#DailyDevotion Have You Made Your Hearts Far From The Lord?
Isaiah 29: 11 And the vision of all this has become to you like the words of a book that is sealed. When men give it to one who can read, saying, “Read this,” he says, “I cannot, for it is sealed.” 12 And when they give the book to one who cannot read, saying, “Read this,” he says, “I cannot read.” 13 And the Lord said: “Because this people draw near with their mouth and honor me with their lips, while their hearts are far from me, and their fear of me is a commandment taught by men, 14 therefore, behold, I will again do wonderful things with this people, with wonder upon wonder; and the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the discernment of their discerning men shall be hidden.”
In Isaiah’s day the people of Israel and Judah were rebelling against the Lord. They did not worship him alone. They worshipped other gods and engaged in all their detestable practices. Out of their worship of their false gods came forth all their injustices upon the poor, widows, orphans, foreigners and the weak. Since they did not desire to do the works of God nor did they want to hear what the Lord wanted to speak to them, he made his word a closed book. For those who could read its meaning was sealed and for those who couldn’t read, it no longer mattered.
They honored the Lord God with their lips. They went to the temple and high places to offer up sacrifices because it was required of them but their hearts were not in it. They offered up sacrifices to other false gods as well. Man has a religious bent. We are going to worship something or someone purely out of nature, instinct if you will. But our hearts are not always devoted to the One who created us and provides us with all good things. So it was in Jesus’ day as he said this prophecy was fulfilled in the Pharisees and Scribes. They did not worship false gods as their ancestors did. But they would not worship the Lord as he desired to be worshipped. The Torah and the writings were closed to their minds. They placed man made laws over and above the Law of God.
But Jesus also fulfilled the latter half of this reading. He did wonderful things with this people with wonder upon wonder. He healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, opened the ears of the deaf and speech to the mute. Jesus forgave the sins of sinners and he raised the dead. Jesus taught the people the ways of the Lord as he had given it to them in the Torah and more than that, he superseded the Torah by fulfilling it in his flesh. He instituted a new covenant with new signs and a way of life. This covenant he sealed with his own flesh and blood upon the cross. He made peace between God and man. Having done that, he was raised from the dead and ascended to the place of his origin, the right hand of God the Father.
In doing this what St. Paul says fulfills the prophets words, 1Co 1:18-31 ESV For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. (19) For it is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.”… (21) For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe.”
O Living God and Father, grant us your Spirit that your word would be an open book to us that we may gain your wisdom and worship you and your Son Jesus in spirit and in truth and ever draw close to you with our hearts. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.