The Life of a Faster
Scripture Reading: Isaiah 58:1-7
Key Verse: Isaiah 58:3
‘Why have we fasted,’ they say, ‘and you have not seen it? Why have we humbled ourselves, and you have not noticed?’ “Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please and exploit all your workers.
In our scripture for today, God is correcting and rebuking His people for their fasting habits. The problem was their lifestyle was far from what God had taught them. They were living daily lives that looked like the pagans, yet still going through the motions of their Jewish faith. The later part of our printed key verse summarizes this section of scripture: “Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please…”
The bottom line of the lesson today is simple: No amount of spiritual exercise or discipline covers up poor behavior in our daily lives. God is never impressed with our fasting, prayer, or Bible study if our lives still look like the pagans who have no God.
In Isaiah’s day, God’s people were fasting yet still getting into quarrels and strife—even fist fights! What is going on in your day? Are there constant quarrels and strife in your home? If so, fasting can’t be used to somehow “balance the books” with God. It might be a good thing to fast, seeking God’s wisdom and power to end the quarreling and strife.
Once again, we must remind ourselves that fasting or any other spiritual discipline is not an end in itself. They are to take us to higher levels of godly living!
Father, I want my life to look like you more and more. I will fast in order to gain more of you! In Jesus’ name, amen.