I'm on some sort of Jesus vibe today and have been pondering Jesus' coming out miracle if you will. As documented in the Bible (John 2:1-11), Jesus' first miracle occurred at a wedding.
Jesus, his mom, and his disciples were at a party at the Galilean village of Cana for a wedding (I suppose you could say the JC posse was in the house). The wine ran out.
They set six "very large stone water-jars" on the floor, each holding twenty gallons, and filled them "to the brim" with water. Jesus said take some to the MC. They did, he tasted it, and it was all good. The man called out to the bridegroom, "Everybody I know puts his good wine on first and then when men have had plenty to drink, he brings out the poor stuff. But you have kept back your good wine till now!"
Fair enough — I guess the women weren't tipping it back, I suppose if they couldn't be priests back then it stands to reason they shouldn't be able to drink. It's clear that at this point in the party it's standard to bring out the swill. This cat must have already have run through all his swill because they were out, or perhaps he hadn’t bought swill at all, which means that it was really time to get that party started because people were getting drunk.
Jesus saved the day by turning 120 gallons of water into wine to drink.
I was thinking, isn't that sort of an unusual coming out miracle? Serving good wine to a bunch of people who already had plenty to drink? Consider that his second miracle was the healing of an official's dying son.
Here's the thing: yes, it was a miracle that he apparently changed the water into wine. It's also a miracle that it was the good stuff. Who knows how knowledgeable an already wined up palette actually is (I'm sure it was not the inspiration for the movie Sideways or anything like that), but that is somewhat beside the point.
What if he had turned the water into mediocre wine, you know like bargain basement stuff. Would it still have been a miracle or would it have become an urban legend or just a really cool parlor trick?
I do not doubt that it happened; I’m sure it did. I'm not even suggesting it's not a miracle. It was for that time period. I'm wondering why a religion of the scope, size, and shear power of Christianity and all it's wonderful derivations would publicly celebrate serving great wine to already inebriated wine guests as the miraculous coming out party. And that at said party, we're relying on accounts that were either delivered first hand or validated by people, many of whom woke up hungover the next day.
Interesting fodder for the imagination, eh?