Religion That Pleases the Lord (Isaiah 58)

In Isaiah 57 we learned that God delights to draw near to the contrite and lowly, to those who recognize their great need, who mourn over their sinfulness. But in chapter 58 we find that there is a way to look humble and repentant on the outside yet remain unrepentant on the inside. In other words, we can be guilty of hypocrisy. This is because genuine repentance doesn’t just stop with having a right view of ourselves and our holy God. Repentance is not demonstrated in ritual alone but in actually doing what our Lord requires: doing justice, loving kindness, and walking humbly with him in all of life.

In this sermon, pastor Matt reminds us how religion that pleases the Lord comes from a repentant heart that delights in God and all his ways. True worship is the result of a deep love for God and an experience of his grace, reflected not just in an observance of ritual but a love for neighbor.