14 Then John’s disciples came and asked him, “How is it that we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” 15 Jesus answered, “How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them? The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; then they will fast. 16 “No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse. 17 Neither do men pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”
18 While he was saying this, a ruler came and knelt before him and said, “My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live.” 19 Jesus got up and went with him, and so did his disciples. 20 Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. 21 She said to herself, “If I only touch his clock, I will be healed.” 22 Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed from that moment. 23 When Jesus entered the ruler’s house and saw the flute players and the noisy crowd, 24 he said, “Go away…
Remember, fasting must be done at the right time, for the right reason, with the right motivation.
- Pharisees fasted very often, but with the wrong reason at the wrong time.
- John’s disciples fasted to prepare themselves to receive the coming Messiah, but he’d already come, so they should have been feasting with him, not fasting. John’s disciples fasted with ignorance.
- Pharisees fasted for “show.” They wanted to show others that they were Super Holy Dudes. The fasted with pride and self-righteousness.
A wedding is a time of celebration and feasting. Likewise, Jesus’ coming is a time of celebration and feasting.
There is a time coming when the bridegroom will be taken from them (John 16) – the crucifixion and death and burial of Jesus. You will weep and mourn while this world rejoices. – Jesus told them.
But their sorrow turned into joy when they saw their risen resurrected Lord.
To be with Jesus Christ is a sign of celebration.
Someday, we must die, all relationships must end someday. Only Jesus remains forever the same. Only the joy of heaven lasts forever and ever. Nobody can take the joy of heaven from our hearts.
New wine and wineskins (v.16-17)
At that time, they stored wine in wineskins.
The illustration of the cross shows that Jesus came to give wholeness, not just patch us up. Also, the wineskins show that Jesus is giving completeness. The old Judaism is the old wineskins – the Law. He didn’t come to repair or mix with the old religion. He came with a new covenant, the covenant of Grace, a new way to express personal faith – the newness of the gospel could not be combined with the legalism of the Pharisees.
Jesus didn’t come to abolish the Law or the Prophets but to fulfill them. He is the END, the FULFILLMENT of the Law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.
He didn’t come to repair and fix up the old Judaism. His purpose is to bring something totally new. The message that the Son of God offers to all people the forgiveness of sins – the reconciliation of God and Man and life everlasting. “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a NEW creation. The old has gone, the new has come.” (2 Cor) “There is no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” (Acts)
There are 2 miracles that follow here – restoration of broken hope, broken families, broken homes. (Also in Luke and John)
This ruler’s name is Jarius. Mark 5, Luke 8, also show this story in more detail. He is a synagogue ruler. When he came to Jesus first, his daughter was CLOSE to death, not dead. “My daughter is DYING” he said. But the delay caused by the healing of the next woman gave death the opportunity to do its work. Jarius’ friends came after the healing and said, “Your daughter has died.” But Jesus quickly reassured him.
Just then, a woman who’d been bleeding for 12 years touched his cloak.
Her bleeding made her ceremonially unclean. So even everybody and everything she touched became unclean. She was cut of from the synagogue and other men and women. She did EVERYTHING possible to be saved from this terrible life of isolation. She actually should not have even been in this crowd surrounding Jesus. Because if they had known it, she was infecting many people with her uncleanness. So, she came quietly, secretly and touched Jesus’ garment with her hand. Jesus said, “who did that?”
Jesus actually knew and his disciples knew he knew, but he kept looking around for her anyway. She eventually came out and trembling with fear, kneeled down before him. “Take heart, daughter. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
Jesus not only gave her physical healing, but also PEACE – heavenly healing. He gave her more than she wanted. Eph “God is able to do immeasureably MORE than we ask.”
Yesterday, today, and forever, he is living with us in his Spirit. He can do more and more than we ask, than we wish.
While he was talking with this woman, Jarius’ friends came and said, “Your daughter is dead.”
Jesus said, “Do not be afraid. Just believe.” Jesus went to his house with only 3 disciples – Peter, James, and John?
There was a funeral procession there – loud weeping and crying and a large crowd. He said, “Go out” but they laughed at him. Mark: Jesus said, “Talitha, get up.”
A lack of crying was disrespectful, a disgrace. Jarius was a synagogue ruler/leader at that time, so lots of people came and expressed their sorrow with loud cries and weeping. Maybe Jarius was angry with the first healed woman because they delayed to arrive before they arrived. The problem wasn’t the woman, but his faith, his attitude.
God is NEVER late in answering us.
If you see a dead person, what do you see? A dead person? An unbeliever’s death = death to God’s eyes AND people’s eyes. A believer’s death = death to people’s eyes BUT sleep to God’s eyes.
We may also be laughed at because of our faith in Christ. 2 Cor “The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing. But to those who believe it is life.”
Have you ever been laughed at for your faith in Christianity? Do not lose heart. Take heart. The most dramatic of all, Jesus, rose again from the dead. ONLY Jesus has the authority and power to say, “I am the Resurrection and the Life. Whoever believes in me will live even though he dies. Whoever believes in me will never die because I will raise him up at the last day.” (John’s gospel).
Soon, this is the last day.
The last day of 2013, the last day of school, last day of work, last day of friendship, the last day of life, the last day of the material world.
But in heaven, there is NO MORE last day. This is our hope, our faith in Jesus’ Christ.