Yohanan Jewish New Testament and comments of David H. Stern

chapter 2
1. On Tuesday there was a wedding at Kanah in the Galil; and the mother of Yeshua was there.
2. Yeshua too was invited to the wedding, along with his talmidim.
3. The wine ran out, and Yeshua’s mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”
4. Yeshua replied, “Mother, why should that concern me? — or you? My time hasn’t come yet.”
5. His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”
Mother, why should that concern me? — or you? Literally, "What to me and to you, woman?" This translates into Greek a Hebrew idiom found a number of times in the Tanakh, and we are thereby reminded of the Hebraic roots necessary to proper understanding of the New Testament. The meaning of this idiom is flexible; renderings include: "What do we have in common?" "Why do you involve me?" "You must not tell me what to do," "Why turn to me?" "Your concern is not mine."

Greek gune means "woman," but saying "GuneV to a woman in Greek is not nearly as cold an address as "Woman!" in English; this is why I have rendered it "Mother." Nevertheless Yeshua's answer, in toto, no matter how translated, puts distance between him and his mother Miryam. Why does he do this? Is he disobeying the commandment to honor his father and mother (as opponents of the Gospel suppose)?

The answer comes with the following remark. My time (literally, "my hour") hasn't come yet. Yochanan's Gospel often has Yeshua speaking about his time (7:30; 8:20; 12:23, 27; 13:1; 17:1), and each occasion has a reason. Here the reason is that Yeshua's mother had been informed, even before he was born, that he was meant for greatness (Lk 1:35,43); she had heard others prophesy about him (Lk 2:25-38); she had observed his development (Lk 2:40, 51), although not always with understanding (Lk 2:41-50); and she had known that future generations would bless her (Lk 1:48). Yeshua's comment is meant to aid her in the transition from seeing him as her child to seeing him as her Lord, to keep her from undue pride, and to indicate that he as Lord sovereignly determines when he will intervene in human affairs — he does not perform miracles on demand merely to impress his friends, or even to give naches (a Yiddish word that means "the kind of joy a mother feels") to his mother. See v. 1 l&N on the purpose of his miracle.

Actually he both honored and cared for his mother: in the agony of being executed he entrusted his mother to the talmid whom he especially loved (19:25-27). And in the end she did come to regard him as Lord, for she was present and praying with the other talmidim in the upstairs room after his resurrection (Ac 1:14). From Miryam's response. Do whatever he tells you. it is evident that she was neither dissatisfied nor put off by her son but received his communication in the right spirit. Moreover, Yeshua did not ignore the problem to which she had called attention but granted far more than she asked or imagined (Ep 3:20). Finally, v. 12, conveniently ignored by those who seek to prove there was a rift between Yeshua and his family (compare Mt 12:48-50&N), says that he left with "his mother and brothers."

6. Now six stone water-jars were standing there for the Jewish ceremonial washings, each with a capacity of twenty or thirty gallons.
Jewish ceremonial washings, literally, "the cleansings of the loudaioi," who in this verse seem to be the Jews by religion, not the Judeans by geography or origin (see 1:19N), if Yochanan is explaining the situation for non-Jewish readers. Alternatively, "Judean ceremonial washings" — on the assumption that the wedding brought guests from all over, including Judea, and in deference their customs were observed (compare 1С 10:29). "Cleansings" (Hebrew Taharot) is the title and subject of one of the six sections of the Talmud; this is a measure of their importance in traditional Judaism (see also Mk 7:2-4N).

Twenty or thirty gallons, literally, "two or three melritas," a metretes being estimated by Josephus at about 8 1/2 gallons and corresponding approximately to the Hebrew bat.

7. Yeshua told them, “Fill the jars with water,” and they filled them to the brim.
8. He said, “Now draw some out, and take it to the man in charge of the banquet”; and they took it.
9. The man in charge tasted the water; it had now turned into wine! He did not know where it had come from, but the servants who had drawn the water knew. So he called the bridegroom
10. and said to him, “Everyone else serves the good wine first and the poorer wine after people have drunk freely. But you have kept the good wine until now!”
11. This, the first of Yeshua’s miraculous signs, he did at Kanah in the Galil; he manifested his glory, and his talmidim came to trust in him.
This verse states the purpose of Yeshua' s miracle: to anchor the trust of his new talmidim in the glory of God as manifested through him.

