Bringing Authentic Worship to God
Thoughts on Isaiah 58:3-12
Elfed Godding 15.02.21
Our reading this week is a wake-up call from God for His people in the southern Kingdom of Judah. They had forgotten to live by God’s priorities and their expression of worshipping God had become meticulous in attention to ceremonial detail but socially ruthless.
So God sounds an alarm bell though Isaiah’s prophecy. The people of Judah wanted to know from God: ‘Why have we fasted and you have not seen it? Why have we humbled ourselves and you have not noticed?’ Verse 3.
God answers. It is because their worship was merely a means of striking a deal with Him to get what they wanted. And because their belief and practice had become more influenced by the prevailing values and rituals of their environment. That was Canaanite culture. Verses 3b-5.
So how do we worship God?
By living as Jesus lived, verses 6-7. Compare these words to those of Jesus in Luke 4:16-19 and Matthew 25:31-46. The Great Commission given to us by Jesus in Matt 28:19 is ‘Go and make disciples of all nations’ and the Great Command Jesus gave us in John 13:34 is ‘Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another’. Let’s take a moment to ask the Lord to increase our passion to reach the lost and to increase our love for Him.
Living this way brings the blessing of God’s Kingdom (His rule, His presence) personally, verses 8-9a, 10b-11. ‘Your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear. Your righteousness will go before you.
Living in this way brings the blessing of God’s Kingdom civically, verses 11-12. ‘You will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings’.
What we say and the way we live, expresses our worship of God. This is our spiritual act of worship; Romans 12:1-2.
Let’s pray that we will have God-given opportunities to share our faith with family, neighbours and friends during this season of lock down.
If you have time, take a moment to worship the Lord using the words of Revelation 9:10-12 by listening to this song sung by Crystal Lewis here.