John 2 Commentary and Bible Study

Hey there, friends! Today, we’re diving into a summary of John 2 commentary, and let me tell you, it’s packed with some amazing moments that you won’t want to miss. From the joyous celebration of a wedding in Cana to a powerful showdown in the temple, John 2 gives us a closer look at who Jesus is and what He’s all about.

Picture this: Jesus performs His very first miracle, turning water into wine, and then flips the script in the temple, showing us a side of Him that’s both compassionate and bold. And through it all, we get glimpses of His divine authority, His deep understanding of our hearts, and His unwavering mission.

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John Chapter 2 Commentary

John 2 recounts two significant events: Jesus’ first miracle and the cleansing of the temple. At a wedding in Cana, Jesus turns water into wine, revealing His divine power and prompting His disciples to believe in Him. Later, in Jerusalem for the Passover, He drives out merchants from the temple, condemning their exploitation and asserting His authority over sacred spaces. When questioned, He alludes to His death and resurrection, indicating deeper spiritual truths. These events highlight Jesus’ compassion, authority, and the beginning of His public ministry.

Let’s take a look at this chapter in the book of John verse by verse.

Summary of John 2:1-12 – The Wedding At Cana

In the first portion of John chapter 2, Jesus attends a wedding in Cana with His mother, Mary, and His disciples. When the wine runs out, Mary tells Jesus, and He initially responds that His time has not yet come. Nevertheless, He instructs the servants to fill six stone jars with water, which He then miraculously turns into high-quality wine. This first miracle reveals His glory, leading His disciples to believe in Him. This passage highlights Jesus’ compassion and divine power, marking the beginning of His public ministry.

John 2:1-2

On the third day there was a wedding at Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. 2 Jesus also was invited to the wedding with his disciples. 

The third day is, probably, referring to three days after Jesus called Nathaniel back in chapter 1. This chapter opens with Jesus and His disciples’ invitation to a wedding. This invitation tells us a lot about Jesus’ character. He loved weddings! He loved being among the crowds mingling with the people.

John 2:3-5

When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” 4 And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does this have to do with me? My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”

A couple of things are happening in this section that we need to notice.

First, the wind had run out. This could have been a devastating social failure for the bride and groom. Back in Jewish culture, failure to provide adequately for your wedding guests was an error that was not easily forgotten. 

Secondly, we need to understand the interaction between Mary and Jesus. A deeper question lurked behind Mary’s statement, “They have no wine”. By this time, she knew that Jesus had been publicly identified as the Lamb of God, that He had been baptized, and that He was beginning to call disciples to Himself. The true meaning of her announcement: “Has Your time come?”

Jesus’ response is a term of respect. However, it is strange that Jesus addresses her this way rather than referring to her as “Mother”. The response “Woman…” signals a transition in their relationship. He tells her that His time had not yet come, but, because of the events proceeding and following this conversation, it appears His time was drawing near.

Mary, picking up on His subtle affirmation, turns to the disciples encouraging them to listen.

John 2:6-8

Now there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. 7 Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. 8 And he said to them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast.” So they took it. 

This is the first of seven miracles recorded in the Book of John. If He wanted to, Jesus could have created barrels of wine from nothing. Instead, he uses items belonging to the people who were with Him. We will see this trend continue as we learn about His other miracles.

Not only did he use the belongings of others, but He also asked for their participation. Again, He could have created the wine from nothing and taken it to the master of the feast Himself; but He doesn’t. He asks the servants to fill the jars, draw some out, and take it to the master.

Jesus wants to participate with us in manifesting His glory in the earth! How awesome is that?!

John 2:9-10

Bible Study Guide of John 1

When the master of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom 10 and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then the poor wine. But you have kept the good wine until now.”

Jesus chose not to reveal Himself publicly; only the servants who drew the water knew the true source of this good wine. 

His partial concealment allowed the honor to fall on the bridegroom. Not only did Jesus transform water into wine, but he also transformed the couple’s public disgrace into honor. 

What a great reminder for us today. God can transform the narratives of our story. He can transform the circumstances and trials in our lives as we surrender to Him and obey His commands.

John 2:11-12

John 2:11 commentary

11 This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory. And his disciples believed in him. 12 After this he went down to Capernaum, with his mother and his brothers and his disciples, and they stayed there for a few days.

I find it interesting that John chose to include the phrase in John 2:1 about this miracle happening on the third day. It seems to point towards the idea that Jesus manifested His glory on the third day and His disciples believed when they realized His glory.

