48 So Jesus said to him, “Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.”
Jesus returned to Cana where he changed water into wine. He is meet by a father whose son is near death. The man is desperate for Jesus to heal his son. You would think this is the perfect time for Jesus to jump right in and heal the boy and demonstrate that he is in fact the Lord and Messiah. By he seems to actually chastise the father by claiming that he won’t believe unless he sees sign and wonders. That certainly feels harsh. I mean after all his son is dying. What is Jesus thinking?
Is it possible that he is speaking not only or even primarily to the father but to the whole crowd that has gathered around. The water into wine trick would certainly have become common knowledge. Many of these folks were most likely at the wedding. Have the come looking for another miracle to tickle their spiritual curiosity? Jesus deals with this on several occasions. People just want a show. They want more and more proof. They want him to make more fish and bread to feast on.
I often hear people say that it would have been so much easier to believe in Jesus if they had been there in the first century and seen him perform miracles like the fish and bread or walking on water or raising the dead. But the fact is you and I would be no different from the people who actually say those things. They had a hard time believing Jesus. Some did, many were just curious, some outright rejected him.
That raises the whole question of what does it take for you to trust God? How big a miracle do you need to be able to say, yes I believe? Jesus has previously said that the greatest evidence he will give for his deity is the raising up of his body after three days. That happened on the first Easter morning. We won’t get to that until near the end of the year but fortunately for us we know that is happened and can look at so much of what Jesus said and did in the light of the resurrection.
The evidence for the life and death and resurrection of Jesus is so overwhelmingly strong that we don’t need to have lived back then and seen the miracles he did. We look back on the greatest miracle of all and put our trust in him.