‘Why(A) have we fasted,’ they say, ‘and You have not seen?
Why have we (B)afflicted our souls, and You take no notice?’

“In fact, in the day of your fast you find pleasure,
And [a]exploit all your laborers.
(C)Indeed you fast for strife and debate,
And to strike with the fist of wickedness.
You will not fast as you do this day,
To make your voice heard on high.
Is (D)it a fast that I have chosen,
(E)A day for a man to afflict his soul?
Is it to bow down his head like a bulrush,
And (F)to spread out sackcloth and ashes?
Would you call this a fast,
And an acceptable day to the Lord?

Is this not the fast that I have chosen:
To (G)loose the bonds of wickedness,
(H)To undo the [b]heavy burdens,
(I)To let the oppressed go free,
And that you break every yoke?
Is it not (J)to share your bread with the hungry,
And that you bring to your house the poor who are [c]cast out;
(K)When you see the naked, that you cover him,
And not hide yourself from (L)your own flesh?

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  1. Isaiah 58:3 Lit. drive hard
  2. Isaiah 58:6 Lit. bonds of the yoke
  3. Isaiah 58:7 wandering

12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’

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