Daily Reading: 4-13-16
Isaiah 6:1-8 New Living Translation (NLT)
In our reading today, we recognize Isaiah (like Ezekiel) uses imagery to describe a heavenly realm that opens up to him in a vision; he sees the Lord. This vision is Isaiah’s commission from the Lord to be a messenger to His people. NOTE: King Uzziah was a good king for Israel, but he tried to take over the high priest’s duties (not God’s idea) and God afflicted him with leprosy. He was trying to do in human strength what only God can do. As a result, during Uzziah’s reign many of the people wander away from their relationship with the Lord; they reject God’s holy ways for living. As we read, we get a strong message that God alone decides who represents and speaks for Him; it requires a vision of Truth, repentance, a purifying touch, and a willing heart for the messenger. Let’s read:
Isaiah’s Cleansing and Call
6 It was in the year King Uzziah (a permissive king 742BCE) died that I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple. 2 Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. 3 They were calling out to each other,
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies!
The whole earth is filled with his glory!”
4 Their voices shook the Temple to its foundations, and the entire building was filled with smoke.
5 Then I said, “It’s all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”
6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a burning coal he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. 7 He touched my lips with it and said, “See, this coal has touched your lips. Now your guilt is removed, and your sins are forgiven.”
8 Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?”
I said, “Here I am. Send me.”
I cannot help but notice the progressive call here from God to Isaiah. First, God gets Isaiah’s attention in a vision; God’s people have been taught to have a small view of their God. In this authentic vision of the Lord, God’s holiness (moral perfection, purity, and sinlessness) is central and encircled around Him are angels who passionately proclaim the Truth of this purity. Second, after Isaiah has an accurate image of the God in whose image he is made according to Scripture, Isaiah realizes his own selfish and filthy character. He has misrepresented God with his life. Isaiah then professes his own rebellious state of being which is a manifestation of true repentance. Third, one of the angels who “burn” or brand the soul for God takes a hot coal (imagery of the work of the Holy Spirit) and touches it to Isaiah’s lips so he may speak Truth. Fourth, Isaiah’s sins are forgiven and his shame removed. Fifth, Isaiah is ready to be a messenger of Truth to God’s people.
Prayer: Lord, You rule all things in heaven, on earth, things above and under; yet, You long to share Your love with me to rule my heart in Truth. Your love is amazing and I am grateful for Your ongoing care to create holiness in me. I desire to represent You in this world. Holy Spirit, “Here I am!” Please continue to brand me with Truth and send me to share Your message of love with others. In Jesus name. Amen.