Last week we looked at the first four of eight duties Isaiah sat before us in Isaiah 58:6-7, if we are to practice a whole-life and vibrant worship of God—in other words, if we are to display a significant work of God in our midst. These formed a helpful picture of what it would look like if God poured out his Spirit upon us and we experienced revival.
This week we move on to Isaiah 58:7d, 9d, 10a, 13 to discover the remaining four duties. A very helpful way to set these forth is simply to put them in the form of a prayer. After all, these blogs out of Isaiah 58 are designed to move us to ask God for revival. So, I encourage you to take the following and allow it to guide you in how to pray for a great awakening from God.
Our rich Lord and Savior, you who did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but instead humbled yourself and became poor that we might become rich: Work among us that we would follow your example and follow the words of Isaiah 58:7d: “and not to hide yourself from your own flesh.” May we be filled with your compassion for family, members of our church, neighbors, anyone who is flesh like we are and who experiences just like we would the pain of lostness, homelessness, poverty, hunger, or injustice. May your Spirit turn his eye and power toward us that we would not turn our eye away from a lost, dying, and hurting world—one that begins in our own home and with our own neighbors.
You have every right to condemn us, Sovereign God, yet you assure us that there is now no more condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. May we follow your example and not turn with condemnation toward others, those whose ethics or place in life does not match our own. May we “take away the…pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness” (Is. 58:9d) toward others. Please keep us from looking down upon or putting down others, but instead, help us lift others up by Christ and his Gospel. Make us into master builders, not demolition experts!
Great giver and provider, guard us from merely parting with a little, our excess, what is easy to release for the welfare of others just to appease our conscience. Instead, may we “pour out [our] soul for the hungry and satisfy the soul of the afflicted” (Is. 58:10a). So fill us Holy Spirit that we long to fill others with us, with whatever we need to give to love.
Our glorious God, we know that if we see this love in action toward others arising within us, it will be a sign of your revival. Yet, we also know there will be love in action toward you. Work in us what you deserve, that we would put you first, above all things and people. May we give you of our best time, our best talents, our best resources, our sole worship above and beyond all else. May we carry out the words of Isaiah 58:13: “…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; …honor it, not going your own ways, or seeking your own pleasure, or talking idly….”
Lord Jesus, it was you who told us that life and God’s will are summarized in loving God with all we have and others as self (Matthew 22:37-40). So work in us this love in action that the world will find us and the gospel of Jesus Christ irresistible, to the honor of your name alone!