Isaiah 6 "Speaking for God"
I. Vision of God
6:1 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, ...3 And they were calling to one another: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory."
Holy - He is unlike any other; He has no competition for our allegiance
Glory/Throne - He is the real King and Sovereign Ruler
Train/Seraph (burn=zeal) - He is worthy of/greater than any worship we can offer
II. View of own Vileness
5 "Woe to me!" 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."
Unless we view God as our absolute Sovereign we won't recognize the degree of our rebellion
An accurate grasp of God's nature and purpose will result in grief over our sin and that of others
The words we speak (or don't speak) reflect the condition of our hearts
III. Victory over Sin
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."
God used Isaiah because he recognized his sin was his undoing and abhorred it
God couldn't use Israel because they refused to recognized and reject their rebellion
Isaiah's confession paved the way for God's cleansing and eventual service
IV. Volunteering to be God's Voice
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!"
Isaiah could hear God's voice only after he had been cleansed from sin (responded to the revelation)
Clearly understanding God's person leads to understanding His plan and our privilege to be part of that plan
V. Vindicating God's Reputation
9 "Go and tell this people: "'Be ever hearing, but never understanding; be ever seeing, but never perceiving.' 10 Make the heart of this people calloused; make their ears dull and close their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts, and turn and be healed."
A servant's primary concern is faithfulness to his Master's will, regardless of results or opposition
God uses His servants' faithfulness for His own purposes, which are frequently beyond our current understanding
Ezekiel 3:5 And whether they listen or fail to listen_for they are a rebellious house_they will know that a prophet has been among them. 7 But the house of Israel is not willing to listen to you because they are not willing to listen to me, for the whole house of Israel is hardened and obstinate. 8 But I will make you as unyielding and hardened as they are. 9 I will make your forehead like the hardest stone, harder than flint...Say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign Lord says,' whether they listen or fail to listen."
Jeremiah 2:9 Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, "Now, I have put my words in your mouth. 18 Today I have made you a fortified city, an iron pillar and a bronze wall to stand against the whole land_against the kings of Judah, its officials, its priests and the people of the land. 19 They will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you and will rescue you," declares the Lord.
Questions for Discussion/Reflection:
1. Why does God send prophets when no one will pay attention to them anyway?
2. What excuses are commonly offered to exclude oneself from service?
3. Of the five steps to service above, which is the most difficult?
4. Are you waiting for a "call" or will you accept your ingraved invitation?
5. Why should a prophet speak when no one wants to listen? What would be his motivation?
ACTION POINT: Where are you in the process described above..What's the next step?