A reading from the gospel according to Luke 5:33-39
The scribes and Pharisees said to Jesus,
33 “The disciples of John the Baptist fast often and offer prayers, and the disciples of the Pharisees do the same; but yours eat and drink.”
34 Jesus answered them, “Can you make the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them?
35 But the days will come, and when the bridegroom is taken away from them, then they will fast in those days.”
36 And he also told them a parable. “No one tears a piece from a new cloak to patch an old one. Otherwise, he will tear the new and the piece from it will not match the old cloak.
37 Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins, and it will be spilled, and the skins will be ruined.
38 Rather, new wine must be poured into fresh wineskins.
39 And no one who has been drinking old wine desires new, for he says, ‘The old is good.’”
Good News: Being with Jesus is like a feast.
As usual, the scribes and Pharisees were quick to criticize the disciples of Jesus for not fasting, unlike the disciples of John the Baptist. It is ironic because they themselves did not become disciples of John. So they asked Jesus for an explanation. The Lord took the opportunity to teach a lesson about His mission.
In the gospel reading, Jesus presents Himself as the bridegroom who unites us with the Father. While he was in the company of His disciples, there was no need to fast because with Him, life is like a wedding feast. After all, He came so that the people will be reunited with the Father.
Like in a real wedding, the bride and the groom begin a NEW life of togetherness. Jesus came to give us NEW life with God as our father. Hence, the bible is divided into two, the Old Testament and the New Testament. We now leave old traditions aside and start a new journey with Jesus as our guide, master and teacher. We shed our old mindset in order to imbibe the new teachings of our Lord.
Of course it is not easy to just throw away “old clothes” especially if they have sentimental value or simply because “the old is good”. We would rather patch them if they are torn and they may look good as new. However, in our spiritual life, the old and the NEW cannot mix. It is therefore best to LET GO of old beliefs and traditions that are no longer in consonance with the gospel.
It is never an easy task but with prayer and fasting, the Holy Spirit will be there to re-NEW us.