Thursday, April 30, 2009
Picking a favorite scripture story is really difficult. I feel moved by and/or connected to so many. For example, on my mission I had a blessing in which I was likened unto Abinadi (not great when you are a missionary and you realize he never even knew he had converted anyone). And then the story of the Stripling Warriors moved me so much I painted around the top of my son's nursery the verse describing them as men who were "true at all times and in whatsoever thing they were entrusted" (see Alma 53:20). I am also fascinated by Mary, the mother of the Savior, and have on the wall in my daughters' room "My soul doth magnify the Lord" (see Luke 1:46).
But none of these are my favorite.
My favorite stories are those that have deep symbolic meanings. Such as Christ turning the water into wine (see John 2:1-11).
The story of the water turned into wine is the first recorded miracle performed by the Savior. Jesus and his disciples were called to attend a wedding in Cana (symbolic of the new law to come into effect). Wine is a symbol of the blood of Christ and sanctification. When he is told by Mary "they have no wine" what is really being stated is "they have no sanctification."
The water Christ turns into wine is held in pots of stone (Law of Moses written on stone). The pots were filled to the brim, showing the Law of Moses was filled, completed. Water is symbolic of death, baptism, and passing through.
The best wine, that which was made by the Savior, was brought out last, reminding us that the "first shall be last and the last shall be first."
There are six pots of water/wine. Seven is a very symbolic number in the scriptures. Is Christ the seventh pot?
I also love that this miracle was bookended in two ways. First there is with the wine aspect of it -- "I alone shall tread the winepress" (sanctify us). And secondly with his mother: making the wine was at the request of Mary and on the cross his last act was to ensure Mary was cared for by John.
Of course there are so many other deeply symbolic stories in the scriptures, so my preference may change over time as I learn and understand them more fully. But for now, this is definitely my favorite.
Scripture of the Day: Read this story in John 2.