Isaiah 58

1Shout as loud as you can! Don’t stop yourself! Shout loud like a trumpet! Tell the people about the wrong things they have done! Tell Jacob’s family about their sins! 2Then they will come every day to worship me. And they will want to learn my ways. They will become a nation that lives right. They will not quit following God’s good commands. They will ask me to judge them fairly. They will want to go to God ˻for his fair decisions˼. 3Now those people say, “We stop eating food to show honor to you. Why don’t you see us? We hurt our bodies to show honor to you. Why don’t you notice us?” But the Lord says, “You do things to please yourselves on those special days for not eating food. And you punish your servants—not your own bodies. 4You are hungry; but not for food. You are hungry for arguing and fighting, not bread. You are hungry to hit people with your evil hands. When you stop eating food, it is not for me. You don’t want to use your voice to praise me. 5Do you think on those special days for not eating food that all I want is to see people punish their bodies? Do you think I want people to look sad? Do you think I want people to bow their heads like dead plants and wear clothes of sadness? Do you think I want people to sit in ashes to show their sadness? That is what you do on your special days for not eating food. Do you think that is what the Lord wants? 6“I will tell you the kind of special day I want—a day to make people free. I want a day that you take the burdens off people. I want a day when you make the troubled people free. I want a day when you take the burdens from their shoulders. 7I want you to share your food with the hungry people. I want you to find poor people that don’t have homes, and I want you to bring them into your own homes. When you see a man that has no clothes—give him your clothes! Don’t hide ˻from helping those people˼; they are just like you.” 8If you do these things, your light will begin shining like the light of dawn. Then your wounds will heal. Your “Goodness” ˻(God)˼ will walk in front of you, and the Glory of the Lord will come following behind you. 9Then you will call to the Lord, and the Lord will answer you. You will shout to the Lord, and he will say, “Here I am.” You should stop making troubles and burdens for people. You should stop using bitter words and blaming people for things. 10You should feel sorry for hungry people and give them food. You should help the people that are troubled—satisfy their needs. Then your light will shine in the darkness. And you will have no sadness. You will be bright like sunshine at noon. 11The Lord will always lead you. He will satisfy your soul in dry lands. The Lord will give strength to your bones. You will be like a garden that has much water. You will be like a spring that always has water. 12Your cities have been destroyed for many, many years. But new cities will be built, and the foundations of these cities will continue for many, many years. You will be called “The One Who Fixes Fences.” And you will be called, “The One Who Builds Roads and Houses.” 13That will happen when you stop sinning against God’s law about the Sabbath. And that will happen when you stop doing things to please yourself on that special day. You should call the Sabbath a happy day. You should honor the Lord’s special day. You should honor that special day by not doing and saying those things you do every other day. 14Then you can ask the Lord to be kind to you. And he will carry you to the High Places above the earth. And he will give you all the things that belonged to Jacob your father. The Lord himself said these things!

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