Summary: Let us cast off inadequate views of God and embrace His sovereignty, Holiness, and Power in our lives and in the world.
Here Am I; Send Me! Isaiah 6:1-13
“No controversy swirls around the date for Isaiah’s encounter with God in the temple. It happened in 740 B.C., the year in which King Uzziah died. Unresolved controversy, however, does come from the question, "How does Isaiah’s experience in the temple relate to the first five chapters in the book?" Is chapter six misplaced? Did Isaiah prophesy before he was called? Is his experience in the temple a confirmation of his calling? Or did he have a special reason for placing chapter six after the opening chapters? The account of Isaiah’s calling is not misplaced. To force a chronological sequence upon Isaiah is to miss the purpose of the prophet’s writing. Our perspective is that he summarized his prophecies and stated his themes in the first five chapters to show the priority of the message over the messenger. If so, Isaiah continues to be consistent with his introduction and his writing throughout the book in which the answer to the question what takes precedence over the question who. As we have already noted, Isaiah is not a prophet on an ego trip. He mentions his own name only when it is relevant to a historical happening and omits it entirely when the vision takes him into a future of which he will not be part. Yet, we also remember that Isaiah alone among the prophets claimed to receive his prophetic authority directly from God. Logically, then, his decision to include a personal testimonial of his encounter with God when he received his vision serves as the sign and seal for his prophetic authority.” (The Preacher’s Commentary)
This morning we will examine the calling of the “Prince of Prophets,” Isaiah. We will look at God’s dealings with Isaiah and the issues which were raised in God’s conversation with Isaiah. Isaiah time and again is diligent in his keeping the emphasis off of himself and squarely upon God.
There are two great and prevailing themes present in all of the oracles of Isaiah. First, we learn a great truth for all of us to apply, especially teachers of God’s Word, that in our lives we should mimic the prophet in taking the emphasis off of self and allowing God to reign supreme in our lives; in all that we are and do.
Second, in his constant reference to God, the prophet offers great insight in the character and nature of the sovereign God of the universe. We will examine both.
Confronted by God (Isaiah 6:1-4):
In the opening section of today’s text we see that when God called Isaiah He confronted him in a powerful way. There are times in our lives when God breaks onto the scene and confronts us with His presence, with His will for our lives, and with His word. He may not do it by whisking us away into the very throne room of Heaven but He will do it nevertheless.
The question for us to answer is whether we will be willing to listen to His voice when it comes? I have occasionally shared my journey of calling to the ministry. Mine was a journey more than a onetime event, though to be sure there were large markers along the path. When I was 16 I had a profound experience as I pray at my grandmother’s house for a very long time.
I was not swept up into the throne room of Heaven, there was no lightening or thunder, no burning bush; just the roaring silence of God’s voice speaking directly to my heart. From that time until finally coming to terms with the reality that God was going to have His way in my life, there were times when I pursed God and times when He pursued me.
I was terrified of the reality that God desired to use me for the ministry. I felt inadequate, unskilled, ungifted, I was a messed up kid from a messed up family who grew up in a messed of city in Northern California. How on earth could God use me? My fear was fueled by an inadequate view of God’s provision.
I was right that I was not good enough and did not measure up. But my ability to measure up was not what was at stake. God had not asked if I had something to offer Him for service; He has called me for service and God always supplies.
When God sends us He always sends us with the provision necessary for the journey ahead. I was answering the wrong question for the question was not “Am I good enough to be used of God.” The question was is God big enough to make a way for His plans to come to fruition. The trouble with me was that I had an inadequate view of God. I wonder if I am not alone. Has God called you to do something and you feel like you don’t measure up?