“Besides, who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. For the wine would burst the wineskins, and the wine and the skins would both be lost. New wine calls for new wineskins.” (Mark 2:21-22, NLT).
Jesus made these analogies in response to questioning from indignant Pharisees as to why Jesus’s disciples didn’t fast like the disciples of John the Baptist (vs. 18).
Jesus responded that the guests at a wedding celebrate with the groom; they don’t fast with the groom (vs. 19).
Jesus was saying that the customs and traditions of the old covenant are incompatible with the arrival of God’s Kingdom.
So, if you sow an unshrunken patch of new material on old piece of clothing, the new material will tear the old clothing when it shrinks when washed. Similarly, brittle old wineskins will burst when new wine ferments in them.
In other words, the fasting of the old covenant cannot mix with the feasting of the new covenant!
What’s required in the new Kingdom is for its subjects to celebrate a new way of life–complete transformation, like being born again (John 3:3).
You cannot have Kingdom life by trying to patch new ways on to the old way of life.
Complete transformation is required!
With the coming of God’s Kingdom, we have entered a new age in which God’s children, Jesus’s disciples, experience transformed lives that are being prepared for eternity!