In my last blog, I touched on the real heart and root of the problems and issues within the church and dividing our country. It is a lack of a true and healthy fear of the Lord, which is the beginning or starting place of true wisdom. Proverbs 1:7 says: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.” There are many intelligent people who are fools and lack true wisdom because they are proud, trusting in and depending on their own human wisdom and intellectual capacity and understanding, rather than in humility, trusting in the Lord and leaning not on their own understanding, but acknowledging God in all their ways so that He can direct their paths as Proverbs 3:5 puts it. We are suffering from a lack of acknowledging the Lord, trusting in the Lord, fearing the Lord and depending on the Lord (i.e. being humble before the Lord).
We may “acknowledge” God with our mouths but our hearts are far from Him. Many “acknowledge” God with their lips but not with their lives. Many declare that they “acknowledge” God but their deeds declare they do not truly acknowledge God.
As in Hosea’s day so in our day: “There is no faithfulness, no love, no acknowledgment of God in the land. There is only cursing, lying and murder, stealing and adultery; they break all bounds, and bloodshed follows bloodshed. Because of this the land mourns, and all who live in it waste away; the beasts of the field and the birds of the air and the fish of the sea are dying.” Hosea 4:1-3
Hosea 5:4 says: “Their deeds do not permit them to return to their God. A spirit of prostitution is in their heart; they do not acknowledge the Lord.”
We need an Isaiah 6 moment.
Listen to Isaiah 6:1-8 and then let me explain.
Isaiah 6:1-8 “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. 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. And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of His glory.” At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke. “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.” Then one of the seraphs flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” 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!”
In these 8 verses, Isaiah is brought from crisis and change to seeing the unchanging and Sovereign God above it all. He then hears the seraphs (angelic beings) declaring the holiness of God and proclaiming the earth being full of His glory. Isaiah then experiences His awesome power and is “undone.” He is convicted of his sin and confesses his own personal sin and the sin of his people. At that point he has an experience where his guilt is “taken away and sin atoned for.” Upon that experience, he then hears the voice of the Lord saying “Whom shall I send and who will go for us?” Isaiah, in grateful gratitude, overcome by the grace he has experienced, offers himself, even before knowing what the mission would be or details were!
Contained in these 8 verses are realities that we need God to make real in our own hearts and lives.
Verse 1: How we need a fresh revelation of the Sovereignty of God–that He is seated on the throne in heaven! Nothing takes Him by surprise! Nothing escapes His ever watchful, never slumbering eyes! Nothing happens without His permission! He is in control! He is high and lifted up! In the midst of chaos here on earth and everything crumbling around us we need a fresh vision of this eternal truth.
Verse 2: We also need a fresh vision of the Holiness of God. We need to hear the sound of the angelic beings saying over and over again, day and night, never-ceasing: “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty!” God is perfect and pure. He is…holy.
Verse 3: We also need fresh eyes to see the whole earth full of the Glory of God. I don’t think many of us have trouble seeing it full of darkness, evil, injustice and sin. But I think some of us have a harder time seeing or focusing on the earth being full of the glory of God—but it is! Just look at creation! Look at the beauty and majesty and wonder of it all! And look at those people who have been transformed and redeemed by Jesus Christ! Think about those in whom you see the beauty and brilliance of Christ shining through. Think of those through whom the grace and goodness of God is evident in what they say and do. God said to the nation of Israel in Isaiah 60:1-3 “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the people’s, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.”
Verse 4: We also need a fresh revelation or experience of the Power of God. Many are asking “where is your God” (Psalm 42) or “where is the God of Elijah?” (2 Kings 2:14). Many are asking this out of unbelief but we are to pray in faith for fresh demonstrations of the power of God (Acts 4:30). We could use a good shaking today and display of the power of God. We really shouldn’t need that to shake us and awaken us, but I fear we do.
When there is, or someone has a fresh vision or experience of the Sovereignty of God, Holiness of God, Glory of God and Power of God they will have an Isaiah 6 moment.
Verse 5: God’s Sovereignty, Holiness, Glory and Power results in man being humbled as his sinfulness is exposed and guilt made clear. Isaiah cried out in response to the Sovereignty, Holiness, Glory and Power of God, “woe is me, I am undone!” He went on to confess not just his people’s sin, but his own personal (and specific sin). Would to God that we were brought to our knees, being humbled by God so that we cried out in confession and repentance of sin as Isaiah did! Would to God that the Spirit of God would bring this type of conviction and His people respond as Isaiah did!
Verse 6-7: Only when Isaiah confessed his sin (and was specific) did he experience the grace and forgiveness of God! Only when he confessed his guilt and sin was His guilt “taken away” and sin atoned for! The angel touched the coal to his lips (the very thing he confessed was “unclean”) purifying and cleansing him of his sin and of a guilty conscience. How we need an Isaiah 6 experience!
Verse 8: Only then, did Isaiah hear the heart and voice of God. Only once He saw God in all His splendor and himself in all his sinfulness; only when he fell down “undone” and God had picked him up and put him back together as a new man…did Isaiah begin hearing the voice of the Lord.
And the question he heard being asked from heaven is a rather sad one. “Whom shall I send…and who will go for us?”
How sad that God is actually looking for those He can use and send! How sad that there are so few with the response like Isaiah who said simply “Here I am! Send me!”
How we need more people in this place with this attitude!
How we need more people who have “ears to hear what the Spirit is saying!”
How we need more people who can hear the voice of God and are willing to offer themselves to do the will of God!
And notice Isaiah was willing to go before he even knew where God was looking to send someone to! Isaiah didn’t first ask for the details of the mission so that he could decide if he accepted the terms or not. Isaiah was not asking to see the plan to see if he could negotiate any of the details. He just offered himself as a servant to the one who had saved him and forgiven him!
Once you are secure in the love of God, you will trust God. Once you know God is in control, you won’t have to try to “take control” or “be in control” of your life. Once you are undone and then restored by God’s grace, you lose the “entitlement” and “need to know everything upfront” mentality. You just say “Here I am God!”
Have you had an Isaiah 6 experience?
Hosea 6:1-3 “Come, let us return to the Lord. He has torn us to pieces but he will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence. Let us acknowledge the Lord; let us press on to acknowledge him. As surely as the sun rises, he will appear; he will come to us like the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth.”
Don’t wait and see if others will respond to this…you respond to this.
Don’t wait for others to turn…you turn.
Don’t wait for others to humble themselves and repent…why don’t you do so right now?
Let God revive you.
Revival takes place beginning with each of us as individuals!