Voices ever ancient, ever new. Friday-Week22-2013.

“And they said to him, “The disciples of John fast often and offer prayers, and the disciples of the Pharisees do the same; but yours eat and drink.”” (Luke 5:33)

Saint Ambrose of Milan offers the following insight on this verse from today's Gospel:

“Then in this passage, fasting represents the old garment that the apostle thought should be taken off. He said, “Strip yourselves of the old man with his deeds,” so that we may put on the new man, which is renewed by the sanctification of baptism. Then the series of teachings is suited to the same garment, lest we mix the deeds of the old and the new man, when the physical exterior performs the works of the flesh. The inner man, which is reborn, should not have the varied appearance of old and new actions but be the same color as Christ. With zeal of mind, it should imitate him for whom he was cleansed by baptism. So let the discolored coverings of the mind, which are displeasing to the Bridegroom, be absent, for one who has not a wedding garment is displeasing to him. What can please the Bridegroom, except peace of spirit, purity of heart and clarity of mind?” (Exposition of the Gospel of Luke, 5)

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