in Isaiah 58, it talks about "True Fasting".
It starts our speaking of Isreal's condition and their wickedness.
2 For day after day they seek me out;
they SEEM eager to know my ways,
AS IF they were a nation that does what is right
and has not forsaken the commands of its God.
They ask me for just decisions
and SEEM eager for God to come near them.
now when it speaks of "seem" and "as if" this implies that God sees through their religious rituals and traditions, and sees man's heart.
5 Is this the kind of fast I have chosen,
only a day for a man to humble himself?
Is it only for bowing one's head like a reed
and for lying on sackcloth and ashes?
Is that what you call a fast,
a day acceptable to the LORD ?
God asks them a question. "do you think that your religiosity will get Me to do anything for you? do you think that I cannot see your heart for who you really are? though you do these rituals, your heart is wicked. I KNOW you.
4 Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife,
and in striking each other with wicked fists.
You cannot fast as you do today
and expect your voice to be heard on high.
6 "Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?
This is what I desire, for you to do. obedience not sacrifice.
fight for justice and free the oppressed.
7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—
when you see the naked, to clothe him,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
Give to everyone to fulfill their needs. Not just in the physical (though very important), but also to share the Food Christ has fed you to sustain the spiritually weary and hungry, to clothe those in shame of sin with protection of Love.
8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.
you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.
THEN, when your heart is right, you will call out in intercession, and your prayers will shine like the sun. He will answer you and bring justice and SWIFTLY.
10bthen your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.
11 The LORD will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.
These are my politics.