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Mark 2:18-22 – The Question on Fasting

|| Matthew 9:14-17;[1] Luke 5:33-39

MK2:18 Now the disciples of John [the Baptist] as well as the Pharisees practiced fasting,[2] and so they approached Jesus and asked him: “Why do John’s disciples and the Pharisees fast but your disciples do not fast?” MK2:19 So, Jesus said to them: “Do the friends of the bridegroom fast while he is with them [at the wedding feast]? As long as the bridegroom is among them there can be no fasting. MK2:20 However, the time will come when the Bridegroom will be taken away. Then [my disciples] will fast in that day. MK2:21 No one sews a new piece of cloth on an old garment,[3] because the new cloth will tear away [when it shrinks]. Then the tear becomes even worse! MK2:22 Also, no one puts new wine into an old wine-skin,[4] because the new wine will expand and burst the old wine-skin. Then, not only is the wine spilled and wasted, but also the old wine-skin is ruined. No, but new wine must be put into new wine-skins.”


[1] Matthew 9:14-17: For details see notes in Nazarene Commentary 2000 on Matthew.

[2] Fasting: See notes on Matthew 6:16-18.

[3] New piece of cloth on an old garment: The “new” cloth was the teachings of Jesus and the New Covenant. The “old garment” was the Mosaic Law and the Jewish rituals.

[4] New wine into an old wine-skin: The “new wine” is the Church of Christ with its “new teaching.” The “old wine-skin” was the Jewish religious system. Christ did not try to remold the Jewish institution, but formed what Paul would call a “New Creation.”



Mark 2 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 2:1-12 – Jesus Preaching and Healing at Home

Mark 2 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 2:13-17 – Accused of Associating With Sinners

Matthew 9:14-17 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: The Bridegroom and Fasting

Matthew 9:14-17 – What others are saying about feasting at the sinners’ table instead of fasting for God’s table



  1. Morning Musing: Mark 2:18
  2. Old Wineskins
  3. Monday, Jan 18, 2021
  4. Feasting, Not Fasting
  5. Old wineskins new wine in a pandemic – a parable
  6. He Takes Away, Part 1

Comments on: "Mark 2 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 2:18-22 – The Question on Fasting" (2)

  1. […] Mark 2 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 2:18-22 – The Question on Fasting […]


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