And so the Lord says, “These people say they are mine. They honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. And their worship of me is nothing but man-made rules learned by rote. Because of this, I will once again astound these hypocrites with amazing wonders. The wisdom of the wise will pass away, and the intelligence of the intelligent will disappear.” What sorrow awaits those who try to hide their plans from the Lord, who do their evil deeds in the dark! “The Lord can’t see us,” they say. He doesn’t know what’s going on!” How foolish can you be? He is the Potter, and he is certainly greater than you, the clay! Should the created thing say of the one who made it, “He didn’t make me”? Does a jar ever say, “The potter who made me is stupid”? Isaiah 29:13-16
From the text, God expressed His dismay to the people who claimed that they were devoted to Him. They were saying the right things, doing the right things, but all these activities were an affront to God for their hearts were not getting transformed and their worship was hallow. All their religious activities were mechanical. Their religious observances were their way of getting God to do what they want in life. God saw their motives and He said; “They honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” We can appear and hold on the form of godliness but our lives deny God’s power for there is no transformation. God wants us to honor Him not only with our lips but also with our lives. If our hearts are filled with real adoration of God, then our lives will reflect that we honor Him. “Bring your confessions, and return to the Lord. Say to him, “Forgive all our sins and graciously receive us, so that we may offer you our praises” (Hosea 14:2). If we remain defiant and insist on our own autonomy, we will realize that we are no match to the Sovereign God. We will miss on His grace always creating new within us. God’s rules in our lives mean that we let Him do what He pleases. “Our God is in the heavens, and he does as he wishes” (Psalm 115:3). This was why Isaiah told God’s people, “How foolish can you be? He is the Potter, and he is certainly greater than you, the clay! Should the created thing say of the one who made it, “He didn’t make me”? Does a jar ever say, “The potter who made me is stupid”? We might not understand all the things that God does or His ways doesn’t make sense, but we should respect Him and allow Him to mold us to the person He wants us to be. God is our reliable Guide in our journey through life who knows us, He knows our way, and He alone could get us through.
Noel De Guzman