Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Hour Has Come

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At the wedding feast of Cana, when Mary tells Jesus that the host has run out of wine, he says to her, "My hour has not yet come." He repeats this several more times in the first half of the Gospel. Finally in 12:23 he says, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified."
In the past I had read those words as a kind of non-response to what had preceded. Some Greeks have come to Philip and asked to see Jesus. Two commentaries I used for meditation and prayer this week helped me to see a connection that I had never noticed before. The arrival of the Greeks confirms the Pharisees' frustrated words in verse 19, "The whole world has gone after him."
This, in turn, points back to a line much earlier in the Gospel in which the Samaritans tell the woman at the well, "We know that this is truly the Savior of the world." (4:42)
Not just his mother and some guests at a wedding, but the whole world represented by these Greeks, now bring Jesus to declare that the hour has come for his death and resurrection, the "hour of his glory."
When we hear only a brief bit of the Gospel read on a Sunday, it's hard to make the connections that the author of the Gospel intended.

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