

(Before the end of this wedding ceremony and feast they ran out of wine, and then they came to Mary the mother of Jesus to get some more wine. Mary went to Jesus and told Him that there was no more wine. This wasn't grape juice as some teach, it was fermented wine, because it is the fermentation and age that would classify the quality of the wine. God uses actual things to symbolize His teachings, to help us understand. We must always teach God's word as it is given. The word for "wine" here in the Greek is "oinos", and in the Hebrew tongue "yayin", "a fermented wine, intoxicating-banqueting wine".)

4 And Jesus said to her, "O woman, what have you to do with Me? My hour has not yet come."

(Jesus response to His mother was, "So, What has this to do with me?" The hour Jesus is speaking of is the hour of His wedding. The wedding that Jesus is concerned with is the taking of His bride which is the bride of Christ. Mary knew that Jesus had the power to change water to wine, for on the day of conception, the angel of the Lord told That virgin woman who the child was that would be in her womb. Mary knew the power of Jesus, and that He was come for a purpose. She knew exactly that Jesus ministry was about to start, and that is why she gave special instructions to the servants to do exactly what Jesus required of them.)

5 His mother said to the servants, "Do whatever He tells you."

(Jesus was now approximately thirty years old, and Mary was aware of Jesus special powers within the family, for this was a family situation. Jesus loved His mother very much, and she knew of Jesus vast knowledge, even as a child. When Jesus was twelve years old, He was in the Temple teaching the wise men of the day the knowledge of the scriptures, and they all marveled at His wisdom.

This lets us know that Mary was the authority among the servants in this house, in other words, this was a social event of the family.)

6 Now six stone jars were standing there, for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons.

(This tells us that there was six stone water pots, and each pot held approximately twenty gallons of water. A "firkin" is a measurement in the Greek that translates into the English unit of just over nine gallons.

The six pots are used in a ritual for sprinkling and cleansing a person. So what is about to take place in this miracle is symbolic. The pots used here were for the cleansing ritual, and the substance used in that ritual was water. The spiritual application here changes the symbolic water of the pots into a new substance that is also symbolic for the cleansing of the soul, and forgiving the sins of the world. The wine is the substance that will be symbolically use for the blood of Christ. Just as it is impossible for man to live without water, the only forgiveness for our sins is through the shed blood of Christ.

When Jesus and the twelve disciples met for their last supper on the night of the Passover, Jesus gave us another lesson that we were to continue until He would be with us in His kingdom. That lesson is the holy Communion, and the cup [the wine] is a vital part of the communion.

So what we see in this miracle is the ritualistic forms of religion being replaced by the blood of the Lamb. The wine is symbolic of Christ's blood. This is why it is important that you know that this was indeed wine, for to make it any other form of liquid is to change the whole lesson of the Lord's teaching.

The whole reason for using the wine, was because of the process of fermentation. Through the process of fermentation, the grape juice fermenting works from within, and all infirmities that are impure within the juices, are brought to the top and discarded. The juices are totally cleansed, and so it is with our lives when we are covered by the precious blood of Christ. The juice of the vine is the blood of Christ; He is the vine, and we are the branches of that vine.

When we allow the blood of Christ to draw out the infirmities out of our live, then as we stand before Him in repentance, our souls are just a pure as the finest of wines. Jesus' blood on the cross will wash all sin from our lives. All of our sins are taken away when we believe and repent in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Our sins are skimmed away at the top, and taken from us.

So we see that the miracle at the Cana wedding, the start of Jesus ministry, was a lesson that we should never forget. It was the transforming of the purifying rituals, cleansing the person on the outside with the pots of the ritual and the substance of water used in that ritual. Jesus transformed that substance in the old pots, to the symbolic new substance that will change the very soul of a person. The substance that will change a person's soul and life is the blood of Jesus Christ.

If you have trouble with the usage of wine in the communion, and prefer the tradition of the plain grape juice (non-alcoholic), then that is fine; for the remembrance of the blood of Christ and the suffering of His body for the sins of many is what is important. The Communion is the symbolic practice that Christ gave to use while we are in our flesh body, to remember Him until Christ's return at the seventh trumpet.)

7 Jesus said to them, "Fill the jars with water." And they filled them up to the brim.

8 He said to them, "Now draw some out, and take it to the steward of the feast." So they took it.

(The governor of the feast is the person who is to oversee the planning of the wedding, a parent of the bride. The governor is the one that samples the wines to see that the wines to be served were good. When all parts of the feast are ready, the wedding begins. However, at this feast they ran out of wine, and so now the new batch of wine is brought for sampling before it could be served to the guests.)

