“Is it not to divide your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into the house; when you see the naked, to cover him; and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?” (Isaiah 58:7)
Nearly the entire chapter of Isaiah 58 discusses the observance of fasting. The “it” referred to in the above verse is fasting. There are many good reasons for fasting. This verse states that the observer is to be a conduit of blessing for god.
You can’t divide your bread unless you have bread to divide. You can’t bring the homeless into your house unless you have a house. You can’t clothe the naked unless you have clothing to give them. God says that if you fast, He will bless you so that you have bread to share. He doesn’t mind blessing you as long as He can use the blessing to bless others. Notice the final statement. Your circumstances will change so that you can help others.
“Then your light will break out like the dawn, and your recovery will speedily spring forth; and your righteousness will go before you; the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard” (v. 8). There are so many great promises here. With fasting, the flesh becomes weaker, and the spirit can shine forth like a light. Do you know that many of our bodies’ problems are related to the weakness of our souls? God says to strengthen your soul in fasting and the healing will spring forth.