Apr 16, 2019
Denying self is difficult, whether you’re talking about passing up your favorite dessert or refusing to satisfy an immoral urge. More often than not, we tend to give in to our inner desires, because the alternative is much harder. But God is all about self-denial and self-sacrifice. In His economy, self is not a god to be worshiped, but a false idol to be avoided at all costs. And one thing God particularly loathes is when His people give Him lip service, pretending to honor Him through acts of self-denial, when all the while their own needs remain their number one priority. In Isaiah 58:1-14, God is going to level some serious charges against the people of Judah, exposing their hypocrisy and false displays of self-denial and sacrifice. They were doing all the right things, but for all the wrong reasons. And yet, they thought their acting had been good enough to fool God. But He was not impressed by their fasting and pious-looking displays of religious zeal, because He could see into their hearts.