Isaiah 6:1-9 (NIV) In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him were seraphs, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. 3 And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” 4 At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke. 5 “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.” 6 Then one of the seraphs flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” 8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” 9 He said, “Go and tell this people: “‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding; be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’
We all are attracted to high sounding, eye catching news headlines. Isaiah’s proclamation in the passage sounds like one of those but it’s different. He gives an account of his vision about heavenly worship. There are a several lessons we can learn from his experience.
- God acts in history. He created time and reveals himself to us in our human and historical contexts (verse 1).
- Worship is revelational. For us to respond to God appropriately we must have a revelation of who He is. The reason why most of our worship is shallow is because our knowledge of God is narrow. We have never had an encounter with this holy (like no other) God the creator, redeemer and judge. You can never encounter the holy God and continue to feel good about yourself. The light of God’s holiness (“high and exalted”) exposes who we truly are: wretched, pitiful sinners (verses 3 -5).
- The good news is that God’s grace is redemptive. He never leaves us in our predicament. He is the God the redeemer. Whenever we acknowledge our sinfulness and need of the savior Jesus Christ, God forgives us and restores us back to himself (verses 6-7).
- In worship we recognize the holiness of God, our sinfulness and the forgiveness
available to us through Jesus Christ. Worship entails: the recognition of the need for the sanctifying work of God; confession of our sins, forgiveness, commissioning by
God. Cleansing precedes commissioning. God wants to use vessels that are clean.
- We haven’t worshiped until we say, “Here I am send me.” Worship is responding
God: His holiness, His word, and His works. Worship is not worship just because we feel good about ourselves. Worship is worship when we have obeyed God’s word. When we have said, “Yes” to God’s will and call (verses 8-9).