I recently ran an errand for someone dear to me. I dropped off a favorite pair of khaki work pants to be repaired at the tailor.
They were not new pants. To say they were well worn would be putting it mildly. The button hole had torn completely and needed to be patched. The tailor advised for value purposes to instead buy new pants. But they were favorite pants. They were soft and broken in. They had been through many a Saturday volunteer landscaping project. Oh, the stories these pants could tell! Throwing them away wasn’t an option.
The tailor shop had no khaki fabric scraps to match for the piece to be patched. I knew if I went to a fabric store to find a match, the new fabric would be stiff. So I went to the thrift store instead in search for some khaki pants of a similar shade and fabric that I could purchase. With older, worn fabric. That was a better match.
I found a close match, and the pants were successfully mended.
This reminded me of a story. A bible story. A parable that Jesus used to explain how His new teaching did not go with the old teaching. How His new ways were not compatible with the old. You don’t put a new patch on an old garment.
If you put a new patch on an old garment, when the new patch shrinks after washing, it will tear away from the older garment, making the tear worse.
The context of this parable illustrates the fact that you can’t mix old religious rituals with new faith in Jesus. Jesus’ disciples were not fasting along with the Pharisees and John’s disciples because they were now under the new covenant of grace and faith in Christ. Jesus fulfilled the law, so there was no longer any need to continue with the old rituals. Jesus couldn’t be added to a works-based religion. Jesus WAS the works, already completed. In the case of the Pharisees, they were consumed with their own self-righteousness, and faith in Jesus simply cannot be combined with self-righteous rituals. He is totally about loving and doing for others not ourselves.
Let’s all stop being self righteous Pharisees and start being true followers of Christ. Let’s not be consumed by the old rituals, but instead see Jesus as the fulfillment of the law. Let’s all see Jesus as our savior. Let’s love Him first then others unconditionally. He has given us life. First creation by God and now redemption through the death of Christ. Eternal life. Which we should be eternally grateful for! And that very gratitude should be what motivates us to seek a lifestyle to please Christ. Not old laws. And let’s all keep doing for others while wearing our old khaki pants!
No one tears a piece of cloth from a new garment and puts it on an old garment; otherwise he will both tear the new, and the piece from the new will not match the old.
Love and laughter,