I want to soak up the light of the truth and expose all the darkness in me!
I have noticed several references to Isaiah 58 on other blog articles I have recently read and off the top of my head I couldn’t remember what this chapter spoke of, these references caused me to be curious (that’s easy to do) so I decided to look it up and read it. “Wow, Wow and Wow!!!” That was my first thoughts, than my thoughts moved on to “Oh, Lord am I like this? Oh, help me Lord I don’t want to ever be like this!!!” I read the entire chapter from about four or five different translations and now I have decided to read only a couple of verses at a time and really listen to what the Lord is saying in them. I want to give the Lord time to do whatever He has to get my attention. I am making myself available to the Holy Spirit to CHANGE me……….my spirit, soul and mind. I want to soak up the light of the truth and expose all the darkness in me! Oh, how I want to please my Lord, I want to be like He has always destined me to be! Though in my life I have done it often, I do NOT want to just read the precious life giving, spirit stirring, soul awakening words of my creator, my Lord, my Saviour, my friend and NOT know I just heard the voice of my ‘everything‘!!
So today I am reading Isaiah 58 : 1-3
1 “Shout with the voice of a trumpet blast.
Shout aloud! Don’t be timid.
Tell my people Israel[a] of their sins!
2 Yet they act so pious!
They come to the Temple every day
and seem delighted to learn all about me.
They act like a righteous nation
that would never abandon the laws of its God.
They ask me to take action on their behalf,
pretending they want to be near me.
3 ‘We have fasted before you!’ they say.
‘Why aren’t you impressed?
We have been very hard on ourselves,
and you don’t even notice it!’
1CRY ALOUD, spare not. Lift up your voice like a trumpet and declare to My people their transgression and to the house of Jacob their sins!
2Yet they seek, inquire for, and require Me daily and delight [externally] to know My ways, as [if they were in reality] a nation that did righteousness and forsook not the ordinance of their God. They ask of Me righteous judgments, they delight to draw near to God [in visible ways].
3Why have we fasted, they say, and You do not see it? Why have we afflicted ourselves, and You take no knowledge [of it]? Behold [O Israel], on the day of your fast [when you should be grieving for your sins], you find profit in your business, and [instead of stopping all work, as the law implies you and your workmen should do] you extort from your hired servants a full amount of labor.(A)
1 “Cry aloud, spare not;
Lift up your voice like a trumpet;
Tell My people their transgression,
And the house of Jacob their sins.
2 Yet they seek Me daily,
And delight to know My ways,
As a nation that did righteousness,
And did not forsake the ordinance of their God.
They ask of Me the ordinances of justice;
They take delight in approaching God.
3 ‘ Why have we fasted,’ they say, ‘and You have not seen?
Why have we afflicted our souls, and You take no notice?’
1-3 “Shout! A full-throated shout! Hold nothing back—a trumpet-blast shout!
Tell my people what’s wrong with their lives,
face my family Jacob with their sins!
They’re busy, busy, busy at worship,
and love studying all about me.
To all appearances they’re a nation of right-living people—
They ask me, ‘What’s the right thing to do?’
and love having me on their side.
But they also complain,
‘Why do we fast and you don’t look our way?
Why do we humble ourselves and you don’t even notice?’
Four translation, One truth, One BLUNT message from God!!
What am I hearing?
1. God was serious about getting this message out! See the words used above “Shout, Cry Aloud” , God wanted to get the people’s attention, He did not want His prophet to timidly express His heart, He wanted that prophet to go in and loudly proclaim the truth. He was not whispering here, he wasn’t saying “um, excuse me, if you would please listen”, some may even say God is not being a gentleman. Who needs a gentleman? I don’t!!! I need a savior, a life giver, one who speaks and the heavens and earth move!! I need everything God has got and will throw my way, even if that is a shout, a demand, a rebuke. Why NOT? He is the One Only true Creator and Lord, His thoughts, His words brought me into existence. Why not take Him just as He is, blessings and rebukes together. When and how did we ever get to a place to object to what God has to say to us, to think we don’t deserve his words no matter what they are. Are we above His thoughts, His ways, His truth, His expectations, His commands, His rebukes and His consequences? NO we are not, never have, never will be. Oh, Lord place your strong, righteous hands on me and shake me up, wake me up, I will listen, I will not take exception to your words and your ways because I choose to trust YOU always know best, You are always right, you love in a way that my mind hasn’t fully grasped (yet) but I have caught the beautiful scent of it, I have felt the warmth and power of it in action so many times and so many ways in my life, the one that you to allowed me to have.
2. These people were in their flesh doing what on the outside would have made it look like they were truly in love with the Lord and truly a people who walked in His ways. It was like another piece of clothing they put on, it didn’t matter that it wasn’t really their color and size, they held tight to it because it was easier to throw this outward outfit on than it was to allow their spirit and soul to be properly attired. The actually fitting of an attire for our spirit and soul may be a very uncomfortable process but in the end we will have an outfit that was always meant to be ours and it will fit us perfectly!!
3. Their fasting was not approved by God, it didn’t reach the heart so it didn’t do any spiritual good. Oh, how many times Lord did I do or say the right thing but yet it didn’t come from the heart. Lord, forgive me for all the times I have been false or empty in my spirit and my soul. Oh Lord create in me a clean heart and a right spirit!!
4. There was no fruit and no lasting effect from the way these people lived. Since their heart was empty of the spirit of God their ways were useless, empty, no good, of no purpose, they changed nothing in the world around them. Oh, Lord I want my ways to be your ways so that your TRUTH will be known to all your creation, to everyone I come in contact with. Lord I am ready to be real in you, to really walk in your ways. Bring on the measuring tape (do I measure up according to your commands, ways, desires, expectations), the mirror (so that I can truly see me the way I really am in the light of your word) and even the scissors, pins and needles. I except the chance I might get pricked and bleed and I might have to experience a cutting away. I may need to except that you want me to be attired in an outfit that I have never imagined wearing but in the end Lord I trust that I will look better (my spirit and soul) than I ever have before. I choose to believe that when I walk around in the right outfit (spiritually speaking) people will take notice, they will be drawn to me, they will want to be like me and wear what I am wearing (for all the right reasons) because I will finally look just like YOU!!!