Beside Still Waters: Fully man

Therese Apel

(Photo: Screenshot from 'The Chosen')

When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”
“Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.”
His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” – John 2:3-5

Do you ever forget that in all His being the son of God, Jesus was also human, and the son of Mary and Joseph? We talk about the miracles and the God side of Jesus while He was here on earth, but we forget the side that was fully human.

I used to be a little confused by this passage. Why does Jesus call his mother “Woman?” Why does it appear that He doesn’t want to help? Why does she immediately just tell the servants to follow His instructions?

Well the problem is that I was reading the Bible like so many people do: It was just words on the page. It was a story, devoid of emotion or inflection, and I think that’s probably because a lot of John’s writing talent was lost in translation years ago.

But as an adult, and especially after watching “The Chosen,” I see this passage a whole different way — this is a mother and son (for lack of a better word) playing. I imagine Mary’s approach was, “Hey Jesus, did you notice they’re out of wine? Sure wish someone would do something about it… you know, like it would be great if the son of God was here or something?”

And here’s where I wonder what it was like to be Jesus’ mother. This is the first RECORDED miracle. This passage makes me think Mary had been watching Jesus do little miracles the whole time He was growing up, otherwise she wouldn’t have known to ask Him.

I imagine He smiled wryly and His answer was something playful like, “So why are you looking at me? I don’t even do public miracles yet?”
Then she turned to the servants and I bet she said, “Oh, whatever. Do whatever He tells you to.” Then I bet she smiled and winked at Jesus and went back to the party, already knowing her son. Because she knew Him like that.

I think this passage had a lot of levity in it, lost in translation. Why is that important, you ask? Because in our trials, in our heartbreak, in our joy and in our mirth, we need to remember that Jesus had those all to the same degree we do. He joked with His mom, He hung out with His friends, He got lonely sometimes, He craved ice cream (or whatever the ice cream thing was back then), He had moody days, He loved animals. He might have wished His knees weren’t so bony or that He was a better cook. But He could raise the dead and walk on water.
Jesus was fully man and fully God.

Maybe we hear that phrase, “fully man and fully God,” too much for it to mean anything anymore. But if you pay attention to some of the little details like this and actually put yourself in the scene, you can see Him.

Look for Jesus the man in Jesus the Savior. It was a human being that hung on that cross, not just God Himself. To me, that makes our salvation even more of a miracle, because that was human pain, human blood, human humiliation, and the Son of the God of the Universe did it in human form for us.

Like I always say, He is so much more real than we can even imagine. Look for Jesus the man, and you’ll see Jesus the Savior much more clearly. ❤️

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