In today’s gospel passage, some people came to Jesus and asked him why he and his disciples did not fast like the Pharisees and the followers of John the Baptist. Jesus replied by using the example of a wedding celebration, noting that the guests do not fast while the bridegroom is still with them at the feast.
The disciples of John and of the Pharisees were accustomed to fast.
People came to Jesus and objected,
“Why do the disciples of John and the disciples of the Pharisees fast,
but your disciples do not fast?”
Jesus answered them,
“Can the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them?
As long as they have the bridegroom with them they cannot fast.
But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them,
and then they will fast on that day.
No one sews a piece of unshrunken cloth on an old cloak.
If he does, its fullness pulls away,
the new from the old, and the tear gets worse.
Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins.
Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins,
and both the wine and the skins are ruined.
Rather, new wine is poured into fresh wineskins.”
Jesus himself is the bridegroom. He is the new wine to be poured into fresh wineskins. Going deeper, though, are we not supposed to be like fresh wineskins? Are we ready to be renewed as the dwelling places of the Lord? Or are we more comfortable in the worn, used wineskin that deteriorates and leaves us far from the the choice wine that is a total commitment to Christ?
Over the next few months I will be occasionally posting on some of the most challenging issues facing us as followers of Jesus, beginning with tomorrow’s post. I hope that we can grow as we journey together in faith!