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Isaiah: 58

True fasting.  Is.58.1-12

1"Cry aloud, spare not,
Lift up your voice like a trumpet;
declare to my people their transgression,
to the house of Jacob their sins.
2Yet they seek me daily,
and delight to know my ways,
as if they were a nation that did righteousness
and did not forsake the ordinance of their God;
they ask of me righteous judgments,
they delight to draw near to God.
3'Why have we fasted, and thou seest it not?
Why have we humbled ourselves,
and thou takest no knowledge of it?'
Behold, in the day of your fast you seek your own pleasure, Or: pursue your own business
and oppress all your workers.
4Behold, you fast only to quarrel
and to fight and to hit with wicked fist.
Fasting like yours this day
will not make your voice to be heard on high.
5Is such the fast that I choose,
a day for a man to humble himself?
Is it to bow down his head like a rush,
and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him?
Will you call this a fast,
and a day acceptable to the LORD?

6"Is not this the fast that I choose:
to loose the bonds of wickedness,
to undo the thongs of the yoke,
to let the oppressed go free,
and to break every yoke?
7Is it not to share your bread with the hungry,
and bring the homeless poor into your house;
when you see the naked, to cover him,
and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?
8Then shall your light break forth like the dawn,
and your healing shall spring up speedily;
your righteousness shall go before you,
the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard.
9Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer;
you shall cry, and he will say, Here I am.

"If you take away from the midst of you the yoke,
the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness,
10if you pour yourself out for the hungry
and satisfy the desire of the afflicted,
then shall your light rise in the darkness
and your gloom be as the noonday.
11And the LORD will guide you continually,
and satisfy your desire with good things, The meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain
and make your bones strong;
and you shall be like a watered garden,
like a spring of water,
whose waters fail not.
12And your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt;
you shall raise up the foundations of many generations;
you shall be called the repairer of the breach,
the restorer of streets to dwell in.

Keeping the Sabbath.  Is.58.13-14

13"If you turn back your foot from the sabbath,
from doing your pleasure Or: business on my holy day,
and call the sabbath a delight
and the holy day of the LORD honorable;
if you honor it, not going your own ways,
or seeking your own pleasure Or: pursuing your own business, or talking idly;
14then you shall take delight in the LORD,
and I will make you ride upon the heights of the earth;
I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father,
for the mouth of the LORD has spoken."


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Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 1952 [2nd edition, 1971], Apocrypha, copyright 1957; The Third and Fourth Books of the Maccabees and Psalm 151, copyright 1977, by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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