In the name of the Father and of the † Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Dear Friends in Christ,
Last week we remembered the baptism of Jesus. The sinless Son of God, stepped into the Jordan River he took upon himself the sins of us all. As he walk into that water, he publicly began his journey to the cross where water and blood flowed from his side showing his death for us.
His journey to the cross was filled with teaching and miracles. The prophets said that the Messiah would proclaim good news and that he would heal the sick, the lame, the deaf, and the blind and would raise the dead. This is what Jesus did on his way to the cross.
The Son of God took upon himself flesh and blood to “fix” all that went wrong when sin entered the world. He came to proclaim forgiveness and salvation. The Messiah came to promise eternal healing and eternal life to all who believed in him.
The first miracle that we hear about Jesus doing is at a wedding. It was the third day of a wedding celebration in a town called Cana. We do not know the names of the couple or how Jesus came to be there.
We know that Mary the mother of Jesus was also a guest and so were some of the disciples of Jesus. Mary came to Jesus with a concern. “They have no wine” she said. It wasn’t the most serious of concerns. Perhaps the bridal couple had planned poorly or the guests had drunk too freely of the wine that had been provided.
Mary simply presented Jesus with the fact, “They have no wine.” Underlying her statement was a request, a request to “Fix It.” She did not give suggestions, she did not insist, she did not stand around to see what he would or wouldn’t do. Mary trusted in Jesus to hear her request and do what was best.
The “Fix It” Answer
“Fix It.” That was what needed to be done after Adam and Eve destroyed their relationship with the Lord. They had sinned and were dying. They had been created perfect without sin and were now imperfect and full of sin.
Their sinful nature would be passed on from generation to generation so that all who follow them would be imperfect as well. On this Sanctity of Life Sunday we see how far this imperfection can go. On this Sunday we remember how the gift of life has for some become an inconvenience that needs to be fixed.
“Fix it” has become 42 million abortions worldwide per year, when the birth would cause an inconvenience or when the child to be born does not fit the mold of a perfectly healthy baby. “Fix it” is the cry for those who are not willing to suffer along with an elderly parent who is suffering. A Canadian family recently petitioned a court to allow them to stop provide food and fluids to their mother who had Alzheimer’s.
Assisted suicide is the “fix it” for those who are not willing to allow God to comfort and care for them through the hearts and hands of their family and friends. Euthanasia is the “fix it” for those who judge that they should end someone else’s life because they think that life is no longer worth living.
Not Our Decision
The sin of Adam and Eve, my sin, and your sin is the sin of “I’ll Fix It Myself.” The first and greatest commandment is that we should “Fear, love, and trust in God above all things.” When it comes to life we are to trust that every life is a gift from the Lord.
If a new life comes at what we think is an inconvenient time, if we know it will be born with medical problems, or if it comes through rape, we are not given the right to “fix it” on our own by ending that life. We are to trust that the Lord is able and willing to bless that life and those who love that life. He is able and willing to provide comfort and strength.
If a life appears to have little or no value because of aging or illness, if a life becomes a burden, we are not given the right to “fix it” on our own by ending that life. God does not value life by what that life can do but by the fact that his Son, Jesus Christ, died on the cross for that life.
The burdens in our own lives provide times when we God’s seeks to comfort us and strength our faith. The burdens in the lives of others provides times when God uses us to bear those burdens through acts of love to those in need.
“Fix It,” Mary said. “Fix It” is our cry as well, “O Lord have mercy on us.” We have no life without Christ. Listen to how Saint Paul describes us without Christ, “foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passion and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another.” Titus 3:3
Listen to what Jesus said to his mother, “Woman, what does this have to do with me?” Jesus is saying to her, “Why have you come to me with this problem?” She came to him because she had faith that he could fix what was wrong, he could fix even this most mundane of problems.
Mary came to Jesus because she trusted that he could make things right, that he was the redeemer of all things gone wrong. That is who Jesus is, he is the restorer, the re-newer, the redeemer, the fixer of all things.
He is the one who came into the world to undo what happened in the garden and replace it with what will happen on that last day and what will last for eternity. Jesus came to redeem you so that you will feast forever from the hand of a gracious God.
Let me go back for a moment. I skipped over a few words that Jesus spoke to Mary. He said to her, “My hour has not yet come.” Jesus was looking forward to a time when Mary would see Jesus fix all things, when he would restore all things, when he would redeem all things.
That time was not yet at hand; it would come soon enough. Whatever miracle he would do that day, whatever other miracles Jesus would do, all would only be a shadow of what he would do on the cross.
Water Into Wine
In changing water into wine, Jesus gave just a tiny glimmer of what he had come to do. He came to replace the old with the new. Jesus came to undo what you have done. He came to redeem you from the Old Adam with which you were born and to give you a new birth through water and the Spirit.
Despite all that you have done, despite what you do today, and despite what you will do tomorrow, he loves you. No matter how sinful or disobedient you are he came to restore you. No matter how negligent and disrespectful you have been toward him and his love he came to give you a new life.
For those who have thought that their caring for an infant, a child, or an elderly parent was an incontinence, Jesus died for those sins and they are forgiven. For those who have had an abortion or who in any way hastened the death of someone, Jesus died for those sins and they are forgiven.
Jesus came to take away your sins and to give you his righteousness. He came to sacrifice his life so that you might have a new life. His hour came and it is past and he speaks to you these words, “It is finished.” You could say it another way, “It is fixed.” Your cry for mercy has been answered.
Your request for God’s grace has been fulfilled. He promises you forgiveness, life, and salvation. He graciously has given you a new heart so that you can give him thanks and praise for restoring you.
You are restored and renewed and redeemed. God has graciously shown you that not only your life is valuable to him but that all life is precious in his sight. For that reason he sent his Son into the world. For that reason he sends you into the world to proclaim that in him alone is life and death.
In the name of Jesus. Amen.