The Urantia Book
Synopsis of Papers

Previous page Home Next page

A Synopsis of Paper 137: Tarrying Time in Galilee

In February, 26 AD, Jesus chose Andrew as his first apostle. At Andrew's suggestion, Simon Peter became the second apostle. Jesus welcomed Simon, saying, "I admonish you to become more thoughtful in your speech. I would change your name to Peter."

Meanwhile James and John, sons of Zebedee, returned from a futile search for the Master in the hills of Pella. When they heard Jesus had chosen his first associates in their absence they were upset. Jesus admonished them, "You should learn to search for the secret of the new kingdom in your hearts and not in the hills." He asked them to be of good cheer and to prepare to accompany the other men into Galilee.

The next morning, this small band of men started on their journey. On the road to Galilee they met Philip of Bethsaida and his friend Nathaniel. Peter consulted with Philip, urging him to offer his services to Jesus. Philip, having been on his way to visit John the Baptist, was unsure of what to do. He decided to let Jesus decide the matter. "Teacher, shall I go down to John or shall I join my friends who follow you?" And Jesus answered, "Follow me." Philip then presented Nathaniel to Jesus, and Nathaniel was likewise welcomed into apostleship.

The group crossed the Jordan river and reached Nazareth late that evening. The next day, the apostles went to Cana to prepare for a wedding feast, while Jesus visited his family and the Zebedees in Capernaum.

His mother and friends suspected that Jesus would soon announce that he was the Messiah. In spite of Jesus' warnings to tell no one about him, they quietly spread the news that something was about to happen. As a result, more than four times the number of invited guests showed up in Cana for the wedding of Naomi and Johab.

Jesus became aware that the people at the wedding were expecting something of him, and he was especially concerned that his family and apostles seemed to be waiting for a sign. Early in the afternoon, Mary and James frankly asked Jesus to tell them how he was going to demonstrate his power to the wedding guests. Jesus, disappointed and indignant, replied, "If you love me, then be willing to tarry with me while I wait upon the will of my Father who is in heaven." He gathered his apostles and told them, "Think not that I have come to this place to work some wonder for the gratification of the curious."

Later that evening, the mother of the bridegroom confided to Mary that the wine supply for the wedding feast was running short. Mary asked Jesus to help, but Jesus said, "What have I to do with that?" Mary told him that she had promised to get him to help. When Jesus replied that she shouldn't have promised such a thing, Mary began to cry.

Jesus, trying to comfort Mary, said, "Grieve not. Most gladly would I do what you ask of me if it were a part of the Father's will- ." Jesus stopped, suddenly realizing that something had happened. The moment Jesus desired to fulfill his mother's request, his wish was implemented by the unseen celestial personalities accompanying him. Wine appeared in the water jugs.

Jesus was more surprised than anyone by the appearance of wine at the wedding feast. Throughout his subsequent career, he tried to keep his guard up against such events, but many similar wonders happened during his life on earth.

Jesus and his apostles left early the next morning for Capernaum. On the way, Jesus tried to describe the nature of his mission on earth. He told his men not to talk about how he had turned water into wine. As Jesus tried to explain his mission, he began to realize that their idea of a Jewish Messiah was so set that he would not be able to dissuade them from it. He decided to leave this problem to the Father.

Jesus and his six apostles stayed in Capernaum for four months, working during the day and spending three hours each evening preparing for their future work. This time of waiting tested the apostles' patience; absolutely nothing miraculous happened. As Jesus instructed them night after night, they began to know each other well.

In June Jesus preached at the synagogue in Capernaum. He told the crowd that when he finished his work on earth, the Spirit of Truth would come to all people, both Jew and gentile. Jesus explained that his kingdom was not of this world, and that his followers needed to have the faith of children to gain admission. He announced, "And whatever it shall cost you in the things of the world, no matter what price you may pay to enter the kingdom of heaven, you shall receive manyfold more of joy and spiritual progress in this world, and in the age to come eternal life."

All who heard him speak that day were astonished. One third believed him even though they could not completely comprehend, one third rejected his spiritual concept of the kingdom, and one third thought he was mentally unbalanced.

Synopsis Titles of Papers