9 When the steward of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward of the feast called the bridegroom

(Did you get that, "the water that was made wine", and in the Greek "onios" meant "fermented wine". The governor knew that they were out of wine, but he did not know where this batch of wine came from. Though only the servants knew what happened, no one else at the feast knew.

So symbolic of the future wedding that will be, Christ is the bridegroom, the supplier of the wine for that wedding feast that will take place very shortly. And the governor of that wedding at the marriage supper of the Lamb will be the Heavenly Father, Himself.)

10 And said to him, "Every man serves the good wine first; and when men have drunk freely, then the poor wine; but you have kept the good wine until now."

(For the sake of simplicity, lets first understand what is actually written here. The wine that was set forth by Christ in His first miracle far exceeds the wine that was considered the good wine brought out at the start of the wedding feast. Just that you understand that this isn't grape juice, the word in the Greek used for "well drunk" is "methuo", # 3184 in Strong's Greek dictionary, and it means "to drink to intoxication, to get drunk". Friend, you don't get drunk sipping on grape juice.

In other words, you put the good stuff out until all the people get a little glow on, then you bring the bad stuff out when they simply can't tell the difference. The only analogy we can use here, is the fact that what ever Christ does, it is done to perfection and for the good of them that love the living God.

The forming of the wine is a natural process using the certain substance of grape juice. What this miracle shows us is that Jesus Christ not only controls the processes of nature in forming the wine, but the very elements itself. By changing one substance [water] into another [grape juice], then taking the grape juice to the final stage of the pure wine. Jesus took this natural process, and from it preformed this miracle. Through that fermentation we can better understand the purification of individuals soul and forgiveness of sin through the blood of Christ.)

11 This, the first of His signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested His glory; and His disciples believed in Him.

(The beautiful thing that is brought out here is that Jesus Christ's first miracle had to do with a wedding that will ultimately take place at the midnight hour. That final wedding is the coming of the Lord as King of Kings and the bridegroom; He is coming for His bride. Jesus' disciples saw the miracle take place, and they saw Jesus glory and believed on Him right from the start of the ministry.)

Mary watched her son during the three years he spent teaching and traveling around the country. She saw that the authorities viewed his actions and words with mounting apprehension.

The Jewish authorities were in a difficult situation. They were trying to maintain a delicate balance of political stability between the Romans and the Jewish population. They saw Jesus as a threat to this stability.

The situation became progressively worse. Mary saw the danger coming, but was unable to protect her son. Eventually, during an incident in the crowded city of Jerusalem, Jesus was arrested, given a swift trial, and executed in the hideous manner reserved for criminals.

‘Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were His mother, and His mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clophas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw His mother and the disciple whom He loved standing beside her, He said to His mother “Woman, here is your son.” Then He said to the disciple “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home.’

John 19:25 So the soldiers did this. But standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.

26 When Jesus saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing near, He said to His mother, "Woman, behold, your son!"

(Jesus saw His mother Mary, and John [the author of this book], the son of His mother's sister Salome. Though this may sound like Jesus was disrespectful of His mother, it is not given in a disrespectful way in the original text. This disciple that He loved was his cousin John, the nephew of His mother Mary.)

27 Then He said to the disciple, "Behold, your mother!" And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.

(Joseph had already passed on to the Father, and now John is assigned by Jesus to take care of His mother. Jesus was telling John to take care of her as though she were your own mother.)

Mary saw her son tortured and killed. Jesus had been her baby, the boy she educated, the young man she was so proud of. She now saw him tormented and executed by brutal soldiers.

It is impossible to imagine how Mary felt as she watched the full horror of the crucifixion. After the death of her son, she lived in the home of one of his friends.

Mary in the early Christian community

Keep in mind as your read this passage from Acts that it was written before the gospels were written. Mary is shown as a mature woman who devoted herself to prayer within the early Christian community. She thus lived out the Jewish ideal of holiness. Jews believe that holiness is found in active participation in the life of the community. Holy people do not avoid the company of others. They share the happiness and sadness of the people around them, because they believe that God is found in humanity, not in isolation.

Mary is shown within a community, focused on God.

Acts 1:13 and when they had entered, they went up to the upper room, where they were staying, Peter and John and James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot and Judas the son of James.

(Judas of Iscariot missing, but don't count him out, see v.18)

14 All these with one accord devoted themselves to prayer, together with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.

(The last mention of her "at prayer". They gathered "in one accord in prayer and supplication" and they were forming the first church.

Keep in mind as your read this passage from Acts that it was written before the gospels were written. Mary is shown as a mature woman who devoted herself to prayer within the early Christian community. She thus lived in holiness. Holiness is found in active participation in the life of the community. Holy people do not avoid the company of others. They share the happiness and sadness of the people around them, because they believe that God is found in humanity, not in isolation.

Mary is shown within a community, focused on God.)