Talk about contrast. In Psalm 50 we read, I bring no charges against you concerning your sacrifices or concerning your burnt offerings, which are ever before me. NIV
But we turn to Isaiah and read, “The multitude of your sacrifices—” what are they to me? says the Lord. “I have more than enough of burnt offerings, of rams and the fat of fattened animals;
I have no pleasure in the blood of bulls and lambs and goats.” NIV
Which is the Word of God?
Both. When we read the whole of Psalm 50 and Isaiah 1, we should understand that in both passages God’s rebellious people are being instructed to stop doing only the outward manifestations of being a God-people and return to the true nature of Godliness. In the paraphrase by Eugene Peterson: I’m sick of your religion, religion, religion, while you go right on sinning. MGS
God expects us to worship him, but to also to, Stop doing evil, learn to do good! Seek justice, relieve the oppressed, defend orphans, plead for the widow. CJB As Jesus put it, Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit, like people waiting for their master’s return after a wedding feast. CJB
Think about how often Jesus used weddings to describe life eternal with God. He even assured us that it would be like a wedding feast. Matthew 22:2: “The kingdom of Heaven,” he said, “is like a king who arranged a wedding for his son.” CJB
While Jesus tells us in other places that we will be guests at the wedding (perhaps even the bride), in this passage he is admonishing us to be ready for his return. When the master of the house left for a feast, the servants remained at home keeping the house in readiness for the master’s return, be it midnight or five am. The master might want a bath, fresh clothes, some food or drink. All had to be ready for any possibility.
We cannot forget that Jesus calls us to be servants, not masters. He calls us to give, not to expect others to give to us. Jesus calls us to Seek justice, relieve the oppressed, defend orphans, plead for the widow. CJB In short, Jesus calls us to do good.
Oh, and while we wait, have faith as did Abraham.
Be righteous and do good.