When the Church is Corrupted with Wickedness, Oppression of the Weak Always Occurs
Hear the word of the LORD, you rulers of Sodom! Give ear to the teaching of our God, you people of Gomorrah! “What to me is the multitude of your sacrifices? says the LORD; I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams and the fat of well-fed beasts; I do not delight in the blood of bulls, or of lambs, or of goats. “When you come to appear before me, who has required of you this trampling of my courts? Bring no more vain offerings; incense is an abomination to me. New moon and Sabbath and the calling of convocations– I cannot endure iniquity and solemn assembly. Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hates; they have become a burden to me; I am weary of bearing them. When you spread out your hands, I will hide my eyes from you; even though you make many prayers, I will not listen; your hands are full of blood. Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause. (Isaiah 1:10-17)
We have here the Lord’s words to His own people, Israel, in the days of the Old Covenant. So corrupt had they become that He calls them Sodom and Gomorrah. They continued on with their multitudes of sacrifices, claiming to worship the Lord faithfully, but the Lord rejects it. He sees the reality of their hearts and motives and all that their “worship” is to him is a “trampling of His courts.” He commands it to cease. Their offerings are disgusting to Him. Rank iniquity and a supposed “solemn assembly” simply cannot co-exist. They stood in their worship services and spread out their hands to pray. Those same hands were covered with guilt — with the blood of the ones they had oppressed. They were doers of evil. Now notice very carefully in the Lord’s command to them to repent that the “good” they needed to learn involved seeking justice, correcting oppression, bringing justice to the fatherless, and pleading the widow’s cause. Isn’t that interesting? This tells us that one of the most wicked evils carried out by the “church” of that day was the oppression and abuse of widows and orphans. Therefore, as we have said in other posts on this blog, where there is injustice dealt out to abuse victims and where the abusers are allowed to remain in the assembly of the “church,” spreading out their hands in “worship” each Sunday, you can be sure what the Lord thinks of the entire mess. He calls for such a church to cease from its worship and repent. It would be better for the doors of such a place to be locked shut until everyone washes themselves from evil by true repentance. The oppression of the weak, of victims, even the abuse of children is quite widespread in today’s churches. Isaiah plainly tells us here what the Lord thinks of such places, AND what such “churches” truly are in reality.