1The Lord told me, “Shout out loud. Do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet. Tell my people that they have refused to obey me. Tell the family of Jacob how much they have sinned.2Day after day they worship me. They seem ready and willing to know how I want them to live. They act as if they were a nation that does what is right. They act as if they have not turned away from my commands. They claim to want me to give them fair decisions. They seem ready and willing to come near and worship me.3‘We have gone without food,’ they say. ‘Why haven't you noticed it? We have made ourselves suffer. Why haven't you paid any attention to us?’ “On the day when you fast, you do as you please. You take advantage of all of your workers.4When you fast, it ends in arguing and fighting. You hit one another with your fists. That is an evil thing to do. The way you are now fasting keeps your prayers from being heard in heaven.5Do you think that is the way I want you to fast? Is it only a time for a man to make himself suffer? Is it only for people to bow their heads like tall grass that is bent by the wind? Is it only for people to lie down on black cloth and ashes? Is that what you call a fast? Do you think I can accept that?6“Here is the way I want you to fast. “Set free those who are held by chains without any reason. Untie the ropes that hold people as slaves. Set free those who are crushed. Break every evil chain.7Share your food with hungry people. Provide homeless people with a place to stay. Give naked people clothes to wear. Provide for the needs of your own family.8Then the light of my blessing will shine on you like the rising sun. I will heal you quickly. I will march out ahead of you. And my glory will follow behind you and guard you. That is because I always do what is right.9You will call out to me for help. And I will answer you. You will cry out. And I will say, ‘Here I am.’ “Get rid of the chains you use to hold others down. Stop pointing your finger at others as if they had done something wrong. Stop saying harmful things about them.10Work hard to feed hungry people. Satisfy the needs of those who are crushed. Then my blessing will light up your darkness. And the night of your suffering will become as bright as the noonday sun.11I will always guide you. I will satisfy your needs in a land that is baked by the sun. I will make you stronger. You will be like a garden that has plenty of water. You will be like a spring whose water never runs dry.12Your people will rebuild the cities that were destroyed long ago. And you will build again on the old foundations. You will be called The One Who Repairs Broken Walls. You will be called The One Who Makes City Streets Like New Again.13“Do not work on the Sabbath day. Do not do just anything you want to on my holy day. Make the Sabbath a day you can enjoy. Honor my holy day. Do not work on it. Do not do just anything you want to. Do not talk about things that are worthless.14Then you will find your joy in me. I will give you control over the most important places in the land. And you will enjoy all of the good things in the land I gave your father Jacob.” The Lord has spoken.
English Standard Version
True and False Fasting
1“Cry aloud; do not hold back; lift up your voice like a trumpet; declare to my people their transgression, to the house of Jacob their sins. (Le 25:9; Joe 2:1; Mic 3:8)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 judgment of their God; they ask of me righteous judgments; they delight to draw near to God. (Isa 1:11; Isa 29:13; Zec 7:5)3‘Why have we fasted, and you see it not? Why have we humbled ourselves, and you take no knowledge of it?’ Behold, in the day of your fast you seek your own pleasure, and oppress all your workers. (Ne 5:1; Isa 60:17; Mal 3:14)4Behold, you fast only to quarrel and to fight and to hit with a 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 person to humble himself? Is it to bow down his head like a reed, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Will you call this a fast, and a day acceptable to the Lord? (Le 16:29; Zec 7:5)6“Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? (Ne 5:10; Isa 58:9)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? (Ne 5:5; Isa 58:10; Eze 18:7; Mt 25:35)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. (Job 11:17; Ps 85:13; Isa 52:12; Jer 30:17)9Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry, and he will say, ‘Here I am.’ If you take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, (Pr 6:13; Isa 58:6)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. (Isa 58:7; Isa 58:8)11And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail. (Jer 31:12)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. (Ezr 6:14; Ne 4:6; Isa 61:4; Isa 65:21)13“If you turn back your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure 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 talking idly; (Ne 13:15; Isa 56:2; Isa 58:3)14then you shall take delight in the Lord, and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth; I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.” (De 32:13; Isa 1:20; Jer 50:19)