A Nugget from New Life Network
Scripture for the Day January 9, 2019
But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort. (1 Corinthians 14:3)
Isaiah was one of greatest prophets of all time. Jesus quoted him more than any other prophet. In Isaiah 58 this great prophet dealt with the attitude of our hearts, and especially a preacher’s heart. Preachers are no different than anyone else. They get hurt in this life probably more than anyone and sometimes their heart can become hard and their words can become critical and hard as a result.
As ministers of the Word (which all believers are supposed to be) we must realize that we must guard our hearts so that the words out of our mouth edify, exhort, and comfort. Angry and hate filled words do not edify, exhort, and comfort. Words of love from a pure heart will always edify, exhort, and comfort, even if the message is corrective in nature.
Listen to the words of Isaiah with your Spirit. They remind us that it’s not about us. We can all speak the truth in love, even when there is sinful and hypocritical religious hearts to deal with.
Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. (Notice that Isaiah is not calling us to be quiet)
Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness, and forsook not the ordinance of their God: they ask of me the ordinances of justice; they take delight in approaching to God. Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold, in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labours. Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high. (Religious hypocrisy mixed with works theology and vanity)
Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the Lord? Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? (God’s fast is all about the people being set free!!!)
Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy reward. Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noon day: And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not. (God’s promises to all those that carry His message with the right heart!!!)
And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in. If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it. (His ways work better!!!)