Respecting the Old and the New

36He also told them a parable: “No one tears a piece from a new garment and puts it on an old garment. If he does, he will tear the new, and the piece from the new will not match the old. 37And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the new wine will burst the skins and it will be spilled, and the skins will be destroyed. 38But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. 39And no one after drinking old wine desires new, for he says, “The old is good.”   Luke 5:36-39

Both are valuable.

New wineskins and old wineskins.

Because of what they hold: wine.

Jesus tells this parable as His new community is under attack.

I believe He conveys the value of both the old and the new.

Put new wine in old wineskins and you spoil both.

Those who have partaken of the aged wine prefer the old rather than the new.

Most people who have experienced good times in community don’t really like change.  We want to hold onto those moments when we experienced God’s grace together.

The church is Jesus’ discipleship movement. But our assets like buildings, culture, music, books, and websites distract us from the fluidity of His Kingdom.  We are seduced into illusions of permanence and legacy that have little to do with His Kingdom.

We require the regenerative work of the Holy Spirit in order to live in the tension of honouring people graced by Jesus in the old and in the new. I know… I’m a church planter. I’m living in-between; sent from the old in order to plant seeds and gather the new. I’m learning that our critique of either will lead to sin if we fail to cherish the people He has and is drawing into the family of Jesus.


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