12. Afterwards, he, his mother and brothers, and his talmidim went down to K’far-Nachum and stayed there a few days.
13. It was almost time for the festival of Pesach in Y’hudah, so Yeshua went up to Yerushalayim.
The festival of Pesach in Y'hudah, or "the Judean festival of Pesach" or, literally, "the Pesach of the Judeans" (but probably not".. .of the Jews" for reasons detailed in 1:19N and 5:1N).
Went up to Yerushalayim. See Mt 20:17 19N.

Поднялся в Йерушалаим. См. ком. к Мат. 20:17-19.

14. In the Temple grounds he found those who were selling cattle, sheep and pigeons, and others who were sitting at tables exchanging money.
15. He made a whip from cords and drove them all out of the Temple grounds, the sheep and cattle as well. He knocked over the money-changers’ tables, scattering their coins;
16. and to the pigeon-sellers he said, “Get these things out of here! How dare you turn my Father’s house into a market?”
17. (His talmidim later recalled that the Tanakh says, "Zeal for your house will devour me" (Psalm 69:10(9)).)
Those who were selling cattle, sheep and pigeons. See Mt 21:12N.

18. So the Judeans confronted him by asking him, “What miraculous sign can you show us to prove you have the right to do all this?”
19. Yeshua answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up again.”
20. The Judeans said, “It took 46 years to build this Temple, and you’re going to raise it in three days?”
Царь Ирод Великий (см. ком. к Мат. 2:1) начал перестраивать Второй Храм приблизительно в 19-20 гг. до н.э. Около двух лет ушло на приготовления, и они, вероятно, не включаются в те «сорок шесть лет», о которых здесь идёт речь; таким образом, этот случай мог происходить в любое время между 26 и 30 годом н.э. Храм Ирода, возможно, так и не был полностью завершён к 70 г. н.э., когда римляне разрушили его.

21. But the “temple” he had spoken of was his body.
It took 46 years to build this Temple. King Herod the Great (see Mt 2:1N) began the remodeling of the Second Temple complex around 19-20 B.C.E. About two years were spent in preparation, which may not be included in the "46 years" of the present verse; so that this incident could have taken place any time between 26 and 30 C.E. Herod's Temple may not have been entirely finished when it was destroyed by the Romans in 70 C.E.

But the "Temple" he had spoken of was his body, not the building (compare 1С 6:19). Yeshua often spoke obliquely to those he knew lacked faith (for another example, see v. 25). At Mt 13:10-17 he answered at length the question of his talmidim, "Why do you speak to them in parables?" Like Nechemyah he did not waste time in futile conversation with closed-minded people (Nehemiah 2:19-20, 6:2-3).

22. Therefore, when he was raised from the dead, his talmidim remembered that he had said this, and they trusted in the Tanakh and in what Yeshua had said.
They trusted in the Tanakh, or "trusted in that verse of the Tanakh." If the former, it means the lalmidim came to believe in ail the passages referring to or hinting at the Messiah's resurrection, such as Hosea6:2, Isaiah 53:7-12, Jonah 1:17 (which Yeshua alluded to at Mt 12:39^1, 16:4; Lk 11:29-32) and Psalm 16:8-11 (quoted and expounded by Kefa at Ac 2:24-32); see Section VII of the Introduction to the Jewish New Testament, Mt 26:24N and Lk 24:25-27N.

But if the latter, it means that at the end of Yeshua's ministry, when he overturned the money-changers' tables a second time (Mt 21:12), the talmidim recalled Yeshua's quoting Psalm 69, "Zeal for your house will devour me" (above, v. 17). This would show that Yochanan's Gospel attributes to the later overturning of tables in the Temple a major immediate-causative role in Yeshua's being brought to trial and death.

23. Now while Yeshua was in Yerushalayim at the Pesach festival, there were many people who “believed in his name” when they saw the miracles he performed.
There were many people who "believed in his name" but not in him (vv. 24-25). His miracles excited them, but they were not ready to acknowledge their sin and repent. In contrast, Nakdimon (3:1 ft.I was a sincere seeker, and eventually he came to genuine faith.

24. But he did not commit himself to them, for he knew what people are like -
25. that is, he didn’t need anyone to inform him about a person, because he knew what was in the person’s heart.
See Lk 16:15&N.

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