by Keith McFarland
Isaiah 58:1 boldly declares, "Shout it aloud, do not hold back...Declare to my people their rebellion and to the house of Jacob their sins." What grievous sins could demand such a rebuke? What could make the people declare, "Why have we fasted and you have not seen it (58:3)?” What could make the Lord reject His people? The answer is plain,
Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice...to set the oppressed free...to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter- when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood...if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness...(58:6-10).
Throughout Scripture there is a Covenant expectation placed on God's people by God Himself to reflect His own nature through caring for the poor and needy. Two specific types of persons seem to reflect the mercy and compassion of God's heart above all the rest: the widow and the orphan. Read more ...