John now changes the focus to the public ministry of Jesus. Here we read of the first miracles and the famous chapter on the central message and ministry of Christ, this being "you must be born again".
John 2:The Wedding at Cana
1On the third day there was a wedding at Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.
2Jesus also was invited to the wedding with his disciples.
3When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to him, "They have no wine."
4And Jesus said to her, "Woman, what does this have to do with me? My hour has not yet come."
5His mother said to the servants, "Do whatever he tells you."
6Now there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons.
7Jesus said to the servants, "Fill the jars with water." And they filled them up to the brim.
8And he said to them, "Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast." So they took it.
9When the master 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 master of the feast called the bridegroom
10and said to him, "Everyone serves the good wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then the poor wine. But you have kept the good wine until now."
11This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory. And his disciples believed in him.
12After this he went down to Capernaum, with his mother and his brothers and his disciples, and they stayed there for a few days.
Jesus Cleanses the Temple
13The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
14In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers sitting there.
15And making a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen. And he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables.
16And he told those who sold the pigeons, "Take these things away; do not make my Father's house a house of trade."
17His disciples remembered that it was written, "Zeal for your house will consume me."
18So the Jews said to him, "What sign do you show us for doing these things?"
19Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up."
20The Jews then said, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will you raise it up in three days?"
21But he was speaking about the temple of his body.
22When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this, and they believed the Scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.
Jesus Knows What Is in Man
23Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs that he was doing.
24But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people
25and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.
John 3:You Must Be Born Again
1Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews.
2This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, "Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him."
3Jesus answered him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God."
4Nicodemus said to him, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?"
5Jesus answered, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
6That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
7Do not marvel that I said to you, 'You must be born again.'
8The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit."
9Nicodemus said to him, "How can these things be?"
10Jesus answered him, "Are you the teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things?
11Truly, truly, I say to you, we speak of what we know, and bear witness to what we have seen, but you do not receive our testimony.
12If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things?
13No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man.
14And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
15that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
For God So Loved the World
16"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
18Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
19And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil.
20For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.
21But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God."
John the Baptist Exalts Christ
22After this Jesus and his disciples went into the Judean countryside, and he remained there with them and was baptizing.
23John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because water was plentiful there, and people were coming and being baptized
24(for John had not yet been put in prison).
25Now a discussion arose between some of John's disciples and a Jew over purification.
26And they came to John and said to him, "Rabbi, he who was with you across the Jordan, to whom you bore witness---look, he is baptizing, and all are going to him."
27John answered, "A person cannot receive even one thing unless it is given him from heaven.
28You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, 'I am not the Christ, but I have been sent before him.'
29The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice. Therefore this joy of mine is now complete.
30He must increase, but I must decrease."
31He who comes from above is above all. He who is of the earth belongs to the earth and speaks in an earthly way. He who comes from heaven is above all.
32He bears witness to what he has seen and heard, yet no one receives his testimony.
33Whoever receives his testimony sets his seal to this, that God is true.
34For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure.
35The Father loves the Son and has given all things into his hand.
36Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.
Things to think about…
- In John 2:1-12 Jesus performs His first miracle – water into wine. This miracle it seems in initial reading was under duress – his mother seems to be the instigator. But it says that "Jesus revealed His glory". There are no accidents with Christ, nothing is out of place. He will get the glory because He is in all and through all. Rejoice in this truth in your own life – even when it seems the wine of the joy of life has run out. He will miraculously restore.
- In Jn 1:6 the Apostle John introduces John the Baptist by saying "There was a man sent from God, whose name was John". Jesus says he was the Elijah to come, the one who was foretold by Isaiah to make the paths straight. John brought the message of repentance, Jesus brings salvation. One can't happen without the other. We know someone is saved because they have repented and can now know that they are saved from their sin.
- Jn 1:13 is key to understanding our salvation. It is all of God and has no earthly or fleshly origin. If it did, it would be corrupted. This should keep us all in a place of humility.
