Academic journal article Currents in Theology and Mission

Second Sunday after the Epiphany January 20, 2013

Academic journal article Currents in Theology and Mission

Second Sunday after the Epiphany January 20, 2013

Article excerpt

Isaiah 62:1-5

Psalm 36:5-10

1 Corinthians 12:1-11

John 2:1-11

First Reading

In John's Gospel, the miracles of Jesus are very clearly not miracles for their own sake: they are not simply meant to impress. John calls them "signs." As signs, the miracles of Jesus point to something. In John's "Book of Signs," each of the signs point specifically to the identity and the nature of Jesus. John uses each of the signs very carefully and skillfully to paint a picture of the nature of Jesus.

In our complimentary lectionary readings, the nature of this particular sign is reinforced. We might ask, what is this first sign all about? What does it mean that Jesus changed water into wine at a wedding party as his first sign? A clue toward how the church has answered that question is to be found in Isaiah 62, Psalm 36, and in 1 Corinthians. That answer: abundance.

Isaiah promises that the land will no longer be called Desolate and that the people will be blessed so abundantly they will be like a crown or a royal diadem. Abundant gifts indeed! The psalmist sings praise of God's abundant gifts in Psalm 36:8 "They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights." Paul writes to the Corinthians about the abundance of God's gifts and the abundance of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit and the Spirit's gifts are so abundant that the variety is obvious and surrounding us. …

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