Daily Thoughts : January 23rd
Isa 1:13 Stop bringing meaningless offerings! Your incense is detestable to me. New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations-- I cannot bear your evil assemblies.
You make think using a reference to ‘New' Moons, stretches this meditation subject a little, but the truth is that the new moon signified a new month and with it came a sacrifice to honour the Lord: “On the first of every month, present to the LORD a burnt offering of two young bulls, one ram and seven male lambs a year old, all without defect,” (Num 28:11) and “This is the monthly burnt offering to be made at each new moon during the year.” (Num 28:14) This was a major monthly celebration when work stopped. It was, we suggest, a reminder of another month passing and a new one beginning, and thus also a reminder of the Lord's goodness in provision, so in fact it was as important as all the other celebrations.
The only trouble was that God wanted sincerity in their sacrifices and in their celebrations, and unfortunately in Isaiah's days they were really just doing it by habit – rather like some people go to church every week. What was worse, they disdained the Lord and their lives left a lot to be desired.
The message of Isaiah is that we can't pretend to be holy on special days while living unholy lives the rest of the time. If we think we are pleasing God and that He'll be happy with our ‘special day' worship, we're mistaken! To be one of the Lord's people means that we are to be holy seven days a week and no amount of putting on special meetings, putting on a show, will balance that.
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