HOW REAL IS OUR COMMITMENT?
What was wrong with Israel when Isaiah spoke these words of God to them? The same thing that is wrong with many people today-lack of real commitment to God and his service, though they are often found in church.
Isaiah was to speak so that no-one could misunderstand him. He was to show the people their sin.
What were the people doing which so displeased God? They were religious formalists. They were relying on ritual for their acceptance before God. Fasting was one of their ways of doing this. They thought this would please God.
God's plan for fasting was very different. Going without food made them irritable and difficult (v. 4). God wanted fasting to be the means of leading them closer to himself.
God's plan is still the same. He wants our worship to bring us into deeper fellowship with himself. He is waiting for us to share our time, our love, ourselves with him in deeper ways than we have ever done before.
In verses 6 and 7 God mentions the people lack of concern for others. He is saying 'If you really mean business with me; if your life is truly dedicated to me; if your commitment to me is what it should be; all this will be seen in your attitude toward others. You will feed those who are hungry and clothe those who need it. You will do everything you can to help those less fortunate than yourselves.'
What is the application of these verses to us today? If our own personal commitment to Jesus Christ is what we say it is, it too will be seen in our concern for others. If someone is sick, if they are in need, if they don't know Jesus Christ, we will be the ones to help them and point them to the Saviour.
Notice the wonderful promises of verses 9 to 11 and particularly claim verse 11 for yourself as God's word to you today. Mark the five things God promises and ask him to make them real in your life today.