The question about fasting » Manila Bulletin News

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Matthew 9:14-17

 

The disciples of John approached Jesus and said, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast much, but your disciples do not fast?” Jesus answered them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast. No one patches an old cloak with a piece of unshrunken cloth, for its fullness pulls away from the cloak and the tear gets worse. People do not put new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise the skins burst, the wine spills out, and the skins are ruined. Rather, they pour new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved.”

 

Reflection

Can The Wedding Guests Mourn? This is Jesus’ counterquestion to John the Baptist’s disciples who ask him why they fast while his disciples do not. They are both in the same camp, for they have accepted the Baptist’s call for repentance and received baptism in the Jordan River for the forgiveness of sins. Why are they different and do different things?

Jesus’ answer is revealing. He tells these well–meaning and friendly disciples of John that a new era has come. Jesus has ushered in the messianic times, and everyone is invited to respond accordingly.

The disciples of John are challenged to reexamine their position so that they may understand better and profit more from the messianic age that is now unfolding in the person and teaching of Jesus. They cannot get stuck in the old platform of the familiar and the comfortable. Jesus is greater than John. John’s disciples should start following the Messiah now and be incorporated into Jesus’ band.

Do you follow Jesus or are you still following the vestiges  of your old belief incompatible with the way of Jesus?

 

SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord 2017,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: books@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.

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