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Summary: "A High View of God" is an exposition of Isaiah 6:1-8, which records Isaiah's life-changing vision of God in the temple and subsequent call to prophetic ministry. The point of this sermon is that your view of God is everything! Isaiah's vision teaches thr

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A HIGH VIEW OF GOD

Isaiah 6:1-8

Isaiah 6 records Isaiah’s life-transforming vision of God and subsequent call to prophetic ministry. It is arguably one of the most well-known passages in Isaiah’s prophecy. And rightfully so, for it contains the dramatic testimony of a sinful man who had a violent encounter with God and lived to tell about it. Isaiah’s gaze was lifted above and beyond his physical surroundings and he received a vision of God that immediately, completely, and permanently changed his life. And God’s Spirit moved Isaiah to record his testimony in order to call you and me to a high view of God. No, we cannot have Isaiah’s personal vision of God. But we can, must, and need to have his resulting view of God. A.W. TOZER was right: “The greatest need of the moment is that lighthearted, superficial religionists be struck down with a vision of God high and lifted up, with his train filling the temple.”

In his book The Supremacy of God in Preaching, JOHN PIPER writes of using Isaiah 6 as a pastoral experiment. He preached this text, trying his best to exalt the glory, majesty, and holiness of God. But he intentionally omitted any personal applications. The test was this: “Would the passionate portrayal of the greatness of God in and or itself meet the needs of the people?” A young family was present that day, which had just discovered that their child was being sexually abused by a close relative. Several weeks later, Piper learned about the incredibly traumatic story. The husband took him aside one Sunday after service and said, “John, these have been the hardest months of our lives. Do you know what has gotten me through? The vision of God’s holiness that you gave me… It has been the rock we could stand on.”

Here’s the point: YOUR VIEW OF GOD IS EVERYTHING! Jeremiah 9:23-24 puts it this way: Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understand and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.” I repeat: A right view of God is everything. Without it, you have nothing. Only when God is put in the right perspective is everything else brought into focus. So let’s walk through Isaiah’s vision as it teaches us three essentials elements of a high view of God.

I. GOD IS SOVEREIGN.

The Bible is clear that we cannot see God with the naked eye. John 4:24 says, “God is Spirit.” 1 Timothy 6:16 says that God “dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see.” And 1 John 4:12 bluntly says, “No one has ever seen God.” Yet Isaiah says, “I saw the Lord.” How could Isaiah see the invisible God? Well, we get an indication of what Isaiah actually saw in the title ascribed to God: “The Lord.” The title “Lord” is used here in verse 1. And it’s also used in verse 3, but with a distinction. In verse 1, the L is capitalized, with the “o-r-d” in lower case letters. But in verse 3, the L is capitalized, with the “O-R-D” in small capitals. This is the translators’ way of indicating that two different Hebrew words are being used in the original. In verse 3, and throughout the OT, when the word “LORD” is in all capitals, it translates the word Yahweh. Later, vowels were added and the name was pronounced “Jehovah.” It’s the proper name of the one true God that means THE SELF-EXISTENT ONE. But in verse 1 the word “Lord” is spelled with lower case letters. It translates the word Adonai, which is a title meaning THE SOVEREIGN ONE.


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