- In Jn 2:13-22 Jesus cleanses the temple by overturning the tables of the money changers. In my trip to Israel in 2017 it wasn't the religious money changes that hit me with currency exchange but the secular ones. I reckon I spent over $100 just in money change fees. Jesus says that if the temple is destroyed He will rebuild in 3 days. When I was on temple mount I remembered this statement. Of course the al Aqsa mosque and the gold Dome of the Rock have replaced the temple. The physical temple has not been there for almost 2000 years. The Jews want to re-build it. They will of course as we know from the scriptures. However, we need to pray that they see Christ's body is the temple and that they rightly belong within its walls.
- Jesus did not entrust Himself to any man, Jn 2:24. Why? Because He knew what was in man. We are sadly very fickle and divided in our loyalties at times. Praise God the Holy Spirit gives those of us in the church love, grace and unity. With these things there should be a godly trust, dependence and loyalty.
- Nicodemas came to Jesus by night, Jn 3:2. In his position as a Pharisee he feared the Jews. But he was a seeker of the truth. Jesus tells him that He must be born again. Many Jews today are also secret believers in Yeshua – Jesus. They follow Him but cannot openly express their faith for 'fear of the Jews'. I saw this first hand in Israel when a man named Mordecai, a Rabbi, would wait and see if any Jews had converted as he waited to see people coming out of the King of Kings church service in Jerusalem. I had a good chat to him, but he certainly was not seeking Jesus like Nicodemas. I'm praying for Mordecai.
- Look at the humility of John the Baptist. He says of Jesus "He must increase, but I must decrease" Jn 3:30. Note that his message was the same as Jesus'. Compare the famous verse of Jn 3:16 with John's testimony in Jn 3:36. Even though he would later have doubts, he still knew his saviour.
CBC's Vision :- To be a growing biblical church community, significantly influencing our city and beyond, through intentional outreach, fulfilling our mission.
Sunday morning's message on "Who's watching over me" from Ezek 3.
1.Ezekiel 3:16-27 speaks about Ezekiel being a watchman, yet the children of Israel are not wanting to listen. Discuss the passage and what it means with respect to the people Ezekiel is called to speak to and the situation in Babylon.
2.Has somebody told you a tough truth? Did you listen to it or ignore it?
3.The passage shows that we are all accountable before God. We cannot change God's message. Unfortunately today, some within Christianity want to soften the message down and not talk about sin, hell or judgement. Explain in your own words what the gospel is.
4.Pray for your pastor and all who hear Sunday's messages that they would have 'ears to hear' and that we would see many coming to Christ in our day?
1.More Sunday school teachers
2.CBC's ministries for this term
3.Our outreach initiatives as well as the Axiom podcast.
4.Next Sunday's messages. John 6"That's not the God I serve" in the morning, "A call to prayer"– Axiom 6pm.
5.Finish "Bean Redeemed" coffee shop.
6.Recharge – Pray for someone to take over Recharge.
7.Church finances – Pray all expenses are met and that we can again support Digital Harvest and One for Israel.
8.Our City and Country – Pray for revival over our city and the leadership of our country.
1.Men's brekky last Saturday
2.New ministries being considered – Outreach opportunities and Church services
3.Unity, love and peace
1.Hawkins group - Hosting morning tea on Sunday morning.
2.Members Meeting – 18th August.
3.Playpatch – Back this week. Carly Backwell leads this ministry.
4.Recharge– back this week. Pete Alback leads high schoolers from 7-9pm Friday nights at church.
5.Kids at Church – Primary school aged children.
6.Members Meeting – 18th August after morning service.
7.Mapleton Women's retreat – Fri August 23rd- Sun Aug 25th. Cost $175. More details here https://www.anewconference.org.au/conferences/mapleton
This month's catechism question...
Q. 3. What has Christ given us to teach us how to pray?
A. The Lord's Prayer.
Bible Reference – Matt.6:5-15; Luke11:1-13.
"Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known" Jer 33:3