Scriptures for today
- Isaiah 58:1-12
- Psalm 51
- Matthew 18:1-7
Fasting – it’s not about you! Isaiah 58:1-12
Sometimes it seems like one chapter ends and another one starts because a monk ran out of paper and had to start a new scroll. To make sense of this passage, I had to go back to read the last few verses of Chapter 57.
“Peace, peace to those far and near” says the Lord. “And I will heal them.” But the wicked are like the tossing sea, which cannot rest, whose waves cast upon mire and mud. “There is no peace,” says my God, “for the wicked”.
They set the context for the prophet’s message.
People might seem eager, but their self-denial and humility is only for show. The Lord isn’t asking us to simply deny ourselves. What is needed is for the powerful “to loose the chains of injustice”. In other words, refraining from self-indulgence is only half of fasting. The other half is to “share your food with the hungry and provide the poor wanderer with shelter.”
This is a New Testament message of social justice, buried deep in the Old Testament. ♥
by Doug Chandler