Has not my hand made all these things,Isaiah 66:2 NIV
and so they came into being?”
declares the LORD.
“These are the ones I look on with favor:
those who are humble and contrite in spirit,
and who tremble at my word.
In this concluding chapter of the book of Isaiah, he contrasts two types of people. Those who trembled at God’s word, and those who did not. Both of these groups could be considered faithful to the Lord. Yet the difference between them is significant.
The first group was focused on externals. They focused on worship facilities and the practice of sacrificial rituals. They were looking to fulfill the letter of the law in what they did. And they likely believed that God was satisfied with that. But he was not. Outward obedience to the law was never what God wanted from his people.
The second group, mentioned in this verse, was composed of those who trembled at God’s word. These were the ones that God looked on with favor. Trembling at God’s word is more than shaking with fear when the Bible is read. Instead, it is listening intently to what it has to say and responding appropriately. Josiah did this in 2 Kings 22:11. When the book of the law was read to him, he tore his robes because he recognized that Israel had not been obedient to God’s word and was facing his judgment. Because what he heard made a dramatic impact on his life.
God is not all that interested in my outward forms of worship. What will meet with his approval is a heart that is sensitive to his instruction. A heart that seeks to follow him in every area of life. What God wants from me is a surrendered life walking with him. One that trembles at his word.