Friday, March 27, 2009

Jesus Turns the Water into Grape Fruit Juice

I was brought up in a very religious household and regularly attended church and we also had nightly prayer and Bible-reading in our home. I was taught that consuming alcohol was a terrible sin and that real Christians did not drink wine or any kind of alcohol. It was scandalous if anyone drank. A lot of what I was taught didn’t stick.

Since the Baptist have aligned themselves with the liquor industry to keep wine out of grocery stores I thought it was time for a little sermon to my Baptist brethren. I would like to examine the first recorded miracle of Jesus Christ, the turning of water into wine at the feast of Cana. Please turn with me to the second chapter of the Gospel of John, verse 1-11:

And on the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there; and Jesus also was invited, and His disciples, to the wedding.And when the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what do I have to do with you? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

Now there were six stone waterpots set there for the Jewish custom of purification, containing twenty or thirty gallons each. Jesus said to them, “Fill the waterpots with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. And He said to them, “Draw some out now, and take it to the headwaiter.” And they took it to him. And when the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom, and said to him, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when men have drunk freely, then that which is poorer; you have kept the good wine until now.”

This beginning of His signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him.(John 2:1-11, NASB).

Let us look at the above text again. “Every man serves the good wine first, and when men have drunk freely, then that which is poorer; you have kept the good wine until now.” I am not a theologian, but the only way I can read that is that most people serve the good wine early in the party, and then when people are getting a little drunk, they don’t notice when the host switches to the cheaper stuff. What else could that mean?

Well, the Baptist teach that Jesus turned the water into grape fruit juice. Ye of other faiths may find that hard to believe, but that it is the truth. Given the historical context, that is as about as silly as you can get. (Can I get an Amen?) The guest at this wedding feast would have probably really been disappointed if not down right pissed off, it the host would have switched from wine to grape fruit juice. If all of the “wine” being served were really grape fruit juice, it wouldn’t have been much of a party. I no longer attend a Baptist church so maybe Baptist just skip that part of the Bible now, rather than embarrass themselves with this teaching. I don’t know.

Some time when I was an early teenager and started thinking for myself, I began having doubts that Jesus really turned the water into grape fruit juice. It is hard to believe that Baptist really believe that, but of course, many Baptist also believe that the earth is only 6000 years old and they profess to believe the story of Jonah and the Whale is a fact and they take a lot of other Biblical stories as literally true.

I am sure there must be many Baptist who have been exposed to the wider world and who enjoy a glass of wine with dinner. I am sure there must be Baptist who have been educated and who doubt the age of the earth is only 6000 years old. Surely there are some Baptist who when out of town on vacation, even dance with their wife. Surely there are many Baptist who are BINO’s (Baptist in name only). At least, I hope there are.

I thought times were changing. That attempt to boycott Disney World fizzled, didn’t it? I thought that was a good sign. Someone told me that Baptist would now even speak to each other in the liquor store. Of course, they still won’t have sex standing up: someone might think they are dancing.

I should probably lay off the Baptist. I don’t want to pick a fight with my devout relatives and the Baptist I know. Just let me have wine in the grocery store and I promise I won’t force you to drink any of it and you can go on believing that Jesus turned the water into grape fruit juice.

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  1. That is a great post! I once considered myself to be a Baptist. As my relationship with the FATHER has grown, I have become a non-denominational Christian. I believe in the WORD of GOD. HE did not intend on us being divided in the first place, but I too respect everyone in their desired denominations.

    As I have matured in the WORD, I have also realized that drinking alcohol is not a sin, it is over indulgence in it that is a sin, as with anything we humans can do. So, I really like this post. It is very truthful and I love the way you point out that believers can go on believing that JESUS turned water into grape juice...Brilliant... LOL!!!

    GOD bless you!!

    In service for CHRIST,

  2. Hmm, living in Utah, I think you could nearly substitute the word Mormon in place of Baptist.

    I'm neither, but I sure get a kick out of how we try to put Jesus in a "box" and have Him conform to our beliefs.

    Now, if only I could figure out how the Mormons own so much of Las Vegas...