“Let them eat cake!”
Is a famous quote attributed to Marie-Antoinette during the French Revolution. The peasants have no bread ma’am and they are revolting. Let them eat cake then like we do silly peasants!
Or maybe just another “attributed quote” making sense of a morality tale. Maybe those words were never said at all … Encyclopaedia Brittanica
“Then the Pharisees and the scribes said to Jesus, “John’s disciples, like the disciples of the Pharisees, frequently fast and pray, but your disciples eat and drink.” Jesus said to them, “You cannot make wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them, can you? The days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast in those days.” He also told them a parable: “No one tears a piece from a new garment and sews it on an old garment; otherwise the new will be torn, and the piece from the new will not match the old. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the new wine will burst the skins and will be spilled, and the skins will be destroyed. But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. And no one after drinking old wine desires new wine, but says, ‘The old is good.'”” Luke 5:33-39
“The old is good.”
The old is what I am familiar with, have lived with, wear each day, can relax with, can share with my friends who also like the old. The old is comfortable, knows my ways and foibles. The old and I fit well together.
Did The Pharisees really say these words to Jesus? Did Jesus really say these words to the Pharisees? Was Jesus real? Is he really the Son of God? Is God real? If he is real – is he really like I have been told he is? And if God is real and he loves me – why does he let bad things happen?
I disagree with Jesus on this one.
I add patches of new belief to my old beliefs. I like my old beliefs but they keep changing as I keep adding and subtracting to them. My old beliefs keep not working as I change and my living changes. What was new and scary becomes the norm and very okay. What was revolutionary and mind-blowing becomes the way things are.
Everything for the first time is tricky and over time becomes how I do things.
We are all master craftsmen and women at stuff we do without thought. I can now listen to a rabid “evangelical” (of any religion OR belief) and no longer feel threatened. Some make good points and I add patches, some make really bad points and I don’t. My belief system is a tapestry and patchwork of old and new that “fits” right now. So I disagree with these words attributed as evidence for and of Jesus. And in that I guess I am disagreeing with Jesus who is God who made me and every thought I have. And I have been taught that is wrong and if I believe in God and Jesus and the cross and the resurrection and the forgiveness of sins and life eternal then I can’t and shouldn’t because God is right and I am not.
And that, for me, is exactly what Jesus is teaching AGAINST in these words attributed to him.
You can and you should and you must. And that is all he is teaching. And we don’t teach that. And we call not teaching that being “scripturally correct”. Just as the Pharisees were “legally correct”. But we cannot be Pharisees because we have made them the enemy. So we now confuse the comparison with “But they wouldn’t believe in Jesus the Son of God and the cross and the resurrection and the forgiveness of sins and life eternal and I do so I am okay!”
Let them eat cake might not be literal – but has a quality that is timeless. These words of the bible might not be literal – but they too have a quality that is timeless.
And It fascinates me how today we still miss the point so often – how we confuse the comparisons just as the Pharisees did. How we elevate the words of God just as the Pharisees elevated the laws of God.
These words invite me to question the laws of God AND the (attributed) words of God.
And that’s how I am learning to see Love in everything and everyone.