New International Reader's Version
4 When you fast, it ends in arguing and fighting.
You hit one another with your fists.
That is an evil thing to do.
The way you are now fasting
keeps your prayers from being heard in heaven.
5 Do you think that is the way I want you to fast?
Is it only a time for people to make themselves suffer?
Is it only for people to bow their heads like tall grass bent by the wind?
Is it only for people to lie down in ashes and clothes of mourning?
Is that what you call a fast?
Do you think I can accept that?
6 “Here is the way I want you to fast.
“Set free those who are held by chains without any reason.
Untie the ropes that hold people as slaves.
Set free those who are crushed.
Break every evil chain.