The greek word for “signs” (semeion) is used 74 times in the New Testament, and 23 of these are in the apostle John’s writings.

As we continue to study the book of John we discover it’s primary purpose in proving Jesus as the Son of God through these miraculous signs.

Summary of John 2:13-25 – Jesus Cleanses the Temple

In this next section, Jesus cleanses the temple in Jerusalem, driving out merchants and money changers to restore it as a place of worship. When challenged by Jewish leaders, He speaks of His death and resurrection, saying, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” Though many believe in Him because of His miracles, Jesus knows their hearts and does not fully trust them. This passage highlights His authority, zeal for true worship, and foreshadows His resurrection.

John 2:13

The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.

This is Jesus’ first visit to Jerusalem during His ministry. This section continues to chapter 3:21. The city would have been crowded because of the thousands of people traveling to celebrate the Passover. This celebration commemorated the time the Israelites were delivered from Egypt and led through the Red Sea by a series of miraculous signs and wonders (Exodus 12).

John 2:14

In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers sitting there.

As Jesus came into the temple, he found people selling the animals needed for sacrifice to the worshippers. The money changers were also there ready to exchange money from those traveling from foreign countries. Many commentators believe that foreign currency was not allowed in the temple because it bore the image of pagan Gods.

John 2:15-16

And making a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen. And he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. 16 And he told those who sold the pigeons, “Take these things away; do not make my Father’s house a house of trade.” 

Imagine the crowd this scene must have gathered! Using a whip, He drove the animals out of the temple and overturned the tables. 

This narrative does not describe an emotional outburst of anger. It says He made a whip of cords and took the time to consider what He would do. Jesus’ words and actions demonstrate His authority.

John 2:17

17 His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.

His disciples remembered a line from Psalm 69:9, referring to the zeal Jesus had for the purity of God’s house. 

Priests had to perform cleansing before entering the outer portion of the temple to perform their duties. No sin enters the presence of a holy God. Jesus, in a way, is cleansing the temple of its defilement.

John began with a miracle of conversion (changing water into wine). Then he showed Jesus performing a work of cleansing (the cleansing of the temple). This is always how Jesus works in His people: conversion first, then cleansing. – David Guzik, Enduring Word Commentary

John 2:18-22

So the Jews said to him, “What sign do you show us for doing these things?” 19 Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” 20 The Jews then said, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will you raise it up in three days?” 21 But he was speaking about the temple of his body. 22 When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this, and they believed the Scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.

Jesus has just finished clearing out the temple, and the Jewish leaders aren’t happy about it. They demand to know what right He has to do such things and ask for a sign to prove His authority. Not a bad question at this point, however as the dialogue continues it becomes clear that they do not have eyes to see or ears to hear the true meaning behind Jesus’ message.

“Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” Naturally, they’re confused and think He’s talking about the actual building. Jesus is talking about something much deeper—His own body. He’s hinting at His death and resurrection, which His disciples only fully understand later on.

First, it shows Jesus’ authority—He’s not just any teacher; He’s got divine backing. It also highlights a common theme in the Gospels: people often misunderstand Jesus’ words until they see the bigger picture. Most importantly, it points to the heart of the Christian faith: Jesus’ resurrection. When He talks about raising the temple in three days, He gives a sneak peek at the miracle that will confirm everything He’s been teaching.

John 2:23-25

John 2:23-25 commentary

Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs that he was doing. 24 But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people 25 and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.

Jesus is in Jerusalem during the Passover festival. While He’s there, He performs many miracles, and because of this, a lot of people start to believe in Him. But here’s the interesting part: even though they believed in His miracles, Jesus didn’t fully trust them. He knew what people were really like inside and didn’t need anyone to tell Him about human nature.

This part of the Gospel gives us some important insights. It shows that Jesus understands us completely—our thoughts, our motives, our hearts. He sees beyond our actions and knows what’s really going on inside. It’s a reminder that belief in Jesus isn’t just about being amazed by His miracles; it’s about a deeper, genuine faith and relationship with Him.

John 2 Commentary

Jesus’ first miracle reminds us that He cares about our joy and is always ready to provide for our needs, even in the most unexpected ways. His actions in the temple highlight His passion for true worship and His desire for us to have a genuine relationship with God. And through it all, we see His incredible wisdom and insight into our hearts, reminding us that He knows us better than we know ourselves.

I encourage you to take these stories to heart and reflect on how they can enrich your own walk with Jesus. Whether it’s trusting Him with your daily challenges or seeking a deeper, more authentic faith, John 2 offers us powerful reminders of His love and authority.

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