ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE WITH JESUS
1. Please open up your Bibles to (John 2). This morning's lesson will come from (John 2:1-11).
I. LET'S FIRST LOOK AT THE SETTING OF THIS STORY.
1. From this story, we see that Jesus, His mother, and His disciples all attended a wedding that took place in Cana in Galilee. Cana was a town about 9 miles north of Nazareth--the city where Jesus and His family lived
2. A wedding celebration in the first century was a gala occasion much like a wedding in our day. It was a time to celebrate the bride and grooms new life together.
3. The wedding celebration usually lasted about a week and some lasted up to two weeks.
4. During this week long festival, normally everyone in the community attended the event. It was considered an insult to refuse a wedding invitation. This means that hundreds of people made an appearance to congratulate the newlyweds.
5. When the guests attended the celebration, the host of the party was expected to provide them with food and wine. And if for some reason the host failed in providing adequately for the guests it was considered a social disgrace. Running out of wine and food meant more than embarrassment; it broke the strong unwritten laws of hospitality. In the closely-knit communities of Jesus’ day, such an error would never be forgotten and would haunt the newly married couple all their lives.
6. In this story, the host of the party did the unthinkable--he ran out of wine. So Mary, the mother of our Lord told Jesus of the predicament expecting Him to do something about it.
7. On the surface, it seems that Jesus was abrupt with His mother. However, to use the term woman in the first century, was a polite form of address. Jesus simple wanted His mother to know that it was not their problem that the wine had ran out.
8. Jesus filled with compassion, decided to help the newlyweds out. He had His disciples fill six stone jars with water and then He miraculously changed the water into wine.
II. HERE ARE A FEW PRACTICAL LESSONS THAT I SEE FROM THIS STORY:
A. FIRST, WHEN WE HAVE A PROBLEM, WE SHOULD GIVE IT TO JESUS, AND TRUST THAT HE WILL TAKE CARE OF IT.
1. Mary realized that she had a problem (the wine was gone). So she gave the problem to Jesus; and then she trusted Him to take care of it. She walked away from the problem and stopped worrying about it because she knew that Jesus was in control and that He could take care of the problem. Our Lord can take care of our problems if we lay them in His lap.
Dr. Charles Stanley, a prominent minister of a large church in Atlanta, tells the story of a time when their church needed two million dollars to relocate to a larger facility. The only problem was they didn’t have the money. One day, the board members told Dr. Stanley to get a loan from the bank because the deal sounded good. However, Dr. Stanley told the group that they needed divine direction, so they all packed their gear and took off for a state park for the weekend for a time of prayer. All weekend they prayed earnestly that God would give them direction and help them resolve the problem that they were facing.
When they finally left the park, they still didn’t have any clear direction about how to purchase the building. But they were committed to waiting on God. A few days later, Dr. Stanley had a message to call a man He had never met. He lived in another state. The man said that he wanted to help Dr. Stanley’s ministry.
Immediately, Dr. Stanley called him back, and the stranger said, “I have had you and your ministry on my mind the past several days. I notice that you never ask for money on the broadcast, and I was wondering if you have any needs.”
Dr. Stanley explained the situation about the building and how they needed two million dollars to purchase it. The stranger said, “I think I can handle that.” And he gave that church two million dollars.
That church had a problem; they gave their problem to God and Jesus; and they solved their problem.
2. While I was going to preaching school, Mary, with her job, was taking care of us financially. One time, times got rough and we were down to thirty-two cents in the bank. We prayed to God that He would help us and a few days later a check came in the mail from my old employer explaining that they had made a mistake and withheld some of my vacation time.
a. We had a problem; we prayed; and God solved our problem.
3. I am convinced that if we are walking faithfully in the sight of God, He will help us solve our problems.
a. In the OT, King Hezekiah had a problem. He was about to die from an illness. But instead of giving up, (Isa. 38:2) tells us that he “prayed to God for help.” God solved his problem by adding 15 years to his life.
b. In the NT, Peter had a problem. He was arrested and placed in jail for preaching the gospel. But (Acts 12:5) tells us that the “church was earnestly praying to God for Him.” God solved Peter’s problem by sending an angel to rescue him from jail.
4. No matter what your problem is, God can help you solve it.
5. When we have a problem, we need to lay it in Jesus' lap and trust that He will help solve our dilemmas.
B. SECOND, WHEN JESUS COMES INTO A LIFE OR SITUATION, NEW POSSIBILITIES ALWAYS EXIST.
1. When the wine ran out, it seemed like a hopeless situation. Where were they going to get more wine? They couldn’t just run over to the local supermarket to buy more wine, for it took days to produce it. It was obvious that the newlyweds were in a jam and in jeopardy of breaking the strong unwritten laws of hospitality because they had no more wine to serve their guests.
2. But Jesus turned a hopeless situation into hope. He turned the water into wine.
3. The point is that our Lord turns hopeless situations into hope.
a. One day, when Jesus entered into Capernaum, four men brought a paralyzed man to Jesus for healing.
b. Can you imagine what it must have been like to be paralyzed, especially paralyzed in the first century?
(1) Back two thousand years ago, they didn’t have the medical technology that we have today.
(2) A paralytic didn’t have physical therapists to work with him day in and day to help restore some muscle movements. He didn’t have an electric wheelchair to transport him from one place to another.
(3) A paralytic didn’t have social security to help him financially.
c. Instead, if you were a paralytic in the first century, you would spend your day lying on a hard and uncomfortable mat. And some days, you would have your friends move you to the streets so that you could beg for money in order to eat. A paralytic lived without pleasure and hope.
d. In (Mark 2), the paralytic must have heard that Jesus, the miracle worker, was in town, so he had some of his friends carry him to meet Jesus, hoping that He could make him well. And we all know from the story that Jesus, full of compassion, healed the man. After the healing, the Bible says that the paralytic “got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all.” Jesus took a hopeless situation and produced a miracle.
4. Are you struggling with problems that seem hopeless and difficult to resolve?
5. Are you struggling with an illness that is causing you a lot of pain and discomfort?
6. Are you struggling with emotional problems that you are having a hard time overcoming?
7. If so, I want you to know that whatever situation you may be going through; there is always hope with Jesus. When Jesus enters into a situation, new possibilities always exist.
1. From (John 2:1-11), we have learned a couple of spiritual principles to help us in our daily walk with the Lord.
a. When we have a problem, we should give it to Jesus, and trust that He will take care of it.
b. When Jesus comes into a life or situation, new possibilities always exist.
2. This morning, if you are going through a dilemma that seems hopeless, I would like for you to come forward and ask Jesus to turn your hopeless situation into hope. When Jesus comes into your life, new possibilities always exist. Come now as we stand and sing.